The Latvian violinist shares her favourite recordings and her most embarrassing moment on stage.

Three pieces of music you love?

Bach Johannes Passion

Brahms Clarinet Quintet

Beethoven Violin Concerto

Baiba SkrideBaiba Skride. Photo © Marco Borggreve

Three recordings everyone should own?

Beethoven Sonatas with Oistrach and Oborin

Goldmark Violin Concerto with Nathan Milstein

Beethoven Symphony No 7 with Carlos Kleiber

Musical heroes?

My musical heroes are the Latvians who during the fall of Soviet Union went on the streets, built barricades and sang together against the Russian army. It was the so called singing revolution, very special time in Latvian history.

Three really underrated composers?

Leoš Janáček

Benjamin Britten

Frank Martin

An underrated piece of music?

Schostakovich’s Second Violin Concerto

Three pieces of music you could happily never hear again?

Any Schlager Music, for me the worst of all music directions…

Your greatest concert experience?

Playing Vivaldi’s Summer in the middle of the Malaysian jungle, and at the time of the thunder movement actual thunder started and fitted exactly to the music!

Your favourite films?

Pulp Fiction, Big Fish and the series The Wire.

Baiba SkrideBaiba Skride. Photo © Marco Borggreve

Three clichés about violinists that annoy you

That we are Divas, that we can’t listen, no idea if there is a third…

Three favourite places in the world?

The stage, my home in Hamburg and the underwater world of the Maldives 

Your proudest moment?

Have to say two moments – the births of my two sons.

An embarrassing or awkward moment?

My string broke during a recital, and when I went backstage I realized that I didn’t have any extras, (because it was just about the time when airlines were very strict about taking extra strings on board, so I had them in a suitcase). So we had to ask in the audience if there was anyone who could loan me a string… luckily there actually was!

What you do to relax?

Sleep, go for a walk, see the places I travel to.

Three guilty pleasures?

Good food and good wine and shoes!

The last book you couldn’t put down?

Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch.

A historical person you’d like to go on a date with?

Casanova

A fictitious person you would like to have as a next-door neighbor?

Superman. He could always protect me!

Six people (real or imaginary) you would like to invite to dinner?

Da Vinci, Bach, Chekov, the Dalai Lama, Audrey Hepburn and JF Kennedy.

Your favourite food?

Meatballs with mashed potatoes and sour cream. The most simple dish, but always reminds me of Latvia.

If you weren’t a violinist, what job would you want?

Anything with traveling involved!


Baiba Skride performs Prokofiev’s First Violin Concerto in the Sydney Symphony Orchestra’s Tchaikovsky’s Pathétique at the Sydney Opera House May 10 – 15

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