Maija Kauhanen esiintyy.
Maija Kauhanen. Kuva: Maarit Kytöharju.

Maija Kauhanen

Su 26.5.2024 13.30-14.30
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Emma-award-winning Maija Kauhanen is one of Finland’s leading folk musicians in terms of international success. She is known as a one-woman powerhouse whose performances combine strong vocals with an enchantingly unique style of music and performance.

Her music is influenced by folk music, pop and cinematic music. Her songs tell stories about the space and boundaries of people and about the fates of different women. Her songs deal with the challenges of human relationships but also with joy, consolation and hope.

Kauhanen’s performances feature a variety of instruments, but she specialises in the 23-string Saarijärven kantele and the traditional way of playing it with a tiny wooden stick as a pick. She is continuously developing new playing techniques. Kauhanen produces her hypnotic melodies with kanteles built by her father, luthier Kari Kauhanen.

Kauhanen has performed live around the world in more than 30 countries including Colombia and Hong Kong. In 2023, she won the Nordic Council Music Prize for her impressive international solo career. She has also received awards in Finland: in 2018 she won the Best Ethno Album in 2017 for her Raivopyörä (Nordic Notes, 2017). She released her second album, Menneet (Nordic Notes), in 2022. In addition to her solo career, Kauhanen is also a member of the electro folk band Okra Playground.

“As an artist travelling around the world, I’ve experienced in a very concrete manner how music at best unites people from different cultures across the borders. These encounters have bolstered my goal as an artist to strive for an equal world where human rights are respected. My lyrics have an emphasis on women’s stories in particular – stories that provide a voice for those who’ve been silenced. I believe that the power of music and art can make us part of a change towards a better world.”

Maija Kauhanen
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