News & Events

Estonian Vocal Ensemble to Perform

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. — Illinois Wesleyan University’s School of Music will host the Heinavanker Ensemble at 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 23 in Evelyn Chapel (1301 N Park St. Bloomington). The concert is free and open to the public. 

The IWU Collegiate Choir will join Heinavanker to perform Mu süda ärka üles, arranged by Margo Kōlar, at the conclusion of the program.

An Estonian vocal group, the Heinavanker Ensemble performs timeless chamber and symphonic music, both ancient and modern. Estonian runic songs and folk hymns are an important part of the repertoire included in Heinavanker, a name which originates from Hieronymus Bosch’s early 16th century painting Haywain Triptych.

Approximately 500 folk hymns with different versions have been collected in Estonia. The records exist both in Estonian and Swedish languages. Most likely these songs were sung in homes, but also at church services and religious meetings.

The program combines liturgical music by several composers from the 15th and 16th centuries, including Johannes Ockeghem, Mikołaj Radomski, Marbrianus de Orto and Jacques Arcadelt.

Director and composer Margo Kõlar has led Heinavanker since 1996. Inspired by fairytales and spiritual imagery, Kõlar’s music has been described as poetic and scenic, and has been used in film and theatre soundtracks. In 2014, he received the Grammy certificate for participating in the recording of Grammy Award-winning CD “Pärt: Adam’s Lament.”

Heinavanker's concert at IWU is made possible by the Joel and Shelley Jameson fund to support the IWU School of Music Voice and Choral Department, the IWU School of Music, the Russian and Eastern European Studies Team of the IWU International Studies Program, and David Rayl.

Heinavanker’s concerts are also supported by the Estonian Author's Society, Music Export Estonia, and the Cultural Endowment of Estonia.

For more information, please contact the School of Music at (309) 556-3061.

By Rachel McCarthy ’21