Musician and actor Jaak Johanson dies

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Jaak Johanson (1959-2021). Source: Kairit Leibold/ERR

Musician and actor Jaak Johanson has died, after a period of illness. He was 61.

Johanson's band, formed with three siblings, released several albums, with "Lahtilükkamine" being one of their most famous songs and one of the anthems of the "Singing Revolution" which led up to Estonia's restoration of independence in 1991. It was also a number which the group performed in Belfast, Northern Ireland, in 1989, as part of an initiative which had seen a troupe of traditional Irish musicians visit Estonia the previous year.

Late last year, Jaak Johanson had announced publicly that he was suffering from leukemia.

His death was announced on the family band's social media account Sunday evening.

Johanson had worked at the youth theater (Noorsooteater) in Tallinn in the 1980s and also as a music teacher.

He was married to traditional Estonian musician Krista Citra Joonas.

In 2010 he was awarded the Order of the White Star (Valgetähe), 4th class by then-president Toomas Hendrik Ilves.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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