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anu taliConductor Anu Tali (center) after the concert with Ambassador Marina Kaljurand, Consul General Sten Schwede, Honorary Concul Lisa Mets together with members of the local Kesk Florida Eesti Selts and their friends from Estonia, Minnesota, etc.     Photo by Monika Orumaa Craig


The Sarasota Orchestra welcomes their new Music Director Anu Tali with a fulpage interview in their 65th Anniversary Masterworks Program for the 2013-2014 season. She was named the Music Director of the Sarasota Florida Orchestra after an 18-month search.

The Orchstra’s Masterworks Program brings to the readers a thorough background of her training, starting with the Tallinn Music High School and Conservatory and the Estonian Academy of Music; the Stockholm Music Gymnasium, St. Petersburg State Conservatory and her most memorable and influential artists in the music field – Prof. Jorma Panula from the Sibelius Academy of Finland and Prof. Ilya Mussin from St. Petersburg. It talks of her passion for music and her impressions of the US and Sarasota.


It tells of her (and her twin sister Kadri) starting the Nordic Symphony Orchestra in 1997, which meets twice a year for tours and recordings, mentions some beloved Estonian composers like Eller, Pärt, Tüür and Tormis, and her enthusiasm for training and working with youth.  And last but not least her off-podium passion for cooking, swimming and spending time with family and friends.

Another full page is devoted to her native Estonia with a pictured geographical map and Anu standing in the “Old Town”.

It tells briefly of our linguistic ties to Finns and Hungarians, a short history of subjugations by Swedish, Polish, German and Russian rulers, our song festivals, about the fact that many of her generation did not see their grandparents because the Soviets had taken them to Siberia, where many perished. It speaks of the inability to travel during the Soviet time and the incredible times when freedom was finally achieved afresh; of being able to bring out the blue-black-white flag, of having Estonia’s own money again and for the musicians to be able to play the national anthem.

The Sarasota, Florida “Herald Tribune’s” review of the Februrary 20th Masterworks V Concert starts with the title “Orchestra’s new director takes charge – Tali brings the orchestra’s energy out”.


The article writes about the performance in great detail, bringing out the fact that the audience was thrilled and a full sell-out of tickets for the season has occurred. It also speaks of the long-distance involvement with Joseph McKenna, the orchestra’s GEO, who mentions that Tali signed a three-year contract last summer, which has gotten off to a great start, although she has been able to spend very little time in Sarasota as of yet.


The article also goes into specific ideas Anu has for the remaining contract time.


The Feb. 20th concert was attended also by ambassador M. Kaljurand, consul Sten Schwede and honorary consul Lisa Mets.  Afterwards at the reception Anu spent about an hour with the 30 or so Estonians who had attended the concert.


Aime Andra


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