Eili Sild (born 26 October 1942)[1] is an Estonian stage, film, television and radio actress whose career began on the theatre stage in the early 1960s and has spanned over fifty years.

Eili Sild
Born (1942-10-26) 26 October 1942 (age 80)
Other namesEili Torga
Eili Sild-Torga
Years active1962–present
Spouse(s)Heino Torga
1967–2012 (his death)

Early life and educationEdit

Eili Sild was born in Tallinn. She attended the Tallinn 7th Secondary School (now, the Tallinn English College), graduating in 1961.[2] In 1963, she graduated from the Tallinn Feature and Newsreel Film Studio (now, Tallinnfilm) and afterwards studied acting at the Lunacharsky State Institute for Theatre Arts (GITIS) (now, the Russian Academy of Theatre Arts) in Moscow, where she graduated in 1976.[3]

Stage careerEdit

In 1963, shortly after graduating from the Tallinn Feature and Newsreel Film Studio, Sild began an engagement as an actress at the Ugala theatre in Viljandi. She would remain an actress with the Ugala (with some intermissions) until 1980. Afterward, she joined the Vanalinnastuudio theatre (Old Town Studio theatre) in Tallinn in 1980, leaving in 1996 and becoming a freelance actress.[4]

Notable performances during her years onstage as a theatre actress include those in works by such varied authors and playwrights as: Rainis, Venta Vīgante, Boris Kabur, Gunnars Priede, Oskar Luts, Eduard Vilde, Aldo Nicolaj, Erskine Caldwell, Maxim Gorky, Astrid Lindgren, August Jakobson, Ardi Liives, Hella Wuolijoki, Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Molière, Henrik Ibsen, and Terence Rattigan.[5]

Sild has also performed onstage at many others theatres throughout Estonia, including the Vanemuine in Tartu, the Tallinn City Theatre and the Vana Baskini Teater (Old [Roman] Baskin's Theatre).[6]

Television and radio careerEdit

Eili Sild's first prominent television appearance was the character Mari in the 1965 feature-length Ants Kivirähk and Valdur Himbek-directed drama Külmale maale for Eesti Telefilm. The television film was based on the 1896 novel of the same name by Estonian author Eduard Vilde. Following this, Sild would concentrate on her stage career and not appear in television roles until the early 2000s after she had become a freelance actress.[7]

In 2001 and 2002, Sild appeared as Ellen in two episodes of the popular, long-running Eesti Televisioon (ETV) drama Õnne 13 in 2001 and 2002. In 2010, she made an appearance on an episode of the Kanal 2 crime drama series Kelgukoerad, and the same year she had a small role on the TV3 comedy-crime series Kättemaksukontor.[8]

Sild has also had a prolific career as a radio theatre actress and as a narrator and presenter. She has appeared frequently on Eesti Rahvusringhääling (ERR) in radio plays and reading monologues and short stories by authors such as A. H. Tammsaare, Lilli Promet, and Jaan Kaplinski, among many others.[9]

Film careerEdit

Eili Sild's first substantial film role was that of Maia in the 1964 Grigori Kromanov and Jüri Müür-directed black-and-white drama Põrgupõhja uus Vanapagan for Tallinnfilm, based on the multi-layered eponymously titled 1939 novel by A. H. Tammsaare. This was followed in 1966 by the Jüri Müür-directed drama Kirjad Sõgedate külast, also for Tallinnfilm, and based on several works by author Juhan Smuul.[10][11]

In 1977, Sild was cast in another small role as a housewife in the Jüri Müür-directed Tallinnfilm period piece drama Reigi õpetaja, which was based on the 1926 novel Reigin Pappi (The Pastor of Reigi), by Finnish author Aino Kallas.[12]

After a ten year absence, Eili Sild returned to the screen in the role of a witch in the 1987 Tallinnfilm Metsluiged, directed by Helle Karis. The film was an adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen's 1838 fairy tale The Wild Swans. The following year, she appeared in a two minor roles; the Roman Baskin-directed Tallinnfilm dramatic short Vernanda, based on the 1968 Arvo Valton-penned short story Vernanda leib; and in the Elo Tust-directed short dramatic film Nõid, starring Ülle Kaljuste and Enn Kraam. Both film shorts were produced for Tallinnfilm.[13]

In 1992, Sild made a small appearance in the Lembit Ulfsak-directed family comedy Lammas all paremas nurgas, which follows the adventures of two young boys who discover a painting that was believed to be lost long ago. The following year, she appeared in another small role in the Pekka Karjalainen-directed Finnish-Estonian comedy Hysteria.[14]

In 2012, Sild returned to the screen as the character Ilme in the Anna Hints-directed dramatic short Vaba maa, opposite actors Rita Raave and Raivo Trass.[15]

Personal lifeEdit

Eili Sild married actor and director Heino Torga. The coupled remained married until his death in 2012. They have one child, daughter Mari Torga, who became a television presenter and theatre manager and director. Her nephew is poet and writer Ivar Sild.[16]


  1. ^ Sirp Kalender. Retrieved 14 January 2017.
  2. ^ Eesti Teatriliit. Teatrikoolid 6. "Tallinnfilmi" filminäitlejate õppestuudio. Retrieved 14 January 2014.
  3. ^ Eesti Teatriliit. Teatrikoolid 6. "Tallinnfilmi" filminäitlejate õppestuudio. Retrieved 14 January 2014.
  4. ^ Ugala. Retrieved 14 January 2017.
  5. ^ Ugala. Retrieved 14 January 2017.
  6. ^ Eesti Päevaleht Teater 21 June 1998. Retrieved 14 January 2017.
  7. ^ arhiiv.err.ee Külmale maale Retrieved 14 January 2017.
  8. ^ arhiiv.err.ee Õnne 13 Retrieved 14 January 2017.
  9. ^ Eesti rahvusbibliograafia "Pimedate akende ajal" Retrieved 14 January 2017.
  10. ^ Eesti Filmi Andmebaas. Retrieved 14 January 2017.
  11. ^ porgupohja Põrgupõhja uus Vanapagan Retrieved 14 January 2017.
  12. ^ Sirp ja Vasar, nr. 29. 22 July 1983. Retrieved 14 January 2017.
  13. ^ Eesti rahvusbibliograafia Metsluiged Retrieved 14 January 2017.
  14. ^ Eesti Filmi Andmebaas. Retrieved 14 January 2017.
  15. ^ Eesti Filmi Andmebaas. Retrieved 14 January 2017.
  16. ^ HMSX Archived 16 January 2017 at the Wayback Machine Luuletaja Ivar Sild paneb lugejad punastama 14 March 2008. Retrieved 14 January 2017.

External linksEdit