PromFest 2009

Lithuanian bass and former minister of culture Vladimiras Prudnikovas gave a solo concert in Pärnu Town Hall. Pieces composed by Dargomyzsky, Tchaikovsky, Rahmaninov etc. were performed.

Vladimiras Prudnikovas' bronzed timbre, charisma, dramatic expression, sense of style and intellect have inspired the music critics of the world to put him in the same league with legendary bassos of the last century such as Petrov, Hristov and Ghiaurov. I have very rarely heard from such a big and capacious opera voice that filigree piano and pianissimo that only at times expanded to their full capacity. 
Tiiu Levald – Sirp, 12th of June 2009

It was the third time that a workshop in collaboration with the Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre took place. This time the workshop was led by the famous Polish soprano Prof. Teresa Zylis-Gara (photo). All singers studying in Estonia to become professional singers and desirous of refininging their art were welcome to participate actively for free.

She is a great master. The methods seen in the workshop were utterly fascinating, unconventional and certainly very effective. It was convincing to see how several young singers who came for the competition overcame very serious flaws in the space of three hours.
Tiiu Levald – Sirp, 12th of June 2009

The traditional Klaudia Taev Memorial Concert took place this time at the Kuninga Street elementary school. The festival ended with a gala concert at the Pärnu Concert Hall where the finalists of the competition were accompanied by the 21st Century Orchestra.

The 6th Klaudia Taev Competition

Having seen the previous competitions, I dare say that the level of the competition was exceptionally high this year. Perhaps there were not as bright characters as Anna Samuil (2001) and Veronika Dzhioyeva (2007), or baritones Laimonas Pautienius (2003) and Ilya Silchukov (2007,) but I believe that all 14 singers who made it to the third round will show themselves to the world very soon.
Tiiu Levald – Sirp, 12th of June 2009

The sixth competition took place in Pärnu from the 1st to 5th of June in 2007. The jury was led by Polish soprano Teresa Zylis-Gara. A favorite of the legendary conductor Herbert von Karajan, she has sung at La Scala, Vienna, Hamburg, Berlin Moscow's Bolshoi Theatre..

A first prize was not awarded this time; the second prize was given to the youngest participant, basso Anatoli Sivko (Belarus); third prize was shared by Asmik Grigoryan (Lithuania), Pauliina Linnosaari (Finland) and Maria Veretenina (Estonia).

Opera production: "Thais" by Massenet

This interpretation of "Thais" commands attention in two categories: deeply psychological interpretation and loving treatment of the characters honor the directing team. Exciting stage works of "PromFest" and Taev Competition as its seedbed have grown into an independent phenomenon in Estonian music life – make them young conductor Erki Pehk's life work. Stagings like Mati Unt's "Demon" and Mai Murdmaa's and Madis Nurms' "Thais" make PromFest one of the greatest successes of Estonian opera life.
Heili Vaus-Tamm – Sirp, 12th of June 2009

The biggest event of the festival in 2009 was the Estonian premier of Massenet's rare opera "Thais". The leading roles were performed by Klaudia Taev Competition winners Veronika Dzhioyeva from Russia, Ilya Silchukov from Belarus and Oliver Kuusik from Estonia. Accompanied by the Pärnu City Orchestra under conductor and musical director Erki Pehk, with director Mai Murdmaa, and designer Madis Nurms.