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Time of Music is approaching

London Sinfonietta and Hans Werner Henze’s Voices, Riot Ensemble’s concert in the dark, Joan La Barbara and John Cage – these and many other top moments you will experience at Viitasaari, Finland, from 4th to 9th of July. There is only a week left until the start of the Time of Music festival, so now is the right time to buy tickets for unique experiences.

The festival starts with London Sinfonietta‘s anticipated visit on 4th–5th of July. The world-famous contemporary music group is visiting Finland for the first time in 30 years, and  only  Viitasaari! The programme features German Hans Werner Henze’s song cycle Voices, dealing with many permanently timely topics in its socially charged songs. The two-concert entity will be completed with world premieres that boldly take a stand on environmental issues and other challenges of our time.

The 21st Century Voices concerts feature two top soloists, the Dutch mezzosoprano Carina Vinke and the American tenor Peter Tantsits. Carina Vinke’s wide repertoire ranges from baroque to contemporary music, and she has performed a substantial amount of music by Gustav Mahler, among others. Peter Tantsits, on the other hand, has conquered the world’s concert halls and opera stages, including the Berliner Philharmonie and La Scala in Milan, and has also performed in Finland with, among others, the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra. The concerts are conducted by conductor Christian Karlsen. Finnish Broadcasting Company’s YLE Radio 1 will record the concerts for later broadcast.

This year’s theme, Voices and Spaces, also brings many other interesting events to Time of Music. On Saturday 8th of July, the British Riot Ensemble performs a concert in a completely dark concert hall at Viitasaari Areena. The unique experience creates a strong contrast to the bright Finnish summer evening.

The American composer-vocalist Joan La Barbara is a virtuosic user of human voice, whose performances combine traditional vocal technique with special effects such as sighs, screams and whispers. In addition to her own music, La Barbara performs the works of her longtime colleague John Cage at Viitasaari. A photo exhibition commemorating Cage’s visit to Viitasaari in 1983 will also be seen during the festival.

John Cage’s music is also on the program, for example, on Friday 7th of July, when Riot Ensemble performs Lecture on the Weather, a work by Cage that takes a stand on climate change. The same concert also includes the premiere of Wheel of Fortune by Tuomas Kettunen, which is a joint commission by Time of Music and the Dutch Gaudeamus Festival.

The Canadian string quartet Quatuor Bozzini and the Swedish ensemble Norrbotten NEO will also visit Time of Music, and they will be heard in several concerts during the festival.

In addition to the concerts, there are interesting discussions with the artists on offer during the festival. Held in collaboration with the city of Viitasaari, the opening seminar Influential Voices on 4th of July will consider the role of music and arts as social influencers. The seminar will be held mainly in Finnish. The guest composer of the summer, Australian Liza Lim, will discuss her own music with our artistic director Johan Tallgren after her composition concert on Friday 7th of July. On the other hand, John Cage’s visit and music will be discussed in the photo exhibition on Sunday 9 July. Access to these and other events of the discussion programme is free. You can find the entire programme on our website.

Tickets to Time of Music are on sale at Lippupiste. In addition to individual tickets, one can buy a festival pass covering the entire festival as well as day tickets at bargain prices. Check out the entire programme on our website at, and buy tickets from Lippupiste’s online store. Welcome to Viitasaari from 4th to 9th of July!


Communications coordinator Sampsa Heiniö, +358 40 671 2977

Artistic director Johan Tallgren,, +358 40 742 6345