This concert offers popular Latvian folk songs, timeless classics and favourite rock melodies, all played on the kokle, a plucked instrument dating back to the 13th century that characterises the national music of Latvia. Sometimes compared to the kantele or the Russian gusli, this uniquely Baltic instrument is growing increasingly popular, with its use expanding beyond folk music to classical genres.Because of its shape and the manner in which it is played, the kokle is considered a relative of the psaltery. Its sound lends equally unique colour to arrangements of folk music as it does to melodies of many styles from different eras, as well as to 21st-century Latvian music, making it popular with modern-day composers. These scores feature the so-called 'concert kokle', which offers technical possibilities similar to the 'academic' instruments - such as the violin, flute and cello.
All the members of the Cantata Kokle Ensemble have grown up with this music since childhood. In the course of their career together, they have devised a powerful motto: 'We are full of energy, passion and the desire to attain a very high level of musical quality - and we work accordingly, day after day. We are here to create music that fills both our listeners and ourselves with positive energy.'
The first part of the programme will feature the musicians playing Latvian folk songs, which will be followed by pieces written for the Kokle by eminent contemporary Latvian composers in the second part. In the third part, they will perform arrangements of melodies from different eras and in different styles, with Pachelbel and Mozart rubbing shoulders with Gershwin, Metallica and others.
Sponsored by: Embassy of the Republic of Latvia in Hungary
Presented by: Müpa Budapest
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