Sehnsucht Berlin - Der Film
the film
Arvo Pärt is considered one of the world’s most important living composers. His musical education began at the age of seven, and at fourteen he created his first composition. Pärt studied music and composition in Tallinn. His music awoke the displeasure of the Soviet cultural bureaucrats due to its non-conformist modernity of compositions and its religious content. His composition »Nekrolog« was officially disapproved of in 1960.
In 1970 Pärt joined the Russian Orthodox Church. After a long uncreative period (1968-76) the reclusive Pärt discovered his own style, and in 1976 presented the piano piece »Für Alina«. In his almost exclusively religious music, Pärt works towards an ideal of simplicity which lends support to the spiritual message. He developed his own style with his »tintinnabulation«, or bell-ringing. This refers to a »tonal trinity« whose three tones are to be heard throughout the piece. The works consist of tonal trinities and a melody that moves within the same key. The static nature of the tonal trinities might be said to represent eternity, the dynamic of the melody represents the transience of time.
»I discovered that it is enough to play a single note beautifully« said Pärt.
In 1980 Pärt and his family emigrated from USSR first to Vienna and later – with help of DAAD to Berlin, where he still lives temporarily.
He has won many awards, among them the coveted »Prize for European Ecclesiastic music« and the coveted the famous Danish »Leonie Sonning Prize«.

Born September 11, 1935 in Paide, (former USSR, today Estonia)
Place of residence Tallinn und Berlin
Profession Composer
DAAD grant 1981/82