We invite you to live out Riga’s legends and tales at the Riga City Festival on 11. novembra krastmala


On August 17th and 18th residents and city guests are invited to the central event of the Riga City Festival on 11. novembra krastmala, where visitors will be able to explore and live out the legends, tales and stories of the city, learn about the rich history of the capital and enjoy a diverse cultural programme.

On Saturday, August 17th, from 13:00 to 23:15 the event “CITY LEGENDS. MEETING OF THE LEGENDS” will take place. During the event visitors will have a chance to get to know the most popular of Riga’s legends and the fantastic stories of Riga’s origins, whether Riga is ready, about Riga’s hills and surroundings, about underground passages underneath Daugava, about defenders, about ghosts, about the first Christmas tree, about Big Cristopher and legendary personalities. DJ [Ex] da Bass, bands “The Rolltones”, “Trio 3 Live Project”, “Laime pilnīga”, “Indygo”, “Laika suns”, Līga Rīdere with accompanying band and Chris Noah will help tell the tales and bring them to life. Event will be hosted by Aivis Ceriņš and Mārtiņš Kozlovskis.

THE GREAT EVENING CONCERT “STUDENT LEGENDS OF A CITY” at 21:30 will be dedicated to legendary students of Riga. Riga has been considered the capital of Latvian students for a long while. This year three of Riga’s universities – University of Latvia, Latvian Academy of Art and Jāzeps Vītols Latvian Academy of Music – celebrate their 100th anniversary. Meanwhile the history of Riga Technical University, Latvian Maritime academy and Riga Dome Choir School stretches back even further. Stories and accounts regarding the life of students in the city have become legends. These legends make it possible to believe that the main motivation of students at all times has been the insatiable urge to explore, discover, understand and conquer the world. Because of students, the longstanding city of Riga along its historic majesty has acquired an aura of eternal youth, joy and mischief. The evening concert will be a musical journey through these values with its central axis being the students’ point of view and their progress in the future on the imaginary development ladder.

The musical programme will include songs and compositions from different eras that have always been popular among students. They will be performed by soloists Ieva Akuratere, Ginta Krievkalna, Antra Stafecka, Raimonds Bartaševičs, Ralfs Eilands, Daumants Kalniņš, Viktors Lapčenoks, Zigfrīds Muktupāvels, Ģirts Rozentāls (OZOLS), Mārtiņš Ruskis and Kaspars Upaciers (UFO), Riga Chamber Choir AVE SOL, the instrumental group under the leadership of Kristaps Krievkalns, festival’s orchestra and dance group under the leadership of Inga Kurciša. 

The Great Concert will be hosted by Gundars Āboliņš. Artistic director and conductor – Romāns Vanags, director – Kārlis Anitens.

The concert will conclude at 23:00 with FESTIVAL FIREWORKS.

All day long a craftsmen’s fair will take place on the side of Akmens Bridge, there will be mobile cafeterias that will operate there, as well as a sculpture object “Rīga” and a sand sculpture “Burinieks” that will be available for viewing.

On Sunday 18th, from 12:00 to 18:00 the event “CITY TALES. OUR TALES” will take place. Ieva Florence and Oskars Vīksne will host several activities and workshops; therefore particularly welcome are families, children and young people.

With the help of duo “Signe un Jānis” with accompanying band, visitors will have the chance to measure Riga with an oxhide, and together with the group “The Originals” they will have the opportunity to explore the tale of roosters on Riga’s spires and to find the devil’s big stone. The event visitors will be welcome to watch the great dance performance “The Tale of Riga’s Hills” created by director Reinis Suhanovs and performed by folk dance collectives “Teiksma”, “Ačkups” and “Vektors” under the leadership of choreographer Jānis Ērglis and choir “Anima” under the leadership of conductor Laura Leontjeva. It will be followed by stories from Riga’s youth – some of the things that young people do nowadays with time will possibly become legends or tales. For this reason, it will be a time of absolute freedom on the big stage with DJ Ex [Da] Bass – street dancing, shuffle and board demonstration. The best from the repertoire of Riga circus studio “Jaunība” will be showcased with accompanying music. The smaller visitors will particularly enjoy the magnificent Giant Puppet and Talisman Parade. The programme will be concluded with a story of the symbols of Riga that will have been created in this day’s creative workshops. The band “Dziļi violets” will help colour this story.

The craftsmen’s market will continue on from Saturday to Sunday and will be there all day long on the side of Akmens Bridge, the mobile cafeterias will continue to operate and visitors will be able to participate in activities such as wrapping the sculpture object “Riga” with oxhide strips, covering the silhouettes of the roosters of Riga’s spires with painted pebbles, Big Christopher’s Hopscotch Championship and creation of small sand sculptures under the direction of professional sculptors.