From October 10 to 13, Latgale Embassy GORS will be hosting the fourth International Organ Music Festival “ORGANismi”, whose art director is a world-famous musician, organist Iveta Apkalna. This year’s festival will include concert programmes prepared by Apkalna herself, the Latvian National Symphony Orchestra, Shipsea, and German jazz organist Barbara Dennerlein.
The International Organ Music Festival “ORGANismi” in Rēzekne was first held in October 2015, showing the multifariousness and possibilities of the organ as a concert instrument. At the first festival, Ivetas Apkalna played together with the chamber orchestra “Sinfonietta Rīga”; German organ improviser Ansgar Wallenhorst and contemporary dance performers lead by choreographer Lilija Lipora created a light and shadow performance, and the year devoted to Rainis inspired the creation of the theatrical performance “Saule. Bērni. Rainis” (Sun. Children. Rainis). In 2016, the art director of the festival Iveta Apkalna performed an organ and piano duet with the pianist Juris Žvikovs, but the French duo Naji Hakim and Marie-Bernadette Dufourcet played the organ. At the same time, the fairy-tales of Italian writer Gianni Rodari inspired the creation of the musical performance “Ja es būtu” (If I Were). In 2017, for the first time in Rēzekne, Iveta’s solo concerto was heard; the guest of the festival was the prominent Hungarian organ music improviser László Fassang who intertwined improvisation with black-and-white film; and the performance “Viens prāts ar otru” (One Mind with Another) was created, where Renārs Kaupers participated together with Iveta and the choir of Jānis Ivanovs Rēzekne Music Secondary School.
This year’s festival continues to delight with its diversity: on October 10, the Small Hall of GORS will be hosting the concert “Džezs satiek ērģeles” (Jazz Meets the Organ) where the German jazz organist’s Barbara Dennerlein latest concert programme “My Moments” will be performed; on October 11, the concert programme of Iveta Apkalna and the Latvian National Symphony Orchestra “Ērģeļu simfonija” (Organ Symphony) will be performed; on October 12, joint performance by Shipsea (Jānis Šipkēvics) and Iveta Apkalna in the programme “Origin”, specifically created for the festival, will be offered; and on October 13, young listeners are invited to take part in the music workshop together with Iveta and improviser Varis Klausītājs.
The festival’s art director Iveta Apkalna, whose hometown is Rēzekne, looking forward to the fourth organ music festival “ORGANismi”, says: “After one year of creative break, festival “ORGANismi” is returning to the cosy and resonant premises of Latgale Embassy GORS to celebrate the wonder of organ music again. The number four means stability, balance, and equilibrium. This is exactly what we, the festival’s creative team, will be trying to perform in the concert programmes created especially for the festival, offering stable values – the organ with a symphony orchestra, balancing these with jazz rhythm in Barbara Dennerlein’s performance and preserving the equilibrium while listening to the organ sounds in the project “Origin” together with Jānis Šipkēvics. I am truly happy that we are coming together again to embark on an unforgettable adventure in the world of organ music.”
Festival programme:
JAZZ MEETS THE ORGAN. Barbara Dennerlein (Germany)
October 10 at 18.00, Small Hall, 12.00–15.00 €
Barbara Dennerlein is an internationally recognised jazz organist, a master of the Hammond, as well as the pipe organ. Dennerlein is the icon of the music stage who has fully devoted herself to discovering and showing the sound that jazz music achieves through the organ. The musician has developed her unique performance style that has no predecessors or imitators. During her career of more than 35 years, Dennerlein has recorded almost 27 solo albums. The extravagant musician visited Latvia for the first and until now the only time almost 15 years ago. At the “ORGANismi” festival concert, the organist’s latest concert programme “My Moments” will be performed, which the musician herself comments on: “Music is like a gemstone, which has given us many valuable moments – happiness and eternal joy, love, and freedom. I want to share these moments of inspiration and my musical world with listeners all over the world, showing the colours and magic of the queen of instruments – the organ. The organ is my love, my mission!”
ORGAN SYMPHONY. Iveta APKALNA, Latvian National Symphony Orchestra
October 11 at 18.00, Large Hall, 7.00–15.00 €
For the first time, the International Organ Music Festival “ORGANismi” will bring together the festival’s art director Iveta Apkalna and the Latvian National Symphony Orchestra in the concert programme “Organ Symphony” to perform “Sinfonia Concertante”, the organ concerto by Joseph Jongen, Belgian composer and music publicist, one of the most remarkable organists and promoters of Belgian music in the first half of the 19th century, and “Sinfonia Concertata” (Symphony No 8) by Latvian Canadian composer Tālivaldis Ķeniņš, which was first performed in Latvia this summer in Cēsis.
ORIGIN. SHIPSEA. Iveta APKALNA, J. Ivanovs Rēzekne Music Secondary School Girl Choir
October 12 at 18.00 and 20.30, Large Hall, 15.00 €
One of the special features of the organ music festival is that a unique joint performance, a concert programme is created during each festival. This time, the call of the organist Iveta Apkalna was answered by musician Shipsea (Jānis Šipkēvics) in order to create the concert programme “Origin” together with Iveta and Jānis Ivanovs Rēzekne Music Secondary School choir. This time, the concert scenography is also expected to surprise the listeners, overturning the usual concert premises. Young people are especially welcome at this festival event. The concert performances created during the previous festivals “Sun. Children. Rainis”, “If I Were”, and “One Mind with Another”, have given joy not only to festival attendees but could also be seen afterwards at the Latgale Embassy GORS, as well as, for example, “One Mind with Another” could also be seen in Rīga and Jūrmala.
MUSIC WORKSHOP. Improvisation Performance
October 13 at 11.00, 8.00 €
Improvisation performance for children, during which, together with young viewers, three artists of different professions will be improvising, creating the content and drawing of each performance as a unique story. The participants of the performance will be improviser Varis Klausītājs, musician Iveta Apkalna, and painter Ingrīda Ivane.
The reason “ORGANismi” festival was born was the acquisition of the digital organ “Johannus Eclessia” in 2014, which allowed Latgale Embassy GORS to become the first concert hall in Latvia where even larger musical repertoire could be performed together with the instrument. The location of this concert instrument at Latgale Embassy GORS opens wide opportunities not only for the performance of a variety of musical genres and compositions, but also for experiments, searching for new forms of cooperation and sound. Similar to organisms, the organ is a complex creation, characterised by the exchange of substances and energy. By playing with the words organ (the musical instrument) and organisms, the organisers of the festival are discovering still undiscovered opportunities of the joint performance of the organ and other arts, centuries, and styles. The International Organ Music Festival is supported by the Rēzekne City Council and the State Culture Capital Foundation in the framework of the specific programme “Access to Diverse Professional Arts at Latgale Embassy GORS”.
Tickets to the festival concerts can be purchased at Latgale Embassy GORS, “Biļešu Paradīze” ticket selling points, and on the Internet. Ticket prices range from 7.00 to 15.00 €; GORS Culture Ambassador Programme participants are entitled to a 30% discount.