Stingray Brava is proud to present “Brava Favorites”, a series of article where Stingray Brava’s music programmers recommend their favorite concert or CD.
Have you always wanted to know more about classical music? Are you ready to hear the story behind the scenes? “Brava Favorites” is your source for these and more interesting reads.
Estonian composer Arvo Pärt, born in September 1935, specializes in classical and religious music. Over the years, his works has been the most performed and sold of any living composer. In contrast to the work of other twentieth century composers, Pärt’s music is quite conservative. Inspired by Gregorian chant, he created his own composition technique to renew this musical tradition born in the earliest days of the Christian Church.
The music of Arvo Pärt is often identified with the school of minimalism, a branch of modern classical music defined by stripping down music to its bare essentials. Repetition plays an important role in minimalism due to limited music materials. This style was developed by composers such as Steve Reich, Terry Riley, and Philip Glass.
The album The Very Best of Arvo Pärt, released in honor of Pärt’s 75th birthday, features his most performed works such as Spiegel im Spiegel for piano and violin. The album is accessible to everyone, whether you prefer instrumental or vocal performances. I would recommend listening to Summa, which is on the album in both the version for choir and the version for string orchestra.
The beauty of simplicity is amongst the album’s most admirable characteristics. Summa as well as Spiegel im Spiegel are the perfect examples. The repetition of the rhythm in Summa and the limited use of meter in Spiegel im Spiegel nurture an emotional tension. Pärt’s take on classical music is fresh, exciting, and easy to listen to, even if you are not familiar with classical music. You’ll definitely want to give this album a listen.
The music of Arvo Pärt and other minimalist composers such as Steve Reich, Philip Glass, and Terry Riley, are available on the Stingray Music mobile app. Search for the “Minimal Music” Vibes channel to discover the beauty of minimalism, great composers, and passionate musicians.
*Available in the Netherlands only