A tragic story of a talented composer − Master of Harmony − an alcoholic who created his best works at the end of his days, already as an invalid. Production by ERP based on the archive recordings of the Estonian Radio. The liner notes’ story by the composer’s daughter, poetess Doris Kareva adds final touches to the CD.
|Sonata-fantasy for two violins|
|2||Allegro energico. Andante. Allegro con brio||5:57|
|Sonata No 1 for clarinet and piano, Op 9 No 4|
|Concerto-triptych Tentazione de Paris for saxophone and piano, Op 27|
|Trio nostalgico for violin, viola and piano, Op 34|
|10||Allegro vivacissimo con fuoco||9:59|
|Sonata No 2 for saxophone and piano Maple Leaves in Colour, Op 29 No 1|
|12||Larghetto molto tranquillo||7:13|
Performed by Mati Kärmas − violin (#1−2), Hannes Altrov − clarinet and Peep Lassmann − piano (#3−5), Villu Veski − saxophone and Signe Hiis − piano (#6−8), Andrus Järvi − viola and Lilian Semper − piano (#9−10), Virgo Veldi − saxophone and Kai Ratassepp − piano (#11−13)
Engineered by: Mati Brauer, Jaan Sarv, Aili Jõeleht
Licensed: from Estonian Radio
Mastered by Marika Scheer / Estonian Public Broadcasting (ERR)
Photos by Hillar Kareva
Designed by Piret Mikk
Translated by Tiina Jokinen
Produced by Peeter Vähi
Published by Estonian Record Productions (#1−10), Edition 49 (#11−13)
Special thanks: Estonian Cultural Endowment
Total time 69:55
AAD / DDD
At the age of four or five I was desperate to have colours and paper so that I could draw as much as I desired. My father gave me a piece of ordinary cardboard, a glass of water and a fine brush saying that this was all I actually needed. To illustrate his words he dipped the brush in the water and painted a landscape the beginning of which was already fading away while he was still giving the final strokes in another corner. Until today for me this magical neverending landscape has remained the symbol of human life. With our limited means we have endless possibilities.
At the Estonian Academy of Music my father’s official title was Master of Harmony. I was always amused by that, as him being a choleric type of person, chain smoker and alcoholic, the whole of his life was in contradiction to the pendulum’s centre of balance which he, a passionate admirer of Antique Greek culture, that much adored and defended. Only later I came to understand: maybe the striving for balance, the new establishment of it at every moment − that is harmony. Is it so that stability could be achieved only through striving and searching like on a surfboard?
Could it be that what we call beauty is actually gracefulness? Gracefulness − so different in a tiger and a gazelle − is born from percieving oneself and one’s surrounding in correlation, from correct estimation of one’s resources and the right usage of them. Gracefulness can only be enhanced and increased through exactness unlike strength that can grow endlessly. Gracefulness is the intellectual strength, the art of getting by with little, the ability to see the necessary and the courage to give up the surplus. Gracefulness is born from trust and even there are a number of possibilities. A child trusts instinctively since it has never experienced disappointment. Contrary to that a pilot trusts experience and control over matters. A lover believes, hopes and loves in spite of everything, risking all he has. Love blinds fear like fear blinds love − these two exclude each other. The very trust of a lover − the openness with full vulnerability − is the highest expression of humanity, precisely there is the ultimate gracefulness − perception of one’s place in the world, one’s fragility and haphazard − and the readyness to act despite all that, maximum dedication and creativity.
One of my books, a collection of selected works, bears the title Days of Grace. That is a legal term standing for the period between the conviction and execution of the sentence. The whole lifetime could be seen as days of grace – being aware of our mortality but not of the moment of death. However, born of love, we were born for love. The time with its duration unknown but the depth of which could be sensed, gives us the chance to love, to do good − at least to strive for what we consider the greatest value at the moment.
When at the end of his days my father lost both his legs and the mobility of his right arm, he rebuilt his piano with his only hand. By night, tormented by phantom pains to insomnia, he created his possibly best works of music.
At daytime he used to photograph the view from the balcony of his apartment block. The smallest change − a pram taken to the balcony of the house across the street, a bird flying by, a rainshower − was worth giving eternity on the photo. Only years later I understood how these countless, seemingly unchanging photos rhymed with the piece of cardboard from my childhood. When the space ends, the time expands.
Sitting at the deathbed of my father, I held his hand feeling how his soul left the body. His last words with eyes halfclosed were: up… up… And then, only half guessing, I realized: when the time ends, the space expands.