Wednesday 1 April, 6 pm
“The Divine Trumpet”
“God was looking for a trumpet player. He chose Sergei Nakariakov.” This description by the French music critic Jean-Jacques Roth captures closely the uniqueness of a trumpet virtuoso who will appear at the festival’s opening concert. At thirteen, he was hailed as “the Paganini of the trumpet” and “the Caruso of the trumpet” somewhat later. He has developed a unique musical voice, which appears to be much more than a vehicle for astonishing virtuosity. He has brought not only the trumpet, but also the flugelhorn to prominence on the concert platform. The soloist is often heard perform on extensive tours all over Europe, Japan, North America and Canada, and in frequent engagements with the world’s leading orchestras, soloists and conductors.
It is most pleasing that the Klaipėda Chamber Orchestra will have a second chance to share the stage with Sergei Nakariakov. Three years ago they performed together at the Lithuanian National Philharmonic Hall under the baton of Saulius Sondeckis.
Wednesday 8 April, 6 pm
“Waking Music in Your Hearts”
“It is difficult to wake music in the hearts of other people, without possessing inborn talent. It is impossible to captivate the academics, without working hard with that talent. It is difficult, but not impossible to both astonish amateur music lovers and satisfy professional musicians at the same time. All these aspects meet precisely at the point where talent and work come together,” accordionist Martynas Levickis reasoned in one of his numerous interviews. This soloist is ever thrilled to meet each time new professional challenges. He chose five most demanding pieces for his appearance with the Lithuanian Chamber Orchestra: transcriptions for accordion of the well-known keyboard and violin works by Johann Sebastian Bach, Antonio Vivaldi and NiccolòPaganini, as well as public’s favourite accordion pieces by Ástor Piazzolla. Actively pursuing a career of a touring musician, Levickis seeks new ways to popularise the accordion on the concert platform and attract and influence a younger generation of music fans.
Friday 17 April, 6 pm
“From the Treasury of Orchestral Music”
Some big names of the performers and composers alike will be featured in this orchestral programme. Vytautas Bacevičius, “a composer who was far ahead of his time,” as contemporary critics have characterised this visionary and revolutionary Lithuanian composer and pianist, must be certainly placed among such names. Born in the beginning of the 20th century, he, too, presaged that his music “would belong in the 21st century.”
This year we will celebrate 110 years since Bacevičius’s birth. Pianist Gabrielius Alekna has been following in his footsteps ever since he has settled in New York and written his doctoral thesis on Bacevičius’s works for piano at Juilliard. Together with the Lithuanian National Symphony Orchestra, Alekna will perform Bacevičius’s Fourth Piano Concerto “Symphonie Concertante”. “I… consider him a highly gifted pianist and musician,” Daniel Barenboim enthused after his performance in 2000.
Christopher Lyndon-Gee, who will conduct the orchestra in this concert, is not only an internationally acclaimed master of the baton, but also a composer, widely renowned for his innovative work.
Saturday 18 April, 6 pm
“The Triumph of the Perfect Art”
A world-class musician of impeccable mastery and an original artistic personality, violinist Gidon Kremer is to give his debut performance in Klaipėda. Having launched his professional career after garnering top prizes at the prestigious Queen Elisabeth (1967), Paganini (1969) and Tchaikovski (1970) competitions, he soon established a solid reputation as one of the most unconventional and compelling musicians of his generation. He is highly regarded as a soloist and artistic leader of the orchestra who has consistently attempted to expand the range of expressive and interpretive possibilities within the most varied repertoire.
In 1997, he founded the Kremerata Baltica chamber orchestra to foster outstanding young musicians from the three Baltic states – his native Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia. The exceptional and internationally acclaimed quality of this ensemble is largely due to its artistic director’s innovative and creative approach to the repertoire formation and programming. This is also reflected in this programme that features performances of Modest Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition and Philip Glass’s Violin Concerto No. 2 “The American Four Seasons” combined with the video artworks.
Thursday 23 April, 6 pm
“Soundscape of the Soul”
This year the festival will host the appearance of an exceptional guest – the grand-dame of Russian contemporary music, Sofia Gubaidulina, who has chosen Hamburg, Germany, as her new home more than two decades ago. After graduating from the Moscow Conservatory in 1963, she demonstrated her dissent from the official Soviet culture by her radical compositions, involving alternative tunings, unusual combinations of instruments, and explicit references to Russian Orthodox spirituality. However, at the time she was allowed to express her modernism in various scores written for documentary and animated films, including the well-known “Adventures of Mowgli” (after Rudyard Kipling’s Jungle Book).
Works by Gubaidulina, enveloped in an aura of mysticism and sacredness, will be performed by the Klaipėda Chamber Orchestra together with the devout champions of her work – pianist Alice Di Piazza and accordionist Geir Draugsvoll. The programme, conducted by the orchestra’s close collaborator Andres Mustonen, will also feature Johann Sebastian Bach’s Double Concerto, in which Mustonen as a violinist will be joined by the orchestra’s artistic director, cellist Mindaugas Bačkus.
Thursday 30 April, 6 pm
“The Resurrection Symphony”
“I have always sought to popularise Mahler, and the public showed keen interest in the series of his music,” says Gintaras Rinkevičius, artistic director and chief conductor of the Lithuanian State Symphony Orchestra (LSSO). Having presented the complete cycle of Mahler symphonies to its audiences both at live concerts and on disc, the orchestra and its leader chose the Second Symphony “Resurrection” for the closing concert of the 40th Anniversary Klaipėda Music Spring Festival. And for a good reason: it reveals the true musical genius of Mahler and his profound philosophical conviction in the beauty of afterlife. To perform this powerful work, rendering the theme of death and resurrection, the orchestra invited two distinguished Lithuanian singers, soprano Sandra Janušaitė and mezzo-soprano Ieva Prudnikovaitė, who both currently have engagements in German opera theatres. A long-standing collaborator in the ambitious programmes and productions of the LSSO, the Kaunas State Choir will join in the closing chorus of the symphony, which brings the blissful, soothing answer to the painful questions about the meaning of life and inspires hope in the afterlife and resurrection.
The “Resurrection” Symphony will also bring the programme to a climax and turn the next page both in the history of the festival and the concert hall.
Let the magnificent sound of classical music never leave your way!