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Performers: Latvian Radio Choir, conductor Sigvards Kļava
Programme: Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (1840-1893) "Evening Prayers"
THE LATVIAN RADIO CHOIR (LRC)
The LRC is a unique musical group in the domain of choral music – here is a chamber choir able to perform the widest repertoire from the early music to the most sophisticated scores created by modern composers. The LRC is a creative lab insistently encouraging composers to write music that challenges the scale of vocal possibilities – from traditional singing to overtones and quarter tones.
Since 1992, the LRC has two conductors: music director and principal conductor Sigvards Kļava and conductor Kaspars Putniņš. Over the last 20 years, the LRC has developed an unprecedented notion of a choir – every chorister has his or her own mission and individual contribution. As a result, the blend of all these timbral qualities defines choral ensemble’s sound. The expertise of the singers has made the LRC a remarkably flexible ensemble able to deal with a wide variety of musical genres: vocal and instrumental music as well as opera performances, multi-media projects, intimate a capella conversations and theatrical shows in which the singer express themselves as versatile soloists, talented actors and instrumentalists.
The choir has repeatedly received the Latvian Great Music Award (the highest national award for professional achievement) as well as the Latvian Cabinet of Ministers Award and other awards.
SIGVARDS KĻAVA, conductor
Sigvards Kļava has been the artistic director of the Latvian Radio Choir (LRC) since 1992. As a result of his steady efforts, the LRC has become an internationally recognised, vocally distinctive musical group welcome at the top music festivals and invited to collaborate with the most outstanding composers and conductors.
Kļava’s LRC projects are deliberate narratives, musical expeditions involving exploration of the phenomenon of singing and voice and seeking bridges between the archaic and contemporary, the eternal and mundane via inspiring thematic concert programmes. Churches have filled with audiences eager to listen to the choir’s higly regarded programmes Litany, The Prayer of Mother Theresa and Evening Conversations at St. John’s Church.
It was Kļava’s idea to cooperate with prominent representatives of academic and non-academic music, the clergy and contemporary musicians to fuse contemporary music experiments with cultural heritage and broaden the view of the possibilities of the human voice. The choir’s theatrical programmmes Imants and Ziedonis, The Poet and the Mermaid, Vācietis: Piano Concerto, Atlantīda (composers Imants Kalniņš and Arturs Maskats) have been particular favourites with audiences. Kļava has also directed tributes to Latvian heroes and cultural giants by preparing music for the filmed epic poem Lāčplēsis (Bear Slayer) and Writer, a stage production dedicated to poet Broņislava Martuževa.
Sigvards Kļava has received the Latvian Great Music Award several times. He is also a recipient of the Latvian Cabinet of Ministers Award and the Order of the Three Stars. He has been a principal conductor of the Latvian Song Festival since 1990.
Kļava has conducted concerts at the Royal Albert Hall in London, the Elbphilharmonie, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Berlin Philharmonic and elsewhere. He takes part in international juries and educational projects. As a guest conductor, Kļava has performed with the Netherlands Radio Choir, the Netherlands Opera Choir, Netherlands Chamber Choir, Cappella Amsterdam, the Berlin RIAS Chamber Choir, the MDR Leipzig Radio Choir and many others.