Kreeta-Julia Heikkilä, violin
Kreeta-Julia Heikkilä is known as an energetic, dynamic, and diverse violinist, who is frequently invited to perform internationally as a soloist, chamber musician, and concertmaster. Since 2017, she has performed as artistic director and violinist at the Helsinki Chamber Music Festival. As a recognized concertmaster, she has served as the concertmaster of Vaasa City Orchestra (2012), the Danish National Chamber Orchestra (2013-) and the Oulu Symphony Orchestra (2015). Heikkilä appears annually as a soloist and chamber musician in many international festivals in Europe, USA, South Korea, and Russia. She has been a prize-winner at national and international violin and chamber music competitions, and a winner of numerous awards, including the prestigious Pro Musica and Nordea awards.
Laura Vikman, violin
In addition to her orchestral career as leader of the FRSO’s second violins, Laura Vikman is a chamber musician, soloist and teacher. She studied at the Sibelius Academy, the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna and the Cologne University of Music, and before taking up her present post in the FRSO in 2013 spent ten years as the or-chestra’s co-principal. Winner of the second prize in the national Kuopio Violin Competition, Laura Vikman was also awarded the corresponding prize in the Leipzig J. S. Bach Competition. In Florence, she was the winner of the same prize in the Vittorio 5Gui Chamber Music Competition with pianist Marianna Shirinyan.
Jakob Dingstad, viola
Norwegian viola player Jakob Dingstad was appointed as the principal viola in the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra in 2017. The same year, he performed Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante as the soloist of his orchestra. He has also worked as the section leader at the Australian Chamber Orchestra, at the Savonlinna Opera Festival, the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Lahti Symphony, and the Tapiola Sinfonietta. Dingstad studied at the Barratt Due Institute of Music and the Norwegian Academy of Music in Oslo and completed his master’s degree with professor Lars Anders Tomter in 2017.
Jaani Helander, cello
Jaani Helander graduated from the Sibelius Academy in 2013 after studying with Martti Rousi and has been a member of the Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra since then. Helander was awarded second prize at the Turku Cello Competition in 2010 and 1st prize in the string instrument competition at the ISA Festival in Austria the same year. As a chamber musician, Helander has performed at various festivals in Finland as well as at the iPalpiti festival in Los Angeles and at the Nafplion festival in Greece. He is also a member of piano trio TEOS with violinist Kreeta-Julia Heikkilä and pianist Jaan Ots.
Mariko Furukawa, piano
Japanese pianist Mariko Furukawa is a prize winner of prestigious competitions, such as Porto International Piano Competition (Portugal), Grand Prix for the American Conservatory in Fontainebleau (France) and First Prize at Dorothey MacKenzie Competition (US). Mariko has also been an active chamber musician, and she has collaborated with such renowned musicians as The Orion String Quartet, Charles Neidich, Anthony McGill and Jasmine Choi. In 2012, she was awarded a special prize in All Japan Music Competition for her outstanding performance as a collaborative pianist. She obtains MM from The Juilliard School and BM from Mannes College of Music.
Jaan Ots, piano
Jaan Ots is an Estonian conductor and pianist. Ots has conducted the Lahti Sinfonia, Pärnu City Orchestra and Narva City Symphony Orchestra. He held the position of assistant conductor at the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra for the season 2015-16, assisted in productions of Verdi’s Otello at the Savonlinna Opera Festival in 2018 and Bizet’s Carmen at the Vaasa Theater. In parallel to his conducting activities, Ots is an active chamber musician. He is member of Frielinghaus Ensemble and tours around Europe with various ensembles, such as the Amaryllis quartet and the Frielinghaus Ensemble. He is also member of Piano Trio TEOS.