Music of the Week: April 15, 2022: Arvo Pärt: Vater unser

Arvo Pärt: Vater Unser (Our Father)

Arvo Pärt: Vater Unser (Our Father)

Our music of the week and on this Good Friday 2022 is this sublime version of the Lord’s Prayer in German by Estonian composer Arvo Pärt, one of the brightest stars in the musical cosmos of our day.

Pärt composed the Vater Unser in 2005 in a single stroke and dedicated it to Pope Benedict XVI, German by descent, for the 60th anniversary of his receiving the holy orders.

Pärt originally conceived the piece for boy soprano and piano, but later also adapted it for countertenor and strings (first performed in this arrangement in 2013 by Andreas Scholl). Many versions have since emerged for solo voice or choir, organ, or orchestra, as well as instrumental-only arrangements.

The simplicity and purity of this composition will be most profound for those who pray the Lord’s Prayer in German, but can be felt by anyone.

On this day of the contemplation of the passion of Christ, may this music transmit its peace.


The Vater Unser on Arvo Pärt’s homepage.

Some additional versions:

Version for choir and orchestra.

Version for choir, organ and strings.

Very unique instrumental version for four saxophones.

Countertenor Andreas Scholl sings Vater unser for Pärt’s 80th birthday.