Start of the event:

May 13

Start of the event:



€ 18, € 24

Place of the event:

Klaipėda Concert Hall, Main Auditorium


Lithuanian National Symphony Orchestra
Artistic Director and Chief Conductor Modestas Pitrėnas

Soloists: Martti Rousi (cello, Finland), Enrico Dindo (cello, Italy), Marcel Johannes Kits (cello, Estonia), Krzysztof Karpeta (cello, Poland)

Conductor Robertas Šervenikas

Programme: Vidmantas Bartulis, Alisson Kruusmaa (world premiere), Osvaldo Golijov


The festival’s closing concert celebrates interaction between different but related cultures – cultures united by the sound of the cello.

Having appeared in many guises and colours during the festival, as in a kaleidoscope, the cello emerges here as a generalised image of universal instrument that is capable of transcending all national and cultural boundaries, uniting different peoples, artists and performers.

The concert is named after the cello concerto called Azul (the Spanish word for “blue”) by one of the world’s leading composers, Osvaldo Golijov. An Argentine composer of Eastern European Jewish origin, educated in Israel and currently living in the USA, Golijov writes music that combines cultural influences from a time when Christians, Jews and Arabs lived in peace, with his music “flowing from three cultural streams into one.” Commissioned by the Boston Symphony Orchestra and premiered in 2006 with Yo-Yo Ma as a soloist and dedicatee, this finest cello concerto so far this century originated during the composer’s experiences in the Middle East around the summer of 2000. A renewed wave of violence enveloped the region, and when Golijov returned to New York he visited the Hayden Planetarium. “I just was struck by this incredible planet that we live on and how beautiful it is from above and how in a way the topographical view, you don’t get that sense of all the struggles of life on the surface of our planet,” he said.

The freedom of creativity will be illustrated by the work of young and internationally acclaimed Estonian composer Alisson Kruusmaa whose cello concerto Ali (Wings, 2023) will receive its world premiere in the performance of its dedicatee – wonderful Finnish cellist Martti Rousi. “For me, this work is a reflection of freedom and movement, of the ability to soar and reach heights that would otherwise be unattainable,” says the composer.

The Concerto for Two Violins and Orchestra (version for 2 cellos and orchestra) from the early period of the recently deceased Lithuanian composer, Vidmantas Bartulis, has many links in its conceptual sense with the music of Bronius Kutavičius, a great influence on Bartulis himself. Thus, this work will, as it were, inject Lithuanian identity into the multicultural picture of the programme.

Perhaps for the first time in Lithuania, the works are performed by a truly stellar roaster of performers, including the Lithuanian National Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Robertas Šervenikas and soloists: Martti Rousi (Finland), Enrico Dindo (Italy), Marcel Johannes Kits (Estonia), and Krzysztof Karpeta (Poland). These are the jury members of this year’s cello competition, bringing their artistic excellence to the audience of the International Klaipėda Cello Festival.



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