Both Liene Andreta Kalnciema and Mārtiņš Circenis come from musical dynasties, and unsurprisingly, are two of the most promising musicians of their generation.
Kalnciema is an active concert organist with recognition from competing in international competitions, the latest being receiving a place in the prestigious Wadden Sea International Organ Competition in Denmark.
Circenis plays the clarinet with a mastered yet gentle and romantic flair. He is the principal clarinetist of the Latvian National Symphonic Orchestra, a requested soloist, and very active on the chamber music scene.
Speaking of the program that they have put together for the Festival, Kalnciema elaborates: “It will have variety and dynamism – the combined sounds of the clarinet and Cēsis’ wonderful pipe-organ will give birth to mightiness, meditation, French charm, and virtuosity.”
Both Latvian and French composers have been selected for the program.
From the former: Pauls Dambis (himself a very distinguished organist); Tālivaldis Ķeniņš, Romualds Kalsons, Marģeris Zariņš (whose father was renown for playing on the Cēsis organ), and Imants Zemzaris.
From the latter: popular masters Jules Massenet and Charles-Marie Widor, and the lesser-known Eugène Bozza and Gaston Litaize.
Built by the Walcker factory, the organ at St. John’s Church was installed in 1907 and is an object of pride in not only Cēsis but all of Latvia. After its latest restoration it achieved a new, pure and clear sound, and with its 41 registers, is a powerful tool for producing impressive and moving music.