The Finnish Wagner Society, founded in Turku in 1991, celebrated its 25th anniversary from 25 to 27 November 2016 in Helsinki. With its 865 members the Society founded by four enthusiasts is currently the second largest Wagner society in the world (next to Würzburg).
The celebrations started with a Wagner concert at Temppeliaukio Church on Friday 25 Nov. The program included Wesendonck Lieder, piano transcriptions of several Wagner's operas and Isolde´s Liebestod performed by Mus. Dr. Jenni Lättilä, soprano, and Mus. Dr. Risto-Matti Marin, piano.
The Anniversary reception with an excellent lecture by music journalist and writer Ms. Minna Lindgren was held at the Finnish National Opera the following day. The occasion was opened by Chairman of the FWS, Mr. Heikki Virri. The greetings to the celebrating society were presented by the President of RWVI, Mr. Horst Eggers, Ms. Rilla Kyykkä from the Finnish National Opera and by Ms. Camilla Nylund (soprano), Senta of the matinee performance of The Flying Dutchman (director Kasper Holten and conductor John Fiore) at the FNO, which was also part of the Anniversary http://oopperabaletti.fi/en/repertoire/the-flying-dutchman/.
The celebrations of Saturday ended with a banquet at the restaurant Laulumiehet with song and other music performances throughout the evening by Bayreuth scholarship holders of the FWS and new applicants, among others.
The celebrations were completed on 27 November by watching the new Wagner movie Der Wagner-Clan. Eine Familiengeschichte. Some 250 members and guests took part in the Anniversary festivities.
As part of the Anniversary the FWS has published Carl Dahlhaus's famous book Richard Wagners Musikdramen in Finnish (translator music journalist Mr Matti Lehtonen) in cooperation with the Finnish publisher Faros and Prof. Hannu Salmi.