Choir's historyThe boys choir of Jazeps Medins 1st Music School of Riga was founded in 1981. During the latest years it has become one of the leading choirs in the Baltic States.
Since 1987 the choir has been directed by Romans Vanags (1960) professor and the head of the choir department at the Jazeps Medins Music School. Romans Vanags has also been one of the principal conductors of the Latvian Song Festival and the Youth Song Festival as well.
The popularity of the choir on a Europe and world scale has been established by successful participation and awards at international choir competitions in 2001 first prize at the international competition Music World in Fivizzano; in 2000 the first prize at the International Choral Kathaumixw in Powell River, Canada; in 1997 the second prize at the international competition Guido d'Arezzo, Italy and in 1993 the first prize in the category of boys choirs and the third prize in Grand Prix competition in Nantes, France.
The voices of the singers have been heard in numerous festivals and concert tours in Australia, USA, Canada, Brazil, Venezuela, Republic of South Africa and many European countries.
The choir has been also one of the regular participants and organizers of the International Boys choir Festival "Rigas Doms". In 2008 choir took part in 8th Latvian Boys' Choirs' gathering. In 2010 choir participated in 9th International Festival of Boys Choirs in Poznan, Poland. In 2011 choir participated in Singapore International Youth Choiral Festival.
The role of the boys choir of Jazeps Medins 1st Music School of Riga in Latvian music culture is very significant. The rich and varied repertoire of the choir includes music from Renaissance and Baroque till Romanticism and 20th century choral pieces as well as the Latvian folk song arrangements and original songs. Every year the choir gives about 40 concerts in Riga and other cities of Latvia and takes part in charity activities.
Close and serious co-operation is established with the Latvian National Symphony Orchestra and other professional music groups and orchestras in performing K.Penderecki "Credo", B.Britten's "War Requiem", A.Honegger's "The Christmas Cantata", G.Mahler's 8th Symphony, I.Stravinsky's "Psalm Symphony", J.Haydn's "The Seven last Words" and J.S.Bach's "St. Matthew Passion". The members of the choir have taken part in Latvian National Opera performances such as P. Tchaikovsky "The Queen of Spades", G.Puccini's "Tosca", W.A.Mozart's "The Magic Flute", C.Menotti's "Amal and the Night Visitor" and B.Britten's "Little Sweep".
The Choir has taken part in many television and radio recordings along with well-known Latvian artists. There are several recordings made: in 1994 - "The Jazeps Medins Music School Boys' Choir", in 1997 - "Dextera Domini" and in 1998 a Christmas CD "Enchanting Night" in collaboration with the rock group "bet bet". The boys' choir has also taken part in recordings of CD's "Look Into Eyes" (winter 2000) and "Riga resounds" (summer 2001). Choir's album "What a Wonderful World" (recorded in 2003) is devoted to the choir's world travels. In 2004 the choir recorded two albums: musical performance named "Return of the Light" and choir's latest album "Listen" devoted to Christmas. In 2006 the choir releases CD titled "Carmina Riga" especially devoted to choir's 25th anniversary.