Cantus sings songs of change in Stillwater

Can music really change the world? In 1989 it did. For Cantus’ spring concert, the nine-member ensemble presents the beautiful music of the Baltic states, along with the inspiring story of how the people of Estonia, Lithuania and Latvia joined hands in a peaceful revolution of song to gain their independence from the Soviet Union.

From March 15-25, Cantus performs the Singing Revolution: Songs of the Baltic Awakening at the Church of St. Michael at 3 p.m. on March 18.

According to baritone Adam Reinwald, "Cantus has been singing Baltic music for years, but most of it has come from Estonia. After seeing the documentary The Singing Revolution, we learned that these traditions extend throughout the Baltic region and that inspired us to further explore Latvian and Lithuanian music as well."

"It’s just an unbelievable story," adds tenor Aaron Humble. "As musicians, we really believe that music can change the world, but to see and hear actual accounts of how it happened literally leaves me speechless."

Using the rich historical tapestry of Baltic folk song to illustrate the powerful, changing force of music, "The Singing Revolution" tells the story of the people of Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia. As their peaceful lives fall victim to government censorship and suppression from communism their quiet celebrations of music and cultural heritage sustain their national pride and eventually helps reinstates their independence. Featuring pieces by celebrated Estonion composer, Veljo Tormis, "The Singing Revolution" will also include songs very dear to the people of each country.

Cantus is acclaimed as the "premier men’s vocal ensemble in the United States" (Fanfare) and recognized for its artistic excellence and musical versatility. The nine members of Cantus rehearse and perform as chamber musicians, working without a conductor or music director, allowing audiences to experience a direct connection to the singers. Committed to a cappella presentation of significant music, including newly commissioned work, its stylistic versatility and eclectic programming have made Cantus audience favorites in its Twin Cities home and in concerts around the world since 1995.

Tickets are $25 and are available online at or by calling 612-435-0055.