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The Baltic Way 2020

The work is inspired by a huge mass demonstration staged in the Baltic States as a call for independence from the Soviet Union on August 23rd 1989.

'The Baltic Way' or 'Baltic Chain' as it became known, saw approximately two million participants linking hands from Vilnius through Riga to Tallinn, forming a human chain over 600 kilometres in length.

It became a significant moment in time — one that eventually heralded the collapse of Soviet intervention in the region, resulting ultimately in the Baltic States gaining their independence.

Jan de Haan's three-movement composition (approx 10 and a half minutes in duration) opens with 'Struggle' — a reference to a nocturne for piano by Lithuanian composer and painter Mikalojus Konstantinas Ciurlionis (1875-1911) providing thematic material used throughout the composition.

The music reflects the resolve and resistance of the Baltic people, before a reference to the anthem of the Soviet Union in the lower brass is relentlessly pushed aside to herald the Lithuanian national anthem, 'Tautiska giesme' (Lithuania, Our Homeland).

'Decades of Suffering', echoes life under the Soviet yoke, before the final movement 'Union' represents the pursuit of freedom — one that culminated in the dramatic symbolism of the Chain of Freedom stretching right across the Baltic states of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia.

The Baltic Way was commissioned by Palangos Orkestras and is dedicated to Remigius Vilys.

Composer: Jan de Haan
Type: Test Piece

Date Contest Winner
05 May 2024 European Youth Championship (Premier Section) Brass Band 'Sklepucini'
26 Nov 2022 Belgian Nationals (Third Division)
03 May 2020 European Youth Championship (Premier Section)

Printed from https://brassbandresults.co.uk/