Lilli Paasikivi is known as a true multitasker of culture. She is active as an opera- and concert singer, artistic director, lecturer, performance coach and specialist of cultural issues.
She was a member of the ensemble of the Finnish National Opera in 1998-2013, and has made a significant international career alongside it, appearing as a soloist with many notable orchestras, f.ex. the New York, Los Angeles, Vienna and Berlin Philharmonics and the London Symphony Orchestra. Her operatic repertoire includes many of the central roles of her voice type, from romantic works to operas of our time.
At the Châtelet theater in Paris, she sang the role of Pelerin in Kaija Saariaho’s opera L’Amour de loin. At the Aix-en-Provence music festival, she appeared in the world premiere of Toshio Hosokawa’s Hanjo, and as Fricka in the Ring project of Sir Simon Rattle and the Berlin Philharmonic. She has also sung the role of Fricka at the Hamburg State Opera and the Finnish National Opera.
Paasikivi has performed in several world premier operas, such as Aulis Sallinen’s King Lear and most recently she sang the title role of Armi by Eeva Kontu, portraying the legendary founder of Marimekko brand, the design icon Armi Ratia.
In concert Paasikivi has extensively performed the various solos of symphonic works, as Mahler-symphonies, orchestral song cycles, as well as oratorios, passions and requiems.
Paasikivi worked as the artistic director of the Finnish National Opera in 2013-2023. Along with artistic content planning, she boldly renewed the operations of the opera. Special projects launched by Paasikivi include e.g. the long-term Opera Beyond project, which investigates the application of new technological possibilities in opera and ballet.
In October 2024, Paasikivi will begin her tenure as the Intendent of the Bregenz festival in Austria.
Paasikivi has been awarded several honors in recognition of artistic merit and her work in the cultural field, the Pro Finlandia medal in 2008, the Commander of the Order of the Lion of Finland in 2017 and Helsinki -medal in 2021.
Photo credit: Sakari Majantie
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