Kuhmo Chamber Music has concerts all year round.

spring concert in helsinki

Thursday 4th of May at 18
Balder Hall (address: Aleksanterinkatu 12)


Outi Tarkiainen (1985–):
Until the Stone Splits (Kunnes kivi halkeaa, 2008)

Antti Tikkanen, violin

Zoltán Kodály (1882–1967):
Allegro molto vivace from Solo Cello Sonata in B minor, Op. 8 (1915)                 

Tuomas Lehto, cello

Jouni Kaipainen (1956–2015):
Piano Trio No. 2, Op. 102 ‘…nous hauki kuusen latvukseen…’ (‘…the pike rose to the spruce’s crone…’ 2014)        

Minna Pensola, violin
Tuomas Lehto, cello
Heini Kärkkäinen, piano


Kelly-Marie Murphy (1964–):
Give Me Phoenix Wings To Fly (1997)                     

Antti Tikkanen, violin
Tuomas Lehto, cello
Heini Kärkkäinen, piano

Jean Sibelius (1865–1957):
Five pieces Op. 75 ‘Tree cycle’ (1914–1919)                                             
När rönnen blommar (When The Rowan Blossoms)
Den ensamma furan (Grave)
Björken (The Birch)
Granen (The Spruce)

Heini Kärkkäinen, piano

Toivo Kärki (1915–1992):
Siks’ oon mä suruinen (I am sad to think of you now, 1944, arr. Minna Pensola)                               

Minna Pensola, violin and singing
Antti Tikkanen, violin
Tuomas Lehto, cello


Heini Kärkkäinen, piano

Heini Kärkkäinen studied piano at the Sibelius Academy under Liisa Pohjola and continued her studies with Ralf Gothóni and Jacques Rouvier, among others. She won the Ilmari Hannikainen Piano Competition in 1984 and two years later she came second in the Maj Lind Piano Competition. She has performed as soloist with numerous Finnish orchestras and has also played chamber music extensively in Europe and the United States. Kärkkäinen has made several prize-winning recordings. For example, her disc of music by Saint-Saëns was British BBC Music Magazine’s disc of the month in March 2007, and Gramophone Magazine included it in its list of recommended recordings.

Along with her solo career, Heini Kärkkäinen is also senior teacher of piano at Tampere University of Applied Sciences since 2010.

In 2017 she founded a new, international chamber music festival in Tampere. The festival combines music, art, science, wellbeing and dance.

Tuomas Lehto, cello

Tuomas Lehto is a busy musician, playing solo parts and chamber music all over the world, as well as at many festivals. He is 1st solo cellist with the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, cellist with the New Helsinki Quartet, a member of the Total Cello Ensemble, and the Artistic Director of the KuruFest festival. He began cello lessons at the age of three under Anja Maja. In 2000 he went on to study at the Sibelius Academy, first with Hannu Kiiski and later with Marko Ylönen and Jan-Erik Gustafsson. From 2007 to 2008 he studied in Stockholm under Torleif Thedéen. Lehto has made radio recordings for Finnish radio and recorded widely as a soloist and a member of various ensembles. He has given first performances of several works, including Ville Matveyev’s cello concerto. He also achieved success in the Turku Cello Competition in 2006.

Minna Pensola, violin

Violinist Minna Pensola is known as an intense performer, invigorating soloist and energetic orchestra leader. As an inspiring fellow musician and teacher she is a regular guest at many international chamber music festivals. Pensola plays in the string quartet Meta4 and has appeared as soloist with almost all the Finnish orchestras. In 2008 Pensola founded the Klasariklubi in Helsinki, which combines the leisurely atmosphere of a bar with an opportunity to hear live classical music. She also established the PuKama chamber music association, a joint project between her and her husband, the violinist Antti Tikkanen, one intended to liven up the chamber music scene in the Finnish capital.

Minna Pensola teaches violin at the Sibelius Academy and was Artistic Director of the Sysmän Suvisoitto festival from 2006 to 2012. She attended the Zurich Music Academy and the European Chamber Music Academy. Here main teachers have included Jerzy Blaszkiewicz, Leonid Mordkovich, Kaija Saarikettu, Ana Chumachenko, Josef Rissin and Hatto Beyrle.

Minna Pensola’s instrument is a Carlo Bergonzi violin from 1732, owned by the Signe and Ane Gyllenberg Foundation.

Offstage the swinging up-tempo is maintained by two daughters and two cats.

In October of 2021 Pensola and her husband Antti Tikkanen were chosen as Kuhmo Chamber Music’s new artistic directors.

Antti Tikkanen, viulu

Antti Tikkanen is originally from Oulainen, Finland, though he later settled in Helsinki. He began playing the violin at the age of seven. He then went on to the Sibelius Academy, studying under Lajos Garam initially, and then Mi-kyung Lee. He also studied under Zinaida Gilels and Pavel Vernikov as well as learning baroque violin with Kreeta-Maria Kentala. At the ECMA (European Chamber Music Academy) his main teachers were Hatto Beyerle and Johannes Meissl.

As a member of the Meta4 Quartet, Tikkanen plays chamber music, but has also performed as a soloist with the principal Finnish orchestras. He organised the Kamari Soi! event in Oulu, and in his present city of residence he and his wife, violinist Minna Pensola, run a project known as the PuKama chamber music association in central Helsinki, which organises concerts throughout the year. Antti Tikkanen was Artistic Director of the Finnish Baroque Orchestra from 2014 until 2017.

He has available to him a Stradivari ‘ex-Berglund’ owned by the Finnish Cultural Foundation.

In October of 2021 Tikkanen and his wife Minna Pensola were chosen as Kuhmo Chamber Music’s new artistic directors.


The duration of the concert is 2 hours, including intermission. Tickets: 30/25 euros (the lower price is for persons aged 20 or under, students and the unemployed).

Advance ticket bookings: Kuhmo Chamber Music, tel. +358 40 169 6509. Ticket sales at the concert venue one hour before the concert. Tickets can also be bought before the concert in advance from the festival’s internet sale site ticket.kuhmofestival.fi.


The concert café will be open an hour before the concert and during the intermission.


The Balder Hall is located on the 3rd floor and unfortunately there is no elevator in this 200 year old building.

The Kuhmo Chamber Music year-round concerts are sponsored by OP Kuhmo, OP Kainuu, OP Ylä-Kainuu and OP Paltamo.