There’s often an Estonian flavor to the music of the Sarasota Orchestra, thanks to its music director, Anu Tali.
That flavor has been more pronounced in recent weeks. In its last Masterworks concert, the Sarasota Orchestra presented the American premiere of a symphony by Estonian composer Erkki-Sven Tüür.
Next weekend’s Masterworks program continues the Estonian emphasis. In fact. the concert’s title is “Estonian Voices.” Joining the orchestra is the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, a renowned vocal ensemble with two Grammy Awards to its credit.
It won’t be the standard orchestral concert of an overture, a concerto and a symphony. The program consists of two pieces performed without intermission.
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Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s “Requiem” is widely considered one of the most poignantly beautiful works for orchestra and choir ever composed. It’s one of those classical pieces that you’ll probably recognize even if you think you don’t know it.
The other work on the program is by Arvo Part, who is probably the most famous Estonian composer of all time, and according to the Sarasota Orchestra he’s the most often-performed living composer in the world. His work “Credo,” from 1969, is both aggressively modern and recognizably influenced by Johann Sebastian Bach. Its religious themes and its chromatic scales caused a scandal in the Soviet Union. Musicians lost their jobs for playing it, and Part’s commissions dried up. He became a composer of film scores for many years before he emigrated to the West and became a leading proponent of “holy minimalism.”
Details: Feb. 23 at Neel Performing Arts Center, 5840 26th St W, Bradenton; Feb. 24-26, Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, 777 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota. 8 p.m. Thursday-Saturday 2:30 p.m. Sunday $33 and up. 941-953-3434, sarasotaorchestra.org.