Culture

Estonia chooses Victor Crone with 'Storm' for Eurovision Song Contest

17.02.19 ... On Saturday evening, Estonian voters in 2019's instalment of Eesti Laul, a competition held to pick an artist to send to this year's Eurovision Song Contest in Tel Aviv, chose Swedish singer Victor Crone to represent the country with his song 'Storm', co-written by Estonian artist Stig Rästa.

Nordic Council of Ministers contributes €100,000 to Baltic Culture Fund

14.02.19 ... Last month, Chief of Staff of the Office of the Secretary General of the Nordic Council of Ministers Helle Engslund Krarup and Cultural Endowment of Estonia Chairwoman Kertu Saks signed an agreement for the contribution of 750,000 Danish krone (DKK), or €100,000, to the Baltic Culture Fund for the organisation of joint Baltic cultural events in Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden.

Tallinn Music Week 2019 lineup confirmed

13.02.19 ... The lineup for Tallinn Music Week (TMW) 2019, the international new music and urban culture festival, has been announced. The three-day music programme, which runs from Thusday 28 March to Saturday, 30 March, brings a broad spectrum of genres to the Estonian capital, with a total of just under 170 artists from nearly 30 countries confirmed.

HeadRead literary festival lineup complete

12.02.19 ... This year's annual HeadRead literary festival in Tallinn is once again set to welcome a very full list of internationally renowned writers and literary figures.

Tickets to Song and Dance Festival, major concerts going like hotcakes

12.02.19 ... This summer will see a schedule jam packed with music in Estonia, with events ranging from the Estonian Song Festival to rock concerts by major international acts. Anyone who still doesn't have a ticket to the Metallica concert in Tartu or the Song Festival had better hurry, though, because tickets are going fast.

Culture.ee's weekly recommendations: 11-17 February

11.02.19 ... A selection of cultural events taking place in Estonia this week as curated by culture.ee: "This week's recommendations include film screenings, concerts, exhibitions and performances. There's something for everyone!"

Rakvere city council sued for cutting back funding of LGBT+ festival

07.02.19 ... Non-profit MTÜ SevenBow, the organiser of the Festheart LGBTI film festival in Rakvere, is suing the city council because they decided to cut back funding for the festival.

Organisers: 20th Dance Festival already sold out

05.02.19 ... All three of the upcoming Dance Festival's grand performances are sold out, organisers reported on Tuesday. Tickets to the event were gone in less than a month, which is a new record. All in all, more than 50,000 have already been sold.

Premiere to bring new choreographers, ideas to Stage of Independent Dance

05.02.19 ... This Friday, 8 February, Premiere, a programme aimed at up-and-coming choreographers, will be introducing two new dance performances at the Stage of Independent Dance (STL). Grėtė Šmitaitė (Lithuania) will debut with her performance "What Do I Cry For?" and Lee Sanghoon (South Korea) will make his choreographic debut with the performance "It is Still Impossible to Exist at Two Places at Once."

Gallery: Popular TV drama ENSV returning to screens soon

03.02.19 ... A new series of popular soap ENSV, set towards the end of Soviet-era Estonia, is to hit the screens on 11 February.

Eeva Mägi wins young documentary filmmaker award

02.02.19 ... The Docpoint Documentary Festival has awarded its annual award for young documentary filmmakers to Eeva Mägi for the first time.

Gallery: Estonian Music Awards gala held in Tallinn

25.01.19 ... Hosted by Triinu "Lepatriinu" Paometsa and musician Reigo Ahven, the Estonian Music Awards gala was held at Tallinn's Saku Suurhall on Thursday night, where awards were handed out in a total of 17 categories.

Culture.ee: Ago Väli on Out-Or's Structures

24.01.19 ... Estonian electronic artist Out-Or has released his latest album, Structures, digitally, on CD and, true to his authentic 90s sound, on cassette, taking reviewer Ago Väli back to his own days of recording songs played on the radio, including one by Out-Or himself, onto cassettes.

'Elect a better past!' exhibit to open at Maarjamäe Palace

23.01.19 ... On 1 February, "Elect a better past!" an exhibit focusing on the events of five particular days in 1992, culminating in the Riigikogu and presidential elections, will open at Maarjamäe Palace in Tallinn.

Anu Tali begins second half of final season conducting Florida orchestra

22.01.19 ... News continues to trickle in regarding Estonian conductors' performances abroad this year, whether with their own orchestra or as guest conductor. Anu Tali, musical director of the Sarasota Orchestra, has two new progammes to direct with her Florida orchestra, and is kicking off the second half of the current season with a total of seven concerts.

Song and Dance Festival tickets on sale, popular seats going quickly

11.01.19 ... Tickets for the 2019 Song and Dance Festival went up for sale at noon on Thursday, and already many of the best seats at Kalev Stadium, the venue for the XX Dance Festival, have sold out, despite ticket prices having gone up since the last festival.

Street artist Edward von Lõngus wins Foreign Ministry Culture Award

10.01.19 ... Minister of Foreign Affairs Sven Mikser (SDE) on Wednesday presented the 2018 Culture Award of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to Estonian street artist Edward von Lõngus for his digital street art project "(R)estart Reality."

Estonian Song and Dance Festival tickets to go on sale next Thursday

03.01.19 ... Tickets for the 2019 Song and Dance Festival, which takes place in Tallinn on 4-7 July, go on sale next Thursday, 10 January at 12:00 EET (5:00 EST).

Culture.ee's full list of 2019 Estonian festivals

02.01.19 ... While summer is the festival high season in Estonia, crowned this year by the 150th anniversary edition of the Estonian Song and Dance Festival, there are actually plenty of events to choose from all year long. The Culture Critics' blog at culture.ee has published a full list, broken down by month, of festivals across Estonia to watch for in 2019.

Estonian films attract more than 600,000 viewers in 2018

29.12.18 ... Estonian films attracted an audience of more than 600,000 in 2018, over half of whom saw films produced as part of the Estonia 100 centennial film programme.

Interview: Helena Maria Reisner on being a child star

28.12.18 ... While it wasn't always easy acting in a film about the difficult Soviet era, in her year-end interview with journalist Anna Pihl, 8-year-old lead actress Helena Maria Reisner, who played a young Leelo Tungal in the award-winning Estonian film "The Little Comrade," admitted that it's pretty cool being called a child star.

Tommy Cash: Charli XCX herself wanted to perform with me in Tallinn

28.12.18 ... Estonian rapper Tommy Cash, who has continued to make waves on the world stage and recently released his debut full-length album "¥€$," revealed that English pop star Charli XCX, who will be guest performing at his concert in Tallinn on Saturday, had herself approached him about joining him onstage there.

Narva Museum overcomes crisis under new director

27.12.18 ... A year that had gotten off to a rough start for Narva Museum ultimately shaped up to be a successful one — a budget deficit was offset by growth in domestic tourism, and even the museum restaurant, a source of contention, has begun to turn a profit. This turnaround has taken place under the direction of Ivo Posti.

Cultural professionals' minimum wage to increase to €1,300

26.12.18 ... Minister of Culture Indrek Saar (SDE) and Estonian Employees' Unions' Confederation (TALO) board chairman Ago Tuuling are set to a sign a wage agreement for 2019 on Thursday that will increase the minimum monthly gross wage of cultural professionals to €1,300.

'The Little Comrade' chosen to compete at Palm Springs festival

19.12.18 ... "The Little Comrade," the first film of the centennial Estonia 100 film programme, will premiere in the US on 8 January after being selected for competition in the Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) in California.

Nukufilm claymation short film 'Teofrastus' to premiere on Tuesday

18.12.18 ... Nukufilm Studios' latest short film, the claymation "Teofrastus," premieres in Tallinn at Cinema Sõprus on Tuesday.

Thesis details fostering of patriotism in Estonian diaspora during Cold War

17.12.18 ... In a doctoral thesis successfully defended at Tallinn University (TLÜ) on Monday, Dr Maarja Merivoo-Parro examined what Estonian life was like in the Cold War-era United States and how this manifested in humor, music, education, recreation and academic mobility.

Liisi Koikson, Robert Jürjendal Trio Christmas concert heard by millions

14.12.18 ... Liisi Koikson and the Robert Jürjendal Trio's Christmas concert, which was held at ERR's concert studio in Tallinn beginning at 16:00 EET on Sunday, was also broadcast across the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), ultimately reaching a combined audience of millions across public radio and TV stations in 15 countries.

Government decision ensures St. Nicholas' to remain museum, concert hall

14.12.18 ... The Estonian government and the Estonian Evangelical Lutheran Church (EELK) reached an agreement according to which St. Nicholas' Church in Tallinn will remain a branch of the Art Museum of Estonia and a concert hall.

Gallery: Choirs sing at Song Festival Grounds on Gustav Ernesaks' birthday

12.12.18 ... A number of choirs gathered at the Song Festival Grounds in Tallinn at dawn on Wednesday to sing in memory of the legendary Estonian composer and choir conductor Gustav Ernesaks on what would have been his 110th birthday.

Latvia's Ivars Seleckis named winner of PÖFF Lifetime Achievement Award

29.11.18 ... Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival (PÖFF) on Wednesday evening awarded Latvian documentary filmmaker and founder of the legendary Riga School of Poetic Documentary Cinema Ivars Seleckis with the festival's second annual Lifetime Achievement Award.

Culture.ee: Reviews for three PÖFF films screening again this week

28.11.18 ... Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival (PÖFF) began on 16 November already, but it's not too late to catch a screening, as the festival lasts through this Sunday! Culture.ee technical editor Taavi Hallimäe has provided short reviews for three of the films being screened again this week.

Arvo Pärt receives two high honours in Poland

27.11.18 ... Estonian composer Arvo Pärt received two distinguished honours in Warsaw on Sunday and Monday.

Actor reads through entire UN Global Migration Compact, takes 2 hours

23.11.18 ... The UN Global Migrant Compact has been at the centre of much heated political debate in Estonia over the last week and a half, to put it mildly. But who has actually read the document – which was not even translated into Estonian until recently? One person who most assuredly has not scrimepd on the issue is actor Gert Raudsep, who read through the entire text as part of ETV's ''Ringvaate'' broadcast on Thursday, a task which took him over two hours to complete.

Culture minister makes clean sweep of Eesti Kontsert board

21.11.18 ... Minister of Culture Indrek Saar (SDE) has appointed six new members to the supervisory board of Estonian music umbrella organisation Eesti Kontsert (EK), replacing the previous board in its entirety.

Culture.ee's weekly recommendations: 19-25 November

19.11.18 ... A selection of cultural events taking place in Estonia this week as curated by culture.ee: "With these recommendations, we suggest attending lectures at Ülase12 and St. Nicholas' Museum, a movement workshop, dance performances, concerts, and last but not least, Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival (PÖFF), which has already begun but does not end until early December."

Culture.ee's weekly recommendations: 12-18 November

12.11.18 ... A selection of cultural events taking place in Estonia this week as curated by culture.ee: "This week, we're recommending stand-up comedy, improvisational music, a chance to explore Nordic philosophy, and a film festival, among other things."

Tartu to celebrate Latvian centennial with eight days of events

09.11.18 ... Beginning Friday, the Tartu Latvian Society is celebrating the centennial of the Republic of Latvia with a special programme of events over the course of more than a week, culminating with an all-day event at the Estonian National Museum (ERM) on Latvian Independence Day on Sunday, 18 November.

216 songs submitted for Eesti Laul 2019 contest

08.11.18 ... A total of 216 songs have been submitted for the 2019 edition of Eesti Laul, the Estonian song contest whose winning song becomes the Estonian entry for that year's Eurovision Song Contest. Exactly half of all songs received were Estonian-language songs; the rest were in various foreign languages.

State rejects Estonian World's plea for funding for this year

07.11.18 ... The Ministry of Culture has rejected the request of English-language web magazine Estonian World (EW) for support from the state to to the tune of €5,000 for the remainder of 2018. The ministry has, however, promised to seek opportunities for supporting the portal in 2019.

Electronic Communications tour to promote Estonian electronic music in UK

07.11.18 ... Next week, Estonian electronic artists Hüpnosaurus, HAPE, DJ Ilmajaam and Cubus Larvik will be going on a four-day tour across the UK, playing shows in London, Bradford, Glasgow and Manchester from 15-18 November.

Rebels to return to Black Nights Film Festival

06.11.18 ... The 2018 edition of Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival (PÖFF) will see the return of the "Rebels with a Cause" category introduced last year, which includes films that are more experimental in nature or whose message is more rebellious.

Culture.ee's weekly recommendations: 5-11 November

05.11.18 ... A selection of cultural events taking place in Estonia this week as curated by culture.ee: "This week you can watch a screening of a Puccini opera, a film about the 'Dolphin Man,' or Joosep Matjus' epic film about Estonian nature. There are also parties in Tallinn and Tartu, a dance performance and an interdisciplinary festival."

Valner Valme: NO99 stole Von Krahl's show

05.11.18 ... Last Wednesday, Theatre NO99 announced that it would be closing its doors. It was unexpected news for everyone: the media, the Ministry of Culture and theatre fans alike. Quickly overshadowed as a result was the event of the day at another one of Estonia's most important avant-garde theatres: the 25th anniversary of Von Krahl Theatre, writes Valner Valme, managing editor of ERR's online culture portal.

First suitors appear for Theatre NO99 building in Tallinn

05.11.18 ... Last Wednesday, Theatre NO99 abruptly announced that it would be closing its doors, with its final performances scheduled for November and December. The theatre will be vacating a large building at the Central Tallinn address of Sakala 3, interest in which has been expressed by Sakala Skene, a new open centre for the performing arts and theatre education.

'The Little Comrade' crowned best debut film at Nordic Film Days Lübeck

05.11.18 ... Celebrating its 60th anniversary this year, the Nordic Film Days Lübeck launched its Debut Film Award, which went to Moonika Siimets' "The Little Comrade," the first film of the centennial Estonia 100 film programme.

Theatre NO99 to close its doors

31.10.18 ... Estonia's Theatre NO99 announced on Wednesday that it will cease operation in January 2019. The Tallinn theatre's final performances are scheduled for November and December.

2019 Dance Festival hopefuls struggling to meet folk costume requirements

29.10.18 ... Thousands of Estonian folk dancers are currently working hard to prepare for the pre-selection round to begin in January, as space on the field is limited and not all folk dance troupes will qualify for the 20th anniversary Dance Festival next summer. This year, however, festival organisers are cracking down on the authenticity of dancers' folk costumes, which means makers of Estonia's national dress are especially busy trying to fulfil all the extra orders in time.

Elin Toona: I want to let those awful moments out; let others read them

23.10.18 ... Cultural programme OP+ recently interviewed author Elin Toona, a refugee Estonian living in the Southeastern US state of Florida, who talked about growing up with her grandmother, her grandfather, poet and children's author Ernst Enno, and her life in the West, among other topics.

'The Little Comrade' wins top prize at Belgian film festival

22.10.18 ... Moonika Siimets' "The Little Comrade" ("Seltsimees laps"), the opening film of the Estonia 100 film programme, earned three top awards at the Waterloo Historical Film Festival (WaHFF), which concluded in Belgium late Sunday night.
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