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date: 19 August 2019

Saar, Martlocked

  • Mart Humal


(b Hüpassaare, Vastsemõisa, Sept 16, 1882; d Tallinn, Oct 28, 1963). Estonian composer. He studied at the St Petersburg Conservatory (1901–11), where his teachers included Nikolay Rimsky-Korsakov and Anatoly Lyadov. He went on to teach in Tartu and at the Tallinn Conservatory (1943–56). A prolific composer and one of the founders of an Estonian national style, Saar primarily wrote choral works, solo songs and piano pieces. Some of his first compositions, such as the song Must lind (‘Black Bird’, 1909) and Skizze (1910) for piano, with their chromatic decentralization of tonality, became early examples of new music in Estonia. None of his Estonian contemporaries could rival his subtle sense of harmonic colouring, an element especially obvious in the solo songs. In his choral works, such as Põhjavaim (‘The Guardian Spirit of Our Northern Land’, 1910, in 14 segakoorilaulu, 1914), Leelo...

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The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians