Between October 28th and November 11th, 2003, the Osrodek "Pogranicze - sztuk, kultur, narodow" / "Borderland of Arts, Cultures and Nations" Centre in Sejny will host an event titled CZLOWIEK POGRANICZA - ARVO PÄRT / PERSON OF THE BORDERLAND - ARVO PÄRT, during which this exceptional Estonian composer of religious music will receive the title of "Person of the Borderland."
The "Person of the Borderland" title will be awarded to Arvo Pärt during a celebration that will be part of an international meeting titled "Wtajemniczenie w trojdzwiek" / "The Secret of the Triad." This will be the first of a number of events the "Borderland" Foundation has planned with a view towards acquainting audiences with the winner's work and popularizing his oeuvre. The program will also include concerts by outstanding performers of the Estonian composer's works, composing workshops for young musicians from different countries, a debate titled "Sztuka i sacrum" / "Art and Sacrum," a film session, several exhibitions, and other events. A detailed program is available on the "Borderland" Foundation" website.
The "Person of the Borderland" project and the title awarded by the Foundation are both designed to popularize the concept and ethos of the "borderland" through extensive presentations of the output and philosophy of life of exceptional creators of culture.
The title is awarded to Central Europeans selected by the Foundation. Through their lives and art, winners have made important contributions to popularizing the borderland ethos, which embodies tolerance and openness, understanding and respect for the differences of others, working to overcome stereotypes and prejudices, and building bridges between people of different nations and religions.
Winners of the title receive no material prizes. However, the "Borderland" Foundation strives to popularize the winner's output through the publication of books, organization of exhibitions, public meetings, and other artistic presentations. The climax of this effort, which spans a year, takes the form of a three-day international meeting devoted to the winning artist. The meeting involves individuals from around the world, who travel to Sejny to deliver lectures about various aspects of the life and work of the "Person of the Borderland" or to present artwork devoted to the winner. In 1999, Jerzy Ficowski was named the "Person of the Borderland," while in 2001 the title went to Tomas Venclova.
Arvo Pärt was born in 1935 in Paide near Tallinn. He studied at the conservatory in Tallinn under Heino Ellera. Persecuted in the USSR for practicing "western formalism," he emigrated to Vienna in 1980 and subsequently moved on to Berlin, where he lives to this day. He has received numerous awards, distinctions and honorary doctorates. The program of the 2002 "WARSAW AUTUMN" Contemporary Music Festival included a performance of Arvo Pärt's CECILIA, VERGINE ROMANA for mixed choir and orchestra, which was composed in celebration of the Holy Year 2000 in Rome, and was inspired by the story of the martyrdom of Saint Cecilia, the patron of music. The piece's world premiere performance took place on November 19, 2000, in Rome, and featured the Choir and Orchestra of the Academy of Saint Cecilia under the direction of Myung-Whung Chung. During the 2002 "WARSAW AUTUMN" Festival, Arvo Pärt's composition was performed by the National Philharmonic Orchestra and Choir conducted by Antoni Wit.
"Borderland" Foundation Centre Borderland of Arts, Cultures and Nations Fundacja "Pogranicze" Osrodek "Pogranicze - sztuk, kultur, narodow" ul. Pilsudskiego 37, skr.poczt. 15, 16-500 Sejny tel/fax (+48 87) 516 27 65 Biuro Fundacji: ul. Kosciuszki 71, skr.poczt. 36, 16-400 Suwalki tel/fax (+48 87) 565 03 69 www.pogranicze.sejny.pl
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