Virtuosi di Kuhmo was founded in 1992 to continue the traditions of the Kuhmo Chamber Music Festival’s orchestra. At present, Virtuosi di Kuhmo (VdK) is an independent ensemble with its own organization and artistic planning. Orchestra members range from musicians in top-rated Finnish orchestras to artists with international careers.
Besides being a regular performer at the leading Finnish music festivals, Virtuosi di Kuhmo has also toured extensively; in addition to the largest countries in Europe, the orchestra has given performances in Russia and Japan. London’s Wigmore Hall and Concertgebouw in Amsterdam are among the more renowned concert halls the orchestra has visited. Virtuosi di Kuhmo has also performed at well-known international festivals such as Festival Pablo Casals, La Roque d’Anthéron, and ”la Folle Journée” in France, and Rheingau Music Festival in Germany.
Virtuosi di Kuhmo’s recordings for Ondine, EMI/Blue Note, CPO and Alba have all received critical acclaim in both the national and international press. The orchestra’s albums have also been chosen as “records of the month” in British magazines and American radio stations. The recordings of Vivaldi´s Four Seasons” (Pekka Kuusisto, (vln/dir.), and “Kaanaanmaa – Land of Canaan” (Jukka Perko sax./John Storgårds dir.) have both reached gold album status in Finland.
Violinist-conductor Peter Csaba has been Virtuosi di Kuhmo’s focal artistic collaborator from the beginning. Founder of the orchestra, he has conducted a great deal of Virtuosi di Kuhmo’s concerts and recordings.
In addition to Peter Csaba, Virtuosi di Kuhmo has been conducted by, among others, Ralf Gothóni, Olli Mustonen, Sakari Oramo, Hansjörg Schellenberger, John Storgårds, Okko Kamu and Hannu Lintu.
Virtuosi di Kuhmo has been performing also without a conductor, mostly concertmaster Elina Vähälä as a leader. Also guest leaders, such as Pekka Kuusisto, Petri Aarnio and Jan Söderblom have been working with the orchestra.
During the years, Virtuosi di Kuhmo has worked with several renowned artists, such as Lisa Batiashvili, James Crabb, Nelson Freire, Martin Fröst, Bruno Giuranna, Natalia Gutman, Aleksei Lyubimov, Vladimir Mendelssohn, Daniel Müller-Schott, and Pieter Wispelwey.
Nowadays, VdK concentrates on performing works on large string ensembles – ranging from Quintets to Nonets. In addition to standard repertoire also rarities have been sought and performed.RECORDINGS