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March 26, 2008

Something missing

On the main BreakPoint site, Roberto has some reflections on the documentary The Singing Revolution:

Watching this inspirational and well-told story, I kept feeling that something was missing: religion. I can’t recall a single mention of religion in the film. Did religion have nothing to do with the Estonian identity and culture the singing revolutionaries sought to preserve?

This absence of religion is made all the more noticeable by the central role of religion—specifically Christianity—in the life and work of the most famous Estonian musician of them all, the composer Arvo Pärt.

Like his compatriots, it was music that got Pärt into trouble with Soviet authorities. His 1968 piece for solo piano, chorus, and orchestra, Credo, opened with the Latin words Credo in Jesum Christum, “I believe in Jesus Christ.”

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