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August 20, 2010

Estonia hosts virtual song festival


Thousands of people across Estonia on Friday took part in a landmark virtual choir festival, gathering in front of big screens to sing the small Baltic state's cherished anthems. Organisers said crowds massed at over a hundred open-air locations in this nation of 1.3 million people to perform eight songs under the baton of conductors -- one per song -- beamed from a real concert venue in Poltsamaa, central Estonia.

Footage from the locations was also fed via the Internet, in a nod to Estonia's thriving hi-tech industry which has won it the nickname "E-Stonia".

"The festival was organised to combine the two things that have made a name for Estonia globally, IT innovation and a long tradition of song festivals," organiser Artur Talvik told AFP. The event was held to mark the 19th anniversary of Estonian independence after five decades of Soviet rule, as the communist bloc crumbled in 1991.

Estonia and its fellow Baltic states Latvia and Lithuania are home to a vibrant choral tradition stretching back more than a century. Mass choral gatherings in the late 1980s formed the bedrock of the trio's freedom drive which became known as the "Singing Revolution".

Estonia's traditional song festivals attract huge audiences on the spot and on television. At the highest-profile festival, held every five years in the capital Tallinn, 24,000 singers perform in a single choir.

Posted by acapnews at August 20, 2010 9:59 PM


And how, pray tell or where are we to get the video of the Virtual Festival in Estonia?

Posted by: Naomi Stephan at August 21, 2010 7:49 AM

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