Next Friday, on August 27, the Riga Jurmala Music Festival’s educational programme in cooperation with Embassy of the United States of America in Latvia presents an in-person singing masterclass with legendary American soprano Renée Fleming. As part of the class, Daniils Kuzmins and Ilze Grēvele – all of whom are students at the Jāzeps Vītols Latvian Academy of Music – will work on their renditions of world-famous arias and romances. The masterclass will be open to the public, and Q&A session with the soprano will follow afterwards. The masterclass will take place at the Great Guild Hall on August 27 from 10 a.m. till 11.00 a.m. and the attendance must be booked in advance at tickets.riga-jurmala.com/2021/. Additionally, the masterclass will be broadcasted online on Riga Jurmala Academy’s Facebook page.
Renée Fleming will be in Riga to perform in the Riga Jurmala Music Festival concert on August 28 at the Dzintari Concert Hall together with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra of Amsterdam and conductor Daniel Harding. The programme will feature music by Claude Debussy, Olivier Messiaen and Igor Stravinsky.
The talented young musicians Daniils Kuzmins and Ilze Grēvele from the Jāzeps Vītols Latvian Academy of Music will take part in the masterclass on August 27. They will work on such famous works as Donna Anna’s “Crudele, ah, no mio bene… Non mi dir” recitative and aria from Mozart’s opera Don Giovanni, Wolfram’s romance “O du mein holder Abendstern” from Wagner’s opera Tannhäuser, and more.
Born in 1959, Fleming is one of the most highly acclaimed artists of our time. She is known for bringing new audiences to classical music and opera, having also performed with Elton John, Paul Simon, Sting and other popular performers.
Fleming won her fourth Grammy Award in 2013 for best classical vocal solo and has sung for momentous occasions from the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony to the Diamond Jubilee Concert for Queen Elizabeth II at Buckingham Palace. In 2008, she became the first woman in the 125-year history of the Metropolitan Opera to solo headline an opening-night gala. Fleming has recorded everything from complete operas and song recitals to indie rock and jazz. Her album Signatures was selected by the U.S. Library of Congress for the National Recording Registry as an “aural treasure worthy of preservation as part of America’s patrimony”.
As artistic advisor to the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Fleming currently spearheads a collaboration with the U.S. National Institutes of Health, with participation by the National Endowment for the Arts, focused on the science connecting music, wellness and the brain. In 2010, she was named the first-ever creative consultant of the Lyric Opera of Chicago. She is on the board of trustees of Carnegie Hall, a board member at Sing for Hope, and on the artistic advisory board of the Polyphony Foundation. She is also a spokesperson for the American Music Therapy Association.
“This is a rare and unique opportunity for young talents as well as experienced musicians to meet and learn from this legendary soprano. I am very happy for the students from the Jāzeps Vītols Latvian Academy of Music who will be able, in these challenging times, to take part in a masterclass – and with such a world-class singer at that. I am likewise pleased to invite all who are interested to join in and observe this masterclass in person,” says Toms Ostrovskis, the director of the Riga Jurmala Academy.
The masterclass is supported by and takes place in collaboration with the Embassy of the United States of America in Latvia and the Jāzeps Vītols Latvian Academy of Music. It is open to all who present a valid Covid-19 digital certificate confirming completed vaccination or recovery from Covid-19 and who register in advance at tickets.riga-jurmala.com/2021/.