Blog / Meet: Pekka Kuusisto

Meet: Pekka Kuusisto

Posted on 13 Jan 2016 by Leo Messias

Pekka Kuusisto image by Tanja Ahola

“Pekka Kuusisto…surely has the most personal sound of any classical violinist now alive”
The Telegraph (UK)

Finnish fiddler and violinist, Pekka Kuusisto, makes his Western Australia debut as ACO Collective Artistic Director with The Four Seasons.

Richard Tognetti first met and heard Pekka shortly after his historic win at the International Jean Sibelius Violin Competition in 1995. He was the first Finn to win the competition which is one of the top three in the world. Pekka was subsequently invited to direct the ACO and became a part of the collective consciousness of the Orchestra.

Richard Tognetti says, “Pekka has a calling to turn things on their head. A musical insight that is as disturbing as it is compelling. He's a musician for the new world and, therefore, his appointment to the newly branded ACO Collective couldn't be bettered. “

Video: Pekka performs with a Finnish folk song with Nico Muhly. 

Boundary-breaking, engaging, and exquisitely talented,  Pekka performs as a classical soloist, directs ensembles from the violin, and runs his own festival (Meidän Festivaali) where he combines different art forms within one concert programme -  dance, electronics and light installations, gastronomy and film all feature alongside performances of standard and contemporary repertoire. His highly individualistic career also sees him playing jazz, rock, and improvising electronic music.

"I eagerly anticipate how he will evolve new forms from ancient traditions. This is a big appointment for the ACO and the future of music in Australia, and we confidently entrust Pekka with these responsibilities." says Richard Tognetti.  

Pekka (far left) curates and performs at Meidän Festivaali (Our Festival), Finland. Image: Maarit Kytöharju.
Along with works from Beethoven and Sibelius, Kuusisto  leads the ACO Collective through some of the most inventive compositions from the 21st century including  innovators in  contemporary classical such as Björk and Philip Glass collaborator Nico Muhly, and The National's guitarist Bryce Dessner.

The Four Seasons

Pekka Kuusisto Director & Violin
ACO Collective

29 Apr-8 May
Albany, Manjimup, Margaret River, Bunbury, Mandurah, Geraldton

VIVALDI The Four Seasons
PIAZZOLLA (arr. Desyatnikov) The Four Seasons of Buenos Aires (Estaciones Porteñas)
PHILIP GLASS Violin Concerto No.2 ‘The American Four Seasons’