Raaya Simran

My Host : The Estonian Music Council

Host: Kadri Lassmann

Dates of the visit - 7th to 11th April 2015

I was introduced to the Academy of Music and Theater, with the wonderful host Mr.Margus Partlas and his staff, which I found out has a direct link to the Israeli Music and Dance Academy for his daughter studies there and I also learned- coming back - that she's doing well and learning Hebrew. The Academy in Tallinn is vibrant with activities in all aspects. I learned from Mr.Partlas also about the musical activities that are held outside of the academy and outside of Tallinn.

I have started to tell about these activities here in order to make connections which will, in the future, lead to musical exchanges, maybe in the next year musicians from Israel will arrive for the traditional music festival in south Estonia. I'm in contact with a few ensembles that seem appropriate and we're trying to find the resources in order to fulfill this plan.

Under the guidance of Ms.Kaisa Lohmus from the music council, I saw the old city and heard of the musical schools and their programs. I also learned about the work of the Estonian music council in organizing chamber concerts throughout the country that loves music.

Later that day, I visited a music college and participated in a rehearsal of a youth choir in the Estonian television, a very professional work with young girls that showed challenging, modern, polyphonic materials, of which I was very impressed. I have already delivered their CD to the Israeli radio, who is supposed to broadcast a selection of it very soon.

Second day, the 9th of April

Meetings with Mr. Marili Jogi, project manager of 1st October International Music Day, She is organizing the international music day to which we will try to send Israeli groups. I gave her information about our Israeli music celebration, that started out as one day and developed for a week. I explained that in Israel we can't connect October 1st to the music day because it falls on the Israeli holidays. Therefore our music celebration is kind of a development of the music day idea.

Mr. Kristel Uksvarav, The producer of the music year 2015 in Estonia was thrilling in her ideas and we're inspired to do similar things in our country. For example, getting involved with maternity hospitals and declaring the kids of 2015 as "music kids" with special diplomas and an opportunity in the future to learn a year supported by musical schools.

The meeting with the producers of the jazz festival was very friendly and warm. They knew about activities in Israel, they've been to an international exposure in Israel and also invited an Israeli ensemble to the current festival. I sent their details to the producers of the jazz festival in Eilat, which is the main jazz festival here and is an international festival, in order to create collaboration.

In the evening I participated in a concert of an improvisation workshop in the academy - fascinating!

Third day, the 10h of April

I learned about the Estonian music days that were about to begin that evening. It was an instructive experience to see the opening up close - a robots show in the mall and a symphonic evening with impressive premieres of Estonian writers in the main music hall after a pleasant meeting with the orchestra director. Somehow it is the same idea of "our" Israeli Music Celebration - of which I have been telling you last year. More Infos here!

As for me personally: It was very exciting to meet wonderful people, who are striving to achieve their goals, full of positive energies and want to do everything in order to develop music in their country. Good people that are also interested in contact with us, the Israelis, which is not obvious for us.

I thought we share similar problems in one way or another, especially because both countries are very small, although Estonia is by far more homogeneous as far as the composition of the population.

My Israeli colleges are always happy to collaborate with Estonia, we have an Estonian ambassador which is a musician, as well as her husband, and they are very involved in the music life in Israel.


  • Maybe it would be worthwhile to fit the hosted to the chosen place. For example: maybe the Israelis could learn in a middle-eastern country or a country which has many immigrants and therefore it is more similar. Not necessary, only a recommendation
  • This is a blessed program and I would like to see it continued and would like to advise from my experience as seen fit.


Schedule of Estonian Visit

April 7th

  • 14.05 arrival at Tallinn airport, meeting with Ms Kadri Lassmann

April 8th

  • 10.00 appointment with Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre vice rector Mr Margus Pärtlas and little tour in the university. (Tatari 13)
  • 12.00 Little tour in the Tallinn Old Town with Association of Professional Musicians concert organiser Ms Kaisa Lõhmus
  • 18.00 visiting Estonian TV Girls' Choir rehearsal

April 9th

  • 11.00 appointment with Ms Marili Jõgi, project manager of 1st October International Music Day coordinated by Estonian Music Council.
  • 12.00 appointment with Ms Kristel Üksvärav, project manager of Music Year 2015 coordinated by Estonian Music Council
  • 15.00 appointment with festival Jazzkaar organizer and Estonian Jazz Union representatives
  • 19.00 concert of Mr Christoph Baumann's improvisation course at EMTA organ hall (Tatari 13). If interested.

April 10th

  • 13.00 Lunch with Ms Madli-Liis Parts, Estonian Music Days (EMP) producer
  • 17.00 EMP opening at Solaris centre
  • 18.00 -19.00 appointment with, Estonian National Symphony Orchestra director, Mr Kristjan Hallik (Estonia pld 4)
  • 19.00 Estonian National Symphony Orchestra concert at Estonian Concert Hall (Estonia pld 4)

April 11th

  • Leaving

There might be slight changes to the schedule.