This sprawling event venue in Kadriorg holds a special place in Estonians' hearts as the birthplace of the Singing Revolution.
It was here in 1988 that Estonia's massive, musical demonstration against Soviet rule set the nation on its road towards re-independence.
The grounds feature an outdoor concert arena, built in 1959, a number of indoor halls, and host a multitude of large concerts and festivals through the year. Most famously the site is home to the Estonian Song and Dance Celebration, an unforgettable event that takes place every five years, drawing together up to 34,000 performers and 200,000 spectators.
Next to the concert arena is the 42-metre Song Grounds Light Tower (advanced bookings required for entrance). Every Song Celebration starts with the traditional lighting of the flame atop the tower. Its staircase displays a photo exhibition on the history of the song festivals, and from its observation platform at the top, with the help of newly-installed binoculars, you'll get great views of the Old Town and ships out a sea.
On top of the natural limestone slope sits a bronze monument to Gustav Ernesaks, Estonian composer and 'father of song'. His creations are regarded as part of the Estonian identity and can be heard on nearby standing 'singing bench'. Here one can rest for a moment, take in the beautiful views and listen to the most popular of the Song Festivals’ sounds.
The Song Festival Grounds is also home to a concrete building called the Cromatico, which is a visual representation of the chromatic – scale, i.e. all the white and black notes on a piano. This sensual and didactic sculpture takes you on a journey through the 12 half tones of the octave, allowing you to touch the art and experience how space relates to musical frequencies.
based on 322 reviews
We went and we saw and we left. Nothing to really see but the dome and statue. 15 minutes is the most you will spend there unless you take a picnic. It was an awfully long drive to it and I... Read more comments
The grounds of the Tallinn Song Festival are beautiful and spacious. I would love to watch an outdoor concert here. Anyway, if you want to see something off the beaten path, this is a must do.
The festival grounds play a big part in the history of Estonia and they are well worth a visit. Many big artists have performed here over the years.