Arvo Pärt by Viktoria Mullova & Paavo Järvi
When I worked Sunday evenings at Readings in Carlton (some few years ago now) one of my favourite albums to put on in the shop to bring the vibe down and yet give it a frisson of emotion was Arvo Pärt’s Speigel im Speigel. His simplicity of style, named ‘tintinnabuli’, or translated from the Latin, ‘bell-like’ was pioneered by Pärt in the 1970s and has inspired and been imitated by composers world-wide. Most people wouldn’t realise that, although most of this music has such simple soaring melodies, the performance can make a huge difference in the emotional impact. The musicians can really make or break a piece with their interpretation, as there’s not much written on the page and it must simply come from the soul.
This latest rendition of some of Pärt’s most popular works are beautifully performed by violinist Viktoria Mullova and fellow Estonians Paavo Järvi and the Estonian National Symphony Orchestra. Their ease and grace within Pärt’s particular style will stop you in your tracks and have you straining your ears to hear every nuance in their translation of his black dots into (mostly) delicate and (definitely) deliberate sounds.