Latvian Composers’ Union festival “Latvian New Music Days. Encore” will take place in Riga from May 7 to May 11

Featuring numerous premieres and musical surprises, the beginning of May will mark the annual festival “Latvian New Music Days” organized by the Latvian Composers’ Union. During the festival the listeners will experience six concerts with more than thirty Latvian composers’ works; the main topic of this year’s festival is Encore, “one more” in French.

After a composition or a concert the audience may shout Encore!, asking musicians to return to the stage one more time to repeat a part of their performance or play something extra. This opportunity to prolong joy from listening to the music brings performers even closer to the audience – this is a moment both sides are happy to enjoy once again. This term is often used outside culture as well – in relation to business, career development and lifestyle: that is an opportunity to continue playing, listening, enjoying, creating and achieving, because each of us deserves more.

Most of the music in Europe and Latvia nowadays gets performed only once – many amazing compositions are put aside after their premieres. Even though the Latvian New Music Days program features more than ten Latvian and world premieres, the festival organizers chose Encore! philosophy this year to emphasize the fact that the Latvian contemporary music deserves to be performed and heard way more than just once.

A moment of creation, limitless ideas that keep them up, curiosity about themselves, love towards music, inner fire, passion of learning. These are just a couple of aspects that encourage composers write more, and performers – go on stage to meet their audience again and again. “We’re thrilled when the listeners enjoy our performance so much that they want to hear more of it. Their wish to see us on stage once again is an honor – it strengthens the connection with our audience, inspiring us to put everything we can into every single performance”, – says pianist Linda Leine who will perform at one of the festival concerts as a part of “Trio Fabel”.

May 7th at 7 p.m. at the Grand Hall of the Jāzeps Vītols Latvian Academy of Music – “Sinfonia Concertante” chamber orchestra concert

The listeners will experience the “Concerto for the Flute and Chamber Orchestra” by Alvils Altmanis (premiere, soloist Egija Sproģe), Anna Veismane’s new composition “Versus” for a string orchestra, specially commissioned for the festival, Anna Fišere’s composition “Voynich Codex” for a voice and a string orchestra (soloist Helēna Sorokina), as well as premiere of a young composer Aleksandrs Avramecs “Iridescence for 18 String Instruments”; Andris Vecumnieks conducting.

May 8th at 7 p.m. at the Riga Latvian Society House – 80th anniversary concert of the Latvian composer Vilnis Šmīdbergs

The concert will feature the music by Vilnis Šmīdbergs in Ilona Meija’s (flute), Magdalēna Geka’s (violin) and Iveta Cālīte’s (piano) interpretation – Trio for Flute, Violin and Piano, Sonata for Violin and Piano, Solo Piano Variations and a recent arrangement of “Raudu dejas” for flute, violin and piano done by the composer himself.

May 10th at 6 p.m. at the Gallery Smilga– solo concert of Helēna Sorokina

During the solo concert of the world-known contemporary music interpret Helēna Sorokina (mezzo soprano / contralto) the audience will hear Latvian premieres of the music written by many Latvian composers especially for Helēna. The authors are Jānis Petraškevičs, Gundega Šmite, Santa Ratniece, Andris Dzenītis and Dace Aperāne; world premieres by Ernests Valts Circenis and Asia Ahmetžanova.

May 11th at the Great Guild – three concerts

1st concert at 4 p.m. by a pianist Robert Fleitz. The American pianist Robert Fleitz, living in Latvia for many years, has inspired many Latvian composers. During his solo concert we’ll hear two premieres by Linda Leimane and Ernests Valts Circenis, as well as compositions by Krists Auznieks, Jānis Petraškevičs and Ruta Paidere. The program will as well feature Pēteris Vasks’ fantasy “Izdegušās zemes ainavas” | Still Nature of the Burnt Land.

2nd concert at 5 p.m. by Trio Fabel. This internationally acclaimed chamber music group, Anna Gāgane (clarinet), Kristaps Bergs (cello) and Linda Leine (piano), has been collaborating with numerous Latvian composers over the years. During the concert we’ll hear compositions by Oskars Herliņš, Georgs Pelēcis, Krists Auznieks, as well as premieres by Andris Dzenītis (“Geography of Rain”) and young composer Žanete Spirka (“Dubultlīnijas” | “Double lines”).

3rd concert at 7 p.m. by the State Chamber Orckestra “Sinfonietta Rīga” led by Normunds Šnē. The concert will feature three premieres for the large ensemble, composed by Edgars Mākens, Santa Bušs and Armands Skuķis, as well as “Apres le chant”, premiere of Asia Ahmetjanova, Latvian composer residing in Switzerland. The final cut of the festival – 3rd Concerto for Piano and Orchestra, a premiere by Ilona Breģe with Vestards Šimkus on the piano.  

Concert tickets and festival passes available at “Biļešu Paradīze” ticket offices and


The festival is supported by the State Culture Capital Foundation, Riga City Council and Latvijas Radio 3 “Klasika”