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From the idea to realization - 16 years

The idea of the concert hall in Ventspils was first discussed in 2003, but not until the year of 2005 at a special urban planning architecture plein air, its potential designers were clarified - German architects David Cook and Martin Haas. Two years later a contract on the development of a technical project was signed, but because of the following global economic crisis the project slowed down the implementation of the plans. However, the residents of Ventspils were not going to give up on the idea of concert hall completely.

The architects visited Ventspils for the first time in winter. Partly, because of the snow and ice everywhere architect ideas were affected on the idea of how concert hall should look like. They were very much influenced by the painting “The Ice Sea” created by German artist Caspar David Friedrich painted in the twenties of the 19th century. It shows impressive stacks of ice sheets and their lines, that can also be depicted in the design of the concert hall. The original painting is in the Hamburg Art Museum.

Based on the German architect office "Haascookzemmrich Studio 2050" the construction of the concert hall “LATVIA” started in the newly created Ventspils Great Square at the February of 2017 and was completed in June 2019. The total area of the building is 6883 square meters, and it also houses both the concert hall and the Ventspils Music School. 76% of the area is intended for the needs of the music school, 24% for the implementation of the functions of the concert hall. The total investment for realization of this project is 33 million euros.

Excellent acoustics, excellent instruments.

The building with its special architectural form fits tastefully into the newly renovated Ventspils Great Square, but even more important, for both musicians and music lovers, are the concert hall's impeccable acoustics, that have been recognized as excellent by industry professionals, and both foreign and Latvian artists. The sound was the main focus when concert hall was built and designed, including the Big Hall, which was being perceived as a musical instrument.

The special concert hall equipment helps to adjust the acoustics for a specific performances and artists. In the Big Hall, acoustic shields or reflectors are installed near the ceiling, that way they can be lowered lower or raised higher with the help of stage machinery, in that way any concert acoustics can be adjusted to the sound of a particular concert needs. The same purpose serves acoustic curtains that are placed along the walls in the balcony.

The Big Hall has 578 seats, while the Small Hall can accommodate 120 music lovers. Also, The Small Hall can also be transformed into an open-air stage, where a much larger number of visitors can enjoy the event from movable chairs or from the green hills of the Ventspils Great Square.

In the Big Hall of the concert hall “LATVIJA” can be found two world class instruments: one, is acoustic concert organ made by the company “Johannes Klais Orgelbau GmbH & Co. KG” in Germany, and second, currently the largest vertical concert piano in the world, created by originally a Latvian piano maker - Dāvids Kļaviņš. The organ has approximately 3,500 pipes, which are placed three stories high, and some of them are also made in Latvia. In a small town named Ugāle there is organ building workshop, where a wide variety size organs are made. From the size of a ballpoint pen, which are made of metal, to the size of wooden pipes that are up to 5.5 meters long. Also, the height of the piano is 4.70 meters, and in order to play this piano, the pianist has to climb the stairs from the balcony to the instrument.

Light, warm and economical

13 different energy efficiency-enhancing technologies are built into the building of concert hall “LATVIJA”. For example: skylight windows in the lobby and the Big Hall, a heat pump that is in the ground, around 100 meters long geothermal tunnels, which are located at the basement level of concert hall and allows building to cool naturally in the summer, but heats up the air in the winter without consuming any energy, a special blind control system, energy-efficient windows and others.

A more efficient lighting system was also thought of, for instance lights in the cabinets turn on and off automatically in response to whether someone is in them or not, and combines natural and artificial lighting to achieve the desired light intensity.

The building of concert hall “LATVIA” was acknowledged as the best new construction of 2019 in Latvia, and also received many other awards, including international competition awards for design solutions, energy efficiency and sustainability.


Concert hall “LATVIJA” is managed by SIA “Kurzemes filharmonija”.