Kaspars Putniņš is Artistic Director and Chief Conductor of Swedish Radio Choir since 2020/21. He held this position with the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir (EPCC) from 2014-2021 and is permanent conductor of the Latvian Radio Choir since 1994.
The Latvian conductor regularly appears with the RIAS Kammerchor, SWR Vokalensemble Stuttgart, Collegium Vocale Gent, Danish National Vocal Ensemble & Choir, Netherlands Radio Choir, NDR Vokalensemble among others.
With the Swedish Radio Choir Kaspars Putniņš plans in this season projects with music by Einojuhani Rautavaara, Kaija Saariaho, Peteris Vasks, Ralph Vaughan Williams, Robert Schumann and Toshio Hosokawa.
Whilst Kaspars Putniņš’ work encompasses a wide range of choral repertoire from the polyphony of the Renaissance period through to romantic music, his foremost goal has always been to promote new outstanding choral music. He has forged close relationships with many Baltic and Nordic composers including Maija Einfelde, Mārtiņš Viļums, Gundega Šmite, Toivo Tulev, Lasse Thoresen, Gavin Bryars and Andris Dzenitis and has set standards with his interpretations. Putniņš has initiated several drama projects in collaboration with visual and theatre artists.
His discography includes recordings of Peteris Vasks’ Mate Saule for BIS Records, Jonathan Harvey’s The Angels for Hyperion, works by Bryars, Vasks, Esenvalds, Maskats and Silvestrov, all with the Latvian Radio Choir as well as the CD New Latvian Harvest with contemporary Latvian music with the Latvian Radio Chamber Singers. He has also recorded Rachmaninov’s The Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom with the Flemish Radio Choir for Glossa. BIS Records released Rachmaninov Vespers with the Netherlands Chamber Choir.
BIS Records has released three albums with the EPCC including Alfred Schnittke‘s Concerto for choir, Arvo Pärt’s Seven Magnificat Antiphons, Franz Liszt’s Via Crucis and Arvo Pärt: Sacred choral works as well as an album with Schnittke’s Psalms of Repentance and Pärt’s Magnificat & Nunc Dimittis, which was awarded the Gramophone Award and Diapason d’Or in 2018.
In recent years, Putniņš has worked extensively with young singers and conductors in various projects and masterclasses, such as Bachakademie Stuttgart, Vocaal Talent and Meesters & Gezellen.
From 2013 to 2017 he has been Artistic Director of the Tenso Europe Chamber Choir.
Kaspars Putniņš is recipient of the Latvian Grand Prix of Music and the Latvian Council of Ministers Award for Achievements in Culture and Science. For his devoted activity in the music life of Estonia as chief conductor of the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir Kaspars Putniņš was given the Annual Award of the Cultural Endowment of Estonia in 2019.
Season 2021/22Read more
Kaspars Putnins and the Swedish Radio Choir perform at Baltic Sea Festival in Stockholm on 16 September, 19:00 (CET) the programme Baltic Seasons with music by Kaija Saariaho, Britta Byström, Jan Sandström (The Great Enigma premiere), Peteris Vasks and Ralph Vaughan Wiilliams in livestream/video: https://www.berwaldhallen.se/play/the-baltic-seasons-nystart-for-gransoverskridande-samarbete/ (available until 15 October)
On 7 May Kaspars Putnins conducted the Swedish Radio Choir in Stockholm, Engelbrektskyrkan in an A cappella concert with music by Arvo Pärt, Brahms, J.S. Bach,
Gavin Bryars and Tõnu Korvits. Here the video: https://www.berwaldhallen.se/play/radiokoren-putnins-bach/Read more
Kaspars Putnins conducts the Collegium Vocale Gent in Rachmaninov's All Night Vigil op. 37 in Hannover |chor.com on 25 September, Northeim | Lower Saxony Festival 26.09., Leuven 27.09. and Gent 28.09.
Here the video of the inaugural concert of Kaspars Putnins with Swedish Radio Choir as Artistic Director to be broadcasted on 22 January featuring music by György
Ligeti, Sofia Gubaidulina, Gundiga Smite and Arvo Pärt and an interview with Kaspars Putnins (available until 22 February):
Kaspars Putnins directs the Swedish Radio Choir in Stockholm Berwaldhallen on 5 December.
The programme features Messiaen: Cinq rechants, Giacinto Scelsi: Tre canti sacri and Jean Yves Daniel-Lesur: Cantique des Cantiques.
Kaspars Putnins conducted the Swedish Radio Choir in Stockholm on 10 October featuring music by Jonathan Harvey, J.S. Bach, Händel and Thomas Adès. Here the video: https://www.berwaldhallen.se/play/bachs-magnificat/
Kaspars Putnins conducts his first concert as Artistic Director and Chief Conductor of the Swedish Radio Choir in Stockholm on 12 September. The programme features
music by Ligeti, Pärt, Gubaidulina and Gundega Smite. https://www.radiokoren.se/en/concert/the-swedish-radio-choir-meets-kaspars/Read more
On 11 June, 19:00 (CET) Kaspars Putnins conducts the Swedish Radio Choir in Stockholm with music by Mahler/Gottwald, Gundega Smite, Arvo Pärt and Brahms in livestream: www.berwaldhallen.se/play
Kaspars Putnins is appointed Chief Conductor and Artistic Director of the Swedish Radio Choir from the season 2020/21. The multiple award-winning Latvian conductor has already
worked with the long-standing, treasured choir. His first concert as Chief Conductor takes place in Stockholm in October 2020. Here a video interview of 2018 (11 min): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4KYGwaCiGlwRead more
The Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir and Kaspars Putnins are performing at Muziekgebouw Amsterdam on 20 February Arvo Pärt's Summa and Nunc Dimittis as well as Rachmaninov's Liturgy of St. John Chrysostomus op. 31.
The album with music by Liszt and Pärt by Kaspars Putnins and the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir with Ondine has been nominated for the ICMA Award 2020. The winners will be announced on 21 January 2020.
Kaspars Putnins conducts Collegium Vocale Gent with Arvo Pärt: Kanon Pokajanen in five concerts in Paris, Brussels, Antwerp, Gent and Brugge from 22-26 October.
On 1 October, the chief conductor of the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir Kaspars Putniņš was given the Annual Award of the Cultural Endowment of Estonia
for the devoted activity in the music life of Estonia.The ceremony took place at the Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre in Tallinn within the Music Day Gala.Read more
The Finnish label Ondine publishes the new album LISZT & PÄRT of the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir and Kaspars Putnins in September.
Kaspars Putnins and the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir perform three concerts at Abu Gosh Festival in Israel from 7-9 June with two programmes featuring works by J.S. Bach, Brahms, Ligeti, Mendelssohn, Mahler/Gottwald and Pärt.
Kaspars Putnins conducts the RIAS Kammerchor with the first performance of Lera Auerbach's Goetia 72 – in umbra lucis in Berlin on 24 May.The concert will be broadcasted
live on Deutschlandfunk Kultur at 20:03-22:00 (CET):
Kaspars Putnins conducts the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir in a gala concert in Tallinn on 15 June at the 800th anniversary of the Danish flag with Concerto Copenhagen. The programme features music by J.S. Bach, Händel, Telemann and Arvo Pärt.
The Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir performs J.S. Bach's B minor Mass on 15 March with the Bielefelder Philharmoniker under Alexander Kalajdzic as well as the A cappella programme Northern Land & Spirit under Kaspars Putnins in Bielefeld on 17 March.
Kaspars Putnins conducts the Swedish Radio Choir in Stockholm on 9 February featuring music by J.S. Bach and Sven-David Sandström.
Kaspars Putnins conducts the NDR Radio Choir in Hamburg at its first performance at Grand Hall Elbphilharmonie on 20 November and on 21 November in
Lüneburg within the NDR festival "My Polish Heart". They perform music by Penderecki, Szymanowski and Roman Padlewski. NDR Kultur broadcasts the concert live: https://www.ndr.de/ndrkultur/programm/epg1482_display-all_date-2018-11-20.htmlRead more
The Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir and Kaspars Putnins were awarded the Gramophone Award in the category Choral for their album with music by Alfred Schnittke and Arvo Pärt at BIS Records.
Kaspars Putniņš conducts the Swedish Radio Choir in Stockholm, Engelbrekt Church on May 5 with music by Ravel/Gottwald, Debussy, Saint-Saens, Wikander, Sven-David Sandström and Daniel-Lesur.
The Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir and Kaspars Putniņš perform at Klangvokal Festival Dortmund on 20 May the programme Longing for the North presenting "Best of Arvo Pärt" pieces as well as sacred and folk songs by Cyrillus Kreek and Veljo Tormis.
Kaspars Putnins and the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir are to perform A cappella concerts in Brussels on 28 January, London on 30 January, Dublin on 31 January, Amsterdam on 5/6 February featuring pieces by Ülo Krigul, Arvo Pärt, Veljo Tormis, Cyrillus Kreek, Galina Grigorjeva, Liisa Hirsch, Jonathan Harvey among others.
Kaspars Putnins returns to conduct the Swedish Radio Choir for an A cappella concert in Stockholm on 29 April with a programme featuring Schumann, Toshio Hosokawa and Jonathan Harvey.
Kaspars Putnins presents a programme with the Crème de la crème of the French choral music of the 19 and 20th century with the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir
in Tallinn on 20 February featuring works by Olivier Messiaen, Maurice Ravel, Claude Debussy, Jean-Yves Lesur and Gabriel Fauré.Read more
Kaspars Putniņš conducts the Danish National Vocal Ensemble in Copenhagen on 30 January and 1 February in two concerts. The programme contrasts Brahms’ Kanon op. 113, Schumann’s Die Lotusblume and Die Capelle with works by Guo Wenjing, Niels Gade, Toru Takemitsu and Toshio Hosokawa.
The Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir and its new chief conductor Kaspars Putniņš are on tour in China from 25 October to 1 November. The programme of the
four concerts in Peking, Shanghai, Xuzhou and Jinan includes works by Arvo Pärt, Cyrillus Kreek, Veljo Tormis and Claude Debussy.Read more
Latvian conductor Kaspars Putniņš and the Netherlands Radio Choir have recorded Rachmaninov’s "All-Night Vigil" op. 37 for BIS Records: "A wonderful legato is unfold,
elegant, ruled lines, added by a closed vertical quality: it is impressive how compact and safe chordal effects are set…The recording is very compelling, especially in the elegant ability to fine difference (www.klassik.com, Matthias Lange, 31.05.2014).Read more
Schnittke’s Choir Concerto and Pärt’s Sieben Magnificat Antiphonen (1988) were achieved seemingly with playful ease under conductor Kaspars Putnins’ meticulously exact and clear leadership. All his movements were to the point and meaningful. Communication between choir and conductor at times seemed almost telepathic.[…]. A generous choral light in November gloom.
Hufvudstadsbladet, Mats Liljeroos, 18.11.2019
The Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir is a lyrical giant, with a dark basic sound, which very much appeals to the ensemble at Schnittke and also at Pärt. (...) Dynamically a huge palette is to be experienced, from the most delicate, extremely fine sounds to the eruptive break-out. As a collective the formation makes an impression in a wonderfully soft forte at the peak of Pärt's Magnificat or in some perfectly pointed Decrescendo. The voicing is fabulous. Not so many ensembles are as relaxed and controlled as the Estonians.
www.klassik.com.de, Dr. Matthias Lange, 03.02.2018
The Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir under Kaspars Putnins creates Alfred Schnittke's 12 Penitential Psalms compelling and spellbinding. The choral sound is completely pure, effortlessly easy even in the heights. (...) The numerous solo parts let you hear what excellent voices are added to this overall sound. (...) Nunc Dimittis by Arvo Pärt flows quietly dark and mysterious, until "Lumen ad relevationem gentium",when it turns into the most radiant C sharp major. The choir remains soundable and not overdriven in the powerful fortissimo: top class of choir culture. This choir belongs in this formation to the best in the world.
www.klassik-heute.de, Rainer W. Janka, 02.02.2018
Superlative sound captures the fantastic dynamic range and textural quality of the EPCC, from ethereal to grainy fades. (...) As perfectly sung, the Magnificat of Arvo Pärt, work of a rare emotional density in a kind predisposing rather to magnificence, and his Nunc Dimittis offer complements of choice: concise, sober and yet captivating.
Diapason, Patrick Szernovicz, 2/2018
Under Kaspars Putnins' direction, the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir sang with a shimmering, warm blend of voices and easy mastery (...) and present and illuminated in the range of piano to mezzoforte.
New York Classical Review, George Grella, 02.02.2017
Kaspars Putnins’ multi-hued Vespers interpretation, backed to the hilt by the tonal heft of the Netherlands Radop Choir’s 68 professional singers, evokes the intensity of Russian Orthodox worship. This outstanding release, recommended without conditions, is crowned with Rachmaninov’s little-known early sacred concerto, an impassioned hymn to Mary, Mother of God, The Theotokos.
The ChorWerk Ruhr under the direction of the Latvian conductor Kaspars Putniņš presented works from romantic folk songs by Johannes Brahms (op.62) up to contemporary works including bizarre sounds and demanding rhythms. […] Highlight of the evening was by surprise the contemporary piece “Traumtänze” by Hans Schanderl. Opposing rhythms and a great amount of vocal tones required everything of the 28 singers – provoking enthusiasm within the audience.
Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung, Anna Ernst, 30.07.2013
ChorWerk Ruhr with their young and sensitiv voices carried the audience away to the land of yearning, the presentiments of death, the coolness of a night in the wood... Kaspars Putniņš was working for the first time with the ChorWerk Ruhr and one was assured of his qualities.
Neue Ruhr/Neue Rhein Zeitung Essen, D. Schenk-Güllich, 31.07.2013
The great Latvian conductor Kaspars Putniņš made the multilayed colours of this 15-part chorus cycle shine without any Russian pathos. High, low, deep, mighty, delicate - all was set together astonishingly - magical for instance the high male voices accompanying with much caution the low, endlessly streaming and intimate alto solo.
Berliner Zeitung, Peter Uehling, 19.02.2013
Kaspars Putniņš conducted the MDR Radio Choir's late night concert with a sense for space, for sound and for the abilities of this unique choir especially with this unique programme. Everybody who had the chance to listen to this concert had to rejoice because the highest form of musical sensuality was achieved.
Leipziger Volkszeitung, 01/2012
Franz Liszt: Via Crucis
Arvo Pärt: Sacred Choral Works
Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir