VIII Forum of the Baltic States Wind Orchestra Conductors and Ensemble Leaders

On October 29 and 30, 2016, for the eighth time in Riga, there will take place the Forum of the Baltic States Wind Orchestra Conductors and Ensemble Leaders, which is the only gathering of its kind of professionals of this sector in the Baltic States. The forum in a short concentrated period of time - in two days, annually, in various formal and informal ways – through master classes, discussions, presentations and exchange of experience, an exhibition and concerts addresses and educates music teachers, conductors of orchestras, leaders of bands, as well as the widest circle of other interested parties. 


The main venue of the Forum is Jāzeps Vītols Latvian Academy of Music, where on both Forum days in an exhibition the visitors will have an opportunity to get acquainted with the displays of Latvian and Estonian musical instrument stores, as well as with the musical instruments produced in Latvia – wind instruments created by the trombone player Vairis Nartišs, xylophones produced by the percussion musicians’ Vaivods family and the drums made by the company of the drummer Raitis Aukšmuksts. The exhibition will be open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

The most sonorous and the most important part of the Forum will be the concerts taking place in its framework. Each programme is specially prepared. Both the leading amateur wind bands of the country and professional groups are all involved in this process. The guests of the Forum of 2016 will be the Orchestra of the Estonian Defence Forces conducted by Peeter Saan (concert on October 30 at 15.30), Jāzeps Vītols Latvian Academy of Music Wind band with the guest conductor Marco Somadossi (Italy) (concert on October 29 at 10.00).

For the second year in a row, there will be held the concert ‘Solo with an Orchestra’ (on October 30, at 12.40), the programme of which this year is being prepared by Jāzeps Mediņš Riga Music Secondary School Wind Band under the lead of the conductors Jānis Retenais and Andis Karelis, as well as a guest conductor Egidijus Ališauskas (Lithuania). Soloists - Augustinas Ališauskas (trombone, Lithuania), Katrīna Terēza Ignatoviča (flute, Latvia), Haralds Klips (clarinet, Latvia), Aigars Raumanis (alto saxophone, Latvia) and Roberts Donis (euphonium, Latvia).

The ‘Latvian Music Concert’ is a unique event every year (the Great Hall, University of Latvia, on October 29, at 19.00). It will allow to present Latvian classical music, original music, arrangements for wind orchestras to a wide audience of professionals, foreign colleagues and other listeners. This year in the ‘Latvian Music Concert’, there will perform the University of Latvia Wind Band, conductors: Jānis Puriņš and Jānis Kaģis (Latvia), Erica Neidlinger (USA), Keith Allen (UK), Petr Kazimir (Russia). The programme comprises compositions and arrangements for wind orchestra by Selga Mence, Indra Riše, Raimonds Pauls, Juris Karlsons, Madara Pētersone, Raits Rērihs, Kārlis Rērihs, Andris Balodis (all from Latvia), Petr Kazimir (Russia). Soloists - Sigita Razminoviča (flute, Latvia) and Artūrs Kuzmins (flugelhorn, Latvia).

One of the concert premieres will be the ‘Fantasy on the Themes of Latvian Folk Songs’ by the Ukrainian-born Russian composer and conductor Petr Kazimir. Petr Kazimir’s grandmother was Latvian by nationality - Olga Boka, who, in 1916, at the age of 4, after the call of the Emperor Nicholas II, together with her family moved to Bashkortostan (Bashkiria). Petr has never been to Latvia and therefore writing of this composition and the visit here is a very emotional event in his life.

On October 29, at 17.00, in the Great Hall of Jāzeps Vītols Latvian Academy of Music, there will be held a Concert of Ensembles, in which will perform the students of music schools and music secondary schools of Latvia.

Although the forum is aimed at orchestra conductors and music teachers, the format gives everyone the opportunity to attend master classes. This year the forum master classes will be led by the Associated Professor of DePaul University, conductor Erica Neidlinger (USA), the concert master of the flute group of the Lithuanian Opera and Ballet Theatre Orchestra Vytautas Sriubikis (Lithuania), the Assistant Professor of the Krasnoyarsk State Music and Theatre Academy Petr Kazimir, the Musical Director of the Birmingham Symphonic Winds, conductor Keith Allen (UK), the Professor of the Conservatory of Music Jacopo Tomadini in Udine Marco Somadossi (Italy), the concert master of the National Opera and Ballet orchestra, lecturer of Jāzeps Vītols Latvian Academy of Music, teacher of Emīls Dārziņš Riga Music Secondary School Mārtiņš Circenis (Latvia), the music teacher of Järvi-Saimaa Municipal College, composer, conductor, percussionist Janne Ikonen (Finland), the music teacher of Järvi-Saimaa Municipal College, conductor  of the Rantasalmi Wind band Marja Ikonen (Finland), Consul General, Mg.paed. Aija Strautmane (Latvia), the breath and voice coach Arturas Burke (Lithuania) and Head of the Yamaha Class Band Europe Vincent de Laur (The Netherlands).

The VIII Forum of the Baltic Symphonic Orchestra Conductors and Ensemble Leaders is organised by the Latvian National Centre for Culture, supported by the great friend of the Song and Dance Celebration - Swedbank, Ltd. ‘Circle K Latvia’, the State Culture Capital Foundation, the Latvian Academy of Music, the Orchestra of the Estonian Defence Forces, the society ‘Latvia Youth Symphonic Band’ and the creative society ‘Juventus’.