Jaakko Mäntyjärvi
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This page contains the following texts:
Very short CV .. Short CV .. Long CV
Updated 1.v.2012


Very short CV
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Jaakko Mäntyjärvi (b. 1963) is a Finnish translator and composer. A professional freelance translator, he is also an active semi-professional musician involved mostly in choral singing. Consequently, most of his output as a choral composer consists of choral works, some 100 of which have been published to date. He describes himself as an eclectic traditionalist. From 2000 to 2005 he was composer-in-residence of the Tapiola Chamber Choir, and he has also taught a course in the history of choral music at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki.

(c) Jaakko Mäntyjärvi 2012


Short CV
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Jaakko Mäntyjärvi (b. 1963 in Turku, Finland) studied English and Linguistics at the University of Helsinki, graduating with an FK (=MA) degree in 1991; he is accredited as an Authorised Translator from Finnish to English and English to Finnish. He has also studied theory of music and choir conducting at the Sibelius Academy.

As a composer, Jaakko Mäntyjärvi describes himself as an eclectic traditionalist: eclectic in that he adopts influences from a number of styles and periods, fusing them into his own idiom; traditionalist in the sense that his musical language is based on a traditional approach and uses the resources of modern music only sparingly. Because he is himself active in making music, his music is very practically oriented; he is a choral singer, and thus most of his works are for choir. His major choral works include
Four Shakespeare Songs (1984), Dagen svalnar... (Day is cooling, 1991/1993), Pseudo-Yoik (1994), El Hambo (1997), More Shakespeare Songs (1997), the choral drama SALVAT 1701 (2001), the 40-part Tentatio (2006) and Stuttgarter Psalmen (2009); Canticum Calamitatis Maritimae received 3rd prize in the European composition competition for cathedral choirs in 1997. His major commissions include works for the Cork International Choral Festival (1999), the 700th anniversary of the consecration of Turku Cathedral (2000), the World Symposium on Choral Music (2008), and for Chanticleer (2001) and the King’s Singers (2002). He was composer-in-residence of the Tapiola Chamber Choir from 2000 to 2005.

Jaakko Mäntyjärvi has been active as an amateur and semi-professional musician, mainly as a choral singer with a number of Finnish choirs, including the Savonlinna Opera Festival Choir, the professional Sibelius Academy Vocal Ensemble, the Tapiola Chamber Choir, the Klemetti Institute Chamber Choir and the Finnish Chamber Choir. He conducted the Savolaisen Osakunnan Laulajat student choir from 1988 to 1993 and was deputy conductor of the Tapiola Chamber Choir from 1998 to 2004. He has also taught a course in the history of choral music at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki.

(c) Jaakko Mäntyjärvi 2012


Long CV
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Jaakko Mäntyjärvi (b. 1963 in Turku, Finland) studied English and Linguistics at the University of Helsinki, graduating with an FK (=MA) degree in 1991; he is accredited as an Authorised Translator from Finnish to English and English to Finnish. He has also studied theory of music and choir conducting at the Sibelius Academy. Currently he is a freelance translator and composer.

As a composer, Jaakko Mäntyjärvi describes himself as an eclectic traditionalist: eclectic in that he adopts influences from a number of styles and periods, fusing them into his own idiom; traditionalist in that his musical language is based on a traditional approach and uses the resources of modern music only sparingly. Because he is himself active in making music, his music is extremely practically oriented; he is a choral singer, and thus most of his works are for choir. His major choral works include
Four Shakespeare Songs (1984), Dagen svalnar... (1991/1993), Ave Maria (1991), Pseudo-Yoik (1994), Kouta (1996), El Hambo (1997), More Shakespeare Songs (1997), Deux ballades de François Villon (2001), the 40-part motet Tentatio (2006) and Stuttgarter Psalmen (2009). Canticum Calamitatis Maritimae, a memorial to the victims of the sinking of the car ferry Estonia in 1994, received 3rd prize in the European composition competition for cathedral choirs in 1997. His works, which are among the best-selling sheet music items of his publisher, SULASOL, have been performed as far afield as Japan, Singapore, South Africa and the USA, and some have been recorded by distinguished ensembles such as the Swedish Radio Choir, the BBC Singers and Chanticleer.

Major commissions include choral works for the Cork International Choral Festival (
Psalm 150 in Kent Treble Bob Minor, 1999), the 700th anniversary of the consecration of Turku Cathedral (Ecce magnus presbiter, 2000) and the 8th World Symposium on Choral Music in Copenhagen (Face the music, 2008). The Esoterics of Seattle (Washington), USA, have commissioned two works from him (Kosijat, 2001; nine sunset watercolours, 2010), and notable commissions further include ones from Chanticleer (The Ballad of the Oysterman, 2001), the King’s Singers (Armahda meidän päällem’, 2002) and the International Bach Academy in Stuttgart (Stuttgarter Psalmen, 2009). His discography is extensive, topped by Pseudo-Yoik with more than 30 recordings to date in various versions.

Jaakko Mäntyjärvi was composer-in-residence to the Tapiola Chamber Choir from 2000 to 2005, an appointment that began with
SALVAT 1701, a 70-minute choral drama consisting of texts and hymns from the Finnish ‘Old Hymnal’ of 1701, premiered and released on CD in autumn 2001 on the occasion of the hymnal’s 300th anniversary, and ended with Introitus et Kyrie Missae Sancti Henrici, premiered in spring 2005. The Choir also released the first CD dedicated solely to his works, ECLECTICA (Warner / Finlandia Records).

Jaakko Mäntyjärvi has been active as a musician in a number of contexts: as timpanist with the Helsinki University Students’ Orchestra (1981–1987); as pianist with the Students’ Salon Orchestra (1984–1990); and as a choral singer with the Savolaisen Osakunnan Laulajat student choir (1982–1987), the professional Sibelius Academy Vocal Ensemble (1984–1987, 1988–1991, 19886–1997), the Savonlinna Opera Festival Choir (1986–1992), the Cantabile chamber choir (1986–1988), the Tapiola Chamber Choir (1988–2004), the Klemetti Institute Chamber Choir (2006–) and the Finnish Chamber Choir (2010–). He conducted the Savolaisen Osakunnan Laulajat student choir from 1988 to 1993 and was deputy conductor of the Tapiola Chamber Choir from 1998 to 2004. He has been deputy conductor of the Klemetti Institute Chamber Choir from 2010. He has also given talks and workshops; his foreign engagements include residencies at the Choralfest of the Australian National Choral Association, at the University of North Texas and at Westminster Choir College in Princeton, New Jersey. He has taught a course in the history of choral music at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki.

(c) Jaakko Mäntyjärvi 2012