EVERY YEAR IN JULY… FOR 20 YEARS!
RIGAS RITMI FESTIVAL is one of the most attended and loved music festivals in Latvia. The festival’s stages at different locations in Riga feature both – world-famous and award-winning, as well as young and undiscovered musical talents.
In its 20th anniversary year, Rigas Ritmi Festival offers a grand program - a selection of music gourmets. This year's festival will feature Cuban pianist Roberto Fonseca and vocalist Danay Suarez, American singer Shenel Johns as well as Grammy nominees and world music super group Bokante. The world-famous music producer Quincy Jones will present a special gift on the anniversary of the festival, offering listeners to enjoy the extraordinary vocals of young American singer Clark Beckham. Festival visitors will also be delighted by charismatic Swedish jazz singer Liselotte Östblom, Tom Syson, as well as young Latvian artists Gints Smukais, Rihards Libietis Orchestra, Very Cool People, and many others…
During these years, the Rigas Ritmi Festival has become an essential part of Latvian and Baltic cultural life, recording the name of Riga in the tourist guides and jazz culture. Over two decades, more than 600 musicians from around the world have performed in 1000 concerts, which have been enjoyed by more than 200 thousand spectators.
Rigas Ritmi Festival is a real musical celebration with performances of outstanding artists, including - Bobby McFerrin, Diane Reeves, “Take 6”, Richard Bona, “BBC Big Band”, Avishai Cohen, Patti Austin, Scott Hamilton, Freddy Cole, “The Yellowjackets”, Victor Wooten, Buika, Astillero, Jojo Mayer, Medeski Martin & Wood, Robert Glasper, Diane Schuur, as well as the greatest Latvian musicians, and as stated before – new talent.
The idea of an international contemporary jazz and improvisation music festival in Riga was initiated by Latvian jazz musician and producer Maris Briezkalns, who currently holds the position of the festival’s artistic director, as well as remains the driving force behind the festival today.
PROJECTS OF CULTURAL EDUCATION
Cornerstone of the festival is master-classes, workshops and seminars for young musicians, held by world renowned masters. Besides diverse concerts, the festival also features jam sessions, where world known musicians share their knowledge and experience to new talents, serving as inspiration and is the turning point for many young musicians in their careers.
An integral part of the festival’s audience comes from music and arts schools – the students and teachers visit not only concerts, but also the master’s workshops, therefore increasing their skills and qualification. Unforgettable master-classes have been with – Horacio el Negro Hernandez, Victor Wooten, Markus Stockhausen, Vinx, Bo Stief, Alex Wilson Salsa Orchestra.
RIGAS RITMI SHOWCASE
An important element of the festival is the Rigas Ritmi Festival is Showcase project, which aims to present the best Latvian jazz, improvisation and world music performers to the world’s jazz scene. The Project aims to promote Latvia’s creative music industry and its export abroad. During this Showcase, guests from abroad have the chance to meet new Latvian talent, view them in concert, meet them at master’s workshops and talk to them during panel discussions.
RIGAS RITMI FESTIVAL PRESENTATION IN USA
In spring 2011 festival made its presentation tour in USA: Rigas Ritmi All Stars – Maris Briezkalns Quintet was giving series of concerts and interviews around USA all of which culminated in ensemble’s debut at the world famous Blue Note jazz club in New York City, this being the first time that Latvian artists headline at Blue Note. In mid- This program was enacted through the cooperation and sponsorship of New York University (NYU) and The New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA).