On Feburary 9, 2021 U: started a series of open workshops Residentuu:r 2021 thas focuses on music criticism.  The series try to address topics - what are the expectations of composer, performer, audience to a music critic, how music criticism influences the scene, how to improve collaboration between critics and performers? U: has invited outstanding specialists from Finland, Canada and Estonia to participate in the meetings and introduce their views.

The last event will take place on Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 5 PM

The meeting will take place via  Zoom and will be broadcasted on  U:'s Youtube channel
Moderator: Kadri-Ann Sumera
- Public discussion and criticism on U's concert in Estonian Music Days on April 25
- Summary of the series
The guest of previous meetings: Jeremy Strachan (Canada) and Kerri Kotta (Estonia),  Kare Eskola and Jaani Länsio (Finland),  David Dacks (Canada), Maria Mölder (Estonia)

The recordings of previous meetings can be  found U:'s Youtube  channel

Udo Kasemets (1919-2014) has jokingly been referred to as the most famous unknown composer from Estonia. Every respected music dictionary contains at least one article concerning him. In Canada, where he spent the main part of his creative life, he was named "the most uncompromising musician in the history of Canadian music". His influence on musical life, especially in Toronto, played a significant role in the development of experimental and contemporary music. In particular, Kasemets introduced theories inspired by John Cage, Marshall McLuhan, and Buckminster Fuller to the Canadian musical sphere. The influence he has held on following generations is hard to over-estimate. However, in Estonia Kasemets' music has been played very little and the knowledge concerning his activities is not wide spread.

To fill this gap, as well as to celebrate Udo Kasemets' 100th birthday (November 16, 2019), ensemble U: in collaboration with The Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre is organizing the conference "Explaining Universe – Systems, Humans and Arts”. During the conference we will introduce Kasemets’ music, ideas, and background. In connection with the conference, two concerts will take place in Kanuti Gildi SAAL and The Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre.


Udo Kasemets


Conference "Explaining universe – systems, humans and arts. Dedicated to 100th anniversary of Udo Kasemets"

November 16.-17, 2019
Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre, Organ Hall (A-404)
Graduate School of Culture Studies and Arts


The working language of the conference is English


Registration is open until November, 7. Please register HERE


This event has been supported by the project EMTASTRA (European Regional Development Fund)

EL struktuuritoetuste fondi logo



L 16.11.19 (A404)

10.30 Welcome coffee
11.00 Immo Mihkelson – “Globally-thinking musician and a human being with Estonian origin: Udo Kasemets as part of broader Estonian musicscape”
11.45-13.00 Jeremy Strachan (Canada) – ““Whence Cometh He?”: Udo Kasemets and the Experimental Tradition in Toronto”


14.00 Theodore Parker – “Udo Kasemets in the Context of North American Experimental Music”
14.40 Tze Yeung Ho – “Tracing the Footsteps of a Diaspora Composer: Udo Kasemets in Canada”
15.20-16.00 Taavi Kerikmäe – "Problematics of interpreting open scores"


19:30 Concert of Ensemble U: in Kanuti Gildi SAAL

Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina (1525-1526) “Tu es Petrus” a 6 (1572)
Udo Kasemets (1919-2014) “Sound, Smell, Taste, Touch, or How to Take a Trip Without LSD” (1965)
Udo Kasemets “4’33” Fractals” for any number of performers (2000)
Udo Kasemets “Trigon”for 1, 3, 9 or 27 performers (1963)
Udo Kasemets “Future is past … is …  now” for four or more performers(1996)
Entrance 5/3 €

Su 17.11.19 (A404)

10.30 Greeting coffee

11.00 Giovanni Albini – "A ‘mechanical duologue’: science and systems in the art of Udo Kasemets”
11.40-12.40 Ragne Kõuts-Klemm – On Marshall McLuhan


13.-00-13.40 Andres Kurg – On the reception of Buckminster Fuller's theories in the Soviet Union in the 1960s and 1970s.

14.00  Concert of New Music Ensemble of EAMT and Estonian Ensemble of Electronic Instruments (Chamber hall C-405)

Elma Miller
"udok asem ets" (1988)
Udo Kasemets
"Primeku"  (2004)
Udo Kasemets "Tt - tribute to Buckminster Fuller, Marshall McLuhan, John Cage" (1968)
Udo Kasemets "Lun(h)armonics" (1969)

Entrance: free


16.00 Mani Mazinani - “Oracle: Udo Kasemets Speaking”
16.40-17.40 Round Table




U: takes part in EU project  DYCE -  Discovering Young Composers of Europe. The project  takes place in cooperation with  Divertimento Ensemble (Italy), Taller Sonoro (Spain) and Cikada (Norway). The aim of DYCE is to discover young talented composers and give them opportunity to work with four top-rate ensembles, gather international experiences and build contacts.

NB! The call fro scores is open until January 15,  2019!

Three selected compositions from each of the four regions of Europe will be performed and streamed live in concerts on April 28, 2019.  One composer is selceted from each consert who will receive commission for a new piece. The composers get invited to rehearsals and perfrormances of the new pieces to all of the four cities (April 2020).

More info, rules and registration: https://dyce-project.eu/
Good concise overview here.


U: continues with series Residentuu:r. In 2018 the chosen composer for collaborations is Andrus Kallastu.

The public workshops take place in the Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre on:

1. We 17.01.2018,  7:00 PM
2. We 7.02.2018
,  7:00 PM
3. We 14.03.2018
,  7:00 PM
4. We 18.04.2018
,  7:00 PM
5. We 23.05.2018
,  7:00 PM



Taavi Kerikmäe and Tarmo Johannes as members of ensemble U: will perform together with Ekke Västrik at prominent festival/show-case Reeperbahn in Hamburg, Germany. With the musicians performs video artist tencu with his original live video projection.

The program is built up on  subtle interplay between seemingly un-uniteable sides of electronic music -  rhythmical, rather dance oriented, club scene electronic music and works of contemporary classical composers like John Cage, Peter Ablinger, Tom Johnson. If the way how people listen to those genres is so different -  are there any possible meeting points at all? Can the audience of one scene enjoy the music of the other one? The goal of the project is to draw attention to details, careful ways of listening and the most important factor of any music -  the SOUND.  And not losing the fun meanwhile :)





ekke "Can't I"
Peter Ablinger "Piccolo und Rauschen"
ekke "Meanwhile"
John Cage "Radio music"
ekke "OK then"




U: & ekke (excerpts) from Ansambel U on Vimeo.