Tartu City Day – Opera Crosses Over
29 June is a busy day in Tartu with lots of fun and interesting things happening. In recent years people have been seeking – and finding – the true essence of Tartu on its special day though opera and classical music.
As part of Tartu City Day, opera comes to town, has a bit of fun and gets everyone involved who it meets along the way. 29 June is also a day when you’re sure to hear how opera crossovers between genres and performers¹ are born.
The day will certainly see people travelling through Tartu’s time and space, as well as exploring the past, present and future of the city, which is one of the candidates for the title of European Capital of Culture in 2024. Moreover, as a UNESCO City of Literature Tartu is inviting all of its writers and authors to set up a book fair for Tartu City Day. This means that all day long on the lovely summer Friday you’ll be able to buy books on Küüni Street, chat with the authors themselves and collect autographs.
Tartu City Day gives you the chance to be entertained, to be enlightened and to be won over by great music. As usual, there will be excursions on the river and terra firma alike and other events that enjoy a traditional place in the City Day line-up. Tartu’s theatres, museums, libraries and cafés will all be playing along.
Since 2003 Tartu has been celebrating its City Day on 29 June, which in the traditional folk calendar is known as the Day of Peter and Paul in reference to the Christian apostles who died as martyrs on that very day in the year 67. In the Middle Ages they were the patron saints of Tartu, and their key and sword are depicted on the city’s coat of arms.
In a fashion similar to many other European cities, Tartu provides a cultural and entertainment programme on City Day
¹ Opera Crosses Over.
This musical title, coined as part of Tartu City Day in 2016, refers to a joint concert of opera soloists and other classical music performers, as well as non-opera singers, during which they take themselves out of their comfort zone by dipping into one another’s repertoires – and surprising the audience with the results. Nobody takes themselves, one another or the weather too, too seriously during the concert. The audience normally comprises everyone from genre puritans and dyed-in-the-wool opera lovers to those who don’t really have any feelings about opera one way or the other (well, so far).