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Maskats leaves Latvian National Opera

Conductor Andis Veismanis has replaced composer Arturs Maskats as artistic advisor to the Latvian National Opera Director Zigmars Liepins, portal "Diena.lv" reported.

Maskats said that he had stepped down of his own free will and pursuant to his agreement with Liepins. "I had seen this coming and I was prepared for this. He [Liepins] has his own artistic vision and politics, and usually a new team is built in such cases. I am associated with the previous management and [the previous LNO head Andrejs] Zagars," Maskats explained yesterday.

He went on to say that he had been working at the opera for seventeen years, and that he wanted to use the opportunity to thank the opera staff for the privilege to have worked with them for so long, Maskats told "Diena.lv".

On the other hand, Veismanis said that he had participated in the Culture Ministry's competition for the vacant LNO board member's position, but when Liepins was appointed chairman of the board and offered Veismanis to work as his advisor, he accepted the offer, noting that he preferred this job to that of a LNO board member, as members of the LNO board also had to tackle various financial matters.

Veismanis said that he would want to perform Latvian operas and urge young composer to work on not only chamber music, but also operas. He said he was very busy with the opera's repertoire for the season, adding that, luckily, he and Liepins had similar opinions on many things. Veismanis also praised Liepins' expertise, experience and dedication to hard work.

Veismanis has been working at the LNO for sixteen years, first as a choir master and later as conductor.

As reported, the Culture Ministry has confirmed that composer and former chief at "Radio SWH", Zigmars Liepins has been appointed the Latvian National Opera's new artistic director and board chairman.

Minister of Culture Dace Melbarde commented that Liepins had proven himself as a professional and a good supervisor.

The selected Liepins revealed that he intends to switch the focus from an opera's staging back to the music, but that he will not reject any good director.

Liepins said that the "repertory needs to be revamped", making it accessible to everyone, not just an "elite audience." Also, the new leader at LNO said that he will devote time to [improving] in-house communication and address the matter of salaries.

leta.lv

08-11-2013
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