SONG CELEBRATIONS DURING THE FIRST REPUBLIC OF ESTONIA
1923– the first Celebration in independent Estonia on a permanent stage in Tallinn, that could fit 12 000 singers. The first aerial photograph and the first film of the celebration were shot.
1928 – the first Celebration on today’s Song Festival Grounds in Tallinn – the new stage by architect Karl Burman fitted 15 000 singers.
1933– Female choirs participated for the first time, the first radio broadcast from the celebration.
1938– Gustav Ernesaks conducted at the Song Celebration for the first time, his music was performed. In 1944 he wrote the music to “Mu isamaa on minu arm” to the lyrics of Lydia Koidula while deported to Russia. Five days later Soviet army bombed Tallinn and destroyed “Estonia” opera house, national broadcasting and conservatory among many other buildings. In 1944 more than 70 000 Estonians fled the country to the West, among them many well-known musicians. In 1946 first larger Estonian Song Celebrations were held in Germany, later in Sweden, USA, Canada, Australia, UK.