The Estonian Music Days 2023 Festival Theme is “Soul and Spirit”

festival emp muusika nüüdismuusika helilooja uudisteos
Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir. Photo: Rene Jakobson

In 2023, the Estonian Music Days festival takes place from April 27 to May 7 in Tartu and Tallinn. The festival will continue in a hybrid format for the third year. The concerts will take place in concert halls and most can also be experienced on the festival website via EMP TV. 

For the first time, the festival has two themes with a different emphasis in each city while creating a common whole. “Soul” is the theme for the concerts in Tallinn and “Spirit” in Tartu. The artistic directors are Estonian composers Helena Tulve, Timo Steiner and Märt-Matis Lill.

Helena Tulve: “Music is directly related to our soul and inner space, hearing the breathing and expressing it. We anticipate composers and musicians to share what’s on their minds right now.”

During the 11 days of the festival, 18 events will take place in Tallinn, Laulasmaa (Arvo Pärt Centre) and Tartu concert halls. A total of 22 new works will be premiered by the following Estonian composers: Tatjana Kozlova-Johannes, Evelin Seppar, Maria Rostovtseva, Tauno Aints, Lauri Jõeleht, Mariliis Valkonen, Jonas Tarm, Kristo Klaus, Jüri Reinvere, Alisson Kruusmaa, Marianna Liik, Ekke Västrik, Sander Saarmets, Age Veeroos, Jüri Tamverk, Malle Maltis, Arash Yazdani, Margo Kõlar, Liisa Hirsch, Märt-Matis Lill, Ülo Krigul, Liina Sumera.

Additionally, the festival highlights the Estonian Music and Theatre Academy student compositions every year, as well as the works of up to 15 years old and 16–22 years old composers in the Young Composer competition at Heino Eller Music School.

The performers include the most renowned Estonian collectives: The Estonian National Symphony Orchestra, Tallinn Chamber Orchestra, Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Ensemble U:, Ensemble of the Estonian Electronic Music Society, EMTA Sinfonietta, Ensemble for New Music Tallinn, M4GNET Quartet, Talvi Hunt, Tarmo Johannes, Pipe Orchestra, Taavi Kerikmäe and Anna-Liisa Eller, Iris Oja, Garth Knox and others.

The LHV New Composition Award Au-tasu, sponsored by the Estonian Composers’ Union and LHV,  will be rewarded to a high-quality creative work by an Estonian classical music composer.

Discounted festival passes with the price of 50 euros are already on sale on Fienta. Single tickets will go on sale in February 2023.

The festival website is