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Anssi Karttunen

Country of origin: Finland
Birthday: September 30, 1960

About Anssi Karttunen

Anssi Karttunen is one of the most innovative cellists in today’s international music scene. In his repertoire, he takes a fresh look at the well-known masterpieces and brings forgotten works to the public ear, as well as making his own original transcriptions. He plays on modern, classical and baroque cellos, as well as violoncello piccolo and electric cello.

Anssi Karttunen is a passionate advocate of contemporary music. He has performed over 170 world premieres, collaborating with such composers as Magnus Lindberg, Kaija Saariaho, Pascal Dusapin, Luca Francesconi and Tan Dun. An astounding 29 concertos have been written for him. He has worked with world-renowned orchestras such as the Philadelphia Orchestra, the BBC Symphony and the Munich Philharmonic. He also performs regularly as a soloist and chamber musician at Europe’s most important music festivals, including Edinburgh, Salzburg and Helsinki. His Zebra Trio, with violinist Ernst Kovacic and violist Steven Dann, performs concerts on both sides of the Atlantic. He also enjoys close collaborations with pianist Nicolas Hodges, choreographer Diana Theocharidis and the producer, composer and multi-instrumentalist John Paul Jones.

His recordings traverse a broad musical spectrum, including Beethoven’s complete works for cello and piano on period instruments and 20th century solo pieces.

Born in 1960, Anssi Karttunen studied with Erkki Rautio, William Pleeth, Jacqueline du Pré and Tibor de Machula, among others. In the autumn of 2014, he started teaching at the Ecole Normale de Musique in Paris. He plays on a Francesco Ruggeri cello.