Petras Cvirka – the Lithuanian Writer Lionised by the Soviets

Petras Cvirka – the Lithuanian Writer Lionised by the Soviets

Born into a poor farming family in 1909, Cvirka's tangled legacy forms a metaphor for all the paradoxes and complexities of the Soviet era in Eastern Europe.Continue Reading →

“Aukstās Dienas…” Singing in Latvian – Without Ever Having Been to Latvia

“Aukstās Dienas…” Singing in Latvian – Without Ever Having Been to Latvia

"First, we had to compose a song about Latvia, a country we had never visited, based entirely on our own imagination..."Continue Reading →

Up the Baltick with Boswell and Johnson

Up the Baltick with Boswell and Johnson

"Marienburg is a vast city equal in size with London, planned with perfect regularity both architecturally and in its social organization."Continue Reading →

Baltic Artists Brought the World Home – But at What Cost?

Baltic Artists Brought the World Home – But at What Cost?

How did something so distinctively American as jazz reach the young Republic of Estonia?Continue Reading →

The Meaning of a Memorial: Reading Kaunas’s Garden of War

The Meaning of a Memorial: Reading Kaunas’s Garden of War

Looking at the site of memory in Kaunas, the “dying for…” is clear: the highest aim of the Lithuanian nation is freedomContinue Reading →

The Best of the Best: Why Mark Shapiro of Laika Studios Loves Estonian Animation

The Best of the Best: Why Mark Shapiro of Laika Studios Loves Estonian Animation

"I think Estonian films are unique and proven; comedic, tragic, irreverent, often with world class scores. The best of the best."Continue Reading →

Era of Dance: How Riga Brought Techno Music to the Soviet Union

Era of Dance: How Riga Brought Techno Music to the Soviet Union

A new Latvian/Russian documentary film tells the story of how the techno explosion of the '80s was brought to the Soviet Union - via RigaContinue Reading →

Britain and the Baltics 2 – …to Peep Show

Britain and the Baltics 2 – …to Peep Show

"We consider [the Soviet Union and Russia] to be synonymous, don't we?"Continue Reading →

Keeping Alive an Extinct Language: the Finno-Ugric Tongue of Latvia’s Remote Fishing Villages

Keeping Alive an Extinct Language: the Finno-Ugric Tongue of Latvia’s Remote Fishing Villages

The north-west corner of Latvia, the so-called Livonian coast, is the home of a nation struggling to survive.Continue Reading →

Two Years of Tracking Down Imaginary Latvians

Two Years of Tracking Down Imaginary Latvians

"Imaginary Latvians always seem to make “cameo appearances,” popping up when you least expect it."Continue Reading →

“Comfortable Doesn’t Interest Me”: Laura Sintija Černiauskaitė

“Comfortable Doesn’t Interest Me”: Laura Sintija Černiauskaitė

Laura Sintija Černiauskaitė’s novel Breathing into Marble is a dark, compelling tale of a family torn apart and a woman driven to the edge of madness.Continue Reading →

Filming Visaginas: Lithuania’s Nuclear Russian Butterfly City

Filming Visaginas: Lithuania’s Nuclear Russian Butterfly City

In the early 1970s my parents moved from Russia to Vilnius, the capital of the Lithuanian SSR, in search for work and better life. This is where I was born.Continue Reading →