Arvo Pärt Project honored by Estonian Government

28 September 2018 • Yonkers, NY

Thanking the Arvo Pärt Project for its “longstanding dedication and in-depth study” of Pärt’s music, the Estonian Ministry of Culture recognized St Vladimir’s Seminary’s (SVOTS) work with Arvo Pärt with a Letter of Appreciation. The most-performed living composer in the world, Pärt’s spiritual roots in Orthodox Christianity have inspired the seminary to engage in a project that has produced high-profile concerts, publish essays and books, and engage in cross-disciplinary panel discussions.
 
On Friday, September 28, the Letter of Appreciation was given by Estonian President Kersti Kaljulaid to SVOTS Professor Peter Bouteneff, who directs the Project, which he co-founded in 2012 together with former SVOTS faculty member Nicholas Reeves. The Letter was presented at the New York Estonian House during a reception for President Kaljulaid.
 
Reacting to the honor, Bouteneff said, “Ever since its founding, the Estonian government has strongly encouraged and supported our work. They see us as helping to promote someone whom they see as their most celebrated cultural export.”

He continued, “Pärt’s music has an incredibly broad and devoted listenership, and yet he sometimes feels like music’s best-kept secret. Plumbing that mystery and sharing it with the wider world has been a great joy.”
 
On November 12, 2018, the Project is co-presenting a concert of Pärt’s music centered on St. Silouan the Athonite. That concert will be preceded by a lecture by Father Zacharias, of the monastic community founded by Archimandrite Sophrony in Essex, UK, devoted to the teaching of St. Silouan. 
 
Before that, Bouteneff will travel to Estonia in October with Seminary President Fr. Chad Hatfield for the opening ceremonies of the Arvo Pärt Centre, with which the Seminary has signed a Concordat of cooperation.