Tallinn and Arvo Part

Arvo PärtImage by AOP Images via Flickr
We also visited the beautiful city of Tallinn in Estonia on holiday which is the home of the amazing composer of sacred music, Arvo Part.

He was born on September 11th Estonia in 1935 into a society which was, by definition, godless. 

Yet, he was a believer.

"That is my goal: time and timelessness are connected.

This instant and eternity are struggling within us.

And this is the cause of all our contradictions...."
- Arvo Pärt

This sublimely beautiful piece of music and beautiful video images below is Spiegel im Spiegel.
which In German literally means both "mirror in the mirror" as well as "mirrors in the mirror", referring to the infinity of images produced by parallel plane mirrors:  the notes of violin and piano are endlessly repeated with small variations as if reflected back and forth.

This year the piece was the focus of a half hour BBC Radio 4 programme, Soul Music, which examined pieces of music "with a powerful emotional impact".

This celestial piece Da Pacem Domine is by the Estonian Philarmonic Chamber Choir.

I am The True Vine

Arvo Part's own website is here.

It has fascinating transcripts of several interviews and details of his life, music and thought.  

It's definitely worth reading.
Pope Benedict hosted a reception in The Vatican earlier this year on 4th July for selected artists under the title Homage of Artists to mark the 60th anniversary of his ordination to the priesthood. 
There were only three composers among the 60 famous artists who were invited, and one of the three was Arvo Pärt. 
Those invited were requested to dedicate one piece of work to the Pope as a gift.

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