Tuomas Hannikainen

Photo: Ari Wahlström

Tuomas Hannikainen, formerly Tuomas Ollila then Ollila-Hannikainen, has been amongst the brightest in the extraordinary wave of younger Finnish conductors since being appointed Chief Conductor and Music Director of the Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra in 1994. He has recently had his contract as joint Chief Conductor of the Ostrobothnian Chamber Orchestra extended and has previously held positions as Joint Principal Conductor of the Tapiola Sinfonietta in Finland, as Principal Guest Conductor of the West Australian Symphony Orchestra and as Chief Conductor and Artistic Director of Finland's period instrument group, The Sixth Floor Orchestra. Today he regularly conducts many of the most prestigious orchestras throughout the Nordic countries. Elsewhere his work takes him through Europe, Australasia, N. America and the Far East with orchestras like the St. Petersburg Philharmonic, Netherlands Radio Philharmonic, Frankfurt Radio Symphony, National Orchestra of Spain, BBC Scottish Symphony, Ulster Orchestra, Sydney Symphony, Melbourne Symphony, New Zealand Symphony, Calgary Philharmonic, Singapore Symphony and Malaysian Philharmonic amongst many others. His formidable talent is also reflected in the several CD recordings he has made, most of them for the Ondine label. 

Tuomas Hannikainen was born in 1965 and is the grandson of the famous conductor Tauno Hannikainen. He began his musical education at the Porvoo Music Institute before attending the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki. He continued his violin studies in France before taking his diploma at the Sibelius Academy in 1988. He began his conducting studies in 1985 in the famous class of Professor Jorma Panula, who also taught Esa-Pekka Salonen and Jukka-Pekka Saraste, at the Sibelius Academy, graduating with Distinction in 1991. In 1993, after completing his postgraduate studies in St Petersburg with Ilya Musin, he attended Tanglewood in the USA where he studied with Seiji Ozawa, Sir Simon Rattle and Sir Roger Norrington.

From the beginning of the year 2011, Tuomas Hannikainen has been the artistic director of the Joroinen Music Festival.