Mariss Vētra 19.07.1901.

120 years ago - on July 19, 1901 - Mariss Vētra, one of the most outstanding Latvian opera singers and stage artists of his time, was born in the family of tenants Jēkabs and Emma Blumbergs in Tirza parish.

The time of Latvia's independence coincided with the graduation of his high school, and Mariss enlisted in the Latvian Army, took part in the Latvian War of Independence (1918-1920), and was wounded. He described the course of the war in the book "Div` dūjiņas".

He started studying opera at the Latvian Conservatory at the age of 21. Involved in the creation of the Liepaja Opera. Already with the first season, the artist falls in love in Liepaja, later also in Riga and throughout Latvia. He is fascinated by loud academic singing and sincerity in performing folk songs. In the autumn of 1924, Mariss Vētra gave farewell concerts because he decided to study in Italy for two years. Returning, he has successfully continued to conquer the opera scene both in Latvia and elsewhere in the world.

When leaving - first to Sweden, later to Canada - Mariss took amber from Latvia as a memory. He has also worked in the field of music in exile - giving concerts, working as a vocal teacher, forming an opera troupe. Another profession of opera singer is publicist. While in exile, he wrote several memoirs that are very engaging and easy to read. Some of them: "My White House", "Riga at that time", "Sixth Column".


Gulbene County Library Local History Collection.

Zelmenis G. "Mariss the Storm". National Encyclopedia.

Photo: Mariss Vētra, 1933, Riga. Source: LU Academic Library