Festivals

37th Klaipėda Music Spring Festival

Klaipėda Music Spring: the magnificent sound of classical music
 
31 March – 10 May 2012

The fanfares of the Klaipėda Music Spring festival will announce its opening on March 31st and continue echoing until its closing on May 10th. For the 37th year in a row the Klaipėda Music Spring festival, organised by the Klaipėda Concert Hal, will offer exceptional opportunities to listen to the finest performances given by outstanding ensembles, orchestras and soloists. In its programmes, this festival has always demonstrated a preference for large-scale projects and a harmonious blend of tradition and innovation. In recognition of its long-standing cultural significance as the oldest surviving music festival in Lithuania, Klaipėda City Council named the Klaipėda Music Spring among the city’s most representative events. The 37th edition of the festival, dedicated to the 760 th anniversary of the city of Klaipėda, promises a magnificent feast of classical music, in which Lithuanian musicians will keep company to their colleagues from Estonia, Ukraine, Poland, Austria, Switzerland, and the U.S.

The festival will open on March 31st, with a concert titled “Endless Expanse. Complete Tchaikovsky Piano Concerti,” featuring the Lithuanian State Symphony Orchestra under the baton of its artistic director and chief conductor Gintaras Rinkevičius. Known for his wide-ranging artistic endeavours, this time Alexander Paley (piano, USA) will join the orchestra in the performance of all three Tchaikovsky’s piano concerti. This portrait programme will reveal the soloist’s arresting musicianship at its best and the conductor’s self-assured and convincing command of the orchestra, as well as raise the curtain on an endless expanse of Russian music…
 
“The Celestial Rainbow of Sounds” will appear dazzling on April 5th. Maestro Saulius Sondeckis will conduct the performance of one of Baroque’s most impressive masterpieces, Mass in B minor by Johann Sebastian Bach. The soloists – Asta Krikščiūnaitė (soprano), Nora Petročenko (mezzo-soprano), Mindaugas Zimkus (tenor), and Liudas Mikalauskas (bass) – will appear alongside the Klaipėda Chamber Orchestra, Klaipėda Choir Aukuras and Šiauliai State Chamber Choir Polifonija. Performed on Maundy Thursday before Easter this Mass will reveal its mysteries as a sacred and deeply touching work of art. In this setting of complete Latin mass, each word is repeated many times, celebrating every letter of the Christian liturgy and encouraging us to reflect on them and comprehend their true meaning.
 
On April 11th the distinguished Estonian early music ensemble, Hortus Musicus, will present a programme “Ecco la primavera. Echoes of Spring,” bursting with vitality and invention. Under the artistic leadership of violinist Andres Mustonen the ensemble is marking its 40th anniversary this year. A phenomenon in its own right, the ensemble will not attempt to demonstrate authentic performance but concentrate more on renditions of musical ideas in works still largely unknown to our audiences.
 
On April 20th we will travel “Down the Meandering Paths of Melodies” together with guest performers from Poland – members of the Łomża Chamber Philharmonic. They will appear in Klaipėda under the baton of conductor Jan Miłosz Zarzycki and with soloist Grzegorz Piotr Kołodziej (baritone). Along with works by Polish composers, the evening’s programme will also feature a composition by Lithuanian national classic, Mikalojus Konstantinas Čiurlionis.
 
On April 27th the Lithuanian National Symphony Orchestra will continue a long-standing tradition of orchestral concerts at the Klaipėda Music Spring Festival. This time the orchestra will appear alongside young and acclaimed Lithuanian violinist Rūta Lipinaitytė, who has recently made Austria her second home. In the programme suggestively titled “Flaming Fantasy,” she will perform solo in Khachaturian’s Violin Concerto. Her Serbian-born friend, Aleksandar Markovič (Austria) who is currently much sought-after around Europe as an orchestral conductor, will also conduct the orchestra in the performance of Balakirev’s Oriental fantasy Islamey, Op. 18, and Scriabin’s Second Symphony.
 
Another group of guest performers will appear with the Khmelnitsky Oblast Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra (Ukraine) under its artistic director and conductor Oleksandr Dragan on May 3rd. The title of this concert, “To the Rhythm of Toccata,” alludes to the predominantly energetic character of music and two Lithuanian pieces included in the programme – Feliksas Bajoras’s Prelude and Toccata and Jonas Tamulionis’s Toccata diavolesca.
The concert will open with Bach’s Keyboard Concerto in F minor, with pianist and composer Oleksandr Kozarenko on the piano. The second half of the concert will be dedicated to Kozarenko’s music in which the national heritage of Ukrainian folk music is found in perfect balance with modern techniques and means of expression. Flutist Taras Malyk and the composer himself will join the orchestra in the performance of his works.
 
The closing concert of the festival, titled “Lost in Heavenly Labyrinths, is slated for May 10th. This programme is prepared by cellist Mindaugas Bačkus, the Klaipėda Chamber Orchestra, and Swiss conductor and flutist Kaspar Zehnder and is comprised of works by Baroque, Classical and 20th-century composers. Among these the programme features an opus by Swiss composer Armin Schibler, in which Zehnder and Bačkus will appear as soloists. While listening to their playing we will be able to imagine the first skylarks of spring, gladly weaving their way through the heavenly labyrinths...
 
The evenings of early spring, filled with the magnificent sound of classical music, are coming soon to the Klaipėda Concert Hall! Welcome to the concerts of the Klaipėda Music Spring!