Heldur Harry Põlda, boy-sopraano
Risto Joost, dirigent
Põlda’s voice has that pure quality which British listeners will know from Howard Blake’s ‘Walking in the Air’, either from the sadly neglected but original Peter Auty, or the starry but subsequent Aled Jones. Unlike the straight English sound of the aforementioned, Põlda is not averse to using some restrained vibrato, though this seems to heighten the perceived vulnerability in his young voice, rather than propel him into mini-tenor territory. What we have here is a very pleasant selection of highly popular classical ‘hits’, given lush but not overly drippy accompaniment from a decent sounding orchestra. The recording reflects the airy acoustic of the church nicely… (MusicWeb International, 2013)
|1||Ch W Gluck||Amor’s aria (from Orpheo ed Euredice, Act I)|
|2||G Caccini||Ave Maria|
|3||J S Bach – Ch Gounod||Ave Maria|
|4||G Fauré||Pie Jesu (from Requiem)|
|5||F Chopin||Sadness (Etude in E major Op 10 No 3)|
|6||F Schubert||Ave Maria|
|7||C Franck||Panis Angelicus|
|8||A-Ch Adam||O Holy Night!|
|9||J S Bach||Aria (from Suite No 3 in D major BWV 1068)|
|10||L Denza||Funiculi funicula|
|11||L Bart||Where is Love (from Oliver!)|
|12||F Loewe||On the Street Where You Live (from My Fair Lady)|
In Latin, Italian, German, and Estonian
Arranged by Valdo Preema (except #9)
Recorded in St Jacob’s Church (Viimsi, Estonia) October 14th – 16th, 2011
Sound engineer Tanel Klesment
Recording producer Peeter Vähi
Liner notes by Inna Kivi
English translation by Tiina Jokinen
Photos by Mati Mõttus, Ahto Sooaru, Kaupo Kikkas
Design by Mart Kivisild
Special thanks: Zoja Hertz, Halliki Põlda
© 2011 Estonian Record Productions
Heldur Harry Põlda (b 1996, in Kuressaare) is a young musician studying violin and conducting at the Tallinn Music High School. His popularity, however, derives mainly from his angelically beautiful soprano which consequently has given name to the current CD Cantus Angelicus. His teachers are Zoja Hertz (singing), Prof Mari Tampere-Bezrodny (violin) and Hirvo Surva (conducting).
Heldur Harry sings in the boys’ choir of the Estonian National Opera and has regularly performed as soloist in various big musical projects. Having had his debut on the opera stage at the age of 8, he has by today gathered an awe-inspiring list of opera and musical roles – Miles (Britten’s The Turn of the Screw), Amor (Gluck’s Orfeo ed Euridice), Nuki (children’s musical Pipi! Nuki! Puhh!), Erik (Maury Yeston’s musical Phantom) and Arno (Anti Marguste’s mono-opera Monologues) – as well as of oratorial works like Lera Auerbach’s Russian Requiem, Roxanna Panufnik’s Westminster Mass, Gabriel Fauré’s Requiem and Galina Ustvolskaya’s Symphony No 1. In 2008, he was awarded the Annual Prize of the Estonian Culture Endowment for his role in The Turn of the Screw, being the youngest musician ever to receive such award. He has also been awarded the Co-operation Prize by the Estonian Choral Society (2010).
Heldur Harry Põlda has performed with a number of choirs and orchestras in various countries like the UK, Germany, Italy, Spain, Russia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Finland, Sweden et al. as well as collaborated with many renowned musicians. The audience of the 25th All-Estonian Song Festival remembers him as soloist with united choirs. In July 2011, Heldur Harry performed Arvo Pärt’s work Vater unser, accompanied on the piano by the composer himself, in Vatican at the festivities Homage of Artists celebrating the 60th anniversary of Pope Benedictus XVI as priest.
In autumn 2010, ERP released CD Terra Mariana featuring Heldur Harry and handbell ensemble Arsis, and in 2011, CD single Vater unser.
Download: Heldur Harry Põlda, photo by Mati Mõttus, colour, jpg, 5.4 MB
Tallinn Sinfonietta (in 2012 renamed Glasperlenspiel Sinfonietta) was founded in 2008 with an aim to perform mainly music from the 18th and 21st centuries. The founder and artistic director of the orchestra uniting the best young musicians of Estonia is Risto Joost. Though a special place in the repertoire is taken by Mozart with the ambition to perform all his symphonies in the course of time, the orchestra performs music from Bach to Tüür and Corelli to Piazzolla. The orchestra has close co-operation with Estonian composers encouraging them to write new works.
Tallinn Sinfonietta has attracted attention with extraordinary concert programs which serve to prove that classical music is still very much alive in our contemporary world and can offer unforgettable experience to the listener. Within a short time the orchestra has made quite a name for itself also in Europe with performances in Switzerland and Austria (2011), at Festival Ars Musica in Belgium (2011), in Amsterdam Concertgebouw (May 2011) and at Mittelfest, Ravello and Emilia Romagna Festivals in Italy (July 2011) as well as a concert tour to Slovenia.
Participants in the current recording: Elar Kuiv (principal violinist), Sigrid Kuulmann (1st vl), Mari Targo (1st vl), Eva-Liisa Heinmaa (2nd vl), Kristjan Hallik (2nd vl), Kristjan Nõlvak (2nd vl), Helena Altmanis (vla), Helen Kedik (vla), Marius Järvi (cello), Villu Vihermäe (cello), Janel Altroff (dbl bass), Eneli Hiiemaa (fl), Kristi Keel (ob), Imbi Tarum (harpsichord).
Risto Joost (b 1980) has graduated from the Estonian Academy of Music, received further training at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Vienna and completed postgraduate studies at the Royal College of Music in Stockholm majoring in orchestral conducting with Prof Jorma Panula.
In 1999, he founded chamber choir Voces Musicales and in 2002, also chamber orchestra Ensemble Voces Musicales. In 2008, he was the initiator of Tallinn Sinfonietta and is the principal conductor of this orchestra.
He has conducted many well-known orchestras both in Estonia and abroad. In June 2007, Risto Joost made his debut in the Estonian National Opera conducting Erkki-Sven Tüür’s opera Wallenberg and since 2009, holds the permanent position of conductor. He has conducted several opera and ballet performances in the theatre.
In 2009, the CD Pilgrim’s Song with Voces Musicales and Tallinn Sinfonietta, featuring music by Arvo Pärt conducted by Risto Joost was elected the CD of the Year. The aforementioned recording gathered critical acclaim in Gramophone, BBC Music Magazine and other music journals.
Risto Joost has conducted more than 50 première performances ranging from chamber music to extensive symphonic works with different orchestras.
From the season of 2011/2012 he holds the post of the principal conductor of the Netherlands Chamber Choir.