Australian company backs the Momentary with $1 million

by Talk Business & Politics staff ( 605 views 

PHOTO CREDIT: Stephen Ironside. Pictured, from left, are Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art Executive Director Rod Bigelow, Melissa Babbage, Rode Microphones Founder and President Peter Freedman, Crystal Bridges Founder and Board Chair Alice Walton, Momentary Director Lieven Bertels and Australian Ambassador to the U.S. Joe Hockey.

The Momentary announced Friday (Dec. 7) a $1 million gift from Australian-based audio company Rode Microphones.

As part of the funding, Rode Microphones will provide audio equipment to assist musicians, sound artists and media teams with live concerts, audio installations, event streaming and podcasts.

The Momentary, a contemporary arts venue in development in Bentonville that is a satellite project to Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, will also name its indoor concert venue the Rode House.

“The Momentary is excited to announce this partnership,” Momentary Director Lieven Bertels said in a statement. “Rode is a brand trusted by many of our artists and we welcome their support, which will help us build a great performing arts and music program. It’s wonderful to collaborate with a company that has creativity and innovation at its core.”

The partnership announcement was timed with a visit from Rode Founder and President Peter Freedman to Northwest Arkansas earlier this week. He was accompanied by Australia’s ambassador to the United States, Joe Hockey, “to discuss cultural exchange between Australia and Northwest Arkansas,” according to the Momentary.

“I first visited this area of the US a little over a year ago, and was struck by the vibrancy and growth of the region,” Freedman said. “Meeting with the Walton family was a genuine highlight.  I have always had a keen interest in supporting the arts, both in my business and philanthropic activities, a focus that aligned perfectly with the work of the Walton Family Foundation. The success of Crystal Bridges is a testament to their commitment, and the plans for the Momentary are an exciting next step that I am proud to support, bringing a little bit of Australia to Northwest Arkansas.”

The Momentary will open to the public in early 2020, with a preview concert in the fall of 2019.