Our privacy policy was last updated on Friday 31 January 2020View it hereDismiss
Sign in
Bachtrack logo
What's on
Festivals home

Festival: Riga Jurmala Music Festival


July 10 – Aug 30, 2020

Why should you visit the festival?

This festival will be an unparalleled experience for classical-music lovers, with a programme of incredible artists in the surroundings of these two stunning locations – it is certainly a musical event unlike any other!

The Riga Jurmala Music Festival announced its 2020 programme, taking place across four weekends between 10 July and 30 August. As with the inaugural edition this year, the Riga Jurmala Music Festival will present four orchestras, anchoring each weekend of three evening and two noon orchestral and chamber music concerts. Tickets for the 2020 Festival season are available at the Festival’s website: www.riga-jurmala.com

Riga Jurmala Music Festival presents four weekends focused on leading international orchestras. Its 2020 programme includes residencies by Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra and Manfred Honeck, Israel Philharmonic Orchestra and Lahav Shani, Philharmonia Orchestra and Vladimir Ashkenazy and St. Petersburg Philharmonic and Yuri Temirkanov.

Orchestral and chamber music concerts feature soloists Behzod Abduraimov, Leif Ove Andsnes, Gautier Capuçon, Nelson Freire, Matthias Goerne, Hélène Grimaud, Alexandre Kantorow, Leonidas Kavakos, Daniel Lozakovich, Truls Mørk, Maria João Pires and András Schiff.

Where is it?

The concerts will take place in the historic capital of Riga. The biggest metropolis in the Baltics, Riga perfectly combines history and tradition with cutting edge cool. Like all northerners, it is quiet and reserved on the outside, but there is some powerful chemistry going on inside. Other 2 classical music holiday weekends will take place in the country’s flagship seaside resort, Jurmala (just forty minutes from Riga). Latvia has an incredibly rich artistic culture, especially regarding classical music. 2 of the world’s top 10 conductors are Latvian (Mariss Jansons and Andris Nelsons) – a truly extraordinary achievement for a country this small.

How to get there?

Riga International airport is easily accessible from most European countries, with several airlines including it among their destinations. Taxis from the airport to the centre are always available and the drivers usually speak English. There is also a bus (Bus 22) which offers a 30-minute ride to the centre for just €2. There is a train that runs regularly between Riga and Jurmala that takes 20-50 minutes (depending on the train) and costs under €2. Driving between the two destinations takes roughly 40 minutes.

There are direct flights to Riga from almost 100 destinations in Europe, Asia, Africa and America. The Latvian national airline and the official carrier of the Riga Jurmala Music Festival – airBaltic provides easy and convenient connections to all the major airports in Europe and CIS countries

Local accommodation

There are plenty of accommodation options in both Riga and Jurmala. Jurmala is known for its spas and resorts, and many hotels will also offer spa and wellness facilities. Learn about the best accommodation places from the Festival’s official accommodation partners.

What can tourists visit nearby?

Riga has some incredible architecture and history to explore. Not only is the city a UNESCO World Heritage Site, but also contains beautiful rivers, skylines and one of the world’s richest collections of Art Nouveau. Riga’s central market is also famous for offering the best in local Latvian cuisine, including artisanal breads, sausages, cheeses and fish.

Jurmala is a beachside town, so it’s the perfect place to relax by the sea. As mentioned before, it’s famed for its wellness facilities, but there are also museums, water parks and, of course, a world-class concert hall.

Learn about other attractions and experiences from the official festival partner Live Rīga.

What type of programmes do you have?

The programme is built around four weekends, each anchored by a leading international orchestra and conductor with a range of symphonic concerts and recitals featuring the foremost stars of classical music, as well as up-and-coming talent.

What are the venues like?

The Riga Jurmala Music Festival will take place at the Latvian National Opera, the Great Guild, and the Great and Small Halls of the Dzintari Concert Hall. The Latvian National Opera is home to the Latvian National Ballet, Chorus and Orchestra, and perform world-class music each season. The Great Guild is home to the Latvian National Symphony Orchestra, and is one of the oldest and most beautiful concert halls in Riga. The Dzintari Concert Hall is an architectural gem located on the shores of the Baltic Sea. The complex incorporates neoeclectism of the 1930s with an acoustically impressive covered concert garden, built just 30 years later. The semi-open Great Hall offers audiences the chance to experience world-class classical music whilst in the surroundings of Latvia’s natural beauty.

Dress code

The weather in Latvia during the summer has an average temperature of 20°C, so we suggest wearing clothes that will make our audiences comfortable. There is no strict dress code, but these are world-class performances, and we encourage our attendees to wear outfits that might reflect this sense of occasion.

Food & Drink

There are plenty of dining options in both Riga and Jurmala, offering both local and international cuisine. In it’s inaugural season, the festival established a collaboration with Riga Wine & Champagne festival to provide music lovers a unique chance to enjoy a set of wine and music paired up by the leading restaurants and sommeliers of Riga. More surprises will await the festival visitors this year!

The Riga Jurmala Music Festival is under the artistic direction of Artistic Director Martin T:son Engstroem and Associate Artistic Director Miguel Esteban.

Click here for more information about the festival on their website.

Latest reviewsSee more...

Russian fire and French nightmare in Jūrmala

Yuja Wang and the Israel Philharmonic © Reinis Oliņš
One of the great performances of a concerto which gets so many performances.
Read more

Zubin Mehta and the Israel Philharmonic in Jūrmala

Jan Lisiecki and the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra © Pauls Zvirbulis
Jan Lisiecki's leap-in with the Israel Philharmonic offers extra spontaneity in Beethoven's Fourth Piano Concerto. 
Read more

Brothers in the night: Jan Lisiecki impresses in Jūrmala

Jan Lisiecki © Evija Trifanova
Jan Lisiecki opens the third weekend of the Riga Jurmala Music Festival at the Dzintari Concert Hall. 
Read more

Das Cello zum Sonntag: Edgar Moreau in Riga

Edgar Moreau © Evija Trifanova
Im intimen Rahmen gibt sich der Cello-Jungstar mit drei von Johann Sebastian Bachs Cellosuiten die Ehre.
Read more

Wie ein Fisch im Wasser: das LSO im Dzintaru Koncertzāle

Vadim Repin © Evija Trifanova
Einen bunten Mix an Werken und vor allem grandiose 25 Minuten Britten bietet das Orchester unter Gianandrea Noseda.
Read more

Russisches Dreigestirn im lettischen Jūrmala

Gianandrea Noseda © Pauls Zvirbulis
Mit Werken von Rimsky-Korsakow, Prokofjew und Schostakowitsch läutet das Riga Jūrmala Festival das letzte Wochenende seiner ersten Saison ein.
Read more
Preview of 2020 edition
Riga–Jurmala Music Festival © Jelena Spasova

Long Latvian weekends: top orchestras headline Riga-Jurmala Festival

After last summer's successful launch, the festival again boasts four star orchestras for its second edition, with appearances by the Israel and St Petersburg Philharmonics, the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra and the Philharmonia. 
Latvian National Opera © Daiga Viksna

From Latvia to the world: Engstroem and the Riga Jurmala Festival

We speak to Martin Engstroem, founder of the renowned Verbier Festival, who is about to launch another ambitious project in Latvia.