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Cantoris Choir: Arvo Pärt

Cantoris Choir: Arvo Pärt

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  • Fri 19 Aug ’11, 6:00pm – 6:45pm


City Gallery Wellington, Civic Square, 101 Wakefield St, Wellington


All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • Free Admission

Cantoris choir, one of Wellington's foremost amateur choirs, performs 6 short works by Arvo Pärt, the 'sacred magician' of contemporary choral music.

Arvo Pärt grew up in Estonia, where under Soviet occupation, his early pieces were mainly influenced by Russian neo-classical style. Later, he immersed himself in early music, studying plainsong, Gregorian chant, and the emergence of polyphony in the European Renaissance, producing music that was radically different.

This period of new compositions included Fratres, Cantus In Memoriam Benjamin Britten, and Tabula Rasa. Pärt describes the music of this period as tintinnabuli — like the ringing of bells. Spiegel im Spiegel (1978) is a well-known example that has been used in many films.

The music is characterised by simple harmonies, often single unadorned notes, or triads, which form the basis of Western harmony. These are reminiscent of ringing bells. Tintinnabuli works are rhythmically simple and do not change tempo.

Pärt’s work has been described as ‘mystic minimalism’ and it has been said of him that “he just seemed to shake his sleeves and notes would fall out’.

- Bogoridtse Djevo.
- Nunc Dimittis.
- The Woman with the Alabaster Box.
- Kanon Pokajanen, Odes 1, 7 & 9.

Musical Director: Rachel Hyde.

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