The unique amber sound of the Orchestra has originated in a unique place at the Baltic Sea – in Liepāja.
On 4 November at 7 p.m. in the Concert Hall “GREAT AMBER” Liepāja Symphony Orchestra will offer a slightly unusual Romantic programme conducted by Normunds Šnē, the artistic director of Chamber Orchestra “Sinfonietta Rīga”, passionate new music interpreter and, deep in his heart, a rock musician.
Conductor, oboist, producer of music recordings and sound engineer NORMUNDS ŠNĒ is one of Latvian musicians who incessantly encourages the creation of new compositions and performing of latest music. The orchestras founded by him – Riga Festival Orchestra and “Rīgas kamermūziķi”, the predecessor of “Sinfonietta Rīga”, have mostly staged and played the music of the 20th and 21st century, paying special attention to outstanding masterpieces and new opuses. Normunds Šnē has conducted Latvian National Symphony Orchestra, Latvian National Opera Orchestra and been a regular guest conductor with Liepāja Symphony Orchestra. He has collaborated with a number of world renowned soloists: pianists Peter Donohue and Kristian Bezuidenhout; violinists Tatiana Grindenko, Gidon Kremer, Alina Pogostkina, Vadim Gluzman, Baiba Skride and Isabelle Faust; cellists Natalia Gutman, Mstislav Rostropovich, David Gering and Truls Mørk; trombonist Christian Lindberg; percussionists Peter Erskine and Evelyn Glennie; jazz musician Joe Zawinul and others. In 2003, together with several leading Latvian musicians he founded the New Music Festival “Arēna”. “In Normunds energetic vitality and rock musician’s temper coexists with refined musicality of contemporary classical artist – and between these distant galaxies he is also a romantic. Such combination is very rare!” comments the director of Liepāja Symphony Orchestra Uldis Lipskis.
Major part of Normunds Šnē life was associated with rock music – he has played oboe and guitar, and has been a sound engineer with rock, instrumental and alternative music bands “Salve”, “Sīpoli”, “Pērkons” and “Marana”, as well as a sound engineer and producer of CD recordings in different genres.
On 4 November Liepāja Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Normunds Šnē will perform Concerto for Violin, Cello and Orchestra by Johannes Brahms and Symphony No.1 by Jean Sibelius. The first piece will feature two outstanding soloists – MARTA SUDRABA, famous Latvian cellist residing in Vienna, a musician of Vienna Philharmonic and the Orchestra of Vienna State Opera, and violinist GEORGS SARKISJANS, principal violinist of Latvian National Symphony Orchestra. Marta Sudraba tells: “This piece is very important in my life – I had the honour to play and record it with Gidon Kremer and Israel Philharmonic conducted by Giuseppe Sinopoli in Tel Aviv.” Georgs Sarkisjans is very much looking forward to the concert as well, and says: “In a way it is going to be a significant event in my career. I will enrich my repertoire with this double concerto, Brahms’ last piece written for violin, which I had not played before. While still a student I was lucky to perform all pieces of Brahms’ chamber music for violin and even more so, to play it in collaboration with such excellent musicians as Jürgen Kussmaul, Ida Bieler, Oren Shevlin, Nikolaus Trieb.”
The double concerto was Brahms’ final work for orchestra and was written as a gesture of reconciliation towards his old friend – famous violinist Joseph Joachim, after the rapture of their friendship due to personal reasons. This piece is a sample of Brahms’ late style where melancholy alternates with gusty unrest. It is a technically and musically complicated piece which is always challenging because it demands the participation of two equally excellent soloists.
Symphony No. 1 by Jean Sibelius was written only ten years later, in 1899, in the very beginning of composer’s creative career. Sibelius was 33 when he wrote it with remarkable mastery, already then equal to that of great West Europe masters.
Tickets to all the concerts organised by Liepāja Symphony Orchestra can be purchased in box offices of “Biļešu paradīze” and at www.bilesuparadize.lv.
Concert “Brahms and Sibelius” is organised by Liepāja Symphony Orchestra in collaboration with Concert Hall “GREAT AMBER”.