Latvia Weekend Events: Memory Music

This week's weekend event guide has everything to do with music and memory. It seems the alliteration makes the two somehow more connected than they perhaps are, but no matter - this weekend will be all about remembering musicians and their wonderful, sometimes commemorative music.

1. Birthday boys

This year the birthdays of Jean Sibelius and Carl Nielsen are marked across the world, including Latvia. On December 4 the Latvian National Symphony Orchestra is holding a concert at the Great Guild, titled Finland. Jean Sibelius. Finnish conductor Petri Sakari will be conducting Symphony No 1. and Tapiola by Sibelius, as well as Nielsen's Clarinet Concerto. In the latter, the solo will be performed by renowned local Egīls Šēfers. 

There are still a few tickets left. 

2. The restoration of unfelt sensations

2015 has been one of remembering artist Hardijs Lediņš, whose projects included the legendary new wave/experimental band Nebijušu sajūtu restaurēšanas darbnīca - The workshop of restoring unfelt sensations. The band's album Kuncendorfs un Osendovskis will be performed by the chamber orchestra Sinfonietta Rīga and conducted by Normunds Šnē. The arrangement was done by composer Platons Buravickis. Inguna Ribene, a former member of the ground-breaking band, will perform as a soloist.

Despite that much time has passed since the album was released in 1984, the 'Hardijs Lediņš year', organized by the Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art, has given a second chance at life for one of the chief examples of Latvian 20th-century experimental music. The concert will take place at the Latvian National Library (Ziedoņa hall) on December 4 at 7 PM. 

3. Talk of music, talk of love

On December 5 at 3 PM the Latvian National Opera will host a solo concert by soprano Evija Martinsone. She'll be performing with Agnese Egliņa (piano), Pēteris Endzelis (oboe) and percussionist Ernests Mediņš. The concert program is dedicated to the most beautiful of feelings. It's love, of course, silly you.

Musicians will be playing Franz Schubert, Samuel Barber, Robert Schumann and local composer Marģeris Zariņš.

4. Waiting for Christmas

As supermarket music and copiously decorated Christmas trees kindly remind us, Christmas is nigh. On December 6 at 4 PM (the second Advent in Christian lingo) the Latgale Gors concert hall in Rēzekne will be holding a pre-Christmas concert with the Rēzekne chamber orchestra as conducted by Jānis Stafeckis. The Rēzekne wind orchestra bigband will also feature at the concert, with works by Arcangelo Corelli, Mozart, and Georgs Pelēcis interspersed with traditional Christmas songs. 

While the Way through the Christmas Trees festival will start - well, unless it doesn't happen - on December 4, featuring a whopping 43 'spatial objects' scattered around Rīga. The website and map can help you make out what's what in the Christmas-themed festival. Rīga was the first place where a Christmas tree was decorated in 1510. 

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