International Women’s Day
Deep in sound, deep in soul

Deep in sound, deep in soul

Kaija Saariaho's music has been widely performed in various concert series and at festivals in the USA recently. The premiere of a new production of her first opera, L’amour de loin, at the Metropolitan Opera in December 2016 will be an operatic event such as has not been seen for decades, and it will be...
Are we really still talking about this?

Are we really still talking about this?

In 2016 women are still under-represented in classical concert repertoire, never mind the canon. At contemporary music concerts, however, women appear as composers with increasing frequency. How should we address the issue of a composer’s (female) gender in this day and age? Are we really still talking about this, in Finland?
Conquering the tradition

Conquering the tradition

In the heart of folk music is an idea of equality: professionals and amateurs playing the same repertoire, each at their own skill level, as valued members of the community. However, gender equality is an issue that still seems to need some fine tuning...
FMQ Autumn 2016 Notes & Letters: From second class citizenship to the conductor's podium

FMQ Autumn 2016 Notes & Letters: From second class citizenship to the conductor’s podium

Baroque violinist and conductor Kreeta-Maria Kentala writes about how attitudes towards baroque music and female conductors have changed during her career.
The voice of freedom

The voice of freedom

Growing up in roughly beautiful Lapland has affected Outi Tarkiainen’s personality and her voice as a composer. For her, music is almost like a force of nature, which can change people and their destinies. Andrew Mellor met Tarkiainen in Rovaniemi.
FMQ Autumn 2016 Guest Column: About art and money  and the “special relationship Finns have with nature”

FMQ Autumn 2016 Guest Column: About art and money and the “special relationship Finns have with nature”

My feeling is that socially active art may be both in-your-face and more subtly influencing; it may mix up meanings in brutal ways, mashing them up, exploring impossible worlds and shaking us up from unheard-of angles.
Notes & Letters column: Blues owes me money

Notes & Letters column: Blues owes me money

BY Erja Lyytinen I was three and a half years old when I performed for the first time, at my father’s employer’s Christmas party. One of the guests gave me a Finnish ten-mark note.  It seemed like a lot of money – especially for singing! We sang at home all the time, so it didn’t...
Success comes through collaboration

Success comes through collaboration

Helena Juntunen, one of Finland’s most sought-after opera singers, appears in a variety of roles and concert productions with many ensembles, but her busy freelancer’s schedule will be replaced by maternity leave in October
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 of mental and financial transition."...
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.
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, because all over the world...
Singing your place in the world

Singing your place in the world

“'Laulu', a new film directed by Selma Vilhunen, portrays the encounter of people, their life stories, joys and sorrows in the heartland of runo singing."