In January 1991 people flowed into the capitals of the Baltic states and erected makeshift barricades around strategic locations like the parliament and the national radio station to protect them against Soviet troops that wanted to crush the Baltic nations' independence drive.
Today, each year an extensive program of commemorative events is launched. On January 20 from 13:50. to 14:30, there will be a solemn Guard of Honor at the memorial stones of the deceased in Bastejkalns and at the former Ministry of the Interior building at Raiņa boulevard 6, and at 14:00, flowers will be laid at the Freedom Monument and at the places of remembrance of the fallen. Concerts in memory of the events will also take place this weekend. Take a look at three concerts devoted to the theme of the Barricades.
Pērkons at Folk club Ala
The rock band 'Pērkons' (Thunder) was the most scandalous band in Latvia in the 1980s, carrying its revolutionary fame to this day. At the folk club Ala Pagrabs (Peldu Street 19), the band will play its famous tunes in rebellious spirit on January 20, 21:00.
More on the event here.
"January Fire" at the Small Guild
To commemorate the 1991 Barricades, on January 20, 18:00, at the Small Guild (Amatu Street 5, Rīga), a concert program "January Fire" will be performed with the participation of the choirs SONORE, MEZGLI, composer Valdis Zilveris and the National Theater actor Mārcis Maņjakovs. The songs of Latvian composers Mārtiņš Brauns, Lūcija Garūta, Zigmārs Liepiņš, Valdis Zilvers and others will be played. Entrance is free.
Commemorative concert at Rīga Cathedral
On January 20, 19:00, at Rīga Cathedral (Rīgas Doms, Herdera Square 6, Rīga), a commemorative cocert "Sign of the times. Prayer" will take place. The academic choir "Latvija" and instrumental virtuosos will participate. More on the concert here. Entrance is free.
If you would like to learn more about the events of that time, and can get to Rīga, the first stop should naturally be the 1991 Barricades Museum. For those further afield, we recommend this story from our archives and the short documentary film below from LTV, which comes complete with English subtitles.