Dr. Niklas Pokki (1976) is a founder and artistic director of the Mänttä Music Festival, the most important annual piano festival in Finland, since 1999. He currently works as Head of Piano Department at the University of the Arts Helsinki, Sibelius Academy and teaches at the Turku Conservatory. More than thirty of his students have won prizes in national and international competitions. Pokki is an active master class teacher and lecturer, and he works constantly as a juror in national and international piano competitions. He is also the founder and coordinator of a prestigious talent education program, the Youth Piano Academy Finland.
Pokki has performed as a soloist with the Baden-Baden Philharmonic Orchestra and Tallinn Chamber Orchestra. He has premiered works by Jean Sibelius, Erkki Melartin, Kalevi Aho, Osmo-Tapio Räihälä and Tõnu Kõrvits. He has played broadcasted concerts includinh Finnish Broadcasting Company, Classic FM, Eesti Klassikaraadio and SWR1, and made studio recordings. Niklas Pokki studied at the Sibelius Academy and at the Music University of Karlsruhe, Germany. His most important teachers were Matti Raekallio, Teppo Koivisto, Erik T. Tawaststjerna, Carmen Piazzini and Emanuel Krasovsky.