Masterclasses taught by Benjamin Appl, Yefim Bronfman and Alice Coote, among others

The Riga Jurmala Music Festival announces the 2021 season of the Riga Jurmala Academy. Organised in collaboration with the Jāzeps Vītols Latvian Academy of Music, the country’s centre for excellence in classical music training, the Academy will provide unique artistic development opportunities for young and talented musicians from the Baltics and abroad. This year’s teachers for the upcoming online masterclasses include singers Benjamin Appl and Alice Coote, pianists Yefim Bronfman and Yoav Levanon, and principal musicians from the Concertgebouworkest, Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra and Chicago Symphony orchestra.

“In this very critical pandemic situation, we must use every possibility, every tool we can find to keep playing, to maintain goals to practice, to learn from one another, until normal times come back again. The Riga Jurmala Academy reacted extremely quickly to make all that happen, which is absolutely terrific, especially for the younger generation of musicians to come,” comments Lionel Cottet, the principal violoncellist of Bavarian Radio Symphony orchestra.

Martin T:son Engstroem, Artistic Director of the Riga Jurmala Music Festival, said: “I strongly believe that every festival should always aim to educate as well as entertain. For young artists, who will hopefully be performing on our festival stages in the future, masterclasses led by outstanding seasoned artists is an incredible opportunity. I am convinced that the Riga Jurmala Academy is just the beginning of a parallel chapter to the amazing adventure we began in 2019.”

Masterclasses will take place online throughout the spring as well as on-site in Riga, during the scheduled weekends of the 2021 Riga Jurmala Music Festival, and will be led by the artists appearing in the concerts.

The first online masterclasses have already taken place on the Riga Jurmala Academy’s Facebook page, including classes with cellist Renaud Capuçon, principal violoncellist of Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, Lionel Cottet, and the principal trumpeter of Concertgebouworkest, Omar Tomasoni.  Watch the first online masterclasses here.

Masterclass schedule

  • 27 January – Benjamin Appl, baritone
  • 24 February- Dominic Seldis, double bass / Concertgebouworkest,
  • 26 February – Gregor Horsch, cello / Concertgebouworkest,
  • 10 March – Emily Beynon, flute / Concertgebouworkest.

Masterclasses with Alice Coote, Yefim Bronfman and Yoav Levanon will take also place in March and April (dates TBC).

The Riga Jurmala Music Festival is contributing to the Latvia’s stellar music education system as well as extending its reach abroad. Each participant in the programme will receive one-on-one lessons with the professors of their masterclass, as well as have access to attend the other masterclasses and workshops. They will also have opportunities to perform throughout the course and selected young artists may be offered performance opportunities at future Festival editions. All participants will also be invited to the concerts of the Riga Jurmala Music Festival, where they will have the chance to watch their mentors perform in a professional setting in front of a live audience. They will also be invited to the artist meet-and-greet sessions and special guest receptions.

Applications will be open for advanced undergraduate and postgraduate students with performance experience. The application process will require submitting performance videos, photos and a biography. A certain number of merit-based scholarships will be available, covering travel and subsistence costs.

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