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Finland: Helena Juntunen

Soprano - born 1976

BBC Cardiff Singer of the World competitor

Helena Juntunen is a graduate of the Sibelius Academy. She studied with Anita Välkki, Jeffrey Goldberg, Renata Scotto and Hartmut Höll.

She opened the 2006-7 season in Vienna with Pamina Die Zauberflöte, also sung in Dresden, Brussels, Nancy, Aix-en-Provence and Luxembourg.

Other roles include Madama Cortese (Il Viaggio a Reims) in Genova and Helsinki; Marguérite (Faust) in Connecticut and Savonlinna, Zdenka (Arabella) in Helsinki and Antwerp; Jenny Hill in Nancy and Luxembourg; and Marie (Wozzeck) in Nice. She has also sung Liù (Turandot), Mimì and Musetta (La Bohème), Sophie (Der Rosenkavalier), Gilda (Rigoletto) in various theatres in Finland.

Concerts with Esa-Pekka Salonen, Jukka-Pekka Saraste, Leif Segerstam, Mikko Franck and Osmo Vänskä. With Vänskä she has recorded Beethoven's 9th Symphony and orchestral songs by Sibelius, also songs by Leevi Madetoja and three operas by Rautavaara.

Helena made her debut at Carnegie Hall's Weil Recital Hall in 2003. Concerts have also taken her to Paris, Tokyo, Brussels, Malaga, Minnesota and Salzburg.

Helena won first prize in the Timo Mustakallio and Lappeenranta competitions. She has also won the Tampere Grand Prix.

Future plans include Pamina (Geneva), Mimì (Helsinki), and Contessa Le nozze di Figaro (Nice).

Her hobbies include cooking, cycling and reading.

Repertoire details for Concert 5 and Recital 4:

Concert 5 - Thursday 14 June

  • Puccini: Mi chiamano Mimì (La bohème)
  • Mozart: E Susanna non vien...Dove sono (Le nozze di Figaro)
  • Gounod: Ô Dieu! que de bijoux!...Ah! Je ris (Faust)

With the orchestra of WNO conducted by Carlo Rizzi

Recital 4 - Tuesday 12 June

  • Toivo Kuula: Suutelo (Songs, Op 8 No 1)
  • Toivo Kuula: Karjapihassa (Songs, Op 31a No 2)
  • Haydn: A Pastoral Song
  • R Strauss: Mein Herz ist stumm (Songs, Op 19 No 6)
  • R Strauss: Cäcilie (Four songs, Op 27 No 2)

Accompanist: Eveliina Kytömäki