Arvo Pärt: Fratres for violin, string orchestraand percussionArvo Pärt: Cantus in Memory of Benjamin Britten for string orchestra and bellArvo Pärt: Adam´s Lament for mixed choirand string orchestraArvo Pärt: Salve Regina for mixed choir, celesta and string orchestraArvo Pärt: Te Deum for three choirs, string orchestra, prepared piano and wind harp

This festival concert in the cathedral in the Prague Castle is taking place only ten days after the eightieth birthday of Arvo Pärt, a composer of exceptionally effective, communicative, meditative, and emotional music. An internationally-renowned musician from Estonia working in Germany, Pärt is often called a ‘spiritual minimalist’. For several years in a row he has been the most often-performed living composer in the world. Our tribute to Pärt has been entrusted to one of the best vocal ensembles of the present time, the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, in collaboration with the Prague Radio Symphony. 

  • Dress code: dark suit
  • Doors close: 7.55 pm
  • End of concert: 10.00 pm


Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra

For many decades, the Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra has been a universal symphonic ensemble with a wide range of repertoire including concert music and opera, and it is one of the most important and oldest orchestras in the Czech Republic. Among the permanent or guest conductors to have collaborated with the orchestra have been Václav Talich, Karel Ančerl, Václav Neumann, Vladimír Válek, and Charles Mackerras. Its present chief conductor is Alexander Liebreich. A number of foreign composers have conducted their own music with the orchestra, including Sergei Prokofiev and Aram Khachaturian. The orchestra has always devoted itself intensively to recording, and it has to its credit the making of audio recordings of many Czech classics that are not a usual part of the repertoire. This is not the orchestra’s first appearance at the Dvořák Prague Festival: back in 2014 it took part in the festival’s world premiere complete performance of Dvořák’s first opera Alfred with its original German libretto.

Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra

Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir

The Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir is the best-known musical ensemble of its country internationally, famous not only for its extraordinary performing qualities but also for the unusual attention it devotes to contemporary vocal music. The ensemble was founded in 1981 by Tõnu Kaljuste, who led it for two decades and continues to return to it. The repertoire of the choir, which gives up to seventy concerts each year at home and abroad, ranges from Gregorian chant to modern works, the most frequently performed and recorded among the latter being by two prominent Estonian composers: Arvo Pärt who is celebrating his eightieth birthday this year, and his senior by five years Veljo Tormis. Twice the ensemble has won a Grammy Award for its recording of a work by Pärt. In this year's programs special attention is also being devoted to the Finnish composer Jean Sibelius in commemoration of the sesquicentennial of his birth. 

Tõnu Kaljuste

Choirmaster and conductor Tõnu Kaljuste is the founder of the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, the Tallinn Chamber Orchestra, and the festival in Nargen. Numerous recordings he has prepared and conducted have won major honours, including a Diapason d'Or and a Grammy Award. For years he has been devoting major attention to international promotion of Estonian composers, especially Arvo Pärt and Veljo Tormis, and from among the younger generation Erkki-Sven Tüür. Together with the vocal ensemble he founded in 1971 and fully professionalized ten years later under its present title, he has developed broadly-conceived international activities, especially since Estonia, following a long period of Soviet occupation and systematic 'Russification', regained its independence in 1991. From 1978 to 1985 Kaljuste was also conductor of the Estonian National Opera. Starting in 1994 he served for several seasons as head of the Swedish Radio Chorus and the Netherlands Chamber Choir, and in 2010 he began teaching at the Estonian National Academy of Music and Theatre where he is chair of the conducting department. 

Tõnu Kaljuste - conductor

St. Vitus Cathedral

St. Vitus Cathedral is the largest and the most important temple in Prague. Apart from religious services the coronations of Czech kings and queens also took place in here. The cathedral is a place of interment of remains of provincial patron saints, sovereigns, noblemen and archbishops.The Bohemian Coronation Jewels are kept in Crown Chamber of st. Wenceslas Chapel.