Friday, 6 August 2021

ICE video premiere!

What an incredible day!

Composer Cecilia Damström and architect Erkko Aarti

Today 6.8 my piece “ICE” commissioned by Green Capital Lahti got its video premiere, recorded by Lahti Sinfonia and conducted by Finland’s star conductor Dalia Stasevska (who is still in the UK as she conducted the opening of the Proms!)! The video premiere was on the big screen of Helsinki Music Centre at 12 PM, and is now available online in 100 cities threatened by rising sea levels. 

Sinfonia Lahti playing ICE conducted by Dalia Stasevska

After the video premiere, the Mayor of Lahti Pekka Timonen officially cut the ribbon and opened the monumental visual piece I.C.E by Erkko Aarti and his team. The piece can be seen in front of Helsinki main library Oodi for the next 10 days, and all these days from 10 AM to 5 PM my piece ICE can be heard in the Wood Paviljong (on repeat).

Lahti Major Pekka Timonen opening I.C.E.

When I was asked in December 2020 if I would like to compose the piece, I immediately had a “vision” of how this piece should sound, it was clear from the beginning to the end. Due to it’s important topic (the climate crisis) this piece is really special to me. My humblest thank you to Green Capital Lahti, Sinfonia Lahti and Dalia Stasevska for your trust in me, and giving me this enormous and amazing opportunity to be part of this!

I.C.E. for GreenLahti2021

I.C.E. for GreenLahti2021

Also a great honour to get the opportunity to collaborate with the super talented Erkko Aarti and his team! Its not everyday a composer gets to collaborate with a prize winning architect and his team! (Well, no part of this project happens “often” in a composers life, to be honest! 😀 )

Still find it hard to believe this all happened today and is real! ❤
Composer Cecilia Damström

#greenlahti #greenlahti2021@greenlahti2021 #sinfonialahti@sinfonialahti #daliastasevska@daliastasevskaofficial#ceciliadamström #ceciliadamstrom@ceciliadamstrom #ICE #icemusic#ympäristöpääkaupunki #climatecrisis

Wednesday, 28 July 2021

Summer Concerts 2021

Composer Cecilia Damström Photo © Maria Svidryk / Villa Concordia

Turning 33 and feeling genuinely happy about life!

So much fun just around the corner, so here is a update of upcoming events the next two weeks:

🎻 29.7 “Sydänlaulu” for viola at @meidanfestivaali 

🐭31.7 “Vickan&Väinö” children opera at @leminmusiikkijuhlat produced by @operaboxhelsinki 

🎹4.8 “Characters” for piano at @manttamusicfestival 

❄️6.8 video premiere of “ICE” by @sinfonialahti and @daliastasevskaofficial on the screen of @musiikkitalo 

🌊7.8 world premiere of “Fretus” for string orchestra at Styrsö Kammarmusikdagar in Sweden

🌈 10.8 world premiere of my new trio “Vibrations” for Rosetta Ensemble at @brqvantaafestival at Tikkurila Church @tiksinsrk 

❄️12.8 Panel discussion about climate change with other artists in Nastola

Hope to see You in Helsinki/ Kallionkuninkala / Styrsö / Tikkurila / Nastola or where ever our might paths meet! 😅

Photo: Villa Concordia // Maria Svidryk @svidryk_ 

#composerlife #happycomposer#contemporarymusic #meidänfestivaali#sinfonialahti #mäntänmusiikkijuhlat#mänttämusicfestival #musiikkitalo#styrsökammarmusikdagar#leminmusiikkijuhlat2021#ceciliadamström #ceciliadamstrom#333daysbamberg #menschoir#femalecomposer #styrsö #mänttä#lemi #bamberg #tikkurila #nastola#vibrations #miamclothing #greenlahti

Friday, 28 May 2021

FFF15: Sign petition for Finnish forests

I would like to contribute to FFF (Fridays for Future) in my own way: by sharing one concrete action per week that YOU can do, and which I have done, for combating climate change. 

FFF15: Sign petition for Finnish forests

WHY: Finland is cutting down old forests at an alarming rate. Old forests are particularly rich in both biodiversity, a factor that is needed for combating pandemics. Areas with good biodiversity can produce a number of important benefits for their regions and, by extension, the people who live nearby. These include functions like protecting nearby water systems, encouraging the formation of healthy soil, and breaking down ambient air pollution. 

WHAT CAN I DO: Sign the petition for Finnish forests. (You need a Finnish telephone number and to give them your name and email.) Greenpeace has made a petition that asks the Finnish Prime Minister Sanna Marin to commit to protecting the preservation of old forests. You can also go to the website and instagram of Greenpeace for more information.

I like to share petitions every now and then, because personally I feel it’s a easy thing to do against climate change. And they do affect: the EU ruled that oat milk and other non dairy products are allowed to be called oat milk also in the future! Yay!

And for people outside Finland, go check out if there is a petition for protecting old forests in your home country you can sign!

Link to petition:

Monday, 24 May 2021

Thoughts on Finnish cultural restrictions

I'm very proud of Finland at the Eurovision song contest final! If the audience would have decided Finland would have been fourth, but also now the 6th placement was the best Finland placement since Lordi won in 2006! Well done @blindchannel !! 

I’m proud of Finnish culture but I’m not proud of how Finnish culture has been treated by our government (by cultural minister @annika.saarikko among others)! 🤯Living in Germany I see how ALL institutions (restaurants, gyms, shops AND culture institutions) are treated equally, same rules for everyone. In Finland again everything else seems to matter except culture. The National Theatre can take in 6 people in the audience while the casino next door can take in 350!! I do believe in regulations due to corona, but a 50% capacity concert or theatre where everyone wears face masks, is for sure a more safe place than for instance any bar. So why does culture have the worst conditions for being able to do work, of all professions in Finland at the moment? A sector that includes 135.000 people working with it, and usually a turnover of 12,5 billion euros a year, it is a substantial industry that has been abandoned by our government. Finland HAS to do BETTER than this! 

Ending with a good Churchill quote, when asked to cut down on funding for art during World War II he replied “Then what would we be fighting for?”. 

#kulttuuriaeisaarikkoa #blindchannel#finnishculture #finnishmusic #annikasaarikko #sannamarin #jaxuhali @eduskunta_riksdagen #mittaontäysi

Friday, 21 May 2021

FFF14: Vote for environmentalists in elections!

I would like to contribute to FFF (Fridays for Future) in my own way: by sharing one concrete action per week that YOU can do, and which I have done, for combating climate change. 

FFF14: Vote for environmentalists in elections!

WHY: The Finnish local elections are beginning next week, and for some reason they often have a lower turnup than other elections in Finland, only 58,8% voted in 2017 to be exact. This is however strange, as local elections are the ones that affect your living and hometown and your immediate environment the most! And through voting for candidates and political parties who care about the environment, we can in a easy way take action and a stand for our environment.

WHAT CAN I DO: VOTE! And I would advice to vote for someone who openly values our environment. Read about different candidates and read also what the party they represent stands for. In Finland we have also many voting aid applications (“vaalikone”), in which you can fill in what you think is important, and the applications will give you suggestions on candidates who have similar responses as you. Elections are also important for preserving culture, so keep that in mind as well! ❤ 

HOW:In Finland you can either vote easily in advance 26.5-8.6 at almost any voting place or on the voting day 13.6 at your predetermined voting place. If you live abroad (like me) you can vote in advance 2-5.6.

Composer Cecilia Damström at Villa Concordia Bamberg


#FFF #FridaysForFuture#kunnallisvaalit2021#kommunalval2021 #kuntavaalit2021#greenfuture #environmentallyfriendly#enviromentalist #333daysbamberg

Friday, 14 May 2021

FFF week 13: Clean a beach

I would like to contribute to FFF (Fridays for Future) in my own way: by sharing one concrete action per week that YOU can do, and which I have done, for combating climate change. 

FFF13: Clean a beach ( #Satakolkyt )

WHY: Cleaning beaches improves the coastal and ocean ecosystem by making sure that none of the trash kills marine life or is toxic enough to disrupt the marine life cycle. The more biodiversity, the better nature can combat climate change (and according to research also more biodiversity goes together with less risk of pandemics)! In Helsinki the initiative “Satakolkyt” (Hundered and thirty) was launched to inspire people to enjoy the beaches of Helsinki while helping nature at the same time. 

WHAT CAN I DO: If you live in Helsinki: go to the website , check which beach hasn’t been cleaned yet, borrow cleaning equipment from the library and mark the beach you have cleaned on the map. So far 170 km beaches have been cleaned in Helsinki through this initiative! If you live somewhere else, you can still clean a beach, nature will be just as happy and thankful. And I think you will too!

I usually each summer clean the public beach close to my parents' summer house, because then I enjoy that beach more as well.

PS. You can also make it to a game with friends: the one that collects the most trash wins a *chocolate/beer/ self made up* award! Just remember to be careful and stay safe!


Saturday, 8 May 2021

Video recording of ICE

Summer has finally come to Finland and German but my heart and mind is currently full of ICE!

Thanks for all of my Instagram followers super inspirational suggestions on music inspired by ice, now my own piece ICE for Sinfonia Lahti and the city of Lahti is finally ready and recorded! Video premiere coming up in August and the concert premiere was announced only this week: January 20th 2022 by Sinfonia Lahti conducted by their amazing brand new chief conductor Dalia Stasevska. 

Concuctor Dalia Stasevska and composer Cecilia Damström

Thank you Sinfonia Lahti and Dalia for an incredible job and can't wait for everyone to hear what an marvellous interpretation you did of my piece!

And congratulations to the city of Lahti for being the Green Capital of Europe 2021!

Here is a small sneak peek behind the scenes of recording ICE on the 7th of May with Sinfonia Lahti and Dalia Stasevska! 🤩

Sinfonia Lahti recording Cecilia Damström's ICE

Was such a fun experience to finally get to work with the fantastic Dalia Stasevska! Amazing on the podium, in rehearsal, in every single way!

Video premiere recorded for August, concert premiere coming up on her first #Mixtape concert on January 20th 2022! So happy that my music is included in Dalia’s first season as chief conductor! 🤩

ICE for Sinfonia Lahti is commissioned in honour of Lahti being the European Green Capital 2021. The piece is inspired by melting ice and in the piece we can hear how landscapes and winter become ever shorter, in the end while alarm signals are chiming and all possible breaks are put into action. Through this piece I try to express how global warming as well as the collapse of ecosystems and the ever faster growing tempo of the world, is killing the beautiful snow and ice structures of millions of years, and how the heart of the earth is fighting for its existence through each beat. In this piece I have also tried to describe what happens if we WILL take action: you can hear a rewind, how action has impact and can make us go back to winters. The name ICE stands both for ice and for “In Case of Emergency”.

Sinfonia Lahti recording ICE at the Sibelius Hall