Johanna Elina Sulkunen is a prizewinning Finnish artist; Vocalist, composer, and improviser who has been based in Copenhagen since 2009.
Johanna’s attitude towards music is about personal sound, which gives freedom to cross the borders between different genres. Cinematic moods bring you to travel that is not afraid revealing and accepting the dark but bringing you always back to the light.
Circulating between experimental music, jazz, electronic music, and contemporary music Johanna builds up her own musical universe where the genre definitions lose their meaning.
Her latest project is a solo project ‘Johanna Sulkunen Sonority’. The album ‘Koan’ was released 2018 on a Danish ILK label. The project started as a research about the sonic textures of vocal sounds/language. Voice is used both as an instrument itself, seeking its potential as a source of sound-based composition. Voice is also manipulated electronically and complemented with field recordings from Japanese Buddhist temples. The result could be described as contemporary composition meets music concrète meets vocal improvisation.
Johanna Elina’s second album ‘Belonging’ 2016 (Eclipse/ DME) was nominated as the Best Vocal Album – Danish Music Awards 2016 in Denmark. The album was finalized at Sundlaugin studio in Iceland, with Birgir Jón Birgisson. Birgir has been working with many great international artists e.g. Sigur Rós. Musicians: Anders Filipsen (DK) – keys, Håkon Berre (NO) – d, Henrik Olsson (SE) – g.
The first album on her own name ‘Our Garden’ (Eclipse Music) was released in 2011. Musicians on the album: August Rosenbaum (DK) – p, Håkon Berre (NO) – d, Henrik Olsson (SE) – g, Joel Illerhag (SE)- b, Kristian Tangvik (NO) – t , Magnus Aannestad Oseth (NO)- t, Francesco Bigoni (ITA) – s.
Johanna has been collaborating with artists like Tomasz Stanko, Hilmar Jensson, Mikko Innanen, Aki Rissanen, Jørgen Leth, Mike Sheridan and she’s a co-leader of the Scandinavian improvising vocal group IKI www.ikivocal.com. Their third album ORACLE’ was released in March 2018 and nominated for two Danish Music Awards. It was produced by the Danish electronic artist Mike Sheridan. IKI has worked with several interdisciplinary acts ( dancers, poets, film music makers, actors …) crossing boundaries between different art forms and expressions and continuously seeking for new.
With their debut album IKI, they won the Danish Music Award “Best Jazz Vocal Release of the year 2011“. ‘LAVA’/DME was released in 2014 and featured by an Icelandic guitarist Hilmar Jensson. An Ep ‘DEW’/DME was recorded together with a Belgium artist Sander de Winne.
Johanna holds a Degree in Jazz Vocals from Rotterdam Jazz Academy, where she graduated with a prize ‘very talented alumni’. She graduated from the Post Graduate ‘Soloist’ line (performance) at the Rhythmic Music Conservatory of Copenhagen in 2017.