November 4, 2019

Riga Jurmala Music Festival Announces Its 2020 Program

Riga Jurmala Music Festival presents four weekends focused on leading international orchestras

Its 2020 programme includes residencies by Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra and Manfred Honeck, Israel Philharmonic Orchestra and Lahav Shani, Philharmonia Orchestra and Vladimir Ashkenazy and St. Petersburg Philharmonic and Yuri Temirkanov.

Orchestral and chamber music concerts feature soloists Behzod Abduraimov, Leif Ove Andsnes, Gautier Capuçon, Nelson Freire,Matthias Goerne,Hélène Grimaud, Alexandre Kantorow, Leonidas Kavakos, Daniel Lozakovich, Truls Mørk, Maria João Pires and András Schiff.

The Riga Jurmala Music Festival today announced its 2020 programme, taking place across four weekends between 10 July and 30 August. As with the inaugural edition this year, the Riga Jurmala Music Festival will present four orchestras, anchoring each weekend of three evening and two noon orchestral and chamber music concerts.

For 2020 the resident orchestras are the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra and conductor Lahav Shani (10-12 July), the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra and conductor Manfred Honeck (17-19 July), the St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra and conductor Yuri Temirkanov (14-16 August) and the Philharmonia Orchestra and conductor Vladimir Ashkenazy (28-30 August).

The public and critics alike judged the inaugural Riga Jurmala Music Festival a success, with many concerts sold out and extensive worldwide press coverage, including the Daily Telegraph recognizing the festival as the No. 1 classical music summer destination and Condé Nast Traveller describing the festival as “the summer’s biggest arrival”.

The Riga Jurmala Music Festival’s dual location of Latvia’s historic capital city, Riga, and the forested seaside resort of Jūrmala appealed to visitors, who enjoyed the unique settings for this new music festival.

Artistic programme

Next summer’s Riga Jurmala Music Festival will consist of 20 symphonic and chamber music concerts, each of the four weekends led by aninternational orchestra and conductor in a range of symphonic concerts and recitals featuring leading stars and young up-and-coming talent.

Music Director Designate of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, Lahav Shani leads the orchestra’s welcome return to the Riga Jurmala Music Festival after the success of their concerts in July 2019 under the baton of the legendary Zubin Mehta.

Another welcome return after their sold-out performances at the Riga Jurmala Music Festival’s opening weekend is the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, performing with conductor Manfred Honeck.

Two further orchestras will be making their debut at the Riga Jurmala Music Festival, both appearing with conducting legends.  The St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, Russia’s oldest symphony orchestra, will be led by their Music Director and Chief Conductor Yuri Temirkanov, who has conducted the orchestra since 1988. London’s celebrated Philharmonia Orchestra, which has been led by some of the greatest conductors ever in its almost 75 year history, performs with Grammy-award-winning conductor Vladimir Ashkenazy.

Soloists announced for the 2020 season include violinists Leonidas Kavakos (with Enrico Pace at the piano) and Daniel Lozakovich, and an array of outstanding pianists, such as Grammy-award winning AndrásSchiff, a rare performance from Maria João Pires, Behzod Abduraimov, Nelson Freire, Hélène Grimaud andAlexandre Kantorow.

Noon recitals offer the chance to discover emerging artists, including the 16-year-old violinist Maria Dueñas (with Julien Quentin at the piano), andpianists such as 12-year old Alexandra Dovgan, 15-year-old Yoav Levanon, Daumants Liepiņš and winners of the International Tchaikovsky Competition in the piano category: Mao Fujita (Second Prize, 2019) and George Li (Second Prize, 2015). Alexandre Kantorow, who performs with the Philharmonia Orchestra, won first Prize and the rare Grand Prix in this year’s competition.

Cellists include Truls Mørk and Gautier Capuçon, and vocalists include the esteemed baritone Matthias Goerne for a reading of Schubert’s Winterreise in partnership with the renowned pianist Leif Ove Andsnes, and noon recitals with tenor Long Long (with Israel Gursky at the piano) as well as with The King’s Singers, a British institution that has been harmonizing for over 50 years.

Led by Artistic Director Martin Engstroem and Associate Artistic Director Miguel Esteban, the team behind the Festival has been working tirelessly to bring the best quality music and musicians to Latvia. The team consists of industry professionals who all share a dedication and passion for classical music, as well as the strongly held belief that Riga and Jurmala are the hidden gems of Northern Europe, and fast becoming amongst the most exciting destinations for classical music connoisseurs.

Martin Engstroem said, “The second season of the Riga Jurmala Music Festival promises to be exceptional for several reasons. First of all, we are honored to welcome back the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra and the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, both of which were warmly received and appreciated by audiences this year. The summer of 2020 will be musically rich, offering a wide range of the finest instrumentalists and vocalists of today coupled with some of the greatest emerging talents of the next generation. I am particularly proud that we have brought together some of the most truly exceptional pianists of our time, some of which have chosen to celebrate the 250thBeethoven anniversary together with us.”

Riga Jurmala Music Academy to be launched in 2020

This year the Riga Jurmala Music Festival will also introduce a music education initiative, organized in collaboration with the Jāzeps Vītols Latvian Academy of Music, the country’s center for excellence in classical music performance. The Riga Jurmala Music Academy will provide unique artistic development and collegial interaction opportunities for young and talented musicians from Latvia and abroad, organizing master classes and workshops with selected soloists and orchestra musicians of the 2020 festival roster. András Schiff will offer an afternoon of masterclasses and members of the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra will work with young instrumentalists interested in an orchestral career.

Tickets available from 20 November 2019

Tickets for the 2020 Festival season will be available on pre-sale from 20 November 2019 at the Festival’s website: