Tõnu Kaljuste is internationally recognised both as a choir and orchestra conductor. His accomplishments that will go into history include winning the Grammy Award in 2014 in the category of Best Choir Performance for Adam's Lament by Arvo Pärt. His recordings have been repeatedly nominated for Grammy Awards. What makes this unique is the fact that Kaljuste’s albums have been featured in various categories. His Grammy nominations include David and Bathsheba, an opera by the Norwegian composer Ståle Kleiberg, as well as a range of symphonic music. In 2019 Kaljuste won the International Classical Music Award with the Wrocław Philharmonic Orchestra for the recording of Arvo Pärt’s Symphonies No. 1 to 4. Kaljuste has collaborated with recording studios ECM Records, Virgin Classic, BIS and Caprice Records. His records have also won several other awards: Cannes Classical Award (1999), Diapason d’Or (2000), Edison Prize (2000) and the Classic Brit Award (2003).

2010-2020 Tõnu Kaljuste was a professor and Head of Conducting Studies at the Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre. He is founder of the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir and Tallinn Chamber Orchestra and has been chief conductor of the Swedish Radio Choir and the Netherlands Chamber Choir. Among others, Kaljuste has collaborated with the great figures of modernism in Northern and Eastern Europe such as Alfred Schnittke, György Kurtág, Krzysztof Penderecki, Giya Kancheli and Einojuhani Rautavaara, and has proved to be an outstanding expert and introducer of Estonian composers Arvo Pärt, Erkki-Sven Tüür, Veljo Tormis and Heino Eller.

Since 2004, Kaljuste has been the artistic director of Nargen Opera, his own project theatre. At Kaljuste’s initiative, Nargenfestival has been held since 2006. The festival takes place every summer, featuring drama and music theatre productions, concerts and exhibitions. The festival is preceded by the Cyrillus Kreek Days in June and followed by the Arvo Pärt Days in September. Kaljuste works closely with the Baltic Sea Festival in Stockholm.

In 2019, the Swedish Radio Choir and Berwaldhallen awarded Tõnu Kaljuste the honorary title of Conductor Laureate of the Swedish Radio Choir. Tõnu Kaljuste is the artistic director (from September 2019) of Tallinn Philharmonic Society and Tallinn Chamber Orchestra.