Events Guide: Night at the Museum or Marathon Man?

LSM's culture editors didn't have to look far to put together this week's list of recommended activities. It's off to a multitude of museums all night long for European Museum Night Saturday!

European Museum Night

It’s time again for one of the favorite and well-attended public events of the year – Museum Night, Saturday, May 16. As dusk settles the museums of all Europe will host surprising all-nighters for the public, and the Latvians this time will be marking the promotional mission with readings from the works of Rainis and Aspazija as they meander along the maze of their biographical turns and twists and wonder at the beautiful realism of their reflections upon life.

In Latvia Museum Night is taking place for the eleventh time throughout the land, involving 136 museums and 34 similarly profiled cultural institutions in all of Latvia.

The tradition is for participating museums to keep their doors open free-of-charge from about 19:00 until the crack of dawn, when curators and museum guides can finally close up for breakfast Sunday morning.

Check out the impressive program in full HERE (in Latvian).

Misha’s choice

The Riga Bourse branch of the National Museum will also be open all Saturday night, but the exhbit of Mikhail Baryshnikov’s personal collection of 105 works united by the theme of movement, ballet and arts personalities, titled "Art I've Lived With" will be on view until July 5. The trove boasts realism, impressionism and later movements, as well as art objects from the worlds of theatre and scenography.

The Riga-born world-famous ballet dancer’s interest in the arts began during his youth in the 1970s, leaning towards airy, fragile graphic drawings and watercolor paintings. The works are here in his birthplace courtesy of his own arts center in New York.

Let it be?

As the 11th School Youth Song and Dance Festival nears, LTV will show a feel-good concert contest program featuring two dozen multi-profession celebrity collaborations with children’s ensembles.

The inaugural broadcast will be on Sunday night starting at 21:20 featuring a cavalcade of kids groups and public figures, including LSM’s own weatherman Toms Bricis performing together with a high school mixed choir.

Forge the sky, pro-Prussian metalists!

Skyforger’s eighth album gets its live reading at the Sapņu fabrika Friday night, plus whatever else they may have up their sleeves from seven other albums to choose from for an impressive setlist, indeed.

The warmup act, Latgallian folk-metalists Green Novice (whose guitarist and singer joined Skyforger last summer) and fellow Estonian guests pagan-metal purveyors Tharaphita make this a thunderously promising triple-header to behold.

Family outings – museums, plus shopping and rafting fests

Friday is International Family Day and events are going on all weekend long (just not at night). Families with young ones will want to visit the picturesque pond-side Ojārs Vācietis Museum on Saturday for eight creatures, creative workshops and a show of Pippi Longstocking.

On Saturday and Sunday at the Riga Art Nouveau Museum the storybook character Tomcat Albertiņš and the theatre studio Rampa will host an expedition-performance.  Then on Sunday there’s a choice of Family Day concerts at the Ziemeļblāzma Culture Palace or the University of Latvia Hall for a collaboration between a kids’ chamber choir, choreography, kokle ensemble and rhythm section.

For the first time ever Riga’s downtown Vermane Garden park hosts a Shopping Festival alternative to those not among the marathon runners. The festival lasts five hours from noon until 17:00 and involves twenty shops in the center of Riga.

For those chaperoning the shopaholics, a rich line up of acts will entertain on the open-air public stage, including the legendary national rock iconoclasts Pērkons at 16:00 and a set by The Sound Poets to close.

Meanwhile in Strenči… the organization known as the Rafters of the Gauja will be rafting down their namesake river from the Spici bridge down to the bucolic town where their ranks will be boosted by Latvia’s strongman community for a local championship show.

Also the documentary “Faster than the current” about the rafters of the Daugava will be screened, along with informative exhibits, a fair, attractions for the kids and, of course, boating and rafting activities.

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