The prestigious annual contemporary music festival World Music Days is about to start in Estonia

In May 2-10 Tallinn and Tartu will host more than a hundred composers to present their most exciting new music by the best Estonian as well as Latvian, Finnish and Swedish performers. The festival will include compositions from nearly 50 countries, topic of this year’s festival is „Through the forest of songs“.

Along with contemporary academical music selection, the festival committee considered it important to include interdisciplinary projects in the programme. The World Music Days 2019 explores the relationship between contemporary music and other artistic disciplines. The opening concert-performance, “The Beauty of Decay”, which will take place at Seaplane Harbour (Estonian Maritime Museum), expresses lightness through the integral combination of sound, poetry, movement and light. A music collective consisting mainly of composers has been assembled especially for this production. Various sound objects, namely crystal bowls, wine glasses and construction tools will be used for creating music.

The exhibition “Music Machines” held in Design and Architecture gallery during the festival will introduce sound objects-machines. In a way, all of them represent an experiment to visualize/embody sound through the technological spectrum. 

The World Music Days will bring guests of the festival to traditional venues, such as Estonia Concert Hall, where Estonian National Symphony orchestra and conductor Olari Elts will perform works of Lotta Wennäkoski, Mayke Nas, Ülo Krigul, Ho-Chi So and Alex Nante. Also new locations of the city such as the recently re-opened Estonian Academy of Arts, Estonian National Museum in Tartu and Arvo Pärt Center in Laulasmaa will be filled with music and art. The Estonian National Male Choir and the string quartet Yxus will introduce contemporary choral music compositions at Tallinn Creative Hub, which is located in the former building of the City Central Power Station.

For the first time, jazz has been included as a separate category in the programme of World Music Days. The concert “Spectres of Jazz” will take the audience to an exciting journey where inspiring poets will perform a poetry slam next to the jazz musicians.

Selected works will be performed by guests from Sweden – Norrbotten NEO, Finland – Defunensemble and Latvian Radio Choir. Full programme:


World Music Days is initiated by the International Society for Contemporary Music (ISCM). ISCM is the most important international network of members from around fifty countries, devoted to the promoting and presentation of contemporary classical music. ISCM is an immense network in the field of contemporary music. Each year, ISCM World Music Days festival is hosted in a different city around the globe. Last years festival was held in Beijing, Vancouver and Tongyeong. In 2020 the festival will take place in New Zealand.