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My First Interview on Lithuanian National Radio 'LRT'

On November 30th, 2023, I had the incredible opportunity to speak on Lithuanian National Radio 'LRT'. This was my first time speaking on the radio and sharing live my experience of playing the Lithuanian national instrument in a foreign country. As previously stated, playing the kanklės in a country other than Lithuania is quite rare, which is why someone would be interested in hearing all about this experience :)

I must admit that I was hesitant at first to accept this amazing opportunity; I was thinking of things I could share with people and was concerned that I might be lacking in some major accomplishments in my career. However, I have already done quite a few things with the kanklės in London, and I know that even though they are not internationally famous (haha), they are still important to talk about.

The first few minutes were scary, with lots of overthinking, such as 'what if I say something wrong or funny?' or 'what if I don't know what to say?' One thing that kept my mind straight was telling myself that I was talking about something I was most familiar with - my instrument. I just need to share my expertise in the kanklės, which could not be easier haha!

What surprised me was that the radio can also receive calls, so radio listeners can call in real time and ask me questions about anything. The fact that people actually called and asked questions about my experience in the UK made me very happy! Yes, on the radio and in general, Lithuanians always ask me, 'how do foreigners react to our country's instrument?' You can contact me and let me know so I know what to tell them the next time ;)

But, to be honest, what I said in the interview was that listeners are always eager to hear the kanklės for the first time. Interestingly, they are less interested in how many strings the instrument has or what type of wood it is made of; instead, they sincerely wonder, 'Where is the instrument coming from?' or 'To which country does it belong?'

I was also asked what kind of music can be played on the kanklės, and as you may know from my first post, the kanklės is originally a folk instrument. However, the idea behind developing the instrument was to give it a much broader repertoire. We can now play many different genres (popular music, jazz, classical, and many more) thanks to implemented chromatisms and multiple added strings. That is why the subtitle of this website is 'Where Classical Meets Folk.' I value folk music and will always remember where the instrument originated, but I am also excited to be able to incorporate such an important genre as classical music, and the greatest beauty is to see where these two genres meet.

Finally, the title of the interview came from something I said: 'I learnt how to live and enjoy within the limits of my instrument.' This is something I would like to discuss in greater depth in future posts, but to summarise: the limitations of my instrument, which used to discourage me from playing music, have now become something that inspires me every day!

You can watch the whole interview here; it is only in Lithuanian, but if you want to take a quick look, here is the link:


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