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Allar Kaasik

Allar Kaasik studied the cello in Moscow, Riga and Tallinn. He has been principal cellist in Estonian National Symphony Orchestra and Estonian National Opera Orchestra, played in Tallinn Chamber Orchestra and the ensemble Barocco Revaliensis, and is a founding member of the ensemble Hortus Musicus.

He has taught the cello at East Helsinki Music Institute and Sibelius Academy in Finland and his students have been prizewinners at national as well as international competitions. He has also given masterclasses in Europe and the United States.

Allar Kaasik has worked closely with a number of composers, arranging, commissioning and premiering their cello works. In addition to the composers featured on the present recording, these include Ester Magi, Anders Nilsson, Georgs Pelēcis, Krzysztof Penderecki, Einojuhani Rautavaara, Helmut Rosenvald, Urmas Sisask, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Veljo Tormis and Pēteris Vasks.

As a soloist, Kaasik has performed with Estonian, Latvian, Italian, and Russian orchestras, introducing Estonian cello music at numerous music festivals in Europe, North America, South Korea and elsewhere.

Over a period of twenty years, Kaasik has founded and acted as the artistic director of David Oistrakh Festival, Musica Hymnis Festival, and Neeme Jarvi Summer Academy in Estonia, as well as six European Union-funded cultural projects. To facilitate the publication of Estonian music, he has founded the pub lishing house Alcanto. In 2009 Kaasik received the Order of the White Star (Fourth Class) of the Estonian state and the Badge of Honour of the city of Parnu.

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