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Estonian Music Days 2018 "Sacred"

In 2018, when Estonia celebrates its 100th anniversary, the theme of the oldest music festival in Estonia, Estonian Music Days, is "Sacred".

Sacred in the widest, most beautiful and human dimension, from a blessed sacred feeling to a silent gratitude, from everyday holidays to uniqueness and miracle. Through sacred, integrity is created, sacred connects and unites. The sacredness of life, the nature of things, respect, relationship with sacred, inner sacredness. People, a collective joy and something shared. Sacred sounds, sacred pauses. Sacred songs, sacred texts. Sacred places, sacred parties.

According to one of the artistic directors of the festival, Timo Steiner, the word "sacred" has several meanings. "This word has to be dealt in conjunction with the sounds and space that will emerge in the festival. Sacred is a word, which electrifies innerly and today it's something to desire, maybe more than ever before," said Steiner.

According to him, the sacred is like an extra space, which can be achieved by having a dialogue with something deep and spacious. "The sacred is, in a sense, an agreement between the people, the state and the human beings. But there should be something plastic in sacred, which can be discussed and joked about, or taken seriously," Steiner explained.

The festival Estonian Music Days comes again with fresh spring energy. The new programme is public from February 21, 2018. Estonian Music Days takes place already the 39th time and it is the largest festival of premieres in Estonia, which, over the course of one week, will bring over 30 new pieces to the audience from eminent Estonian composers of different generations.

The performers are Estonian top performers and interpreters, among them Estonian National Symphony Orchestra, Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Estonian National Male Choir, Yxus Ensemble, Ensemble U:, Tallinn New Music Ensemble, Vox Clamantis, Heinavanker, string quartet Prezioso, Heigo Rosin, Kadri-Ann Sumera, Tõnu Kalm, Mingo Rajandi, Ekke Västrik, Jaanus Siniväli, Kristin Kuldkepp and others.

The festival includes internationally renowned interpreters and musicians from Italy, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Germany, among them the contrabass player Dario Calderone from the Netherlands, violin and viola player Barbara Lüneburg from Germany, and new music ensembles L'Arsenale from Italy and Ensemble du Bout du Monde from Switzerland.

The works of the following composers are performed: Toivo Tulev (*the programme includes world premieres of his three new symphonies), Jüri Reinvere, Kristjan Randalu, Maria Kõrvits, Pärt Uusberg, Arash Yazdani, Helena Tulve, Tatjana Kozlova-Johannes, Liisa Hirsch, Märt-Matis Lill, Galina Grigorjeva, Kristjan Kõrver, Malle Maltis, Margo Kõlar, Robert Jürjendal, Ardo-Ran Varres, Lepo Sumera, Erkki-Sven Tüür, Liina Sumera, Riho-Esko Maimets, Gerta Raidma, Age Veeroos, Mari Vihmand, Mart Saar, Kuldar Sink, Cyrillus Kreek and others.

In September, the ballet show "Keres" is premiered in the Estonia 100 highlights programme as the follow-up to the festival in April. The production is about Estonian chess player Paul Keres. The authors of the original compositions are Timo Steiner and Sander Mölder, and director-choreographer is Teet Kask. The performance will be accompanied by the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Yxus Ensemble and the ballet dancers of the National Opera. The contemporary ballet production will be premiered on September 3 at the National Opera Estonia in cooperation with the Vaba Lava Theatre Centre and the National Opera Estonia.

Programme of Estonian Music Days 2018 and additional information is available at www.eestimuusikapaevad.ee.

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