The accordion in Finland – an instrument of contradictions

The accordion in Finland – an instrument of contradictions

Edited by Vesa Kurkela and Marko Tikka and released in late 2014, a new book about the Finnish accordion covers, among other things, the early stages of the instrument and the most significant players, as well as going through the Finnish accordion repertoire.
Column: Misusing music

Column: Misusing music

Music, too, can be used for malevolent purposes, as Arttu Tolonen reflects in his column.
Festivals facing the future

Festivals facing the future

Music audiences’ age structure and consumer patterns are changing, offerings are growing and becoming more varied, but for now, one thing remains unchanged: there are enough festival-goers in Finland for hundreds of festivals. Organisers must nevertheless have their feelers out for changing expectations from their customers.
Checkpoint Viitasaari

Checkpoint Viitasaari

This summer, the Time of Music festival will once again convert the sleepy little town of Viitasaari in the heart of the scenic Finnish lakeland into a nexus of contemporary music for creators, trends and audiences.
Lions music

Lions music

The Lions have an interesting musical repertoire associated with them, and to the delight of many and the disgust of others this repertoire is revived every year. Thanks to the media that function as extensions of the ice hockey arena, these songs are ubiquitous, and new ones are added every...
Sibelius’s music in focus

Sibelius’s music in focus

Sibelius’s music has, naturally, been a popular topic among Finnish music researchers. Three recent dissertations open new perspectives on the composer’s orchestral and vocal music. We let the new ‘Sibelius doctors’ elaborate on their research.
The freedom of song

The freedom of song

Soprano Soile Isokoski, one of Finland’s internationally most celebrated singers, has returned to her roots and begun a new chapter in her life. As of this year, her calendar features teaching and recitals.
Taking Note 1-2/2015: Content with content

Taking Note 1-2/2015: Content with content

"It is also not insignificant that one of the most powerful shapers of our national identity was a composer. In Finland, classical music has always enjoyed an undisputed status with a solid infrastructure. Having said that, I acknowledge that times are difficult and that high culture is in a state...
"Utterly Finnish, peculiarly original”

“Utterly Finnish, peculiarly original”

The concept of a national musical language made its way to Finland in the 1800s. One of the culminations of this new wave was the premiere performance of Sibelius’s Kullervo. The birth of this epic music historical tale was influenced by a number of endeavours, ideas and occurrences.
A visit from Mr Composer

A visit from Mr Composer

What happened when Jean Sibelius and Larin Paraske met? This is one way to imagine the scene, from the runo singer’s point of view.
"Struggling artist like the rest of us"

“Struggling artist like the rest of us”

What relevance does Sibelius – and his big anniversary – hold for the wider Finnish music and culture scene in 2015? Andrew Mellor asked five musicians from outside the classical music tradition.
Patriotic soundtracks

Patriotic soundtracks

Following the general European trend, musical meanings that could be interpreted as nationalistic were put to use in Finland during the first half of the 20th century. The propaganda and educational film industries used music by Sibelius, among others.
The responsibility of an artist

The responsibility of an artist

Jean Sibelius was a political person throughout his life, although this should be understood in the right way. He was never a member of any political party, nor did he participate in any such activities. He was politically active in a different way.
Orchestras for all

Orchestras for all

Someone once described Finland as an orchestral utopia. And we are indeed said to have more orchestras per capita than any other country in the world.
Broader perspectives in teaching music

Broader perspectives in teaching music

The International Minifiddlers distance-learning project is testing a new kind of learning environment for studying the violin. At the same time the East Helsinki Music Institute is searching for ways to bring high-quality music education within reach of even more people.
Art comes first

Art comes first

The Sibelius Academy, Finland’s only music university, has for the past two years been part of the University of the Arts trio, together with the Theatre Academy and the Academy of Fine Arts. What does the future sound like for the Sibelius Academy?
Guest Column: My Sibelius

Guest Column: My Sibelius

"Most of the time, I am far from Sibelius’s – and my own – homeland and on neutral territory, i.e. alone with my scores. But it is there, between the lines, that I am struck by something I cannot explain. I don’t, however, think it is just a national trait,...
Augmented music

Augmented music

The latest Finnish examples of using multimedia to add to the way people experience music via use of new media are augmented reality application Arilyn, and SibHack, an event for programmers.
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The accordion in Finland – an instrument of contradictions

The accordion in Finland – an instrument of contradictions

Edited by Vesa Kurkela and Marko Tikka and released in late 2014, a new book about the Finnish accordion covers, among other things, the early stages of the instrument and the most significant players, as well as going through the Finnish accordion repertoire.
Column: Misusing music

Column: Misusing music

Music, too, can be used for malevolent purposes, as Arttu Tolonen reflects in his column.
Festivals facing the future

Festivals facing the future

Music audiences’ age structure and consumer patterns are changing, offerings are growing and becoming more varied, but for now, one thing remains unchanged: there are enough festival-goers in Finland for hundreds of festivals. Organisers must nevertheless have their feelers out for changing expectations from their customers.
Checkpoint Viitasaari

Checkpoint Viitasaari

This summer, the Time of Music festival will once again convert the sleepy little town of Viitasaari in the heart of the scenic Finnish lakeland into a nexus of contemporary music for creators, trends and audiences.

Fiddler on a bike tour

In summer 2015 fiddler Emilia Lajunen will undertake a concert tour of Finland by bicycle. You can follow Emilia’s tour – and feel the magic of the festival summer in Finland – via the video blog on the FMQ website.
Lions music

Lions music

The Lions have an interesting musical repertoire associated with them, and to the delight of many and the disgust of others this repertoire is revived every year. Thanks to the media that function as extensions of the ice hockey arena, these songs are ubiquitous, and new ones are added every year.
Sibelius’s music in focus

Sibelius’s music in focus

Sibelius’s music has, naturally, been a popular topic among Finnish music researchers. Three recent dissertations open new perspectives on the composer’s orchestral and vocal music. We let the new ‘Sibelius doctors’ elaborate on their research.
Alluring and curious trio

Alluring and curious trio

"Pianist Kari Ikonen fuses fresh elements. On this second outing with bassist Ara Yaralyan and drummer Markku Ounaskari, not only Scandinavian and American sounds are heard. As the title reveals, this record has two distinctive sides: beautiful composed pieces and spontaneous collective takes."
Almost there

Almost there

"Satellite Stories have already gained notable international attention for some years. Their merits include sold-out clubs in London, tracks with millions of listens on Spotify, and their third album, Vagabonds, produced by internationally renowned producer Barny Barnicott, who has collaborated with Arctic Monkeys and Kasabian, among others."
Lusty lungful

Lusty lungful

"The microphones are going to take some time to catch up with the astonishing flood of Finnish instrumental concertos since the turn of the 21st century, so it’s good to be able to welcome the first recording of Jouni Kaipainen’s Trumpet Concerto, written in 2003 to a commission from the soloist here, Pasi Pirinen, to...
Strong statement

Strong statement

"Like moths to a flame, music lovers have flocked towards the work of Helsinki-based songwriter Manna ever since the mid-Noughties. Four releases down the road and the woman born in 1977 to a Finnish-Algerian family as Mariam Jäntti has yet to make two albums that are alike."
An institution alive and kicking

An institution alive and kicking

"In 2015, JPP is still alive and kicking, and playing with as high quality as ever. They don’t play too often, but when they do there is a nice relaxed touch, and they don’t take it all too seriously. "