The 150th anniversary of the Estonian Song Festival

Tartu Song Festival 2019

20–22 June 2019

The Song Festival’s 150th anniversary is naturally celebrated at its birthplace, Tartu, with a song festival, when over 8500 singers ranging from kindergarteners to grandparents perform music from Estonian composers Arvo Pärt, Veljo Tormis, Gustav Ernesaks, Miina Härma and many others at the main concert of the Tartu Song Festival on 22 June 2019 at the Festival Grounds.

The first nation-wide song festival was held in Tartu in 1869, a city that is forever young, always in its springtime, the same Estonian city that gave birth to the Estonian national university, the Estonian-language newspaper and theatre, as well as the Estonian national museum.

The song festival, born 150 years ago and nowadays held every 5 years, features on the UNESCO Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage.

The song festival is an important awakener and keeper of the Estonian people – it would be hard to find Estonians who do not hold the song festival dear: this is a special event that they find time for and will even travel home for from afar. At the festival, we Estonians are at our best.

18:00 22 June 2019

Main concert

The main concert of the Tartu Song Festival, focusing on songs most loved by audiences today, will be held in the evening of 22 June at the Tartu Song Festival Grounds. The hallmark choral music will be performed by over 8500 singers ranging from kindergarteners to grandparents. The programme features works by Arvo Pärt, Veljo Tormis, Gustav Ernesaks, Miina Härma and many others. The concert also includes brass bands, including the Vanemuine Theatre Symphony Orchestra.

20 June 2019
Concert day of combined song festivals

The Estonian National Male Choir and the Academic Women’s Choir of the University of Tartu perform at the festive joint concert of the Tartu Song Festival and the XXVII Song Celebration in the festival church of St. Mary’s, Tartu.

21 June 2019
Day of period concerts and dance performance

The three period concerts – 1869, 1919 and 1969 – invite you to travel along the song festivals’ timeline.
The dance performance „Loodud Jääma“ (“Here to Stay”) begins at Kassitoome (Toomeorg) Valley just before sundown.

22 June 2019
The Song Festival Day

The main concert of the Tartu Song Festival is the cherry on top of the Song Festival’s 150th anniversary.

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