Leida Laius' 100th anniversary celebrated with retrospective, exhibitions

Leida Laius and actress Monika Järv on the set of
Leida Laius and actress Monika Järv on the set of "Games for Schoolchildren." Source: Arno Saar/Estonian Film Database (EFDB)

On March 26, this year, one of Estonia's most prominent cinema directors, Leida Laius, would have turned 100 years old. The week honoring her contributions to the cinema runs from March 20 to 26.

Over the course of the week, Laius' films will be screened in Tallinn and Tartu and the director's work will be made available on a number of streaming services.

All of her feature-length films, including the acclaimed "Werewolf" ("Libahunt," 1968), will be screened at the Tartu Elektriteater art-house cinema and Kino Sõprus in Tallinn. The two documentaries, "A Child is Born" ("Sündis inimene," 1975) and "Childhood" ("Lapsepõlv," 1976), both of which have a strong connection to her last features, "Games for Schoolchildren" ("Naerata ometi," 1985) and "Stolen Meeting" (Varastatud kohtumine, 1988), will be screened as well.

In addition, the Elektriteatr and Sõprus Cinema will exhibit a selection of photographs from the national archive depicting the director's creative process behind the scenes.

The Vabamu Museum's new exhibition, "Escape the Kitchen!," which starts on March 9 and runs for a year, features a part dedicated to the work of Laius.

On March 26, her film "Spring in the Forest" ("Ukuaru," 1973), for which Arvo Pärt composed his "Ukuaru" waltz, will be screened at the Arvo Pärt Centre, and Tristan Priimägi will lead a conversation on Leida Laius' film heritage at the Vabamu Museum of Occupations and Freedom in Tallinn.


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Editor: Kaspar Viilup, Kristina Kersa

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