Presenting our musicians: Eero Palviainen

Musician interview 16.10.2018

Early music and the lute fascinated Eero Palviainen already when he was in his teens, luckily enough for FiBO’s audience.

Eero Palviainen

Renaissance and Baroque lutes, archlute, theorbo, Baroque guitar and vihuela

Short introduction
I play as a freelancer in many other ensembles as well, such as Arpeggiata, Baccano, HeBo and Battalia. Sometimes I also build early plucked string instruments.

Tell us about yourself
My career as a musician began when I was only five years old and destroyed a guitar in my childhood home in Tampere’s Pispala. Later, in my teens, I first played the mandolin and then the piano, and I started taking guitar lessons at Turku Conservatory when I was 12 years old. My teacher was unsettled as I only practiced Baroque and Renaissance music, and said: “You should play the lute”. And so I did. After school I started studying lute as my main instrument at the Sibelius Academy as Leif Karlsson’s student. Later on, I studied five more years in Basel.

How did you end up with your instrument? Who or what made you choose it?
When I was young and played the guitar I fell in love with Renaissance lute and vihuela music, and I was also thrilled with how awesome these instruments looked.

What inspires you as a musician and in life?
The previously mentioned instruments in themselves inspire me, and of course the skilled and funny musicians around me.

What other art form is close to your heart?
I enjoy instrument building as an art form, and I do it a lot myself.  

Which is your favourite travel destination, and why?
Because of my work, I travel a lot by plane and train, so my preferred journey is by sail to one of the little islands close to Helsinki. My soul rests there.

How do you feel your art is affecting society at large?
No one can live without art. Beside me, early music is important to lots of other people.

Why do you enjoy playing music that is over 300 years old?
Already the meantone temperament of early music brings the sort of peace that you don’t get anywhere else.  

Do you have a guilty pleasure or a “secret” special skill?
Laziness is my vice and skill. On a free day I can just lie in bed and read all day.

If you had to run the Cooper test or bake for a party of 30 people, which would you choose?
I would cook, I have never been a baker.

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