On 11 October 2019, Joensuu Conservatoire hosted a concert of the Kantele Ensemble from Petrozavodsk. The Ensemble, together with Finnish kantele players Minna Raskinen and Hanna Ryynänen, presented their new Finnish-Russian kantele music programme. This event is a result of the cross-border cooperation project “Kantele Goes Global,” funded by the Karelia CBC Programme (http://kareliacbc.fi/index.php/en). The new music programme has combined kantele’s traditional melodies and songs with innovative compositions belonging to contemporary music genres. It has been developed at Finnish-Russian music labs, held in Petrozavodsk and Kuhmo earlier this year.
The project’s overall aims are to stimulate diversification of kantele music repertoire, to develop cross-border cooperation between Finnish and Russian kantele players and to promote kantele music on the global stage. At the Karelian Institute, Professor Pekka Suutari and Dr. Dmitry Zimin are responsible for three tasks in this project: (1) a comparative study of international experiences in ethnic music promotion; (2) research on new cultural niches for kantele music; and (3) preparation of an International Kantele Promotion Action Plan for 2021-2030. The project will continue until September 2021.