Native of Oulainen, Northern Ostrobothnia, Finland, Antti Tikkanen began taking violin lessons at the age of seven at the local music institute as a student of Tomasz Orzech. When studying at the Sibelius Academy from 1997, his first violin teacher was Lajos Garam and later Professor Mi-Kyung Lee. Other teachers and instructors have included Zinaida Gilels at the Kuhmo Violin School, Pavel Vernikov at the Conservatory of Music in Lyon as well as most recently, Kreeta-Maria Kentala in playing the baroque violin.
Antti Tikkanen performs as a soloist and a chamber musician, and is a member of the string quartet Meta4. In 2004, Meta4 won the Dmitri Shostakovich Competition in Moscow, while also being awarded the special prize for the best Shostakovich interpretation. The success continued, the quartet winning the first prize in the International Joseph Haydn Chamber Music Competition in Vienna in 2007. In the same year, the Finnish Ministry of Culture awarded Meta4 with the annual Finland Prize in recognition of their promising breakthrough. Meta4 was also invited to the BBC New Generation Artist program for 2008-2010.
Meta4 has given concerts, for instance, in Vienna, London, Madrid and New York. In their home country they have performed at the Helsinki Festival, the music festivals in Turku and Mänttä, as well as at the Kuhmo Chamber Music festival, where the ensemble acts as the festival’s residence quartet. Meta4 also acted as artistic director of the Oulunsalo Soi festival from 2008 to 2011. The quartet keeps performing around Europe on a regular basis.
As a soloist, Antti Tikkanen has performed with orchestras such as the Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra, the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Tapiola Sinfonietta, Oulu Sinfonia and the Ostrobothnian Chamber Orchestra, and under the baton of Paavo Berglund, Juha Kangas, Sakari Oramo and Osmo Vänskä.
In his birthplace, Antti Tikkanen has been organizing a chamber music event called Kamari Soi! in connection with the music festival in Oulainen. Correspondingly, in Punavuori, his present neighborhood in Southern Helsinki, he strives to enliven the local chamber music scene by organizing regular concerts in the name of PuKama, the chamber music society of Punavuori – a project he attends to with his wife, the violinist Minna Pensola.
PREVIOUS ARTISTIC DIRECTORS
Anssi Mattila 1998–2000
Jukka Rautasalo 2001–2004
Tuomas Hannikainen 2005–2009
Markku Luolajan-Mikkola 2010–2013