Features Music

Open your ears

Since its first
edition in 1981 – at the time it was called Helsinki Biennale – Musica Nova has
focused on introducing contemporary music from all over the world to the
Finnish audience. And judging from some of the musicians who have been
participating in the festival the mission has been, so far, brilliantly
accomplished. Over the years one of Musica Nova’s main features has been the
choice of offering a great variety of contemporary music, from jazz to chamber
music to choral concerts to electronic music.

This year the festival will turn 26. Also, this year marks the 90th anniversary
of Finland
as an independent republic and the 125th anniversary of two institutions of
paramount importance in the cultural life of Helsinki and the whole country – the Sibelius Academy and the Helsinki Philharmonic
Orchestra. Thus it’s probably not by chance that Musica Nova’s 2007 program
focuses on Finland, offering the opportunity to get familiar with the country’s
composers and performers, and the work of some of those artists who have come from
abroad to study and work in Finland.

The festival will take place from the 10th to the 17th of March in several Helsinki
venues (all listed in the festival website: where you can also find detailed
information about programme and tickets), and boasts several very interesting
premiers, as for instance Kimmo Hakola’s
L’or d’Azur, Kaija Saariaho’s
cello concert Notes on the light, the Concerto for orchestra by Jukka Tiensuu. But this year at Musica
Nova there will be space also for modern dance with Kwaidan, composed by
Pehr Henrik Nordgren and
coreographed by Mia Malviniemi, and
for the series of Focus concerts featuring such artists as Matthew Whitthall, Paavo Heininen, Lauri Kilpiö and Perttu Haapanen.

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