American Grammy Award-winning composer Eric Whitacre is in Tallinn to give a master's class today and to conduct an 80-member choir at a concert in St. John's Church on Friday.
According to Bachtrack.com, Whitacre was one of the most-performed living composers last year, second only to Estonia's own Arvo Pärt.
"Even to have my name in the same sentence as Arvo Pärt is humbling for me. He's one of my greatest heroes. And so even to be in his land now, it leaves me speechless really [...] It's one of the reasons I really wanted to come - to meet this whole country that sings," Whitacre told ETV on Wednesday.
The composer moved to London a few years ago and to his own surprise began writing spiritual music. He does not consider himself a religious person.
"But being in the cathedrals and being in these spaces, it's just drawing something out of me. And so lately I'm writing music with liturgical texts with poetry from religious ceremonies, which is unusual for me," Whitacre said.
Source: Estonian Public Broadcasting