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The tradition-rich festival, which once started as the International Pianism Star Festival, has been attracting both listeners and musicians to Liepāja in springtime for more than 30 years now.

This year, among the participants of the Festival, the audience will see the Canadian pianist Louis Lortie, the German violinist Kathrin ten Hagen and the French oboist Céline Moinet, the Finnish conductor Juha Kangas, the State Academic Choir “Latvija” and internationally recognized opera singers, pianist Aurēlija Šimkus, jazz musician John Ruocco and other outstanding artists.

The programme of this year’s Liepāja International Star Festival includes five concerts: the audience will be able to enjoy symphonic music composed by Frédéric Chopin, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Pēteris Vasks. Such events as the chamber jazz music night and piano music solo night will take place at the Chamber Hall named after Dzintars Jurgelaitis of the “Great Amber” Concert Hall, while at the end of the festival, “Requiem”, which is a monumental piece of spiritual vocal and instrumental music composed by the Italian opera music genius Giuseppe Verdi, will be performed.

At the opening concert of the Festival on 9 March at 18:00, the Canadian pianist Louis Lortie will take the stage with the Liepāja Symphony Orchestra under the direction of the conductor Guntis Kuzma to play Frédéric Chopin’s Piano Concerto No.1 together. For more than three decades, Louis Lortie has built his career as one of the most versatile pianists in the world.

For the second year already, the winners of the Valdis Vikmanis’ Latvian Young Artist Competition – violinists Elza Siliņa and Lueta Žagare, cellist Reinis Rudzītis, percussionist Sonja Misiņa and trombonist Dāvis Matīss Leišavnieks, will join the Liepāja Symphony Orchestra on stage at the Liepāja International Star Festival opening concert.

On 15 March at 19:00, the Star Festival audience will be delighted by the jazz programme “Trio Elpo” accompanied by the saxophonist and clarinettist John Ruocco, while on 21 March at 19:00, pianist Aurēlija Šimkus will play a solo concert, where admirers of piano music will be able to go on an exquisite journey through time and get to know the wonderful music pieces by Philip Glass, Sergei Prokofiev and Frédéric Chopin.

On 16 March at 19:00, the Liepāja Symphony Orchestra will perform under the direction of the Finnish conductor Juha Kangas. The programme is a fusion of the timeless elegance of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and the loving harmonies of Pēteris Vasks.

The concert will feature music by Pēteris Vasks – “Musica Serena”, which he dedicated to his long-time friend – conductor Juha Kangas, and “Vox amoris”, a fantasy for violin and strings, which is a story about the strongest power in the world – love. German violinist Kathrin ten Hagen will be the soloist performing this piece.

From Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s unfathomably vast oeuvre, the audience will enjoy the “Haffner” symphony filled with emotions and the Oboe concert, where the solo part will be performed by the excellent Frenchwoman Céline Moinet.

In addition, at the grand Festival closing concert, on 23 March at 18:00, the “Requiem” by the great Italian opera genius Giuseppe Verdi will be played – it is a monumental piece of spiritual vocal and instrumental music, in which the composer has put all his talent as a genius melodist and master of musical form dramaturgy.

The Liepāja Symphony Orchestra under the direction of the conductor Atvars Lakstīgala will perform in front of the audience accompanied by its long-time partner the State Academic Choir “Latvija” and outstanding soloists: Polish soprano Joanna Zawartko, Slovenian mezzo-soprano Monika Bohinec, Ukrainian tenor Oleksandr Chuvpylo and Latvian National Opera bass Rihards Mačanovskis.

Tickets for the 32nd Liepāja International Star Festival consisting of five concerts, are available here.