Having won the World Championship for Accordion at the age of only sixteen, Finnish
accordionist Timo Kinnunen started his international career.
He works continuously as an accordion soloist and as a chamber musician worldwide
with over 50 concerts a year, performing contemporary, classical, and improvised
music. Kinnunen’s artist image and his virtuosity on the accordion have inspired
composers to create very interesting works for this instrument. Besides the concert
activity, Kinnunen has an international reputation for his innovative cultural and
Timo Kinnunen has premiered more than one hundred solo and chamber music works dedicated
to him and has cooperated with, for instance, composers Vinko Globokar, John Cage,
Astor Piazzolla, Alvin Curranand Jukka Tiensuu. He has recently premiered works
of such well-known composers as Hans-Joachim Hespos, Jan Sandström, Miklós Maros,
Jouni Kaipainen, Dimitris Andrikopoulos, Daping Qin, Uljas Pulkkis, Perttu Haapanen,
and Christina Athinodorou.
Over past seasons he has collaborated with various distinguished artists, orchestras,
choirs, and ensembles including singers Claron McFadden, Charlotte Riedijk, Phil
Minton, Ute Wassermann, Helena Juntunen, and the Ecio-European Contemporary Improvisation
Orchestra, the UMO Jazz Orchestra, the Oulu Symphony orchestra, the Karelia Philharmonic
Orchestra, the Mondriaan quartet, The Screaming Men, the Tempera Quartet, cimbalomist
Enikö Ginzery, percussionists Sabu Toyotzumi, Maurice de Martin, Michael Gould, sho-player
Naomi Sato, violinist Heleen Hulst, cellist Jörg Brinkmann, contrabasists Chris Dahlgren
and Matthias Bauer, pianists Iiro Rantala and Yoko Arai, guitarists John Russell
and Daniel Göritz, Erik Westberg´s vocal ensemble, dancer-choreographers Nadja Raszewski
and Aki Suzuki, conductors Marius Stravinsky, Jan Söderblom and Taco Kooistra, Terri
Cat´s Jungle Band, and the Camus Nova Ensemble.
After completing his studies in the Sibelius Academy, Timo Kinnunen continued his
studies with Mogens Ellegaard at The Royal Danish Academy of Music in Copenhagen
and with Hugo North in the University of Music Trossingen, Germany and in Jyväskylä
University. Timo Kinnunen also teaches classical accordion, improvisation, and new
chamber music at the Oulu Conservatory and at the Oulu University of Applied Sciences.
His many former accordion students are well-known artists in the international music
scene. Timo Kinnunen also teaches in universities and courses throughout Europe.
Kinnunen has enriched european cultural life through many projects. He was 22 years
old when he founded with composer Jukka Tiensuu the international festival and summer
academy ATime of Music in his native town Viitasaari. The festival is one of the
world's foremost festivals of new music. In the nineties he created and led an international
festival named OULULUO, which concentrated on a dialog between art and technology.
Currently, Timo Kinnunen works also as an artistic director for Poison City Festival,
Cultura Creativa and the International PanAccordion composition contest.