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Tales of the North

Two Finnish choirs sing

Brahe Djäknar and Florakören are the male and female student choirs of Åbo Akademi University in Turku, Finland. Åbo Akademi University is the only Swedish language university in Finland and the choirs have been part of the vibrant student community since 1937 and 1944, respectively. Throughout the years they have represented the university in Finland and around the world. Even though the two choirs are separate entities with their own projects and endeavors, they collaborate frequently and successfully. A strong sense of community is found between the choirs and allow the singers in both choirs to develop and venture into new musical territory. Audience favorites such as the annual Advent concert in Turku Cathedral are mixed up with special projects such as the celebration of Åbo Akademi University’s 100th anniversary this year and other academic festivities. The choirs often travel together and their tour to Iceland is the finale of a very busy and lucrative semester for the choirs.

Since 1991 both choirs have been led by conductor Ulf Långbacka, who is also the lector of musicology at Åbo Akademi University. In addition to his successful career as a choir conductor he is also an accomplished composer. He has composed a large number of ordered works, most recently the cantata Undrans Mosaik, for the celebration of the 100th anniversary of Åbo Akademi University. In 2017 the album Visions was released, containing recordings of some of his choral compositions.