This summer, Latvia will host the largest traditional culture festival in the Baltics – the international folklore festival Baltica 2015, which will gather ethnographic singing groups, folklore groups, traditional musical groups, storytellers and other folklore-related performances from Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia and other countries.
The festival itself will take place from July 15 to 19 and is expected to gather the largest number of participants in the festival’s history – 3,500.
The festival’s main events will take place in Riga, as well as in Rēzekne and Rēzekne Region. Events will also be held in Aizkraukle, Cēsis, Dikļi, Dobele, Jūrmala, Lielvārde, Līvāni, Ludza, Talsi, Viļaka, Viļāni and elsewhere. The festival will also be organizing concerts for the first time ever in several new concert halls – the Vidzeme Concert Hall in Cēsis, the Gors Concert Hall in Rēzekne, as well as the new National Library building in Riga.
This year’s festival will put a special emphasis on story-telling, as Latvian, Lithuanian and Estonian storytellers, as well as storytellers from Scotland and Spain, will entertain audiences in Riga, Cēsis and Rēzekne.
Another special event will be held in Rēzekne’s Festival Park, where all of the festival’s participating folklore groups will gather for a special performance.
Traditionally, the Baltica festival program is always enhanced by inviting foreign participants. This year, the festival will feature guests from Belarus, Georgia, Ireland, Russia, Great Britain, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Spain and Ukraine.
The Baltica festival is always an important event for the people of the Baltics, which demonstrates the traditional cultural values of the region – songs, instrumental music, storytelling, dance, as well as traditional arts, crafts and other displays of traditional forms of art and culture. The Baltica festival has been held in one of the Baltic countries each year since it was first took place in 1987. This year will be the 10th time that Latvia is hosting the festival.