Festival-packed weekend on the way

The summer festival season gets into full swing this weekend with scores of events including rock, metal, blues, electronic, classics, literature, religion and more.

The crowd at last year's Bättre Folk festival on the island of Hailuoto. Image: Bättre Folk

Even though the season has been underway for weeks, this weekend festival-goers are being offered peak volume and variety. Here's a selection of just a few of the bigger and smaller events taking place over the next few days.

Provinssi - "the festival of the people"

Provinssi, held in Seinäjoki, is an annual tradition for more than one generation of rockers. Running this year 30.6-2.7, this is the festival's 38th incarnation.

Artists range from Germany's pyrotechnic metal band Rammstein to Finnish pop star Antti Tuisku and Swedish hiphop artist Silvana Imam with her lyrics combining themes from feminism and Islam.  Website in English.


Droves of hardcore fans of metal music will be making their way to Helsinki's Suvilahti this weekend to the Nordic region's biggest metal festival, Tuska (the word means "agony" in Finnish).

Tuska-festivaalien vieras.
One fan at last year's Tuska festival. Image: Ilona Koivisto / Yle
One of the featured performers is the Swedish band Ghost, known for wearing masks to protect the anonymity of its members. Other acts include the German symphonic metal band Avantasia, and Finland's Children of Bodom. Website in English.



Not far from the Tuska venue, the Visio festival will fill Teurastamo, an old city slaughterhouse yard, with electronic music and visual installations. Visio organizers have been advertising both top musical talents from reputable artists and more alternative, up-coming performers. This year's featured artists include Norway's DJ/producer Todd Terje and Brooklyn-based techno and house DJ Levon Vincent. Website in English.

Helsinki Pride

Kuvaa Helsinki Pride 2014 -tapahtumasta Helsingin tuomiokirkon edustalta lauantaina 28. kesäkuuta 2014.
A Helsinki Pride gathering in June 2014. Image: Yle
The week-long annual Helsinki Pride kicked off last Monday, but most events are clustered at the weekend. This year's Pride parade, which starts from Senaatintori Square at 1 PM on Saturday, continues to Kansalaistori Square for a park party. The Helsinki Pride closing party Saturday evening in an old cable factory will be a whole festival in itself, with three stages, three dance floors and dozens of entertainers.  Website in English.


Billed as one of the biggest blues events in Europe, Puistoblues got underway in Järvenpää on Wednesday and continues through Saturday. The city's pedestrian street Janne has been converted into "Blues Street" with free concerts. The main concert on Saturday features Finnish artists

Swengin vintti oli suosittu keikkapaikka. Kuvassa Olavi Uusivirta Järvenpään Puistobluesin klubikeikalla.
Olavi Uusivirta in a club appearance at Puistoblues in 2015. Image: Vesa Marttinen / Yle
and three American performers: soul vocalist Nikki Hill, blues guitarist Sonny Landreth, and the blues rock band Simo. Website in English.

Iskelmäfestivaali - adult contemporary

Iskelmäfestivaali, which features a type of middle-of-the-road adult contemporary music popular in Finland, opened Thursday and runs through Saturday at the Himos holiday centre near Jämsä. Performers are a long list of nationally-known names in the genre, including Vicky Rosti and Juha Tapio, but also representatives of a younger generation with a very different take on music, such as Sanni, Anna Abreu and Elastinen. Website in Finnish.

Bättre Folk

The small, alternative Bättre Folk festival, held on the island of Hailuoto off the coast of Oulu, brings together fans of new music and new literature. In addition to musical performances audiences will be hearing from some of the country's best-read young authors such as Katja Ketu, Laura Lindstedt, Mikko Rimminen and Riku Korhonen. Website in Finnish.

Summer classics

Muusikot soittavat
Avanti's Summer Sounds brings the classics to Porvoo. Image: Yle
Avanti’s Summer Sounds is a classic music festival in the southern coastal city of Porvoo, held annually since 1986. Continuing through Sunday, this year's programme features a large number of free public concerts. Website in English.

Summer services

Finland's biggest summer festival is none of the above, but rather the "Summer Services" of the Conservative Laestadians - the Nordic region's largest spiritual event, attended each year by 60,000- 85,000 people.

Suviseurojen lippukulkue valmistautuu poistumaan seremonian päätteeksi.
A flag raising ceremony is part of the opening of the Summer Services event. Image: Juha Kemppainen / Yle
The site is like a mid-size self-supporting town. This year's Summer Services are just outside Tornio where attendees are spending Friday through Monday listening to sermons, singing hymns, meeting friends and relatives, and maybe finding a future spouse. Website in English.

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