South African energy, Roma music, flamenco, yoik, blues, Arabic music...

Etnosoi! brightens up the cultural autumn of Helsinki for the 31st time. This year concerts are arranged around Helsinki from 3rd to 12th of November at among others Korjaamo, Malmitalo and Vuotalo. During the festival the public can enjoy both debut concerts, unique meetings and concerts celebrating long careers, not to forget program for children.

Our international guests this year are South African music veteran Dizu Plaatjies, reminding us about the multitude of musical traditions in southern Africa, and Leyla McCalla from the US, who reflects on how deep in a large variety of ethnicity lie the roots of the United States of America. McCalla starts her autumn world tour in Helsinki. Her third solo album is to be released in January and once again tells about her courage to treat difficult subjects via music: on "Capitalist Blues" this versatile singer and multi-instrumentalist treats the psychological and emotional effects living in a capitalist society has had on her.

The festival starts with a unique meeting in a free afternoon-concert in Tenho Restobar in Kallio on All Saints day, Saturday 3rd of November. Folk musician Päivi Hirvonen performs her solo program, featuring a very special guest. Rane Diallo from Senegal is familiar for the Finnish audience from ensembles like Galaxy and Hasse Walli & Asamaan but in his home country Senegal he is a musical celebraty collaborating with all the big names like Youssou N'Dour. Something truly unique will certainly happen when these two artists meet on stage for the first time.

Al-Teslim is a pioneer ensemble playing Arabic music in Finland and has invited two luminous musicians from Great Britain for their 30 years concert: Rihab Azar and Jamal Al-Saqqa, originally from Syria. The Gypsy Music Orchestra Mumo is an orchestra of 19 musicians giving their debut concert at the festival - the audience is invited on a journey through different landscapes of Roma music, from traditional Roma songs to gospel and gypsy dance. Some of these musicians are currently on tour with Samuli Edelmann as part of the energetic Orkestra Suora Lähetys.

The concert Voices from the North presents two very different voices from the North: Hildá Länsman is well-known from the ensemble Solju and the UMK competition and has found a very interesting musical connection with accordionist Viivi Maria Saarenkylä in the VILDÁ duo. The northernmost flamenco singer in the world Anna Murtola releases her first solo album in the concert, an album which also contains tango and Arabic spices. The grand old man of Finnish folk music Heikki Laitinen is celebrating at his 75 years birthday concert, which is already sold out.

Etnosoi! for kids is celebrated on Father's Day, and we will hear what Dizu Plaatjies has put together with the GloMas students of the Sibelius Academy during the festival week, as well as enjoying the meeting between Balinese dance and Spanish clownery. The Etnosoi! program also includes lectures, Meet the Artist -events, courses and an exhibition - this year most of this program is arranged in collaboration with Pasila library as part of their festivity week.

Etnosoi! 3.-12.11.2018