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Teosto Prize for 2015: Mikko Hassinen receives the prize for his album Elektro GT

09.04.2015


A bold and unapologetic work that captures its audience – The Teosto Prize was awarded for the twelfth time this year, and the winner is Mikko Hassinen for his works on the album Elektro GT. The prize sum is EUR 25,000.

The winner of the Teosto Prize was announced on April 9 at Musiikkitalo in Helsinki.

According to the jury, Mikko Hassinen’s album is characterised by the urge to do things and express one’s self. The works have variety and the album is rich with musical ideas which allow the virtuoso players to use their skills. Elektro GT is a bold and unapologetic work that captures its audience.

The winner was selected among the nominees by the award jury that had three members; Päivi Kärkkäinen, General Director of the Finnish National Opera, Stefan Möller, Managing Director at RadioMedia and Risto Ylihärsilä, the winner of last year’s Teosto Prize.

Päivi Kärkkäinen, the chair of the jury, described the task as rewarding.

“The pre-selection jury did an excellent job and provided us with a fascinating list of diverse candidates. However, the pre-selection jury also gave us a very hard decision to make,” Päivi Kärkkäinen, the chair of the jury said.

“Our decision was unanimous. We wanted to emphasise the award criteria of the Teosto Prize: courageousness, originality and innovation.”

For Hassinen, becoming a nominee was a win on its own.

“Previous nominees and award-winners include many artists who have inspired me, and becoming one of them has thus far been one of the high points of my career,” Hassinen said.

“When I was making this album, I employed a number of thought games or ‘plays’ which I hoped would help me shed the worst clichés of electro-jazz. It is very difficult to achieve an original sound or to make music in a fully unique way, but I set out to make an album that would sound fresh and even novel, at least to my own ears.”

Nominated finalist

This year, the music professionals in the pre-selection jury had selected six works or pieces in the finale. The nominees were:

Perttu Haapanen: Compulsion Island
Perttu Haapanen’s (b. 1972) composition on Compulsion Island

Matti Mikkola: Pepe & Saimaa
Matti Mikkola’s (b. 1976) compositions and arrangements on the album Pepe & Saimaa

Olavi Uusivirta: Ikuiset lapset
Olavi Uusivirta’s (b. 1983) compositions and lyrics and the arrangements by Timo Kämäräinen, Jaakko Kämäräinen and Olli Krogerus on the album Ikuiset lapset

Mikko Hassinen: Elektro GT
Mikko Hassinen’s (b. 1971) works on the album Elektro GT

Tuomas Logrén: Yövesi
Tuomas Logrén’s (b. 1976) compositions and arrangements on the album Yövesi

Antti Paalanen: Meluta
Antti Paalanen’s (b. 1977) works on the album Meluta

The Teosto Prize is awarded to courageous, original and innovative works

The authors and publishers of music use the Teosto Prize to reward courageous, original and innovative Finnish music. This year, the prize was issued for the 12th time.

The prize will be awarded to 1–4 musical works or pieces, and the maximum prize sum is EUR 40,000. If the prize is awarded for a sole musical work or piece, the sum is EUR 25,000. The works can represent any genre, but they must be produced after the previous award season.

The nominees are selected by a pre-selection jury. Members of this year’s jury were Jutta Jaakkola, Executive Director (dep.) of UMO Jazz Orchestra, Heta Hyttinen, Managing Editor, Mari Koppinen, Journalist, Pekka Laine, Journalist, Lauri Pokkinen, Audience Outreach and Social Responsibility Manager at the Finnish National Opera, Kare Eskola, Journalist and Vilma Timonen, Musician and Artist. 

Read more: Teosto Prize 2003-2015

Further information: Tomi Korhonen, Director of Communications and Public Relations, Teosto, tomi.korhonen@teosto.fi, +358 (0)50 449 9575

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