Seppo Kimanen’s last festival in Kauniainen exceeded all expectations

16.11.2016 hrs 13:27
With 25 concerts and 100 artists Kauniainen Music Festival 2016 exceeded all expectations. The record audience enjoyed high quality concerts and presentations. Furthermore, matinees were organized for about 1000 children and young people.

The retiring artistic director, of the Kauniainen Music Festival, Seppo Kimanen had designed a festival with high ambition and broad scope. The festival became a final fanfare to his career as a Festival Director, a career that lasted for almost half a century.

25 artists within the festival gathered on Saturday evening to a solemn gala concert named Farewell Seppo and Welcome Jan to perform a brilliant musical firework. Profound, pleasant, melancholic, merry and wise words were heard between musical performances. The concert started with a trumpet fanfare played by Pasi Pirinen and his three students. Thereafter the stage were taken by, each on their turn, Jaakko Kuusisto and Paavali Jumppanen, Kamus quartet, Pia Freund and Jan Söderblom, Borea quartet, Sami Junnonen and Marko Hilpo, Senja Rummukainen and Klaus Mäkelä, Juhani Lagerspetz as well as  the French quartet Arod.

Towards the end of the concert, Seppo Kimanen symbolically handed over the token baton to the new artistic director Jan Söderblom. Söderblom thanked and promised to continue on the chosen path with string quartets in the focus.

The New Pavilion Chamber Music Hall was named Seppo Kimanen Hall

Towards the end of the concert, Seppo Kimanen was surprised with an additional programme event. Before the final music performance, the Mayor of the City of Kauniainen as well as the Chairman of the Board of the Association of the Kauniainen Music Festival entered the stage and handed over a brass plaque with the text: Seppo Kimanen –salen / Seppo Kimanen –Sali (Seppo Kimanen Hall in English). The plaque was fixed to the wall of the concert hall.

Mayor Masar: ”The City of Kauniainen wish, to thank and honour Seppo Kimanen for the high quality and important work that he has done during the last seven years in Kauniainen as well as for his achievements during his long career. He has raised Kauniainen and the New Pavilion to the cultural chart both in the capital metropolitan area as well as in the other parts of the country.” Mayor Masar continued:” Kauniainen Music Festival is a fine continuation for the long cultural tradition of the city.”

Chairman Kurtén: ”We have had close collaboration with Seppo during the last seven years. We will remember him as an exceptionally capable artistic director and as a humble man who has a great heart and high degree of wisdom.”

Seppo Kimanen

Professor and cellist, Seppo Kimanen is one of the internationally most well-known musical personalities of in Finland. In 1970, he founded Kuhmo Chamber Music Festival, one of the most reputed and most significant chamber music festivals in the world. He acted as the artistic director of the festival for 35 years.  Mr. Kimanen has founded and directed festivals for almost half a century. Mr. Kimanen is a cellist as well a chamber musician. Among other things he has played in the Jean Sibelius quartet. Mr. Kimanen’s contribution for to classical music, both in Finland and internationally is most remarkable. Directly or indirectly he has touched hundreds of thousands of people generating well-being and moments of peace in a hectic world. In addition to making music, he Seppo writes, lectures, takes photographs, plays tennis, studies Japanese and spends time with his grandchildren. This year sees the end of Mr. Kimanen’s tenure as the Artistic Director of the Kauniainen Music Festival, a festival he founded in 2010.


Jessica Jensen, Executive Director, jessica.jensen (at), ph. +358 (0)50 585 3270

Jessica Jensen