Head of Department of Winds at Jazeps Vitols Latvian Academy of Music
Janis Purins was born in 1960 in Latvia. He graduated from Latvia Music Academy at 1984 where he studied trumpet. After obtaining his degree he then studied symphony orchestra conducting under the guidance of Vasily Sinaisky until 1986.
Mr. Purins however, has worked with wind bands since 1977. He was conductor – assistant (1977-1990) and Artistic Director (1990-1992) of Students Band of Latvia Technical University. Under his direction his band took part in and received many first place awards in festivals and contests in Rostock, Geseke, Augsburg (Germany), Neerpelt (Belgium), Saint Pol Sur Meer (France).
From 1991 until July of 2007 Mr. Purins was the Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the full time professional Wind Orchestra Riga.
Under his baton the Wind Orchestra visited Rostock (1993), Valensia (WASBE conference 1993), Wien (2000) Vilnius (1998), and Moscow (2002).
He is the Artistic Conductor and one of founders of the Latvia Youth Symphonic Band, first formed in 1996. The Youth Symphonic Band has also been decorated with many awards at international festivals including contests in: Rostock (1997), Zürich (1999), Seinajoki (Finland, 2000) Kerkrade (The Netherlands, 2001, 2005), Schladming (Austria, 2006), and Interlaken (Switzerland, 2007).
Mr. Purins conducting repertoire includes classical composers: W.A.Mozart, and J.S.Bach, wind band composers: J.de Meij, P.Spark, A.Reed, J.van der Roost, Soviet and Russian composers: M.Musorgsky, A.Borodin, A.Ladov, and Latvian composers: J.Karlsons, R.Kalsons, M.Bass, G.Ordelovskis among many others.
Mr. Purins has twice visited the United States and guest conducted university bands at Northern Iowa, Brigham Young, and Nebraska-Omaha, as well as at universities in Sweden, Germany, Norway, Switzerland, Belgium, The Netherlands, Estonia, and Lithuania.
He was selected as a guest judge at the Norwegian Wind Band Competition in 2004 and Estonian Wind Band Competition in 2006 and 2007.
Mr. Purins has been a guest conductor of joint symphonic bands at the Latvia Song and Dance Festival (1990, 1995, 1998, 2003), and the Song Festival of Nordic and Baltic Countries in Riga. He will be the Artistic Director of Wind Bands at the Latvia Song and Dance Festival in 2008.
Since 1995 Mr. Purins has an Associate Professor and Head of Department of Wind Instruments at Jazeps Vitols Latvia Music Academy where he also teaches wind orchestra conducting classes.
Mr. Purins is currently President of the Latvian Association of Symphonic Bands