A group of more than 500 singers will greet the first visitors to the new Tate Modern gallery when it opens in June, underlining its new focus on live and performance art.
Following that visitors can look forward to being corralled by horseback police in the Turbine Hall courtesy of Tania Bruguera's Tatlin's Whisper, as well as experiencing experimental sculpture from Tokyo, social art from South Africa and performance from Romania. "Performance and engagement is becoming ever more prevalent.
Tate director Nicolas Serota admitted the new gallery, which is located behind the iconic South Bank development, was still £30m short of fully costing the extensive new building project. This appears to leave it in virtually the same financial position it was in eight months ago, with Serota saying: "We're confident we'll raise the money… I'm speaking to lots of benefactors". He said the shortfall would not affect the June opening, adding the new building would “give a new face to the city”.
The development was originally slated to open in time for the 2012 Olympics but was pushed back when it became clear this was wildly ambitious; the total cost has risen from £215m to £260m.
The first interior pictures of the new building show a sleek, airy space with the same emphasis on wood and poured concrete as the other Tate modern buildings.