Eller, Heino, noted Estonian composer and pedagogue; b. Yuryev, March 7, 1887; d. Tallinn, June 16, 1970. He studied law at the Univ. of St. Petersburg (1908–12). Following service in the army during World War I, he studied violin and composition (with Kalafati) at the Petrograd Cons, (graduated, 1920). After teaching theory and composition at the Tartu Higher Music School (1920–40), he was prof, of composition at the Tallinn Cons. (1940–70). In 1957 he was honored with the title of People’s Artist of the Estonian S.S.R. In 1965 he was awarded the prize of the Estonian Republic. Eller was one of the principal founders of the modern Estonian national school of music. Many of his students became prominent figures in the musical life of Estonia. Filer’s works adhered to Classical precepts but explored modern harmonic and timbral usages.
ORCH Fantasy for Violin and Orch. (1916; rev. 1963); 6 symphonic poems: Twilight (1918); Dawn (1918); Nocturnal Sounds (1920); Apparitions (1924); The Eagle’s Flight (1949); The Singing Fields (1951); Symphonic Scherzo (1921); Violin Concerto (1933; rev. 1965); 3 syms. (1936, 1947, 1961); White Night, symphonic suite (1939); Dance Suite (1942); 5 Pieces for Strings (1953); Sinfonietta for Strings (1965); Episode from Revolutionary Times (n.d.). CHAMBER : 2 violin sonatas (1922, 1946); 5 string quartets (1925, 1930, 1945, 1954, 1959); many violin pieces; pieces for Cello and Harp. Piano : 4 sonatas (1920, 1938, 1944, 1958); about 200 other pieces.
H. Sepp, H. E. i klaverilooming (Tallinn, 1958); idem, ed., H. E. sonas ja pildis (H. E. in Words and Pictures; Tallinn, 1967).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire