Last concert before the next war?

Last concert before the next war?


norman lebrecht

August 31, 2014

A group of artists from the Baltic and former Soviet states have gathered in Helsinki this afternoon to play out their differences.

Here’s their manifesto:

We have decided to get together to remind each other that the only sustainable way to solve our conflicts is by working together. This is a statement on behalf of all people and peaceful development. 

We are facing huge shared challenges, so huge that we really do not need them to be further complicated by military encounters. If we want a chance to meet these challenges, we have to decide – today – to accept our differences. Not even our biggest disagreements justify abandoning peaceful, constructive practice. 

Our ensemble of players is gathered from many countries. There are also strong differences of opinion amongst us. Still, confronting our common goal, a successful musical performance, we are perfectly capable of focusing on working together. We are proof of people’s desire to do good and to create beauty. This time we are not here to solve our problems, but to build common ground on which to face them. 

Let us focus on giving the future a chance.


The concert is live-streamed here.

anna-liisa bezrodny




These are the players:

Participating artists

Aalto-Setälä Kerttu flute
Ahtinen Timo double bass
Ali-Mattila Teppo violin
Antola Iida soprano
Anttila Martti tenor
Batiashvili Lisa violin
Bezrodny Anna Liisa violin
Binder David trombone
Brostek Magdalena cello
Bugnot Thomas trumpet
Buinovschi Ion violin
Büchert Mads timpanist / percussionist
Chousovskii Anton violin
Coleman Amelia english horn / oboe
Dmitri Ermilov trumpet
Dmitrjev Aleksei bassoon
Eerola Inka violin
Ernesaks Greta cello
Franzon Johanna violin
Frostén Harri violin
Gil Shaked Agababa clarinet
Gorkun-Silén Iryna flute
Grans Peter double bass
Grans Pontus double bass
Gricius Tomas trumpet
Gustafsson Jan-Erik cello
Haikola Anna-Leena violin
Heikinheimo Siljamari violin
Helander Jaani cello
Hendricks Barbara vocal
Hoffström Anna violin
Hohti Hanna viola
Hohti Markus cello
Holmström Emil piano
Horttana Helmi violin
Hurttia Linnea violin
Hyväkkö Jarmo clarinet
Indermühle Nicolas tuba
Itoh Eri violin
Ivars Mikko cello
Juris Dani bass
Juutilainen Hanna flute
Juvonen Sirpa viola
Jämsä Henna clarinet
Kares Jenny flute/piccolo
Kaukola Ritva viola
Kauppinen Maiju violin
Kilpeläinen Atte viola
Kitaeva Maria violin
Kivistö Jenni violin
Kivivuori Kimmo viola
Klas Eri conductor
Koistinen Arto viola
Koivisto Juha-Pekka violin
Komsi Nuppu violin
Koponen Matti violin
Koskimies Minna piano
Kotka John trombone
Kumela Petri guitar
Kupiainen Heini piano
Kuusava Kati violin
Kuusisto Pekka violin
Kärnä Noora contrabassoon
Laivuori Jaakko viola
Lake Carly french horn
Larionov Oleg viola
Latvala Tero violin
Lehikoinen Lotte alto
Lehto Tuomas cello
Lehtola Jarno tenor
Luolajan-Mikkola Mikko-Ville violin
Maalismaa Eriikka violin
Maijala Lilli viola
Malmivaara Paula oboe
Mattila Elina cello
Mellberg Niklas teorbi
Murdvee Mikk violin
Mussafia Barbara cello
Mäkinen Pasi trombone
Nikula Heikki bassclarinet
Nironen Sirja cello
Nisonen Tanja french horn
Pajuoja Hannu french horn
Palola Erkki violin
Parviainen Hanna violin
Pensola Minna violin
Podyachev Ivan viola
Pulkamo Kaisa viola
Raikas Johannes contrabass
Rantanen Simo trumpet
Raulamo Jaakko cello
Resjan Valeria piano
Reskalenko Olga viola
Rintamäki Sirkku mezzosopraano
Rinta-Rahko Anna double bass
Ristiluoma Riitta-Liisa viola
Rouvali Santtu-Matias conductor
Ruskeepää Tuomas french horn
Saarikoski Mauri violin
Salminen Annu french horn
Sarantola Markus viola
Schweckendiek Nils conductor
Segerstam Leif conductor
Severeide Päivi harp
Silén Sebastian violin
Stasevska Dalia viola / conductor
Stasevski Lukas cello
Sundroos Pia violin
Suomela Soineli oboe / french horn
Suoranta Antti timp / perc
Söderblom Jan violin / conductor
Takacs Zoltan violin
Tikkanen Antti violin
Tollet Susanna alto
van Treeck Outi flute/piccolo
Unkari Erja violin
Vehmanen Heikki viola
Vilhjámsson Ari violin
Viitala Jussi cello
Vilkman Camilla viola
Virtanen Sini violin
Vähälä Anna violin
Wikström Tomi timp / perc
Willey Pietari timp / perc
Ylivuori Sakari bass
Åström-Tiula Annemarie violin



  • Neil McGowan says:

    And indeed, there has never been any need for a militarisation of this situation. The rhetoric for war is coming primarily from the organisations who have most to gain (territorially, materially and financially) from beginning one.

    • Christy says:

      You understand over 1000 Ukrainian soldiers have already been killed and thousands are internally and externally displaced, with at least 200 Russian tanks involved, right? I believe it is too late to worry about “starting” a war, or talking about “rhetoric.”

      • Neil McGowan says:

        I understand that the populations of Donetsk (more than 1 million people) and Lugansk, not to mention the smaller towns and villages of E Ukraine have been strafed and shelled out of their homes, in an “ethnic cleansing” campaign led by Ukrainian bandit Kolomoisky. Kolomoisky isn’t leading the regular Ukrainian army – but instead a vigilante army raised from the ranks of the neo-Nazi group “Pravy Sektor”. They’ve been given uniforms, guns and salaries by the government, and retitled “The National Guard”.

        You’d think that if there “200 Russian tanks”, someone would have seen them or photographed them? But they remain a figment of the imagination of the Ukrainian President and his US-imposed PM, Mr Yatsenyuk. In other words – a lie.

        In your table-thumping anger, “Christy”, I wonder if you have the slightest sympathy for the actual people of Ukraine?

        Because you seem to be cloning the NATO talking-points of Barack Obama and Frau Merkel – with little knowledge (or care) of what’s happening in Ukraine.

    • Greg Hlatky says:

      Soon Putin’s Internet boiler room will be accusing Polish “bandits” of attacking a radio tower.

  • Christy says:

    The reality is that as long as people like “Neil” exist, no concerts will make any difference regarding the actual war, and that is horribly sad. However, these events will help create further positive relationships between many countries in Central Europe, and that’s a good and very positive thing for the future.

    Ukraine, Poland, the Baltics, Moldova, Bulgaria, and even countries like Finland, have a shared history and can make positive contributions to the continent, but only if they work together, even on issues where they find disagreement. Music is one of the best conduits for this.