BALSIS will launch its 30th performance season with the concert series DAUGAVA’S BALSIS. From August 25 to 28, the choir will continue the tradition begun in 2011 of travelling along the Daugava River, sailing a different section each year, presenting concerts free of charge in churches, parks, castle ruins and novel venues on both sides of the river. Over the past 6 years the choir has performed 37 concerts as part of this project. This year over the 4 days, BALSIS, under the leadership of Ints Teterovskis, will perform 10 concerts between Aizkraukle and Ogre.

Release, poster and pictures for download

Thursday, August 25

1.00pm Aizkraukle (old) Ev. Lutheran Church (Aizkraukles Municipality, A6 Riga-Daugavpils

Highway, 82 kilometres)

5.00pm Jaunjelgavas Ev. Lutheran Church, Martin’s White Church (Jaunjelgava, Meža street 13)

8.00pm Skriveri Dendrological Park near the fountain (Skriveri Municipality)

Friday, August 26

5.00pm Jumpravas St. John’s Lutheran Church (Lielvarde Municipality, Dzelmes)

8.00pm Dziesmu svētkiem 143 (Song Festival 143), at the Kaibala’s Poetry Oaks (Lielvarde

Municipality, Kaibala)

Saturday, August 27

11.00am Linde Manor Park (Kegums Municipality, Linde)

2.00pm Lielvarde Knights’ Castle ruins (Lielvarde, Lielvarde Park)

7.00pm Kegums Ev. Luth. Church. Special guests, the Kegums’ Youth Choir, Lins (Kegums,

Liepu Alley, 3)

Sunday, August 28

12.00 noon Tome Ev. Luth. Church (Kegums Municipality, Tome)

6.00pm On a raft on the Ogre’s River (Ogre, near the crooked bridge – pie Līkā tilta)

Aizkraukles residents will be the first with an opportunity to hear BALSIS sing at the old Aizkraukles Evangelical Lutheran Church at 1.00pm on August 25. During WW2, the tower of this church was struck by German bombers but miraculously the church was not destroyed. Just a few hours after this concert, at 5.00pm, the choir will perform at Jaunjelgava Evangelical Lutheran Church, Martin’s White Church which was built in 1957 during the period of Soviet occupation on the left bank of the Daugava. The evening concert, held by candlelight, will be at 8.00pm at the Skriveri Dendrological Park near the fountain.

On August 26, BALSIS will perform at Dzelme, at Jumprava’s St John’s Evangelical Lutheran Church at 5.00pm. Later at 8.00pm the choir’s singing will reverberate through Dziesmu Svetki (Song Festival) 143, Kaibala, near the Poetry Oaks. This place inspired Auseklis and Joseph Vitols to create the composition Dievozolu trijotne (God’s Oak Trio), which the choir’s young singers have prepared especially for this concert. As in Olinkalns in 2015, audience members will be invited to take part in singing the classic choral pieces - Gaismas pils, Jāņu vakars, Lauztās priedes, as well as songs from the 2018 Song Festival repertoire.

The third day of the concert series will start on August 27, at 11.00am with a concert at Linde Manor Park, which can be found on the left bank of the Daugava. The park has two hundred year old linden trees as well as baroque-style entrance gates from 1767. Back on the right bank, there’ll be a concert at the Lielvardes Knights’ Castle ruins which will commence at 2.00pm. During the Middle Ages this was an important settlement for Livs from the Daugava area, therefore this concert will include songs in the Liv language. The next concert will be at 7.00pm at Kegums Evangelical

Lutheran Church. Along with BALSIS, this concert will also feature the Kegums youth choir Lins, conducted by Maira Liduma. A concert of sacred music will start the day on Sunday, August 28 at the Tome’s Evangelical Lutheran Church at 12.00 noon. There have been churches on this site since the 1700s, but the current church is the youngest one in Ogre Municipality, completed in 2003. This year the DAUGAVAS BALSIS concert series will conclude in Ogre. At 6.00pm BALSIS will literally be singing on the water, performing on the Ogres River Raft at the Crooked Bridge (Līkais Tilts). Inese Zandere’s and Raimond Pauls’ well known cycle Dziesmas par Latvijas upēm (Songs about Latvian Rivers) will be performed.

Concerts at each venue will vary as they have been selected so as to resonate with specific venues. Pauls, Ešenvalds, Sejans, Sipkevics, Puce, Skepasts, Rusovs, Muktupavels, Darzins, Melngailis, Tormis, Kalnins, Maskats, Jurjans, Ramins, Dubra, Brahms, Sisask, Plakidis, Butans, Vaivods, Vasks, Vitols, Stabulnieks, Brauns, Kaminskis, Lusens, Garuta, Barisons, Cimze – a total of 67 songs!

BALSIS wants to express its thanks for the support of Aizkraukle, Jaunjelgava, Skriveru, Lielvarde, Kegums and Ogre Municipalities, as well as Jumpravas and Tome parishes. The concert series also receives financial support from the State Culture Capital Foundation and Latvian State Forests. As well, the choir is immensely grateful for the assistance that BALSIS has received that has allowed them to participate in both international festivals in Asia – Rietuma Bank Charity Fund, the State Culture Capital Foundation and Latvian State Forests, as well as Babites and Aizkraukles local area governments and other supporters. As well during the tour the world at large has become familiar with Live Riga, Riga Free Port and LIAA.

 

All of the concerts are free.

See you on the banks of the Daugava in August!

 

 

 

 

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