The international meeting of young composers is a tradition, which goes back to 2002, started and still hosted by the composer Andris Dzenītis and his companions. Three times the workshop took place in the village Dundaga on west side of Latvia, two last times in Mazsalaca, a small town in the north of Latvia, but in 2012 - in Cēsis.
The workshop in Cēsis is organized in collaboration with FREE MUSIC AGENCY LATVIA, LATVIAN RADIO CHOIR, CĒSIS ARTS FESTIVAL, INSTITUT DE RECHERCHE AT COORDINATION ACOUSTIQUE / MUSIQUE 'IRCAM' PROJECT 'ULYSSES PLATFORM' which is supported by the European Commission Culture Programme.


Augusts 12th, at 20.00
St. John's Church of Cēsis
Concert of Latvian Radio Choir "From Bach to Tibet"
Conductor: Sigvards Kļava
Programme: Johann Sebastian Bach; Knut Nystedt; Anders Hillborg; Jogn Cage; Santa Ratniece; Toivo Tulev; Lasse Thoresen; Pēteris Vasks

August 17th, at 18.00
Forest School music hall
Latvian Radio Choir final concert
Conductor: Kaspars Putniņš and Sigvards Kļava
Programme: Music of workshop lecturers and participants






We are happy to announce, that the residing musicians for this year’s workshop will be the internationally recognized LATVIAN RADIO CHOIR
Conductors - Sigvards Kļava and Kaspars Putniņš

ACTIVE PARTICIPANTS (selected by jury)

Alice Berni
Oskars Herliņš
Eugene Birman
Jose Manuel Serrano

ACTIVE PARTICIPANTS (nominated by Academies)

Laura Gustovska
Linda Leimane

Evelin Seppar
Pärt Uusberg

Rita Maciļiūnaite
Albertas Navickas


Irene Buckley
Greta Janonytė
Alex Pozniak
Ji Eun Moon
Matias Hancke
Samuel Gray
Jēkabs Nīmanis
Ben Hanlon
Santa Bušs
Anna Veismane

There is a common theme for the commissioned musical pieces

Shakespeare’s dream

You will be free to choose any texts of Shakespeare or even use this topic just as a subject of inspiration, as the basis of the main idea of composed piece.

The chosen participants will have to conclude and send the compositions to Latvian Radio choir no later than the 1th of July, 2012.

The pieces must be fully completed by then. The workshop will be devoted to working together with lecturers and musicians in order to sharpen up the details and introduce realistic modifications.

The selection of pieces will be used by Latvian Radio choir for their further programs, performed in contemporary music festival Arena in Riga and some international, traveling projects.

The determined age limit is 35 years. However, the organizers prefer not to object if this limit is exceeded for participance.

The service will be equal and it will be possible to attend the group work sessions, however the observers are not obligated to compose any piece for workshop. Observers will have the same rights to attend all activities of the workshop (including individual lessons with lecturers, lectures, rehearsals, participate in discussions and presentations).


During the nine days of the workshop every participant will attend private consultations with all lecturers, as well as present his/her music, take part in open rehearsals, seminars and discussions. Each lecturer will read two lectures on current issues of contemporary music. The theme of the workshop is only the axis around which different discourses concentrate. During the workshop all conditions for creative, individual work will be provided.


Two concerts will take place during the workshop, where Latvian Radio choir will perform compositions by active participants, lecturers and music chosen by themselves. Every evening there will be an informal invitation for everyone to enjoy participants’ presentations.


For active participants
From Baltic countries – 200Eur
International participants – 300Eur

For observers
From Latvia – 200Eur
Other countries – 400Eur


More detailed information about the workshop upon request:
Šī e-pasta adrese ir aizsargāta pret mēstuļošanu (spam), Jums ir jābūt aktivizētam Javascript, lai to aplūkotu


Michaël Lévinas
Concert pianist and composer, Michaël Lévinas (1949) occupies an unusual place in today's musical world. This double identity has influenced his performance and writing styles. His principal teachers were Vlado Perlemuter, Yvonne Loriod and Olivier Messiaen. He was in residence at the Villa Médicis, at the time it was directed by the painter Balthus. Often associated with the spectral movement and with the founding of Ensemble l'Itinéraire, the compositional path of Michaël Lévinas is distinguished by the production of noteworthy works. Among these are Appels (1974), Ouverture pour une fête étrange (1979), the Conférence des oiseaux (1985), Par delà (commissioned in 1994 by the Donaueschingen Festival for the Südwestfunk Orchestra, conductor Michaël Gielen) and more recently Implorations (Printemps des Arts, 2007) or his opera Go-gol (premiered in 1996 by the Musica Festival in Strasbourg, IRCAM and the Montpellier Opera with staging by Daniel Mesguich). His opera Les Nègres, after the play by Jean Genet, with the composer's own libretto, was commissioned by the Lyon National Opera and Geneva Opera, premiered in 2004 with staging by Stanislas Nordey, followed by a new production in 2006 at the Grand Theatre in Freiburg. The recording, released by Sisyphe in 2008, is a critical and public success. His work on what he calls the "paradoxical polyphonies", based principally on complex tone quality counterpoint and variations of temperament, have produced, among others, Les Lettres enlacées IV (2000), Se briser for ensemble (2008, commissioned by the Ars Musica Festival, Brussels) and Evanoui for orchestra and electronics (commissioned by Radio France, premiered in Paris on March 6, 2009, with electronics by IRCAM). A third opera, composed after La Métamorphose by Franz Kafka, is currently being composed and constructed in collaboration with Valère Novarina and Emmanuel Moses. This work, a commission from the Lille Opera, was premiered in Lille, spring 2011. Michaël Lévinas is a professor at the National Paris Conservatory.

Toivo Tulev

Toivo Tulev (b.1958) is inclined to musically conjoin the expressionistic and the religious. His compositions represent a constant existential struggle between tension and equilibrium. Tulev’s musical idiom has been influenced by his active participation in several early music vocal ensembles and by deep interest in Gregorian chant. Tulev’s compositions – written prevalently for orchestra or for various ensemble line-ups – have been always remarkable for their peculiar, mesmerising atmosphere created by temporal, spatial and sound effects. Into his recent works exotic flavours have been introduced through Eastern timbres and melody-design. On graduating from the Tallinn Conservatoire in composition under Prof. Eino Tamberg in 1990, Toivo Tulev furthered his training with Sven-David Sandström in Stockholm (1991), studied electro-acoustic music at the Cologne Hochschule der Musik (1996) and undertook a post-graduate course at the Estonian Academy of Music (1995–1998). Toivo Tulev has taught music theory, Gregorian chant and composition at the Tallinn Georg Ots Music High School. He worked as a singer of the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir (1981–1988) and sung in various vocal ensembles like Vox Clamantis, Choeur Gregorien de Paris and Heinavanker. He is the founder (1995) and artistic director of the liturgical music ensemble Scandicus. Toivo Tulev was appointed Composer-in-Residence at the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir for the season 2004/2005 and at the Danish vocal ensemble Ars Nova for the season 2007/2008. At the present he is a lecturer of composition (since 2001) and head of the composition department (since 2005) at the Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre. Tulev’s music has been performed in many Scandinavian and European countries. Two of his works, Opus 21 for chamber orchestra (1996) and Concerto for Violin and Orchestra (2002), were selected among the best ten compositions at the International Rostrum of Composers in Paris. Opus 21 was also performed at the Tokyo new music festival Composium 1998 dedicated to Toru Takemitsu. His work Hommage to the Setting Sun for chamber ensemble (1993) was written for the Sydney Spring Festival, Quella Sera for chamber orchestra (1996) for the London Baltic Arts Festival, Don’t Call Him Too Early (2002) for the Gaida Festival in Vilnius and Dutch Nieuw Ensemble. Be lost in the Call, commissioned by the Berlin MaerzMusik Festival, premiered at the Chamber Hall of the Berlin Philharmonic, March 2003. Swing low, premiered in Tallinn at the international contemporary music festival NYYD 2003, was also performed at the Warsaw Autumn Festival 2004. Tulev’s short ballet Cruz, inspired by poetry of Spanish mystical philosopher John of the Cross, was staged at the Estonian National Opera in 2002. Estonian Radio has released Toivo Tulev’s author CD Be lost in the call (2004), his works have been published by Theatre of Voices Edition. Twice, for 2001 and 2003, Toivo Tulev has been awarded the Annual Prize of the Endowment for Music of the Cultural Endowment of Estonia. In 2002, he received Cultural Endowment’s Live and Shine grant and in 2006 was awarded the Annual Music Prize of the Estonian Music Council.

William Brooks


William Brooks studied music and mathematics at Wesleyan University (BA 1965), then received degrees in musicology (MM 1971) and composition-theory (DMA 1976) from the University of Illinois. Among his teachers were Charles Hamm in musicology and Ben Johnston, Kenneth Gaburo and Herbert Brün. He has been associated with John Cage as both performer and scholar; he played in the world premiere of HPSCHD and has several times directed productions of Cage’s Song Books. Brooks taught at the University of Illinois (1969-73) and at the University of California (1973-7), then worked as a freelance composer, scholar and performer before returning to the University of Illinois (1987). There he was Associate Professor of Composition, director of the Contemporary Chamber Singers, and Chair of the Composition-Theory Division for many years. In 2000 he took up his present post at the University of York.


Founded in 1940, is regarded as one of the top professional chamber choirs in Europe. The choir gives at least sixty concerts annually in Latvia and abroad, and regularly appears in theatrical and multimedia events. Every year, the choir commissions about ten new works from Latvian composers. The Latvian Radio Choir could be described as a sound laboratory – the singers explore their skills by turning to the mysteries of traditional singing, as well as to the art of quartertone and overtone singing and other sound production techniques. Therefore composers have the unique opportunity to experiment, and to immediately hear at the choir’s rehearsals whether these experiments have worked. One could also say that the Latvian Radio choir is the creator of a new choral paradigm: every singer is a distinct individual with his or her own vocal signature and roles in performances. The Latvian Radio Choir actively popularizes the music of Latvian composers around the world.The choir’s recordings of works by Ēriks Ešenvalds, Kristaps Pētersons, and Mārtiņš Viļums have won each of them first prizes at the UNESCO International Rostrum of Composers. The quality of the Latvian Radio Choir is well known to European concert and festival producers. This is proven by regular invitations to perform in prestigious international musical forums (including the Baltic Sea Festival, Klangspuren Festival, La Musica, Ultima, The Venice Biennale, and Internationale Koorbiennale Haarlem) and in renowned concert halls such as the Concertgebouw and Muziekgebouw in Amsterdam, Konzerthaus in Berlin, and Cité de la Musique in Paris. The choir has successfully collaborated with many outstanding guest conductors, including Heinz Holliger, Lars Ulrik Mortensen, Stephen Layton, Tõnu Kaljuste, and James Wood, among others. The Latvian Radio Choir records on a regular basis. Every season, three or four new CDs appear in collaboration with such labels as Hyperion Records, BIS, GB Records, Ondine, and Naïve. The Latvian Radio Choir is one of the four founders of the European professional chamber choirs’ association Tenso. The choir organized Tenso Days 2008 in Riga, and a similar event is planned for 2014, when Riga will be the Cultural Capital of Europe. The choir has been awarded the most esteemed musical prize in Latvia, the Latvian Music Grand Prix, a total of six times (in 1994, 2000, 2004, 2005, 2007 and 2010)


2002 – 1st International Workshop for Young Composers. August 22-26, Dundaga
Lecturers: Tönu Kôrvits, Helena Tulve (Estonia), Imants Mezaraups, Rolands Kronlaks (Latvia), Rytis Mazulis, Sarunas Nakas (Lithuania).

2004 – 2nd International Workshop for Young Composers. 15-23, 2004, Dundaga
Theme: Usage of vocal in contemporary music.
Lecturers: Tapio Tuomela (Finland), Toivo Tulev (Estonia), Peteris Plakidis (Latvia) and Remigijus Merkelys (Lithuania).

2006 – 3rd International Workshop for Young Composers. 13-21, 2006,
Theme: Between intimate and global. Sound aesthetics of contemporary chamber music.
Lecturers: Rolf Wallin (Norway), Klas Torstensson (Sweden/The Netherlands), John Woolrich (United Kingdom).

2008 – 4th International Workshop for Young Composers. 10-18, 2008, Mazsalaca
Theme: Universe and labyrinths of possibilities for wind instruments in contemporary music.
Lecturers: Yannis Kyriakides (The Netherlands/Cyprus), Johannes Maria Staud (Austria), Alla Zagaykevych (Ukraine).

2010 – 5th InternationalWorkshop for Young Composers. 15-23, 2010, Mazsalaca
Theme: Contemporary chamber music
Lecturers: David Lang (USA), Pär Lindgren (Sweden), Richard Ayres (The Netherlands)