The Little Mermaid goes to China

On March 25 the famous Little Mermaid will leave Copenhagen.

A basin with water from Copenhagen Harbour where the audience can take a dip, and The Little Mermaid placed in the middle. Those are the plans of the Danish architects Bjarke Ingels Group for the Danish Pavilion at World Expo 2010 in the Chinese metropolis Shanghai. Bjarke Ingels Group's proposal won in the competition of total eight groups of architects and designers. 70 million people are expected to visit the Expo Shanghai from 1 May - 31 October 2010.

The Danish Pavilion is called Welfairytales - a contraction of the words welfare and fairy tale. Here, visitors can greet The Little Mermaid, and they will be presented with new modern fairytales about the Danish welfare society.

The famous sculpture of The Little Mermaid at Langelinie quay was donated to the city of Copenhagen by the owner of the Carlsberg Brewery and the great connoisseur of arts Carl Jacobsen in 1913. Carl loved the ballet and often visited the Royal Theatre. Infatuated by the ballet The Little Mermaid, and by the dancer Ellen Price de Plane who starred in the title role, he asked the artist Edvard Eriksen to create a sculpture that could capture her graceful figure. Eriksen took on the job and sculpted the mermaid using his wife as a model. Today The Little Mermaid is the biggest tourist attraction in Denmark, and for many visitors the symbol of Copenhagen and Denmark.

The Little Mermaid will be gone from 25 March - December 2010. While she is away, visitors to Copenhagen will be able to experience at Langelinie an art installation by Ai Weiwei, a famous Chinese artist and designer.

The Little Mermaid will start her historic trip on Thursday 25 March at 14:00. The program contains a dance performance based on the theme of the Danish Pavilion, Welfairytales, as well as Chinese and Danish children singing songs from Denmark and China. Danish and Chinese officials will be there to send her off. Then she will be lifted away from her rock and driven away.

The Carlsberg Group is the forth leading brewery group in the world, with a large portfolio of beer and soft drinks brands. Its flagship brand – Carlsberg – is one of the fastest growing and bestknown beer brands in the world. About 43,000 people work for the Carlsberg Group, and its products are sold in more than 150 markets. In 2009 the Carlsberg Group brewed 116 million hectolitres of beer.

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