The hottest Kuhmo Chamber Music Festival on record ended on Saturday 28 July, having lasted more than two weeks. The festival reached its audience target, with ticket sales the same as last year. There were 32,711 seats sold, and five concerts sold out entirely.

The theme of the festival this year was The Merchants of Dreams. It had begun with Baroque music and a children’s opera and ended with a jazz arrangement of the Nutcracker Suite, while in between there was a whole range of music from Bach to Piazzolla. The main emphasis was on small ensembles, but the festival had also catered for lovers of orchestral music and opera.

This year there were more than 150 performers appearing at Kuhmo Chamber Music, with almost 100 events. With no major cancellations, the entire festival went according to plan.

[b]A nostalgic anniversary[/b]

Next year will be Kuhmo Chamber Music’s 50th anniversary, and the programme will clearly reflect this. Artistic Director Vladimir Mendelssohn says that the main theme of the festival is to be nostalgia.

Not limited to the festival’s own history, though. He explains that, although the theme is nostalgia, the festival will not be just looking back, but into the future too. Plenty of first performances are on the agenda.

Most of the concerts next year will take place in the Kuhmo Arts Centre. The planning of the programme has been affected by the threatened demolition of Kontio School, therefore eliminating that as a venue. The school hall, which is close to the Arts Centre, has served as one of the festival’s main concert venues since 1974. However, the hall in the newly completed Tuupala School is being considered as a replacement. This summer a children’s opera and one concert were tried out there, and the acoustics were found to be viable.

The first Kuhmo Chamber Music Festival was in 1970. What started as a small event has grown into Finland’s biggest celebration of chamber music. In terms of what is puts on from morning to night in just two weeks, internationally speaking it is virtually unique.

More information:
Kuhmo Chamber Music, tel. +358 8 652 0936