Helsingin Sanomat calls him a romantic virtuoso, Aamulehti praises his Beethoven interpretation as one of an experienced master, Rondo Classic describes his sound as romantic. Almost unanimously critics have named him a piano poet. The rise of Ossi Tanner (b. 1997) to become
one of Finland’s most acclaimed and most active concert pianists can be called a phenomenon rarely seen in Finland.

Tanner has performed as a soloist in the seasonal concerts of the best symphony orchestras in Finland even before winning the Tampere Piano Competition in 2017. He has played with the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra, Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra, Lahti Symphony Orchestra, Oulu Symphony Orchestra, Jyväskylä Symphony Orchestra, Lohja City Orchestra, Tapiola Sinfonietta, and Ostrobothnian Chamber Orchestra. He has worked with renowned conductors from Sakari Oramo to Joshua Weilerstein and Eiji Oue to Klaus Mäkelä and Hannu Lintu.

Even as a chamber musician Tanner is exceptionally popular. He has made a great impression for example in the chamber music concerts of the FRSO, the Helsinki Phil, and the Oulu Symphony, and also the Turku, Naantali, Mänttä, PianoEspoo, and Lahti’s Sibelius festivals. He has collaborated with the Brentano Quartet, Arto Noras, Li-Wei Qin, and Gregor Witt, just to name a few. At Kuhmo’s Chamber Music Festival he played practically during all the summers of his teenage years. As Artist-in-Residence at Lahti Symphony Orchestra in 2018, he played the Chopin Piano Concerto and the Brahms Piano Quintet during one evening. He has performed solo recitals in Finland, Croatia, Cyprus, Estonia, and Russia. As a young artist in Kuhmo, he played Beethoven’s Appassionata Sonata to a sold-out Kuhmo House at the age of 19.

Tanner is the Co-Artistic Director of the Kamarikesä Festival in Helsinki together with violinist Abel Puustinen and clarinetist Klaara Vasara.

This has all happened at a rapid pace. Tanner, who spent his childhood in the United States and Belgium, began playing the piano at the age of six in Sirpa Heikkilä’s classes, and in just a few years he practiced several hours every day with professionalism in mind. When Tanner was not playing he listened to the works of Schumann, Chopin, Rachmaninoff, and Ravel.
When Tanner met Lang Lang in London at the age of 14 after hearing his interpretation of Beethoven’s Emperor Concerto he really understood why he was lured by the piano time and time again.

After moving to Finland Tanner’s artistry rose to a new level. He began his studies with Junio Kimanen who guided him towards the soundtrack of his childhood. Kimanen also introduced Tanner to the legendary Konstantin Bogino whose classes he still regularly attends in Paris. Niklas Pokki, who mentored him at the Youth Piano Academy Finland, and Paavali Jumppanen, who gave him private lessons, have also made a great impression on Tanner’s artistic image. In recent years Tanner has studied at the Sibelius Academy with professors Erik T. Tawaststjerna and Matti Raekallio.

Tanner has earned a reputation as a pianist whose touch is at the same time heavy but soft, bright, singing, inspired, and imaginative – in a word, lyrical. This is no wonder since both his pianistic ideals and his outlook on life rely on the attainment of a profound state of flow, freedom of interpretation, and seizing the moment. His role models are such pianists as Vladimir Horowitz, Alfred Cortot, Arthur Rubinstein, and Daniil Trifonov – romanticists expressing with extreme sensitivity and strong empathy.

Tanner also seeks inspiration for his playing by listening to old and historical jazz records performed by such greats as Keith Jarrett, Oscar Peterson, and Nat King Cole. Singers Frank Sinatra and George Trenet are also among his favorites. In his spare time, Tanner enjoys golfing and ice
swimming, reads novels, and devours all kinds of movies.

Jaani Länsiö



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