Virkhaus, Taavo, Papers

Finding Aid



Immigration History Research Center, College of Liberal Arts, University of Minnesota

Descriptive summary

Dates: 1978-1998
Abstract: Concert-programs and booklets.
Quantity: 5 linear in.
Collection ID: IHRC3618


Collection transferred to the IHRC from the Estonian Archives in the U.S.A. (EAU) in 2003-2005. It was processed as part of a collaborative project between the Estonian Archives in the USA (Lakewood, NJ), the National Archives of Estonia (NAE), and the IHRC in March 2011. Gerli Raadik and Peeter Valjas of the National Archives in Tallinn, Estonia, worked with IHRC staff on the project.


Taavo Virkhaus was born on 29.06.1934. He studied in Elementary School of Tartu Seminary for one and a half years. In 1944, he fled to Germany. There he continued his studies in Estonian Elementary School in Gesilingen and after that in Estonian Gymnasium in Geislingen. 1949 emigrated to USA. 1951-1955 he studied in University of Miami (field of study was music). 1957 graduated with MA the University of Rochester Eastman Music School in music theory, 1967 graduated same school with PhD. 1956 he made his debut in conducting with the Miami Ballet Guild orchestra. Since that he has been conducting several orchestras in USA, Canada, Europe and Russia. In 1978, he got the first opportunity to conduct in Estonia (Estonian National Symphony Orchestra). T.Virkhaus has presented a number of Estonian composer’s works in America. T.Virhaus has worked in Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra as conductor; University of Rochester. Eastman School of Music as assistant, professor, associate professor and director of music; West Miami Junior High School as music teacher (1955-1956); Duluth Superior Symphony Orchestra as conductor and music director (1977-1994); Huntsville Symphony Orchestra as conductor (1989-2003). Social activities: The Eduard Tubin Society (member); Estonian American National Council (council member); corp. Fraternitas Estica (member); Estonian Mixed Choir in Buffalo (conductor, 1957-1961). Tartu City Government recognized him with the medal to honor his activities for carrying on Estonian music life in Abroad and for participating in Estonian and Tartu Song Festivals. Father is Adalbert (August) Wirkhaus (17.05.1880 - 19.12.1961), composer and conductor. Mother Helene, sister Kristi, wife Nancy Hermann (married in 1969).



The Virkhaus, Taavo collection is available for public research.


The Virkhaus, Taavo collection is the physical property of the Immigration History Research Center, University of Minnesota.

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The Virkhaus, Taavo Papers, Estonian American Collection, Immigration History Research Center, University of Minnesota