Ain Mäeots and Indrek Hargla convey the Gaudeamus participants through the solstice secrets and 1000 years


The largest student festival in the Baltic States Gaudeamus will bring over 4 000 high level singers, dancers and musicians to Tartu. On June 24th, as a highlight of the festival the song festival „Songs of Midsummer“ will take place at the Tartu Festival Arena. The song festival’s central themes are Midsummer Day traditions and youth through different ages.

“For each generation the youth period is always for the first time. And this period is truly special at solstice time when nature’s blossoming peaks and humans are thoroughly part of nature, whether we admit it or not. The solstice moment lends itself best to letting oneself loose, to whoop, shout, sing, frolic and dance, best together with thousands like yourself,“ explained the song festival’s director Ain Mäeots.

Mäeots directs the song festival together with the author Indrek Hargla. They will take the audience and performers through solstices of different centuries.

“My modest role as director is to look back on imaginary solstices of our territory throughout centuries together with the absolute guru on Estonian history and science fiction Indrek Hargla. Love and passion are not bound by space or time, so on the year’s shortest night youths whose births are separated by 1 000 years on the Kronos scale can meet, as the difference is insignificant on the Kairos scale“,the director said when unveiling the song festival’s show content.

The song festival’s artistic director is Kuno Kerge (Tartu Academic Male Choir) and the director is Ain Mäeots (Vanemuine). The concert’s musical committee includes many acclaimed choir conductors such as Alo Ritsing, Triin Koch, Aivar Leśtśinski, Jüri Rent and many more. The song festival’s programme will include new works as well as memorable Midsummer Day songs from all three Baltic States.

The song festival and production “Songs of Midsummer” has been inspired by Juhani Pütsepp’s tale “Jaaniõhtu lugu” (Midsummer night’s story), which gives a romantic account of the birth of bonfires for midsummer and of love.

Festival Gaudeamus is part of the EV100 program and combines light art, music, choral song and dance with a special feature that has never been organized in Tartu before.

Tickets for “Songs of Midsummer” are on sale through Piletilevi!

Photo: Gabriela Liivamägi.