Latvia Weekend Events: Maestro Mania

2016 is important not only for being the year of Raimonds 'Maestro' Pauls' 80th birthday but also as being the year when the renowned composer Imants Kalniņš will turn 75, on May 26. This week LSM's culture editors have prepared a music-heavy program that touches on these two artists and more.

1. Birthday boys

Lielā ģilde will at 4 p.m. on January 30 resound with the Gift to Maestro concert, featuring the children's folk ensemble Zelta sietiņš and the vocal ensemble Dzeguzīte who will perform at an event dedicated to Raimonds Pauls' birthday. 

The two-parts concert will look at the cheerful early career of Pauls while the other will reflect Pauls' contributions to the Youth Song and Dance festival. The chamber choir Austrums will accompany the smaller artists on the stage. 

While Imants Kalniņš' birthday celebrations will be started off this year with three concerts during the weekend, starting January 29 at 7 p.m. at the Liepāja Great Amber concert hall, then moving to Cēsis at the eponymous concert hall January 30 at 7 p.m. While on January 31 at 4 p.m. the concert will move to the Gors concert hall in Latgale. The concert will feature the Liepāja Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Māris Sirmais. The three concerts will see three works of Kalniņš performed for the first time.

2. Winter music in Valmiera

The 25th international Winter Music Festival has just started in the tranquil Valmiera city and will continue on the weekend. 

Friday at 6 p.m. pianist Jautrīte Putniņa will perform at the Valmiera 5th high school, followed by a concert of Estonian, Lithuanian, and Latvian music school students.

On January 30 at 11 a.m. the same school will see a lecture on Medieval music by Guntars Prānis, followed by a concert of the Valmiera Music School students at 3 p.m., followed by a Baltic music school students' concert at 7 p.m. 

On January 31 the Valmiera Svētā Sīmaņa church will see the concluding concert with the baroque orchestra Collegium Musicum Riga together with soloist Elīna Šimkus, violinist Agnese Kanniņa-Liepiņa, Kristīne Kupča (baroque oboe). The concert will feature pieces by Hendel, Vivaldi, Purcell and others.

3. A new artspace in Liepāja

The contemporary art exhibition Dzīles (the deep) will open the new Civita Nova art space in Liepāja at the Great Amber concert hall. The event is slated for 3 p.m., January 29. It will feature sculptural works by Aigars Bikše, Andris Eglītis, Gļebs Panteļejevs, Olga Šilova and others.

"During this year visitors to the Great Amber hall will have the chance to be introduced to many great artists, so I am confident that Civita Nova will in time positively influence the quality of the Liepāja art scene," said curator Andris Vītoliņš.

The exhibition will be available until March 19 at the Civita Nova art space, located on the first floor of the Great Amber concert hall.

4. Competitions on television and radio

Sunday will see the second episode of the stellar Supernova show, broadcast at 9:25 p.m. on Latvian Television. The show is your first chance to meet Latvia's future Eurovision participants as 20 musicians and bands will be trying to win the good graces of the jury and the viewers. 

While Pieci.lv youth radio invites its listeners to support DJs Karmena Stepanova and Magnuss Eriņš who will be participating in the Radio Battle of the Italian broadcaster Rai. On January 31 from 9 to 10 p.m. the Pieci.lv station will compete with Croatian HR2 station. The teams will engage their listeners and play music in a battle to get the most tweets containing a certain hashtag within an hour. The winners will head to the Radio Battle finals in Rome on April 22. 

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