Kulturkompasset | critics of culture events

CHRISTMAS CONCERT “The greatest gift”, ¨Vilnius 26th December 2012

Applaus for all participants at Christhmas concert in Siemens Arena, Vilnius.

CHRISTMAS CONCERT “The greatest gift”.

By Henning Høholt

VILNIUS: In the biggest hall for many typs of events in Vilnius, . sport, basketball, Disney on ice, Cirque de Soleil, expositions, congresses, and also popular for large concert events. Siemens Arena, as far as I know, it can cover up to 15.000 people in the audience. The big Christmas Concert “The greatest gift” was arranged 26. December 2012.

Including a long line of the most famouse Lithuanian stars, headed by the great international lithuanian tenor Virgilijus Noreika, still at the age of 77 singing absolutely wonderful. Soprano Sigute Stonyte.

Virgilius Noreika, still going strong and singing wonderful, a highlight at the Christmas concert. Photo: Martynas Aleksa,

Vaidas Visniauskas, and behind Virgilijus Noreika.

The programme was organised by the most famouse internationally Lithuanian tenor to day Vaidas Visniauskaus, who even has an international name Kristian Benedikt. Onute Kolobovaité, together with the great boy soprano Mantas Jarašūnas, wonderful singing the difficukt discnt part in Pie Jesus by Andrew Lloyd Webber

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. Followed by Rosita Čivilytė, performing Mary Magdalene’s aria from “Jesus Christ Superstar” –  soprano,  Liudas Mikalauskas, baryton.  Furthermore G.Abarius, Ovid Vyšniauskas,  Gintautas Tautkus, G.Abarius. 

With one famouse international star, the young Russian soprano Yana Kleyn guesting, brilliant in her Mozart solo Halleluja, with great coloratura. The evening was elegantly leaded by Sigutė Stankevičiūtė-Vozbutienė. The very good choir Ave Vita, leaded by Kastytis Barisas and the recently formed Orchestra of Vilnius Sinfonietta. It all splendid conducted by  Vytautas Lukočius.

It was interesting that in the 3 hour long programme with great variations the leading thema was Christmas and the all the religiouse music building up to that. In the preparation, the organizer Vaidas Visniauskas has done an outstanding job.

Sigute Stonyte

That furthermore one catholic priest and two bishops from different directions, but with one thing in comon the Christmas and Jesus Christ, could cooperate with the Vilnius City to organize such a concert. Hopefully this kind of Christmas concert will be a tradition every year. There is plenty of music and text to choose by. Siemens Arena was completely full.

The only detail, I would have prefered to place the stage at the midlle of one of the long sides, which would do so that the audience would come closer to the stage. Esactly as they do in Oslo Spektrum at the Nobel Peace Prize concerts every year. The lighting was great. The only thing was that there was a disturbing sound from something sounding like a vakuumcleaner, when only a low sound was on, That extra sound disturbed a lot. I suppose it has to do with ventilation, but that is not acceptabel.

Full house at Siemens Arena, Vilnius during the Christmas Concert 26th December 2012.


1.  (Georg Friedrich Handel “hornpipes”)

2. GF Handel‘s “Joy to the World” – Liudas Mikalauskas, choir, (English).

– Catholic priest RIČARDAS DOVEIKA

3rd G.Caccini “Ave Maria” – Onute Kolobovaité, chorus; (Latin LCC)

4th Mozart‘s “Alleluia” – Yana Kleyn; (Latin LCC).

5th G. Bizet‘s “Agnus Dei” – Maya Vyšniauskas, chorus; (Latin LCC).

6th GF Handel‘s “Lascia ch’i Piang from the opera Rinaldo,  – S.Stonyte; (Italian LCC).

7th G.F.Handel “Hallelujah”  from Messias– chorus, (English).

Yana Kleyn, international sopran soloist, singing Halleluja by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.

8th C.Franck “Panis Angelicus” – V.Noreika, chorus; (Latin LCC).

– Vilnius Mayor Arturas Zuokas

9th Andrew Lloyd WebberREQUIEM” – Pie Jesu – Onute Kolobovaité & Mantas Jarašūnas, chorus; (Latin LCC).

10th ALWebber – Mary Magdalene’s aria from “Jesus Christ Superstar” Rosita Čivilytė, (English).

11th S.Peres, Lielie “rays of hope” – OVyšniauskas, Rosita Čivilytė, G.Tautkus, choir, (Lithuanian LCC).

Part II

1.  J.Naujalis “Great joy over the horizon” – Chorus, in addition to solo!

2. “The Lord’s Prayer” – S.Stonyte, choir, (English).

– Lutheran bishop MINDAUGAS SABUTIS

Liudas Mikalauskas and Onute Kolobovaité singing white Christmas by Irvin Berlin. 

3rd A.Galbiati / A.Rinaldi / J.Franzel “You are with us,” V.Noreika, V.Vyšniauskas, choir, (Lithuanian LCC).

4th A. Adam, “O Holy Night” Y.Kleyn, O. Kolobovaité + choir, (English, Lithuanian LCC).

5th “I’ll Walk With God” – V.Vyšniauskas,choir, (English).

Vaidas Visniauskas is a popular soloist, and admirers brought flowers to him on stage, so his home must look like a flower shop sometimes? Photo: Tomas Bagackas

6th Ovid Vyšniauskas “I believe”;

7th A.FomaciatiMiserereO.Vyšniauskas & V.Vyšniauskas; (Lithuanian LCC).

8th I.Berlin “White Christmas” – L.Mikalauskas, O.Kolobovaite, choir, (Lithuanian LCC).

9th Gintautas Tautkus “Born in Jesus”;

– Pentecostal Church Bishop RIMANTAS KUPSTYS

10th JFWade “Adeste Fideles” – Y.Kleyn, O.Kolobovaitė, V.Vyšniauskas, L.Mikalauskas, Chorus, (English).

Rosita Čivilytė singing: I don´t know how to Love Him from Jesus Christ Superstar by Andrew Lloyd Webber

11th Franz Gruber“Silent Night” chorus, all the soloists; (Lithuanian LCC).

Bisa “God, Bless Lithuania” – G.Abarius – all soloists and chorus; (Lithuanian LCC).

The concert led Sigutė Stankevičiūtė-Vozbutienė

Choire Ave Vita. 

Orchestra of Vilnius Sinfonietta, conductor Vytautas Lukočius.

Sigutė Stankevičiūtė-Vozbutienėwas conferencier

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