Johanna Kärkkäinen is a versatile flutist, poet and artist. In 2015, she graduated with a Master of Music degree from the Sibelius Academy, University of the Arts Helsinki. In addition, Kärkkäinen earned a Bachelors degree in Music Education from Metropolia University of Applied Sciences in 2011. Kärkkäinen works as a freelance musician in symphony orchestras, chamber orchestras, opera productions, chamber music ensembles, and as a solo artist and flute teacher. Her repertoire covers classical flute music from the 17th century till present day.
Kärkkäinen plays the flute in the 5parts wind quintet. She also plays by request in weddings, funerals, corporate events and other.
New music is close to her heart, and Johanna Kärkkäinen is keen on interdisciplinary cooperation. Kärkkäinen has premiered many Finnish music pieces and cooperated with visual artists, video artists and performance artists both in Finland and overseas. Audiences have enjoyed Kärkkäinen’s interdisciplinary concerts, which combine poetry and solo flute music, not only in Finland but in Germany and Italy as well.
In 2015 Kärkkäinen composed the music for a documentary on Mirkka Rekola by Maija Hirvonen. Furthermore, she served as the artistic director of the Helsinki-based Mirkka Rekola Poetry Festival (Kuutamourakka) in 2018.
For the 2020 season Johanna Kärkkäinen is working as a flutist in the Seinäjoki City Orchestra. Additionally, she performs as an artist in the Lieksa Brass Week and Aino Ackté -chamber festival in Helsinki, among others, and organizes concerts around Finland in which she combines her skills in music and poetry.
Johanna Kärkkäinen’s debut poetry collection was published in October 2017. In this collection (entitled “Kädet lokakuun harmaat,” or “The Grey Hands of October”), death and time are contemplated through different phases and invisible dimensions in life.
Poetry, along with music, is the closest form of art for Johanna Kärkkäinen. She organizes regularly concerts combining music and poetry, one of which was her final degree concert based on Mirkka Rekola’s poetry at the Sibelius Academy in 2015. Since 2014, Kärkkäinen has been a member of the board of Mirkka Rekola -association. Moreover, in 2018, Kärkkäinen served as the artistic director of the Helsinki-based Mirkka Rekola -festival.
Poems by Johanna Kärkkäinen have been recited in concerts, art galleries and festive events in Finland as well as overseas. These include, for example, the Aino Ackté -chamber festival in Helsinki, Helsinki Winds-festival, Pasimusic -festival in Kuopio and Vanhan kirjan talvi -event in Jyväskylä, as well as Kärkkäinen’s solo concerts around Finland. The poems have been performed in German in Munich and in Italian in Lucignano, Italy, as well as in Berlin at the Showroom Berlin - art gallery in 2016. Composer and jazz-pianist Artturi Rönkä has composed a piece ”...taakseni katsonut” for flute and piano in 2017 based on poems in Kärkkäinen’s debut poetry collection. Composer Antti Ilvonen composed the piece ”Encre Noire” in 2019 for soprano and guitar based on Kärkkäinen’s poems.
Johanna Kärkkäinen’s second poetry collection will be published in 2020.