Music awards all around for Latvia. The MIDEM Classical Awards jury announced the first Special Awards for 2010: Latvian mezzo-soprano Elina Garanca is among the winners, reports LETA. The jury selected four musicians, Garanca, Italian soprano Mirella Freni, Canadian pianist Angela Hewitt, German baritone Christian Gerhaher as well as the label 'Naive,' to receive the MIDEM Classical Awards. The award ceremony will take place on Jan. 26 at the Palais des Festivals in Cannes, France. Garanca, along with Gerhaher was recognized by the jury as 'Singer of the Year'. The song 'Maybe' by Latvian pop-band 'Brainstorm' (Prata Vetra) has been voted the second best song of 2008 by radio 'Antena 1' listeners in Brazil. The song was up against songs by well-known artists such as Celine Dion, Alicia Keys, James Blunt, Kylie Minogue and others. "We are very happy and flattered. If a song speaks to people, then everything else is not important," said lead singer of Brainstorm Renars Kaupers.
The government of Valdis Dombrovskis (New Era) could be toppled after the 2010 state budget is endorsed in Saeima, says Union of Greens and Farmers (ZZS) Saeima group leader Augusts Brigmanis, reports LETA. "The Moor has done his duty, the Moor can go," he said, adding that ZZS would not want such changes to take place, taking into account the hard work that the government has done. Brigmanis also said that Dombrovskis' government will not be threatened until the budget is passed, and the budget will most probably be endorsed without any substantial changes in the parliament. Changing the government is not being discussed behind the scenes at the moment, but usually "such things may happen very fast," Brigmanis added. Commenting on the conflict between the suspended State Revenue Service Director General Dzintars Jakans and Finance Minister Einars Repse (New Era) and whether it could affect stability of the government, Brigmanis said that it depends on whether the People's Party has accepted the suspension of Jakans.