Rihards Pleshanovs.

.. a page from the question book. Rihards Pleshanovs.

Continuing to flip through the notebooks of questions and memories, this time we invited a local resident whose birthday is in August - pianist Rihardas Plešanov - to answer the questions.

I have to thank my great-grandfather for my name, who built our family house in Gulbene, in the "Grantskalnos" of Svelbergs. The word was neither from Wagner nor Strauss.

A food that is still associated with my childhood... freshly picked strawberries with milk at my grandmother Velta's Galgauska parish in Elderos.

As a child, I read .. the newspaper "Mana" and, apparently, "Laba". The newspaper "Sportiņš" was also always on the table. I fell in love with reading books later and have not stopped it. I read slowly, and the last book that particularly excited me was Andras Kalnozola's "Calendar calls me".

I sat down at the piano for the first time .. quite early - at the age of 4. I remember that Dad played the bass (the lower part of the piano) and I improvised something over the top. But around the age of 5, I also got a violin in my hands. I studied that as well. But the piano won.

Childhood mischief .. not an exaggeration, but I was a boy with dimples in my cheeks who didn't do mischief. But in the 7th grade, I started living in the dormitories of the Dārziņas music school, and then the sins began to multiply. But that needs another survey to tell.

I remember from my school years .. some things remain in the heart. I will count on Gulbene's time. Folk ball tournament "Milk Prize", party at the brothers' graves before the gymnasium disco, the violin fell out of his hands during violin lesson, listening to Chopin's "Revolutionary Etudes" in music literature, boys' choir show, dance festival with the dance group "Sienāži", mathematics hours with Astrid Bister. Enough now.

The biggest birthday surprise .. the surprise is already the date itself - August 8, 1988. But for the last 3 years I have concerts on that date. The surprise is when your colleagues play a congratulatory song with you and put everything together ;)

In the summer evenings in Gulbene .. I somehow don't remember. But I remember an evening this winter - sitting at home, when I went for a walk with 2 dogs in an absolutely dead city (it was legal). Frost, one police patrol car and stars.

I remember Gulbene Music School .. as home, because I was at home less. It was generally a thing that I hid from my mom that I have absolute hearing (it's the hearing when, if a tram track squeals, I sometimes hear that it's B flat). Mom taught solfeggio at the music school at the time. I sat in the last row and wrote the dictation to then pass it on to the boys in the choir class who were in agony at the moment. I pretended to my mom that I was doing math. After that, I slipped the dictation under the table to the addressee. The guys got a good rating. For that I earned respect from the choir boys and they didn't touch me either. Mom later found out about my hearing.

The one who inspires me the most .. right now is definitely Ukrainian President Zelensky. There is tremendous power in his public speeches. And a march for the demolition of the Soviet legacy in Latvia.

On days when the rain is drumming on the roof, I .. used to open the lid of the piano. Yes, good exercise on rainy days.

When I'm not in Latvia... it's rare, but it happens. I like to go to a cultural metropolis and go to a symphony concert, in Paris definitely to a museum, at night to a jazz club. But it also happens to play a concert in an abandoned bus station in Croatia at +30 degrees.

A piece that I recommend others to listen to as well .. the song Olsen, Olsen by the Icelandic group Sigur Rós. They will be in Riga in October.

I always have .. my cell phone in my pocket.

I wish the residents of Gulbene region ... to preserve the inner strength that every Gulbene has. But next to that, be responsible and critical of yourself and the environment where you live.


Rihard, thank you very much for the open answers! Hearty greetings on the special date - your birthday! May your work be successful and your dreams come true!


In the photo: Rihards Plešanovs at the chamber music festival "Sanssus" in August 2021 in Aknīste.



Inese Kalēja,

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