Paleface performed at Malmi Summer of Events in 2023. This year, the city festival will spread to Ala-Malmi Park for the third time. Kirsi Tähjä / Helsinki

This summer, the Malmi district in Helsinki will come alive with the Malmi Summer of Events festival, offering a vibrant lineup of free activities in June and August. Hosted in Ala-Malmi Park, the festival will feature open-air concerts, workshops, and family-friendly activities, promising an exciting and diverse program for all ages.

Organized by the Helsinki Cultural Centre Malmitalo, the festival reflects the wishes and ideas of local residents.

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The Embassy of Malaysia in Helsinki, Finland, played host to a delightful gathering on 6 May 2024, as we welcomed guests to the 'Friends of Malaysia (FoM) Art Exhibition and Luncheon'.  This vibrant event, held on the Embassy's premises, aimed to foster connections among individuals who share a profound affinity with Malaysia, as well as celebrating the spirit of camaraderie and cultural exchange.

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The center of summery Helsinki is the Esplanade Stage, which this year again will feature programs throughout the summer five days a week. Photo: Jussi Hellsten

Helsinki’s cultural summer kicks off with an exciting lineup at the Esplanade Stage, offering a diverse array of nearly 250 performances, free of charge, until August 31. This year’s program promises an eclectic mix of jazz, folk, pop, rock, classical music, dance, and circus performances, catering to all ages.

The season opens on May 16th with the Esplanade Stage’s inaugural concert in the heart of Helsinki.

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A woman holds a Palestinian flag as part of a demonstration in front of AFAS Live, ahead of the start of the 'Eurovision in Concert', to persuade participants and the audience to withdraw from the Eurovision Song Contest, in Amterdam on April 13, 2024. More than two hundred and fifty Dutch artists signed an open letter calling on Dutch musician, rapper, singer and former YouTuber Joost Klein, also known as Joost, to boycott Eurovision 2024 due to Israel's participation. LEHTIKUVA / AFP

In the lead-up to the Eurovision Song Contest set to take place in Malmö, Sweden, organisers have ignited a storm of controversy by announcing a ban on Palestinian flags and pro-Palestinian symbols during the event. The decision, made public by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), has sparked heated debate and drawn sharp criticism from various quarters.

The EBU, responsible for overseeing the competition, declared its intention to remove any Palestinian flags or political symbols wielded by attendees, citing concerns over potential politicisation of the event.

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Kim Simonsson: Friendship, 2022. Photo: Mika Huisman / Amos Rex

Today, on April 29, 2024, the much-anticipated "Moss Giants" exhibition by renowned sculptor Kim Simonsson opens at the Lasipalatsi Square in Helsinki. Coinciding with the May Day celebrations and the reopening of the square, Simonsson’s towering, bright green sculptures have already captivated both locals and tourists alike.

Standing at an impressive height of four meters, these "Moss Giants" communicate through sign language, adding a layer of mystique and interaction to their presence.

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The plot of the "Jungle Book reimagined" performance takes place in the near future, where a family fleeing their homeland ravaged by climate change becomes separated from each other. Photo: Camilla Greenwell

Helsinki is set to celebrate its vibrant culture with the 2024 Helsinki Festival, scheduled from August 15 to September 1. The festival's program, now finalized, features an exciting mix of performances including a contemporary dance piece by Akram Khan Company, a new concert version of Modest Mussorgsky's opera "Khovanshchina" directed by Esa-Pekka Salonen, and a unique composition by Lauri Porra involving 125 bass instruments.

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Jean Sibelius at his desk in Ainola, 1915. Erric Sundström, Helsinki city museum

A groundbreaking study has unveiled the pivotal role radio broadcasts played in propelling Jean Sibelius, Finland's most esteemed art music composer, to international stardom, particularly in the 1930s. This era marked a significant turning point for both the broadcasting industry and the legacy of Sibelius, as well as for Western classical art music at large.

Jean Sibelius (1865–1957), whose compositions had already earned him national acclaim, saw his global influence surge as radio became a prevalent medium across Europe.

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The Roomba J9 robot vacuum cleaner. Photo: Manufacturer

This spring, the Museum of Finnish Architecture and the Design Museum Helsinki will unveil "FIX: Care and Repair," an innovative exhibition that questions the relentless pursuit of the new in favor of celebrating the art of repair and maintenance. Opening on April 26, 2024, and running until January 5, 2025, this collaborative exhibit seeks to alter perceptions of wear and decay by highlighting their inherent value in both architecture and design.

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Joyce DiDonato Photo: Sergi Jasanada

The Turku Music Festival, set to take place from August 8 to 29, 2024, announces a spectacular lineup featuring multiple Grammy award-winning American mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato, the esteemed Il Pomo d’Oro Baroque orchestra, and the talented choir from Puolala School Music Classes. This year, the festival not only celebrates world-class music but also emphasizes environmental education and community involvement.

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Portrait: Tapio Wirkkala © Maaria Wirkkala. Artwork: Tapio Wirkkala, Square (detail), 1950s. Tapio Wirkkala Rut Bryk Foundation Collection / EMMA – Espoo Museum of Modern Art © Ari Karttunen / EMMA

For the first time, Japan will host a comprehensive exhibition of Tapio Wirkkala's work, titled "The Sculptor of Ultima Thule," touring multiple venues throughout 2025 and 2026. Celebrating the 110th anniversary of the birth of Tapio Wirkkala (1915–1985), a pioneer of Finnish modernism, the exhibition will showcase the artist's visionary and broad-ranging contributions to art and design. Known for his work across various mediums, including art objects, industrial design, graphic design, exhibition and architectural design, sculptures, and environmental art, Wirkkala's influence on the design world is profound.

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