From Finland – The Kauhava Big Band In Concert, Friday July 22

Kauhava Big Band

THE FINNISH American Folk Festival, Naselle, WA and The United Finnish Kaleva Brothers and Sisters Lodge #2, Astoria, OR present in concert Kauhava Big Band from Kauhava, Finland.

Kauhava Big Band was formed in 1986 by “gentlemen musicians” from all of the regions of Finland.  The band is comprised of five saxophonists, four bassoonists, four trumpets, an accordionist, pianist, bassist and a drummer.  The conductor is Jukka Lumme.  Soloists are Seinajoki (tango finalist), Erkki Mustikkamaki, and jazz soloist Helena Taijala.  With their black tie attire and nostalgic concerts, they bring big band culture to life, Finnish style. The traditional 18 piece big band program features lots of swing classics, evergreens and dance music. Kauhava BB also has a strong tango repertoire – and will be doing several tango tribute concerts at Finn West 2011 in Vancouver BC this summer.

Kauhava Big Band posterA correlating theme of the concert is “Kiel on Jaahyaiset,” which translates to “Farewell to My Lily of the Valley – a Finnish War Pilot’s Story”.  The story is based on an actual Finnish couple during WWII in Finland.  Olli Nieminen, the concert’s manuscript writer, wrote this story because his father was a pilot at Finland’s Air-Pilot School Base in his hometown of Kauhava, Finland.  Each year over 10,000 people gather at the base, during the Midsummer celebration, to watch an annual air show.  Olli states that the dramatic story is tightly connected to the music.  Some of the story will be translated into English and you do not need to be of Finnish decent to enjoy the big band sound.  Swing music is universal!
The United Finnish Kaleva Bros and Sis’ are dedicated to keeping the culture and heritage alive in the Columbia Pacific Region. The Kauhava Big Band in addition to its performance is also spending time in Astoria to get acquainted with the Finnish heritage here.  A reception to meet the members of the band will be held at the Fort George Brewery. This is a wonderful opportunity to commune with Finns and enrich cultural ties.

The performance begins at 7:00 pm, Friday, July 22, 2011 at Clatsop Community College’s Performing Arts Center, 588 16th Street, Astoria, OR.  Immediately following the concert a no-host reception will be held at the new Fort George Brewery Building.  The staff at the Fort George Brewery will be preparing a traditional Finnish Sausage meal.  Tickets for the meal can be purchased at the reception.

Tickets for the concert may be purchased at the door, Finn Ware (Astoria), Creative Flaire (Naselle), or by sending a check made out to FAFF, to Anita Raistakka, 92 Big Hill Rd, Naselle, WA 98638.  Adults $10.00 and students $5.00. This event is sponsored by One Five Six Bond Salon, Salon Verde and North Coast Mini Storage.

For more information  visit:, kauhava Big Band on You Tube or call 503.791.9156.