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Instrumental music by Arvo Pärt
Arvo Pärt.jpg
The composer in 2008
Composed1977 (1977)

Fratres (Brothers) is a composition by the Estonian composer Arvo Pärt exemplifying his tintinnabuli style of composition.[1] It is three-part music, written in 1977, without fixed instrumentation and has been described as a “mesmerising set of variations on a six-bar theme combining frantic activity and sublime stillness that encapsulates Pärt’s observation that ‘the instant and eternity are struggling within us’.”[2]

Structure and versions[edit]

Structurally, Fratres consists of a set of eight or nine chord sequences separated by a recurring percussion motif. The sequences themselves follow a pattern, and while the progressing chords explore a rich harmonic space, they appear to have been generated by means of a simple formula.[3]

In film[edit]

The composition was used for many films and documentaries. Notable usages include:

In other compositions[edit]

Jazz pianist Aaron Parks incorporated elements of Fratres into his composition "Harvesting Dance," heard on his album Invisible Cinema and on Terence Blanchard's album Flow.[4]


  1. ^ Zivanovic, Rade (2012). "Arvo Part's Fratres and his Tintinnabuli Technique". Retrieved 2017-04-27.
  2. ^ Arvo Pärt, Sinfini Music website
  3. ^ Linus Åkesson (2007-12-03). "Fratres". Retrieved 2007-12-03.
  4. ^ Frank J. Oteri (2014). "Aaron Parks: Make Me Believe A Melody". Retrieved 2014-06-17.

External links[edit]