Distinguished Finnish cellist Anssi Karttunen draws inspiration from his seminal Creative Dialogue workshop for young composers and performers where they collaborate to solve musical problems and create pieces together.

Featuring world premieres for solo cello, The Five Dialogues (2015) emphasizes the idea of experimentation and improvisation. The work is the direct result of the organic discourse and exchange of ideas – either sound, text, or a concept – exchanged between Karttunen and the five young composers chosen for this concert.

The program also includes a group of Finnish and Argentine tangos for three cellos – transcribed by Karttunen in consultation with Argentinian composer Pablo Ortiz – that explore the unique dialogue between the traditions of both styles of tango and its performers.

The five composers for this concert – Taylor Brook, Zosha di Castri, Bryan Jacobs, Yoshiaki Onishi, and Nina Young – were chosen for the Creative Dialogue by Columbia University. The two cellists playing alongside Karttunen are Caroline Stinson, selected by the Juilliard School of Music, and Joann Whang, a student of Yale University and The Royal Conservatoire in The Hague.

About Anssi Karttunen

Anssi Karttunen is one of the most reputable and versatile musicians of classical music today. Exceedingly active both as a soloist and chamber musician, his repertoire covers all of the standard works for cello, as well as a myriad of forgotten masterpieces and his own arrangements. He plays on modern, classical, and baroque cellos, as well as the violoncello piccolo.

Karttunen is a passionate advocate for contemporary music. He has performed over 135 world premieres, collaborating with such composers as Magnus Lindberg, Kaija Saariaho, Rolf Wallin, Luca Francesconi, and Tan Dun. An astounding 27 concertos have been written for him; he premiered Magnus Lindberg’s First Concerto with the Orchestre de Paris and Second Concerto with the Los Angeles Philharmoni; Esa-Pekka Salonen’s Mania with London Sinfonietta; Martin Matalon’s cello concerto with the Orchestre National de France; Rest (2003) with the RAI Torino; and Kaija Saariaho’s Notes on Light (2006) with the Boston Symphony Orchestra.

Karttunen has worked with world-renowned orchestras such as the Philadelphia Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra, BBC Symphony, Orchestre National de France, NHK Orchestra, Tokyo Metropolitan Orchestra, Southwest German Radio Symphony Orchestra, Munich Philharmonic, Ensemble Modern, Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, Residentie Orchestra, Danish National Radio Symphony Orchestra, Oslo Philharmonic, RAI Torino, Luxembourg Philharmonic Orchestra, Helsinki Philharmonic, Avanti! Chamber Orchestra, and many more. He also performs regularly as soloist and chamber musician at Europe’s most important music festivals, including Edinburgh, Salzburg, Lockenhaus, Spoleto, Berlin, Venice, Montpellier, Strasbourg, and Helsinki. His Zebra Trio, with violinist Ernst Kovacic and violist Steven Dann, performs concerts on both sides of the Atlantic. Dos Coyotes, his duo with Magnus Lindberg, has performed all over the globe.

Karttunen studied with Erkki Rautio, William Pleeth, Jacqueline du Pré, and Tibor de Machula, among others. From 1999 until 2005 he was principal cellist with the London Sinfonietta. Between 1994 and 1998, he was the Artistic Director of the Avanti! Chamber Orchestra and the Suvisoitto Festival in Porvoo, Finland. Having directed the Helsinki Biennale in 1995, he has been Artistic Director of its successor, the Musica Nova festival, since fall 2013.

Karttunen frequently teaches masterclasses, for example in 2012 together with Kaija Saariaho at Carnegie Hall, at the 2012 Cello Biennial Amsterdam, and regularly since 2008 at the workshop series Creative Dialogue, offered in collaboration with the Sibelius Academy in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
He plays on a Francesco Ruggeri cello circa 1670.



—Anssi Karttunen— Image by Irmeli Jung.

THU – 10-29-2015 – 7:30 PM
$25 ($20 ASF Members)