Estonia National Male Choir, Estonia, 2018

Tour Dates: 19th March - 23rd March, 2018

Celebrating its 72th birthday this year, Estonian National Male Choir (also known as RAM) was established by Estonian choral music legend, conductor and composer Gustav Ernesaks.

Tour Info: 

TimeVenueTickets
20th March 19:00 Peking University Hall Tickets
22nd March 20:00 Shanghai Symphony Hall Tickets

Estonian National Male Choir

Celebrating its 72th birthday this year, Estonian National Male Choir (also known as RAM) was established by Estonian choral music legend, conductor and composer Gustav Ernesaks. Having sung mostly a cappella during its early years, RAM has grown into a world-famous professional choir that often performs large symphonic compositions.

Estonian National Male Choir frequently records for Estonian National Broadcasting and has collaborated with such labels as Deutsche Grammophon, Sony, Finlandia, Alba Records, GB Records and Virgin Classics.

In 2004 RAM was awarded the Grammy Award for the best choral performance, first for Estonia (Sibelius' cantatas, in collaboration with Ellerhein choir, Estonian National Symphony Orchestra and conductor Paavo Järvi). During last five years the choir has released four CDs, including "In Paradisum" with compositions by Galina Grigorjeva, which in 2015 won the award for the best classical album in Estonia. The most recent CD was released by Grappa and includes music by Norwegian composer Henrik Ødegaard. Yet to be released is a CD featuring Italian composers Giovanni Bonato and Giovanni Gabrieli.

Starting from the 2011 / 2012 season Estonian National Male Choir is led by chief conductor and artistic director Mikk Üleoja. The list of previous conductors includes Harald Uibo, Uno Järvela, Olev Oja, Kuno Areng, Ants Üleoja, Ants Soots, Kaspars Putniņš and others. The choir's repertoire spans from renaissance to contemporary. Besides many Estonian composers, RAM has premiered compositions by such luminaries as Dmitri Shostakovich, Otar Taktakshvili, Gavin Bryars and Giovanni Bonato.

During its long history Estonian National Male Choir has performed all over Estonia and former Soviet Union, as well as in many European countries, Israel, Canada and USA. In 2015 the choir sung a cappella and with orchestras in Russia (St Petersburg), Israel (Tel Aviv, Jerusalem), France (Chateauroux), several Canadian cities, Germany (Hannover) and China (Shanghai, Beijing).

In 2016 the concerts took place in St Petersburg's famous Cappella-hall, Armenia (Vanadzor, Yerevan) and Georgia (Tbilisi). In August the choir sung at the "Nuits de Choeurs" festival.

In 2015 Estonian National Male Choir and Mikk Üleoja were awarded the State Cultural Award, marking the choir's remarkable performances.

Choir conductor - Mikk Üleoja

Mikk Üleoja graduated from the Estonian Academy of Music in 1997 as a choir conductor (class of Prof. Ants Üleoja) and received Master's degree in music in 2004 (supervised by Prof. Toomas Siitan). As a vocalist, he has been the member of World Youth Choir (1989–1992), Estonian National Male Choir (1994–1996), Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir (1996–2000) and the Gregorian ensemble Vox Clamantis (1998–2011).

Mikk Üleoja has conducted the St. Michael's Boys' Choir and the chamber choir Mattone, he has been the chief conductor of Kaarli Church Concert Choir and taught conducting at the University of Tartu Viljandi Culture Academy. During the years of 1998–2011 Mikk Üleoja worked as choirmaster of the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir. Starting from the season of 2011/2012 Mikk Üleoja holds the position of the chief conductor and the artistic director of the Estonian National Male Choir.

Five CD-s have been recorded under the direction of Mikk Üleoja, including the album "Ma tulen taevast ülevalt" ("I Am Coming from Heaven Above", 2005), featuring the works of Cyrillus Kreek performed by the Kaarli Church Concert Choir. Together with the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir he has recorded the album "Luule, see ei tule tuulest" ("Poetry, it Doesn't Come from the Wind", 2007), featuring the choral works of Mart Saar and also Jüri Reinvere's Requiem (2009). Mikk Üleoja received the 2007 Annual Award from the Cultural Endowment of Estonia for the Mart Saar CD, the album was also named as the year's best choral record. In spring 2014, Üleoja recorded Galina Grigoryeva's music for "In paradisum". (Sibelius' cantatas, in collaboration with Ellerhein choir, Estonian National Symphony Orchestra and conductor Paavo Järvi). During last five years the choir has released four CDs, including "In Paradisum" with compositions by Galina Grigorjeva, which in 2015 won the award for the best classical album in Estonia. The most recent CD was released by Grappa and includes music by Norwegian composer Henrik Ødegaard. Yet to be released is a CD featuring Italian composers Giovanni Bonato and Giovanni Gabrieli.

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