René Eespere 70
Conductor: Arvo Volmer
Soloists: Esther Dorado Suela (flute), Marcel Johannes Kits (cello), Karis Trass (mezzo-soprano), Reigo Tamm (tenor), Kristel Pärtna (soprano), Heldur Harry Põlda (tenor)
Estonian National Opera soloists, Chorus and Orchestra
Flute Concerto No. 2
Epigrams VIII and IX for solo voices and orchestra
“Concertatus celatus” for cello and chamber orchestra
“The Sixth Day” for symphony orchestra
“Symphony of Silence” oratorio for soloists, mixed choir and symphony orchestra
René Eespere’s music combines pure joy of music and ritualistic power. His music contemplates the secrets of existence and core values of life. Vocal works with a message, and concert genre carrying energy of motion hold a central place in his output. Eespere’s idiom influences of baroque and rock music are present but relation to Estonian folk music and minimalist repetition technique can also be detected.
Flute Concerto No. 2 was written in 2003 and dedicated to Maarika Järvi who also premiered the work. René Eespere: “This concert shows clear influences of New-Baroque characteristics of expression in both ideologic-philosophic and the human emotion sphere as well as in certain compositional elements. I consider the colours of sound and timber equally important”. The soloist of the concert is Esther Dorado Suela, the principal flute of the Estonian National Opera. She is celebrated for her remarkable technique, refined musicality, and beautiful sound. Her orchestral career has led her through Europe performing with orchestras such as Orquesta Sinfónica de Talavera, Västerås Sinfonietta, and the Royal Opera in Stockholm, among others. Her professionality has made her a prominent flutist in her home country as well as in the Nordic countries.
In 2001–2014, Eespere wrote altogether nine Epigrams to 2000-year-old Latin texts. Originally for solo voices and piano, the Estonian audiences will hear the premiere of the two epigrams with an orchestral accompaniment.
“Concertatus celatus” (2004) premiered within the Estonian Music Days with Marius Järvi as a soloist. The composer has said of his work: “Concertatus celatus – a concealed struggle. Life itself is a struggle and many experience this from early on. Those, for whom it is only a thorny road of self-exploration can consider themselves lucky. Twenty years ago, I imagined and created a musical portrait of a man (myself?) exactly as you hear”. Cellist Marcel Johannes Kits is one of the most promising young cellists of his generation, having won the 3rd prize at the Queen Elisabeth Cello Competition and 1st prize at the George Enescu competition in Romania. He has performed as soloist with many renowned orchestras such as the Brussels Philharmonic, Estonian National Symphony Orchestra, Latvian National SO, Lithuanian State Symphony Orchestra, St. Petersburg Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre Royal de Chambre de Wallonie, Tallinn Chamber Orchestra, Moscow Chamber Orchestra, Munich Chamber Orchestra, George Enescu Philharmonic Orchestra, etc. Marcel plays an Italian cello made by Francesco Ruggeri (Cremona, 1674) and a bow made by Victor Fetique (ca 1900), both kindly on loan to him by the Deutsche Stiftung Musikleben.
“The Sixth Day” (2003) is a piece for orchestra in which the author meditates on the essence of Men. “Just as it says in the Old Testament, God created Man on the sixth day. Who believes it and who doesn’t, but here we are in this world. What are we like – good or bad? Or are we a little bit of both? Twenty years ago, I painted a musical picture of Man (myself?) as you hear it”.
The concert also features one of the most important vocal symphonic works of the composer carrying an ethical-existentialist message, an oratorio for soloists, mixed choir and symphony orchestra – “Symphony of Silence” (1989, text by Malle Talvet) that also has a premiere in a revised orchestration.