For the first time this year, the Baltic states will host a joint pavilion at this international gathering as well as concerts from each of the countries.
Music Information Centre Lithuania first presented a stand showcasing the music of the Baltic states at Frankfurt’s music fair in 2004. This format was later used at the MIDEM music industry fair in Cannes. Until this year, the Baltic states have presented their music separately at WOMEX. However, having witnessed the success of the joint Scandinavian area in previous years, representatives of the Baltic states have decided to make better use of the opportunities the fair affords and use these to strengthen ties between the three countries.
2019 has proven to be a favourable year for such initiatives, as the newly established Baltic Cultural Fund is sponsoring the project. Additionally, the ever-migrating event will this year take place in the Finnish city of Tampere with a greater emphasis to be placed on music local to the region. A regional stage – Northern Connections – will showcase the music of both Northern and Baltic states.
Estonia will be represented by two performers – Cätlin Mägi, who’s music combines vocals and Jew’s harp, both manipulated electronically; and Mari Kalkun, a Võro language singer, instrumentalist and composer. From Latvia, the ten-vocalist ensemble Saucējas will present a repertoire of local archaic polyphonic songs.
Lithuania will be represented by singer Indrė Jurgelevičiūtė – part of the international group Merope – playing the traditional Lithuanian instrument kanklės. The group’s compositions present a unique take on Lithuanian folk music, incorporating motives from traditional Indian and Mediterranean music, jazz and even elements of electronic and improvisational music. This will be the first time a Lithuanian act has been presented at WOMEX. Interestingly, in all four concerts presented by the Baltic states, the vocal parts will be sung by women only.
WOMEX‘19 Special Focus: Northern Connections
Small Auditorium, Tampere Hall
Oct 24 Thursday 23:15
Cätlin Mägi (Estonia)
Artist explores the sonic potential of the Jew’s harp by bringing the ancient instrument in contact with modern technology and live electronics.
Oct 25 Friday 00:45
Mari Kalkun (Estonia)
Her compositions are redolent of the forest, the earth and the icy waters of rivers and lakes, setting the lyrics of local poets or her own reflections, sung in Estonian and the regional Võro language.
Oct 26 Saturday 23:15
Indie folk band playing minimalistic traditional Lithuanian melodies embraced by their own compositions, improvisations melted electronic soundcapes.
WOMEX‘19 offWOMEX Showcase
offWOMEX Stage, Klubi, Tullikamari
Oct 26 Saturday 22:30
Ancient polyphonic singing traditions are brought to life by the female singing group of the Latvian Academy of Culture.
article posted by:Radvilė Buivydienė, Music Lithuania