Online magazine Estonian World compiled a list of twelve “most outstanding Estonians” in the world in 2014.
The magazine said that the list was compiled in the run-up to the Estonian Independence Day.
The people’s achievements, their presence and influence in the international media, appearances in global leading cities and the number of international followers in the social media were taken into account, while compiling the list, according to the magazine.
“It is important to emphasise that this is not the ultimate list of either the most important or famous or influential Estonians in the world. There are many others who work hard every day to make life better for everyone. Merely, we have brought out the names of Estonians who had a larger than usual clout and impact last year – that in turn helped get the name “Estonia” to the lips of more people around the world,” Estonian World said.
Composer Arvo Pärt won the title as the “most outstanding Estonian in the world”.
“Pärt commands respect and admiration from classical music fans from around the world, from Italy to Iran, and Belgium to Brazil. In fact, Pärt’s music became internationally renowned before most Estonians were aware of it because he was forced to emigrate from his home country with his wife and their two sons in 1980, after a prolonged struggle with the Soviet officials. Most Estonians learned about Pärt’s fame when “Te Deum” climbed the Billboard’s classical music charts for 52 weeks during 1994-95 and was later nominated for a Grammy Award. In last 20 years, however, Pärt has been universally revered as Estonia’s most famous son,” the magazine said.
2014 saw Pärt been given the title of the world’s most performed living composer by the classical music event database, backtrack.com. Conductor Tõnu Kaljuste won a Grammy Award in the Best Choral Performance category for his work on Pärt’s album “Adam’s Lament” at the 56th Annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles. In October, the Japan Art Association presented Pärt with the prestigious Praemium Imperiale cultural award. The award is considered equal to the Nobel Prize in the field of culture, and was presented to the Maestro by the patron of the association, Prince Hitachi of Japan.
Top 12 most outstanding Estonians in the world 2014:
12. Ilmar Raag, film director
11. Karmen Pedaru, supermodel
10. Mord Fustang aka Rauno Roosnurm, electro house and dubstep producer and DJ
9. Paavo Järvi, conductor
8. Eiko Ojala, illustrator and graphic designer
7. Anu Tali, conductor
6-5. Taavet Hinrikus and Kristo Käärmann, founders, TransferWise
4. Toomas Hendrik Ilves, president
3. Kerli Kõiv, singer-songwriter
2. Tõnu Kaljuste, conductor
1. Arvo Pärt, composer
Editor: S. Tambur