Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Riga Festival
In Riga Festival on 8 of June 8 PM in Riga, Great Guild’s Hall Liepaja Symphony Amber Sound Orchestra conducted by Martins Ozolins will perform George Gershwin’s „Rhapsody in Blue”. Soloist of the concert will be Latvian jazz pianist Harijs Bass, who once with great success performed in a duet with Raimonds Pauls.
George Gershwin is a symbol for the process of approximation of two cultures in the first decades of the 20th century – the European classical music and the American black wild plant – jazz. Gershwin’s parents were Russian Jews – immigrants in the USA, and he spent his childhood in an unimaginable mix of traditions of various nations: he grew up in Eastside – the eastern part of Manhattan which was populated by Jews, Afro-Americans, white Americans, representatives of various Eastern European nations. The young music lover studied music theory, got acquainted with contemporary trends in classical music, but a teacher told him: you will gain greater success in the field of non-academic music. So it happened, and his very first heat – the song “Swanee” – gained enormous success. Rooted in the fertile soil of classical music and facing Afro-American musical traditions – this was Gershwin, and he gained success in both, exquisite salons and apartments of common people.
American music journalist Alex Ross says about “Rhapsody in Blue”: “It stands with one foot in the kitchen and one foot in a salon”. Of course, this is not jazz. Neither it is contemporary classical music. This is Gershwin – that was said by Leonard Bernstein, the greatest melodist since the time of Tchaikovsky.
It is said that after the first performance, the audience had literally jumped to their feet and shouted loudly. Gershwin was praised by Stokovsky, Godovsky, Heifetz, Kreussler and even Rachmaninoff. Having come to Europe, the young American received songs of praises from Stravinsky, Ravel, Prokofiev, Schoenberg, Berg and other great musicians of their time. Within a short time, George Gershwin became the most popular “export product” in American sound industry.
The programme includes also Symphony No. 9 “From the New World” by Antonin Dvorak with the amazingly beautiful slow part, encircled by popular melodies. The opening part of the concert will feature the Overture to the musical “Candid” by Leonard Bernstein – one of the most joyful classical pieces of all times.
The Riga Festival is organized by VSIA „Latvijas Koncerti”.Tickets can be purchased at "Bilesu Paradize" ticket office!