Vardo Rumessen

Vardo Rumessen studied with professors Bruno Lukk and Eugen Kelder, graduating the Tallinn Conservatory in 1971. Today he is the world's best known interpreter and promoter of Estonian Piano Music.

Mr. Rumessen has recorded and performed the piano and chamber music of R. Tobias, M. Saar, H. Eller, E. Tubin. He is the widely recognized master interpreter of Eduard Tubin's music, having recorded a 3 CD set of the composer's piano music for BIS in 1988. As a close personal friend of Tubin, Rumessen had the opportunity to discuss the composer's musical intentions in depth. The composer, to a very high degree authorized Mr. Rumessen's various interpretations.

Vardo Rumessen performed the American premiere of Tubin's Piano Concertino in 1993 with the Longview Symphony Orchestra conducted by Tônu Kalam. In addition, he has performed works by Beethoven, Franck, Tobias and Tubin with such orchestras as the Estonian, Longview, and Göteborg Symphony Orchestras, conducted by the late Peeter Lilje, Tônu Kalam and Neeme Järvi. He performs frequently in ensemble with numerous Estonian singers, violinists, cellists, and others.

Although Mr. Rumessen has achieved great success as an interpreter of Estonian classical music, he also performs music from elsewhere in the world. His public undertakings have included such works as J.S. Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier, Book 1 (1976), Scriabin's 10 sonatas (1972), Chopin's 27 Etudes (1979), Rachmaninoff's 15 Etudes-Tableaux (1980), the complete piano works of Tubin (1977), the complete piano works by Saar (1982), Eller's 29 piano preludes (1987), and many others.

Vardo Rumessen is not only the world's foremost proponent of Estonian piano music but also a musicologist with vast and complete knowledge of most other forms of Estonian music. He has personally published Estonian music by Tobias, Saar, Kapp, Oja and Eller. Said composers' works have naturally found a place in Rumessen's solo, orchestral and ensemble repertoire. Among others, he restored and published R. Tobias' monumental oratorio "Jonah's Mission," which was printed by Nordiska Musikförlaget in 1996.

In addition, Vardo Rumessen has written many articles and has served as editor for several books on Tobias, Saar, Kapp, Oja, and Tubin.

Though recently retired from political life, Mr. Rumessen was elected to the Congress of Estonia and served as a member of its Board for the 1990-1991 term. He was a member of its Constitutional Assembly during the period 1991-1992, and was a member of the Estonian Parliament from 1992-1995.

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