Maria Kalaniemi

(born in 1964 in Finland), composer and accordionist. She was classically trained, but has become manly a folk musician having played this music from childhood. Classical music studies and also at the folk music department of the Sibelius Academy. She has been involved with may groups: Niekku, formed during the years at the Sibelius Academy, Aldargaz, also formed at the Sibelius Academy, a duo consisting of her and Timo Alakotila, that recorded the album Ambra, Maria Kalaniemi Trio, extending the duo with Olli Varis. Both the duo and the trio plays traditional tunes, popular Finnish tunes from about mid 20th century as well as new material by Kalaniemi and Alakotila. She has also worked and recorded with the Swedish fiddler Sven Ahlbäck, the popular Finnish singer Katri Helena, singer/actor/flautist Vesa-Matti Loiri, Finnish accordionist Kimmo Pohjonen and many others. In 2004, she was the special guest at a concert in London with the BBC Concert Orchestra and the Finnish fiddler group JPP playing duets with Timo Alakotila, plus a piece by Alakotila for accordion, orchestra and JPP written for this occasion. Maria has released many albums with many ensembles including the international accordion collective Accordion Tribe. She has toured and performed throughout Europe, USA, Canada and Japan. Currently she teaches at the Sibelius Academy Folk Music Department.
Recordings: Ahma, 2001 (Rockadillo Records); Bellow Poetry, 2006 (Alula Records); Planet Squeezebox, 1995 Ellipsis Arts); Åkerö, album released December 2011, duo album with Timo Alakotila; Vilda Rosor Wild Roses album, a collection of Finnish-Swedish songs, was released in Finland in October 2010.

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Anna-Mari Kähärä

(born in 1963). Finnish composer, singer and pianist. She studied at Viitasaari Music School, violin and piano, Jyväskylä Conservatory, piano, Kuopio Conservatory, piano, Pop & Jazz Conservatory, voice and piano, at Sibelius Academy/Jazz Department, voice and piano. She is best known with the vocal group How Many Sister and etno jazz Zeta Boo.
Selected works: For Orchestra: Ikävä Omia Maita, composition and arrangements for symphony orchestra, eg. for How Many Sisters 2004-2012+(recording); ¿Hablas Usted espanol? Umo Big Band; Ask me no more vocal series for soprano and string orchestra. For Symphony orchestra: So this love: piano, soprano and string orchestra; Anna-Mari Kähärä Orchestra: Anna-Mari Kähärä Orchestra 2005; with ZetaBoo band ZetaBoo, 1997; MediZine, 2000; OuteRail, 2007.
Awards: Art Finland prize, 2002; Finnish Jazz Federation Yrjö reward, 2002; Nominee for Jazz Emma prize, 2005.


Liris Kaasinen

(born in 1995, in Liperi, Finland, resident in Espoo, Finland), composer. She studied composing as a secondary subject in Espoo Music Institute from 2009 to 2010 with the teacher Sebastian Fagerlund, and from 2010 to the present with the teacher Riikka Talvitie. In 2013 she participated in the Concert, at Musica Nova Festival in Helsinki. She obtained the second place in Uuno Klami, competition for young composers.
Selected works: In the night, 2009, for musical saw and string quartet, performed at Kuhmo Cahmber Music Festival; Kallio, 2010 for two French horns and piano performed at Festariti (festival) in Riga, Latvia;
Surupuu, 2011 for two French horns and string orchestra; Ilmatar, 2011 for soprano, violin and piano; Saule 2011 for two violins, French horn, violoncello and piano, performed at at Festariti (festival) in Riga, Latvia; A game of Flame, 2012 for two violins; Aavekell, 2013, Fantasia for violin and piano; A Race, 2007, for a string orchestra; Raindrops, 2010, for one or two kantele; Northern Lights, 2010, for a female vocal quartet.

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