Conductors of the closing concert

Conductors of the closing concert in Mežaparks Open-air Stage on June 28, at 17.00.


Erik Bjørn Lund

Musical director of Aarhus Chamber Choir.

Erik Bjørn Lund graduated from the Jutland Music Conservatory as a state-authorised music pedagogue specialising in conducting and singing.
For many years he has taught music at the Aarhus Teacher Training College. He is also much in demand as a leader of music courses.
Erik Bjørn Lund has composed and arranged music for amateur choirs and ensembles and together with his wife Kirsten Busk often composes for childrens’ choirs.


Triin Koch

Conduktor of the The Chamber Choir of the University of Tartu.

Conductor Triin Koch has been conducting The Chamber Choir of the University of Tartu since autumn 2001 - within that time she has shaped this choir to become a unique and colourful chamber choir in the field of Estonian choral music. Her devoted and meticulous work with music and singers has been awarded  several times - she has been The Young Conductor of the Year, The Conductor of the Year along with The Chamber Choir of the University of Tartu being The Choir of the Year (prizes given by The Estonian Choral Association). Triin Koch has also been awarded The Prize of Estonian Music, several special prizes for the conductor from choir competitions in Estonia and abroad, and many more.

Besides The Chamber Choir of the University of Tartu, Triin Koch also conducts The Academic Women's Choir of the University of Tartu and The Tallinn Alumni Choir of the Tartu University Female Choir. Triin Koch is a devoted caretaker of the Estonian song celebration tradition: in 2014 celebration she was the chief conductor of the women's choirs and the main conductor of the mixed choirs. In 2014 she was also the main conductor and the artistic director of the 9th Nordic Student Singers’ Summit in Tartu. 


Heli Jürgenson

Heli Jürgenson (1969) has studied choir conducting at G.Ots Tallinn Music School and Tallinn Conservatoire. Since 1992 she is tutor of the choir conducting speciality at G.Ots Music School. Heli Jürgenson has been the conductor of the Estonian Society Mixed Choir since it was founded in 1993. She has conducted also Charles Church Concert Choir and many other choirs. In 2001–2012 she was engaged as a chorus master in the Estonian National Opera. Since 2012 Heli Jürgenson is the chorus master of the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir.  Heli Jürgenson is known also as a conductor at the Estonian Song Celebrations. She has been the artistic director of the Finnish-Estonian Song Festival and Sacred Music Festivals.



Guðlaugur Viktorsson

Guðlaugur Viktorsson did his musical study in The Music College of Akureyri and in the Reykjavík Conservatory of Music where he finished his degree as a musical instructor. Also he did finish his degree at Reykjavik Academy of Singing and Vocal Arts and master´s degree in Rhythmic Music Education, Choir Direction from The Royal Academy of Music Aarhus/Aalborg.

He has had his carrier as a singing instructor and a director of different choirs, both male, mixed and youth choirs.  He has performed as a singer, conductor and chamber musician on concerts in Iceland and abroad.



Regina Maleckaitė

Regina Maleckaitė (b.1955) graduated from M.K.Čiurlionis Art School and Lithuanian State Conservatoire (now Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre) Choir conducting department. After studies and by now she is a conductor of the Lithuanian Radio and Television (LRT) Childrens’ Choir (now it is LRT Choir of Vilnius Culture Centre) and also since 1986 she leads the chamber choir Sodžius . In 1998 R. Maleckaite became the chief conductor of Lithuanian Song Festivals and in the recent five Song Festivals she has been a member of the creative groups. For many years R. Maleckaite has been a member of the Choir Union Presidium.


Tomas Ambrozaitis

Conduktor of the Šiauliai State Chamber Choir Polifonija.

Tomas Ambrozaitis (1979) had been studying at the Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre; he finalized his postgraduate studies at the Faculty of Arts of the Klaipėda University. He worked on probation at the Leipzig Felix Mendelsohn Academy of Music and Theatre (Germany). Within the years 2001-2003, he had been studying for the Master’s degree at the Faculty of Arts of the Klaipėda University. In 2007, he graduated from his aspirant studies at the Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre where he was awarded the qualification degree of the Licentiate of Art.

He had been working as a choirmaster of the choir Aukuras in the Klaipėda Concert Hall, as a kapellmeister of the Chamber Orchestra in the Klaipėda Concert Hall, as an organist and a choirmaster of the Mass Choir in the Plungė St. John the Baptist Church, as the lecturer of the Choir Conducting Department of the Klaipėda Stasys Šimkus Conservatoire, as a leader of the String Orchestra of the Klaipėda Eduardas Balsys Gymnasium of Arts.

In 2007, he was elected to conduct at the Lithuanian Festival of Songs in Vilnius. In 2009, he was the chief conductor at the Millennium Festival of Songs “Glee of the Centuries”. In 2008, he was awarded with the Culture Prize of the Kretinga District Municipality.

In 2012, he debuted in the Klaipėda State Musical Theatre at the concert, dedicated to Eduardas Kaniava jubilee; also he worked up and conducted the musical “Sapnai apie Brodvėjų” (Dreams about the Broadway). Since 2012, he executes the duties of the Artistic Director and Conductor of the Klaipėda Gintarėlis Boy’s and Youth Choir.



Ketil Jule Bjørnstad Belsaas

Conduktor  of Collegium Vocale.

Since 2010 the choir has sung under conductor Ketil J. B. Belsaas. Ketil has studied conducting with Grete Pedersen and Tore Erik Mohn at The Norwegian Academy of Music. He also holds a degree in choral pedagogy from the University College of Hedmark.

In addition to conducting Collegium Vocale, Ketil conducts Kongsvinger mixed voice choir. He is currently supervisor of conductors and choirs in the county of Sogn and Fjordane under the auspices of the Norwegian Choir Association.


Kåre Hanken

Kåre Hanken holds a Master Degree in Church Music at the Music Conservatory in Oslo, Norway. In addition, he has qualifications in Organ and Choral Conducting from Denmark, Sweden and the USA. His career spans almost four decades, starting as an organist in Ålesund, before becoming Principal of the city’s music school. From 1987 to 2000 Kåre Hanken taught choral conducting at the Institute for Music and Theatre of the University of Oslo, and later been a part time lecturer at the Academy of Music in Oslo. Kåre Hanken was Secretary General of the Norwegian Choir Association from 1991 to 2009.

At the University of Oslo he became the conductor of the Schola Cantorum, a choir whose concerts have brought them international acclaim all over Western Europe, the Baltic States, the Nordic countries, South Africa and Japan. In 1998 the Norwegian Department for Foreign Affairs afforded the choir the honour of representing Norway in the Pre-Olympic Culture Program in Japan.

Kåre Hanken is in great demand as guest conductor and adjudicator at national and international choir competitions. In 2000 he served on the jury of the first Choir Olympics held in Linz, Austria and the World Choir Games in China in 2006. He is also a well-known choral conducting specialist and has held master classes in conducting at Universities and Academies in the Nordic countries, Estonia, Latvia, Japan, South Africa, Taiwan and the USA.

In 1999 he was awarded an Honorary Professorship at the University of Port Elizabeth (Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University) in honour of his contributions to the development of choral singing in the Eastern Cape and South Africa.

Since 2007 he presents and supervises the Master degree in Practical Choral Conducting at the University of Stellenbosch, South Africa. From 2009 to 2015 he has been an extraordinary professor in Choral Conducting at the University of Stellenbosch.  



Paavo Hyökki

Paavo Hyökki (b. 1981) is a professional conductor and the Master of Music, who began his studies in 1987 in Espoo Music Institute with cello and piano. During 1989 – 1994 he was a singer of Tapiola Choir, conducted by Erkki Pohjola. He was also a founder member and a tenor-section-leader of EMO Ensemble in 2000-2013, conducted by his brother Pasi Hyökki. In 2010 he gratuated as a Bachelor of Music from Sibelius Academy´s Music Education Program. During that year he changed his main subject and made his A-exam (former Diploma) of choral conducting in 2012 with excellent grade. Hyökki gratuated from Sibelius Academy´s Choral Conducting class in 2013.

Paavo Hyökki has been an artistic director of Ahjo Ensemble from its founding in 2013. He conducts also the mixed choir Lain Huuto (f.ex. the winner of the International Canta al Mar, Barcelona 2014) and the male voice choir Laulajat. In addition to conducting he works as a freelance-singer and artistic producer. Since 2010 he has been a secretary of the Finnish Choral Director's Association (FCDA) and in 2015 he started as an artistic director of the Finnish Male Choir Association (SMKL).


Kari Turunen

Kari Turunen was educated at the University of Helsinki and the Sibelius Academy where he studied choral conducting with Matti Hyökki. He holds a doctorate in early music performance practice from the University of the Arts, Helsinki.

He is the artistic director of five choirs and ensembles: the male chorus Akademiska Sångföreningen, Kampin Laulu chamber choir, the choir of the cantors of the Finnish Lutheran Church, Chorus Cantorum Finlandiae,  the all-male Ensemble Petraloysio and Spira Ensemble. He is also a member of Lumen Valo, a vocal ensemble that is one of the driving forces on the Finnish early music scene.

Dr. Turunen taught choral conducting at the Tampere University of Applied Sciences, School of Music between 2001 and 2011 before concentrating on the roles of conductor and artist-scholar. He appears regularly as a teacher of choral courses, adjudicator and clinician. Mr. Turunen acts as chairman of the Finnish Choral Directors’ Association (FCDA). He was the Choral Conductor of the Year 2008 in Finland.



Helene Stureborg

Helene Stureborg was born in 1964. She has studied church music at the Ersta Skondal University College and at the Royal College of Music in Stockholm. She got the organist degree in 1989 and a diploma in choral conducting in 1993.

In parallel with the various services as an organist, in 1990 Stureborg began working as a music teacher at the Stockholm Music Gymnasium. In 1994 she became the conductor of the Royal Technologist’s Choir at the Royal Technical University in Stockholm and held this post until winter 2002.

Since 1996 Helene Stureborg works as a part-time teacher in conducting and ensemble leading at the Royal College of Music. In autumn 2002 she became the conductor of the Stockholm Music High School Chamber Choir. The choir, which is well known and highly valued abroad, is an advanced youth choir at a high level with which Helene gained great success in several competitions. In 2013 the choir won the Chamber Choir Competition in Maribor, Slovenia and qualified thereby to compete against other Grand Prix winners in the European Grand Prix in 2014 in Debrecen, Hungary. In autumn 2011 she started a new ensemble which was named Helene Stureborg's Chamber Choir. Since 2014 she is a member of the Artistic Council of the Swedish Performing Arts Agency.



Mārtiņš Klišāns

Mārtiņš Klišāns (b.1967) got his first professional musical education singing in Emīls Dārziņš Music School Boys' Choir and finishing the Choir conducting class of Emīls Dārziņš Music School. He continued his studies at the Latvian Music Academy and graduated from the Choir conducting class of Professor Imants Kokars.
During the period of studies the singer participated in the Stuttgart Bach Academy workshops. In 1999 he perfected his knowledge in Princeton (USA) in the World Choir Conductors’ Conference. In 2000 in Rochester (USA) together with the Riga Dome Boys’ Choir, he led a seminar for children's choir conductors.
From 1989 to 1992 Mārtiņš Klišāns was the conductor of Latvia University choir Juventus. For several years he has conducted the winner of many international competitions - chamber choir ‘Sacrum’.
Mārtiņš Klišāns has worked as a vocalist of Riga Vocal Group and has participated in a number of baroque opera and oratorio performances singing the tenor part.
He was the chief conductor of XXIV and XXV Latvian Song and Dance Celebration. He is the artistic director and conductor of mixed choirs Valmiera and Vaidelote as well as of the Riga Dome Cathedral Boys Choir, assistant of the chief conductor of Riga City choirs, chief conductor of the choirs of Cēsis region.


Mārtiņš Ozoliņš

Mārtiņš Ozoliņš (b.1974) is the chief conductor of the Latvian National Opera and the Head of the Department of Orchestral Conducting in Jāzeps Vītols Latvian Academy of Music.
He is a graduate of the Latvian Academy of Music where he studied in Choir conducting (prof. Edgars Račevskis class) and Symphony orchestra conducting departments (prof. Imants Resnis class). Mārtiņš Ozoliņš has participated in master classes with Vasilijs Sinaiskis in St.Petersburg, with Helmut Rilling at the Bach Academy in Germany and with Gintaras Rinkevičius in Lithuania. Mārtiņš Ozoliņš has been the Latvian National Opera conductor since 2005.
He was the chief conductor of the 25th Latvian Nationwide Song and Dance Celebration and is the artistic director and conductor of the mixed choir Sonore.

Mārtiņš Ozoliņš is a prizewinner of the prestigious 4th International Jorma Panula Conductor Competition (2009) as well as a laureate of several other international competitions. He has collaborated with the Latvian National Symphony Orchestra, the Lithuanian State Symphony Orchestra, the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, Liepāja Symphony Orchestra and Kaunas Symphony Orchestra and staged opera and ballet performances in Tampere (Finland), Trieste and Catania (Italy). Martins Ozolins has given concerts and has been on tours in Moscow (Russia), Mexico City (Mexico), Tampere (Finland), Trieste and Catania (Italy), Muscat (Oman), Leipzig (Germany), Gdansk (Poland), etc.

Romāns Vanags

Artistic Director of the VIII Nordic - Baltic Choral Festival.

Romāns Vanags (b.1960) has finished Emīls Dārziņš Special Music School and has graduated from Jāzeps Vītols Latvian State Conservatory (now - Latvian Academy of Music) Choir and Orchestra conducting department, obtaining diplomas in choir conducting and music pedagogy. He has also studied the conducting of a symphony orchestra. In 2003, he received a Professional Master's degree in music. Romāns Vanags professional activities are connected with conducting and pedagogy. From 1984 to 2004 he was the chief conductor of the teachers’ choir Vanema; since 1990 he is the artistic director of Latvia University female choir Minjona. From 1987 Romāns Vanags is the chief conductor and artistic director of Jāzeps Mediņš Music School Boys’ choir, and from 1990 to 1993 he has worked with the Symphony Orchestra of Jāzeps Mediņš Riga Music Highschool. From 1987 Romāns Vanags teaches choir conducting and leads the choir of the Latvian Academy of Music. Since 2005 he has been the head of the Conducting Department and an associate professor of the Academy.

Romāns Vanags has organised a number of conducting workshops in different countries around the world and has worked in the jury of many choral competitions. He was the chief conductor of the Nationwide Latvian Song and Dance Celebration (1993, 1998, 2001, 2003, 2008) and the chief conductor of School Youth Song and Dance Festivals (1995, 2000, 2005, 2010). He is the chief conductor of the city of Riga and Tukums district choirs. From 2004 Romāns Vanags is the chairman of the UNESCO Latvian National Commission in matters relating to the Latvian Song and Dance Celebration.
The choirs conducted by Romāns Vanags have gained prizes in international competitions (Arezzo, Debrecen, Tours, Varna, etc.) and have performed in many countries around the world. In 2008, Romāns Vanags received the highest Latvian State Award - the Order of the Three Stars.


More about the concert:


Conductors Mežaparks