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History of Messe Frankfurt on stage

Sep 27, 2018

At the festival from 28 to 30 September celebrating the official opening of the reconstructed Altstadt – Frankfurt’s old town – Messe Frankfurt will be contributing to proceedings in the form of a new theatre play, to be performed by independent theatre group “Dramatische Bühne”. In the entertaining production, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe takes the audience through 800 years of city and trade fair history.

The piece – “Frankfurt trade fair history – an entertaining look back over 800 years” – was written by Thorsten Morawietz, head of “Dramatische Bühne”, for the ensemble to perform in the “Römer” town hall as part of the festival on the last weekend in September. In a pleasantly anecdotal style, the play traces Messe Frankfurt’s story from a trade fair centre with imperial privileges to its current status as a leading international trade fair group.

“With this play, Messe Frankfurt is not only making a contribution to the Altstadt celebrations, but is also doing its bit for culture in Frankfurt and the region as a whole”, said Wolfgang Martin, President and Chief Executive Officer of Messe Frankfurt. The play lasts 30 minutes and admission to the eleven performances will be free of charge. Access to the town hall basement will be via the side entrance of the Schwanenhalle (Paulsplatz 3).

This basement – and other locations in the vicinity of the town hall – was where the first trade fairs in Frankfurt were held. Since as far back as the Middle Ages, merchants and businesspeople from many different countries would come together twice a year at the town hall and in the surrounding streets. At the beginning of the 17th century, up to a quarter of these came from outside Germany. Today, three quarters of exhibitors and around half of visitors come from abroad. This generates valuable business for a wide variety of industry sectors such as hotels, restaurants and other services – both in the region and throughout the rest of Germany. Every year, events at Messe Frankfurt create some 33,360 jobs in Germany and generate immense purchasing power of €3.6 billion, around half of which can be attributed to Frankfurt.

Background information on Messe Frankfurt

Messe Frankfurt is the world’s largest trade fair, congress and event organiser with its own exhibition grounds. With over 2,400 employees at 30 locations, the company generates annual sales of some €669 million. Thanks to its far-reaching ties with the relevant sectors and to its international sales network, the Group looks after the business interests of its customers effectively. A comprehensive range of services – both onsite and online – ensures that customers worldwide enjoy consistently high quality and flexibility when planning, organising and running their events. The wide range of services includes renting exhibition grounds, trade fair construction and marketing, personnel and food services. With its headquarters in Frankfurt am Main, the company is owned by the City of Frankfurt (60 percent) and the State of Hesse (40 percent).


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