Blog / WATCH: Pekka Kuusisto

WATCH: Pekka Kuusisto

Posted on 11 Jan 2016 by Leo Messias

Finnish maverick violinist Pekka Kuusisto has a penchant for turning things on their head, playfully interpreting songs through his unique poetic sensibility, as though he were hearing them for the first time.

His collaborations with alt-classical hero and friend Nico Muhly, his juggling-violin duo with Jay Gilligan, winning the prestigious Sibelius competition back in 95 - we take a look at some of his more far-reaching musical pursuits ahead of his Murder & Redemption tour.

Onstage with Nico Muhly, Pekka puts a minimalist/alt-folk twist to a playful tradional Finnish song - featuring piano and electric violin, loops and voice.

Teams up with juggler Jay Gilligan in an idiosyncratic festival performance.

Provides the soundtrack for Finnish life in winter, including a performance of Vivaldi’s Winter (from minute 6:09).

Wins the prestigious International Jean Sibelius Violin Competition in 1995.

And takes on Sibelius' playful - and marginally less virtuosic - Water Droplets.

Transforms the violin into a synth capable of the most exquisite sci-fi soundscapes in Whales - a collaboration with accordionist Johanna Juhola. 

Performs Sebastian Fagerlund’s Violin Concerto Darkness in Light, written specially for him.


2 - 14 February 2017
Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Melbourne, Newcastle and Sydney.

Pekka Kuusisto Director & Violin
Sam Amidon Voice & Banjo

 (arr. Muhly) Kedron
JANÁČEK (arr. strings) String Quartet No.1 ‘Kreutzer Sonata’: I. Adagio con moto
TRAD. (arr. Muhly) Way Go Lily
JANÁČEK (arr. strings) String Quartet No.1 ‘Kreutzer Sonata’: II. Con moto
TRAD. (arr. Muhly) Wild Bill Jones
JANÁČEK (arr. strings) String Quartet No.1 ‘Kreutzer Sonata’: III. Con moto – Vivace – Andante – Tempo I
TRAD. (arr. Muhly) How Come That Blood
JANÁČEK (arr. strings) String Quartet No.1 ‘Kreutzer Sonata’: IV. Con moto
TRAD. The Redemption Set
ADAMS, JOHN Shaker Loops: I. Shaking and trembling
BRACKETT Traditional Shaker hymn: Simple Gifts
ADAMS, JOHN Shaker Loops: II. Hymning slews, III. Loops and verses, IV. A final shaking