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Berlin Philharmonic fire extinguished

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Berlin Philharmonic fire extinguished
Photo: DPA
08:42 CEST+02:00
Firefighters extinguished a roof fire in the Berlin Philharmonic that left the building still standing but with millions of euros in damage, officials said on Wednesday.

Observers remained in the building early on Wednesday morning to ensure that pockets of embers in the construction of the roof did not catch fire again, a Berlin fire department spokesman said.

The Philharmonic announced they would not hold concerts in the building until the extent of the structural damage can be determined.

The blaze that broke out on Tuesday afternoon is believed to have damaged about 1,600 square metres of the concert hall's distinctive swooping metal roof but to have left the interior auditorium intact.

More than 170 firefighters and 20 trucks worked to extinguish the fire, believed to have sparked by renovation work in the insulation underneath the building's metal hull.

Firefighters had to strip metal sheeting from the roof with blowtorches.

A spokeswoman for the Philharmonic told radio station RBB-Inforadio that the concert hall's metal cladding would need to be replaced.

The Philharmonic is seeking another venue for two Beethoven and Berlioz concerts planned at the weekend with renowned Italian conductor Claudio Abbado, intended as a highlight of the season.

Investigations into the cause of the fire and the level of damages are expected to continue through Wednesday.

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