CONSUMER DRIVEN: There will be plenty of ways to stay busy this Valentine’s Day.
RIGA - A celebration is always a special moment, something to enjoy. It is a time when ordinary problems move to the rear a bit, and a festive mood steps in. The celebration reaches even those who are strictly against it, proving that there are no barriers for one. However, the largest part of human-kind gladly welcomes any celebration if it offers events to attend and respective gifts to buy. This is the situation with the international celebration of St. Valentine’s Day, which arrives on Feb. 14, bringing many topic-related activities to the city of Riga.
It is not a secret that St. Valentine’s Day takes an important role in today’s consumer society. Its commercial status makes this celebration both beloved, and hated, at the same time. Yet, its historical roots can be dated back to the time of Ancient Rome, where the legend of Valentine is supposed to have been born. While there are many versions that speak about who the main character was, one of these versions is that the bishop Valentine organized secret weddings of poor soldiers, which had been prohibited at the time, and it is only in the Middle Ages this legend became associated with romance. Today, when the world honors its day of lovers on Feb. 14, it is almost impossible to think about St. Valentine’s Day without its symbols: doves, hearts, cupids, roses and engagement rings.
The event guide shows that Riga flourishes on this lovers’ day, and everyone can locate the best activity for themselves. People are invited to visit the concert “The Stories of Love” at the Great Guild, for instance. The professional brass band “Riga” celebrates its 40th anniversary, and the concert on St. Valentine’s Day enchants the anniversary year. Conducted by Raitis Asmanis, the brass band will play fragments of the most popular musicals, like “Les Miserables” and “West Side Story” to stress the meaning of love.
A quiet opposite event is scheduled for Arena Riga where the popular St. Petersburg National Ballet on ice is going to perform the magnificent “Swan Lake.” The ballet was founded by the choreographer Kontantin Boyarsky in 1967, and throughout its history it has employed the most talented skaters, including European, world and Olympic champions. The ballet on ice, while having the traditions of classical ballet as well, is an extraordinary approach to many world-known stories; apart from “Swan Lake” the skaters also present the iconic Christmas story the “Nutcracker.” With an unbelievable easiness and grace “Swan Lake” gains a virtuosity which will be praised by spectators.
Lovers’ day is usually under the crosshairs, dependent on money, selling the idea that St. Valentine’s Day is complete only when your money is spent on presents, roses and events, and the more the better. Another counterargument against this Lovers’ day notes that there is not a special day for loved ones to show their affection, as it needs to be outlined all year round.
Still, this day has not decreased in popularity, and the entertainment industry works hard to keep its consumers satisfied from year to year. Why is this day so important? It reflects the inner longing for romance. It is obviously the only day in the year when the meaning of love is allowed to be a bit exaggerated to indicate our necessity to be loved. St. Valentine may be the guardian of loved ones, but basically it points out that love is never-ending and works in different directions, like the love towards your family, and even the love of being independent.
Thus, events on this day can bring more joy than expected. It is a way for how to release the heaviness of the day and let in the warmth. Entertainment is one of the greatest ways how to relax, and the assortment of events on St. Valentine’s Day has taken care that nobody leaves the day frustrated.
Ticket information is found on www.bilesuparadize.lv and www.bilesuserviss.lv.