ARENA 2020Although, as usual, the festival possesses the breath and spirit of the world, this year, its main focus falls on concert programmes by outstanding local artists and world premières by several Latvian composers, as well as keyboard instruments in their various manifestations. The scintillation of all the timbral nuances of the black and white keys – from the extraordinary harpsichord to the versatile piano, and from the toy piano to the monumental accordion and the regal organ – is bound to touch the heart of any listener. The diverse repertoire of this year's festival is also marked by a variety of stylistic nuances.
Harpsichord, recorders, electronics, harp, a giant musical dream catcher, a guitar made from skis, sewer pipe trumpets, singing vegetables, spoken word... These original instruments, non-traditional musical ensembles, improvisation, jazz music and many surprises in the world premieres of modern composers' works await in this year's New Music Festival ARENA 2019 which will take place in Riga from 19 October to 2 November.
ARENA 2017October 14 – 20, 2017, the contemporary music festival ARENA for the 16th time will offer its visitors to experience and listen to rather unusual musical performances. This year the festival will present world premieres of musical pieces created by both Latvian and foreign composers, the visitors will have the chance to meet outstanding Latvian and foreign musicians, as well as go on a one-day concert journey on a special ARENA trolleybus.
Contemporary music festival ARENA is celebrating its 15th anniversary this year and offers its visitors an exquisite and colourfully festive programme with world class musical celebrities participating in it!
From 14 October until 6 November the New Music Festival ARENA will be held in Latvia for the 14th time. This year it will offer to the audience in Riga, Sigulda and Liepaja ten acoustical and visually unusual programs of contemporary music and art. For the first time in the festival there will be a special program for children, welcoming them both to enjoy the performances of music and art as well as to make the music instruments in special workshops.
ARENA in Classical: NEXT 2015 in Rotterdam
From 20 to 23 May, New Music Festival ARENA will participate in the international professional's forum for classical and art music Classical: NEXT in Rotterdam, Netherlands, representing three co-productions by Latvian and foreign artists.
For the thirteenth year already the New Music Festival ARENA offers scenery of diverse genres. This year festival’s theme “Crossing Borders” indicates the authors’ wish to explore the tangency of diverse styles and expressions of contemporary music. The programme includes six concerts of interdisciplinary and conceptual projects, exquisite studies of the sound in the instrumental and the vocal media, as well as sacred music. The festival contains also lectures and discussions by both Latvian and foreign guests:- Ilma Grauzdiņa “Contemporary Music – Is It But a Serious Conversation Partner?”,- Boriss Avramecs “On the Crossroads of Rock and Academic Music”- Artūrs Mednis “Social Networking – How Does Music Cooperate with the Present Age?”,- John Palmer (Great Britain) “The Art of Listening to Contemporary Music” and- Javier Hagen (Germany / Switzerland) “Does Contemporary Music Possess a Nationality?”.
ARENA 2003To perceive the imperceivable – the high-points of unloading of tensity in the present world of music – the playground must be relatively capacious. On the ARENA ground a dense and intense atmosphere is to be expected! György Ligeti alone with his unlimited freedom of mind and imagination is challenge enough for the connoisseurs eager to listen. In the relationship of the unique master with his environment lies the appeal of unrelenting directness, this emerges in the apparent invitation (read: demand) to the addressee of his art – Open your ears!, in the ability to cement microscopic structures into the foundation of grand forms and extended musical ideas, as well as in a healthy unpredictability unveiling in the personal tragic and venturing of brusque jokes and irony.
ARENA 2002The Latvian audience (not unreasonably though) tends to regard itself to be sufficiently well aware of the ABC's of classical values to be able to digest the streams of the contemporary art world – so to say, the contemporary art pulse readily resonates on our cultural scene. True, it doesn't pulsate in all fields with equal verve and steadiness. Theatre in Latvia has its festival "Homo Novus", cinema identifies itself with the word "Arsenāls", art has its magazine "Studija", literature enjoys international relations – even if they require further improvement, but music – ? We celebrate, among others, opera music, piano stars, early music, sacred music, boys' choirs, while new music has always remained in an underpriviliged position. The niche is free, the gate is open. What to do next?