Iveta Apkalna

Iveta Apkalna

Piano • Organ

• Born 1976

Biography

Iveta Apkalna has revitalized the organ and its repertory through world premieres and prominent appearances around the Baltics and beyond. She has served as the official organist of the Klain organ at the Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg, Germany, since the hall's opening at the beginning of 2017.

Apkalna was born November 30, 1976, in Rezekne, a small city in Latvia. She attended the Jazeps Vitols Latvian Academy of Music, graduating with honors, and then enrolled at the London Guildhall School of Music and Drama, studying piano. Apkalna won a German Academic Exchange Service scholarship to the State University of Music and Performing Arts Stuttgart (HMDK Staatliche Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst Stuttgart). There she studied with Ludger Lohmann for three years, ending in 2003. Apkalna won several major awards, including the J.S. Bach Prize at the World Competition of the Royal Bank Calgary International Organ Competition in 2002. Since then, she has made appearances both at major church and cathedral venues, and in concert halls with such ensembles as the Berlin Philharmonic, the Bavarian Radio Symphony, and the Los Angeles Philharmonic. She continues to maintain her career in her native country, often playing recitals at Riga Cathedral in the Latvian capital. In 2016, Apkalna was named the official organist of the Klain organ at the new Elbphilharmonie Concert Hall in Hamburg, Germany. At the hall's opening in January of 2017, she played world premieres of works by Wolfgang Rihm and Jörg Widmann. A champion of contemporary music, she has performed works by Ēriks Ešenvalds, Arturs Maskats, and Peteris Vasks, among others.

Apkalna has recorded for several labels, including Oehms Classics, Berlin Classics, and Edition HERA. Her 2005 album Himmel & Hölle earned her an Instrumentalist of the Year nod from the ECHO Klassik Awards. In 2018, her Light & Dark album was the first recorded on the Klain organ. Two years later, she recorded Saint-Saëns' Organ Symphony and Poulenc's Organ Concerto with the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks under Mariss Jansons.

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