fri 03/04/2020

Estonia

Classical CDs Weekly: Eller, Musorgsky, Rachmaninov

 Heino Eller: Symphonic Poems – Night Calls, White Night, Twilight, Dawn Estonian National Symphony Orchestra/Olari Elts (Ondine)Heino Eller was described as the ‘Estonian Sibelius’ in the first decades of the last century. Predictably, the...

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theartsdesk Q&A: Conductor Olari Elts in Tallinn

Arriving in Tallinn hotfoot from Paavo Järvi's inaugural concert as chief conductor of Zurich's Tonhalle Orchestra, and expecting the limelight to belong to composer Erkki-Sven Tüür on his 60th birthday, I found another Estonian bonus in store. Not...

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theartsdesk in Zurich and Tallinn: celebrating great Estonians

Culturally, "the little country that could" - as Estonia's ex-Prime Minister and historian Mart Laar dubbed it - punches well above its weight. While it educates the young with a musical instrument made available to every child, Estonia continues to...

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theartsdesk at the Pärnu Music Festival 2019 - super-orchestra, top clarinettists, transcendent strings

Little has changed about Pärnu, with its concentric rings of eight-mile sandy beach and dunes, wooded gardens and wooden old town, in the five years I've been going there. It came as a bit of a shock to find that voters in the region favoured the...

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theartsdesk in Tallinn and Tartu: Estonian Music Days go global

First under Soviet rule, then in the remarkable flourishing of a liberated nation, Estonian contemporary music has held its independent head high and showcased it, under the aegis of the Estonian Composers' Union, first for a few days and now for...

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DVD/Blu-ray: November

Life in rural 19th century Estonia looks hard. The ice and the squalor are tough enough, but then you’ve the kratts to contend with. We see one in the eye-popping opening sequence of Rainer Sarnet’s 2017 epic November, an unsettling creature cobbled...

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Mullova, Philharmonia, Järvi, RFH review – clear paths through the forest

Visit Ainola, Sibelius’s woodland house by Lake Tuusula north of Helsinki, and you’ll be told the story of the green stove. It appears that the famously synaesthetic Finnish composer identified the shade of his heating installation with the key of F...

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Tallinn Music Week 2019 review: 'We All Value Being European'

“We like people here in Estonia. I think we all here very much value being European. To all our British friends, we know that the offer of e-residency has been ticking-up constantly. You can find a sure foothold for your business here in Estonia....

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Lupu, Philharmonia, Järvi, RFH review - concerto magical in parts, symphony stupendous

Pianists most often cite Radu Lupu alongside Martha Argerich and Grigory Sokolov as the greatest. So it was hardly surprising to see so many top musicians in a packed audience, buzzing with expectation for the 73-year-old Romanian's most recent UK...

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Albums of the Year 2018: Mari Kalkun - Ilmamõtsan

Any of the individual elements making up Ilmamõtsan would be enough. Unified, they imbue Ilmamõtsan with beauty and an understated power. That questing Estonian singer-songwriter Mari Kalkun does not sing in English is no barrier to being affected....

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Anderson & Roe, RLPO, Tali, Philharmonic Hall, Liverpool review - measured fire

There must be something of a beauty parade going on in Liverpool now that Vasily Petrenko has called time on his tenure at Philharmonic Hall.  After all, someone will need to step into his shoes from 2021 after he departs for the Royal...

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Prom 42, Buniatishvili, Estonian Festival Orchestra, Järvi review – bright lights from the North

Music-lovers who normally balk at the sight of national colours in a concert hall would surely have forgiven the little Estonian flags – in stripes of blue, black and white – that waved happily at the conclusion of this Prom. Under the baton of...

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