Skip to main content
Flag of Finland

Finland

Republic of Finland Europe Helsinki 5,268,799 inhabitants 338,145 sq km 15.58 inhabitants/sq km euros (EUR) population evolution

Famous people from Finland

Here is a list of famous people from Finland. Curious if anybody from Finland made it our most famous people in the world list? Read the aformentioned article in order to find out.

Kimi Räikkönen

Racing driver

Kimi-Matias Räikkönen is a Finnish racing driver. After nine seasons racing in Formula One, in which he won the 2007 Formula One World Drivers' Championship, he competed in the World Rally Championship in 2010 and 2011. In 2012, he returned to Formula One, driving for Lotus and continued to drive for Lotus in 2013. On September 11, 2013, Ferrari announced their signing of Räikkönen on a two year contract, beginning in the 2014 sporting season. Räikkönen entered Formula One as a regular driver for Sauber-Petronas in 2001. Having previously only raced in very junior open-wheel categories, he was given his Super Licence from the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile after a performance delivery promise by his team boss, Peter Sauber. He joined McLaren Mercedes in 2002, and became a title contender by finishing runner-up in the 2003 and 2005 championships to Michael Schumacher and Fernando Alonso, respectively. Räikkönen's 2003 and 2005 seasons were plagued by severe unreliability from his McLaren cars. Räikkönen switched to Ferrari in 2007, becoming the highest paid driver in motor sport with an estimated wage of $51 million per year. His move to Ferrari saw him secure his first Formula One World Drivers' Championship, beating McLaren drivers Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso by one point, as well as becoming one of the very few drivers to win in their first season at Ferrari. In 2008, he equalled the record for fastest laps in a season for the second time. However, with Ferrari's desire to get Fernando Alonso in the team with his Santander sponsorship, Räikkönen left the sport and Scuderia Ferrari F1 Team in 2009. Räikkönen then went into WRC to drive a Citroën C4 WRC for the Citroën Junior Team in the World Rally Championship for 2010. Along with rallying, Räikkönen also competed in NASCAR, and made his debut for Kyle Busch Motorsports in the Camping World Truck Series. Räikkönen made his return to F1 when he signed a 2-year deal with Lotus starting with the 2012 Formula One season. In his comeback season, he won the 2012 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. His consistent performances allowed him to end the season 3rd in the Drivers' Championship.

Jean Sibelius

Art song Artist

Jean Sibelius was a Finnish composer of the late Romantic period. His music played an important role in the formation of the Finnish national identity. The core of Sibelius's oeuvre is his set of seven symphonies. Like Beethoven, Sibelius used each successive work to further develop his own personal compositional style. His works continue to be performed frequently in the concert hall and are often recorded. In addition to the symphonies, Sibelius's best-known compositions include Finlandia, the Karelia Suite, Valse triste, the Violin Concerto in D minor and The Swan of Tuonela. Other works include pieces inspired by the Finnish national epic, the Kalevala; over 100 songs for voice and piano; incidental music for 13 plays; the opera Jungfrun i tornet; chamber music; piano music; Masonic ritual music; and 21 separate publications of choral music. Sibelius composed prolifically until the mid-1920s. However, after completing his Seventh Symphony, the incidental music to The Tempest, and the tone poem Tapiola, he produced no large scale works for the remaining thirty years of his life. Although he is reputed to have stopped composing, he in fact attempted to continue writing, including abortive efforts to compose an eighth symphony. He wrote some Masonic music and re-edited some earlier works during this last period of his life, and retained an active interest in new developments in music, although he did not always view modern music favorably.

Tarja Turunen

Symphonic metal Artist

Tarja Soile Susanna Turunen Cabuli, generally known as Tarja Turunen or simply Tarja, is a Finnish singer-songwriter and composer. She is a light lyric soprano and has a vocal range of three octaves. Turunen studied singing at Sibelius Academy and Hochschule für Musik Karlsruhe. She is well known as a professional classical lied singer but best known as the former lead vocalist of the Finnish symphonic metal band Nightwish, which she founded with Tuomas Holopainen and Emppu Vuorinen in 1996. Their combination of hard and fast guitar riffs with Turunen's dramatic, "operatic" lead vocals quickly achieved critical and commercial popularity. Their symphonic metal style, soon dubbed "opera metal", inspired many other metal bands and singers. Turunen was dismissed from the band on October 21, 2005 for personal reasons. She started her solo career in 2006 with the release of a Christmas album called Henkäys Ikuisuudesta. In 2007, Turunen released My Winter Storm, an album featuring various styles, including alternative rock and symphonic metal and started the Storm World Tour. Turunen released her third album, What Lies Beneath, in 2010. She also can be heard on the latest Scorpions record. She performed several concerts in Europe, playing in metal festivals including the Graspop Metal Meeting and the Wacken Open Air, before starting the What Lies Beneath World Tour, which lasted until April 8, 2012. Tarja's first live DVD Act I was filmed during this tour on March 30 and March 31, 2012 in Rosario, Argentina. Act I was released on August 24, 2012. On the 6th of May it was announced that the 4th album would be named Colours in the Dark. Tarja started the Colours in the Dark World Tour on October 17, 2013 to promote her new album.

Mika Häkkinen

Racing driver

Mika Pauli Häkkinen is a Finnish former racing driver and two-time Formula One World Champion. Häkkinen debuted in F1 with Lotus in 1991 after a successful career in karting and different junior formula categories. After two years with Lotus, he joined McLaren as a test driver in 1993 initially as a backup for Ayrton Senna, but took over the responsibility of race driver after Michael Andretti was dismissed by the team after that year's Italian Grand Prix. In 1994, he became the lead driver of the team after Senna left to join Williams. Following a life-threatening injury during a practice session for the 1995 Australian Grand Prix and a remarkable comeback to professional racing, Häkkinen and McLaren made considerable improvements in 1996 and 1997 with Häkkinen taking his first victory at the 1997 European Grand Prix. Häkkinen won back to back titles in 1998–99 against the Ferrari drivers Michael Schumacher and Eddie Irvine respectively. In 2000, Häkkinen won four races but the title was won by Schumacher. This was followed by two more victories in 2001, and the announcement of a sabbatical the same year that later turned into retirement.

Jarkko Nieminen

Tennis Player

Jarkko Kalervo Nieminen is a Finnish professional tennis player. His highest ranking is World No. 13, achieved in July 2006. He has won two ATP singles titles and three doubles titles in his career. His best performances in Grand Slam tournaments have been reaching the quarterfinals of the 2005 US Open, the 2006 Wimbledon Championships, and the 2008 Australian Open. Arguably Finland's best player ever, Nieminen is the highest-ranked Finn in rankings history, and is also the first and so far only Finnish player to have won an ATP singles title and to have reached the quarterfinals of a Grand Slam event. His wife, Anu Nieminen, is currently Finland's top-ranked badminton women's single player.

Linus Torvalds

Programmer

Linus Benedict Torvalds is a Finnish American software engineer, who was the principal force behind the development of the Linux kernel. He later became the chief architect of the Linux kernel, and now acts as the project's coordinator. He also created the revision control system Git as well as the diving log software Subsurface. He was honored, along with Shinya Yamanaka, with the 2012 Millennium Technology Prize by the Technology Academy Finland "in recognition of his creation of a new open source operating system for computers leading to the widely used Linux kernel".

Alvar Aalto

Architect

Hugo Alvar Henrik Aalto was a Finnish architect and designer. His work includes architecture, furniture, textiles and glassware. Aalto's early career runs in parallel with the rapid economic growth and industrialization of Finland during the first half of the twentieth century and many of his clients were industrialists; among these were the Ahlström-Gullichsen family. The span of his career, from the 1920s to the 1970s, is reflected in the styles of his work, ranging from Nordic Classicism of the early work, to a rational International Style Modernism during the 1930s to a more organic modernist style from the 1940s onwards. What is typical for his entire career, however, is a concern for design as a Gesamtkunstwerk, a total work of art; whereby he – together with his first wife Aino Aalto – would design not just the building, but give special treatments to the interior surfaces and design furniture, lamps, and furnishings and glassware. The Alvar Aalto Museum, designed by Aalto himself, is located in what is regarded as his home city Jyväskylä.

Teemu Selänne

Ice Hockey Right winger

Teemu Ilmari Selänne nicknamed "The Finnish Flash" is a Finnish professional ice hockey winger for the Anaheim Ducks of the National Hockey League. He formerly played with Jokerit of the SM-liiga and began his NHL career the Winnipeg Jets who selected him in the first round, 10th overall, at the 1988 NHL Entry Draft. Selänne has also played for the San Jose Sharks and Colorado Avalanche during a professional career that has spanned 25 years. After leading the SM-liiga in scoring in 1991–92, Selänne broke into the NHL by scoring 76 goals in 1992–93. It remains the league record for most goals by a rookie and earned him the Calder Memorial Trophy as the top first-year player in the NHL. He has scored 50 goals in a season three times and topped 100 points on four occasions. Selänne is one of the highest scoring players in NHL history with nearly 700 goals and over 1,400 points during his career. He has played in 10 NHL All-Star Games, has been named to four post-season All-Star Teams and won the inaugural Maurice "Rocket" Richard Trophy in 1998–99 as the league's leading goal scorer. He won the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy in 2005–06 for perseverance and dedication to the game. He was a member of the Ducks' 2007 Stanley Cup championship team.

Tuukka Rask

Professional Ice hockey Player

Tuukka Mikael Rask is a Finnish professional ice hockey goaltender currently playing for the Boston Bruins of the National Hockey League. Rask was drafted 21st overall in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft by the Toronto Maple Leafs. On June 24, 2006 his rights were traded to the Bruins in exchange for goaltender Andrew Raycroft. He is the brother of Nashville forward Joonas Rask.

Heikki Kovalainen

Racing driver

Heikki Johannes Kovalainen is a Finnish Formula One racing driver who last raced for Caterham F1 in 2012, and is currently one of the team's test and reserve drivers. He drove for McLaren in 2008 and 2009 and Team Lotus in 2010 and 2011, before its rebranding to Caterham. He was supported by the Renault Driver Development programme early in his racing career, during which he won the World Series by Nissan championship and finished runner-up in the GP2 series. Renault signed him on as a full-time Formula One test driver for 2006, and then promoted him to a race seat for 2007. He gained his first podium by finishing second in the Japanese Grand Prix that year. He moved to McLaren for the 2008 season, where he partnered Lewis Hamilton. His second season saw him achieve his first pole position at Silverstone and his first victory at Hungaroring, becoming the 100th driver to win a Formula One Grand Prix. He remained with the team for the 2009 season. In 2010, he moved to Team Lotus where he remained for 2011.

Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim

Military Commander

Baron Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim was a Finnish military leader and statesman. Mannerheim served as the military leader of the Whites in the Finnish Civil War, Regent of Finland, Commander-in-Chief of Finland's Defence Forces during World War II, Marshal of Finland, and the sixth President of Finland. In a Finnish survey 53 years after his death, Mannerheim was voted the greatest Finn of all time. Given the broad recognition in Finland and elsewhere of his unparalleled role in establishing and later preserving Finland's independence from Russia, Mannerheim has long been referred to as the father of modern Finland, and the Finnish capital Helsinki's Mannerheim Museum memorializing the leader's life and times has been called "the closest thing there is to a [Finnish] national shrine." Mannerheim was born in the Grand Principality of Finland, Russian Empire, into a family of Swedish-speaking aristocrats who had settled in Finland in the late 18th century. His paternal German ancestor Marhein had emigrated to Sweden during the 17th century. His maternal ancestry has its roots in Södermanland, Sweden.

Ville Valo

Alternative rock Artist

Ville Hermanni Valo is a Finnish singer, songwriter, artist, and multi instrumentalist. He is the frontman of the Finnish rock band HIM. Valo has a baritone voice type and has maintained a wide vocal range throughout his career. He has received the "Golden God" award in 2004 from the heavy metal magazine Metal Hammer. Valo was ranked number 80 in Hit Parader's 'Top 100 Metal Vocalists of All Time'.

Valtteri Bottas

Athlete

Valtteri Bottas is a Finnish racing driver currently competing in Formula One with Williams. He currently resides in Oxford, United Kingdom.

Mika Salo

Racing driver

Mika Juhani Salo is a Finnish racing driver. He competed in Formula One between 1994 and 2002. His best ranking was 10th in the world championship in 1999. He also won the GT2 class in the 2008 and 2009 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Jari Litmanen

Soccer

Jari Olavi Litmanen is a Finnish former footballer. He was the first-choice captain of the Finland national football team between 1996–2008 in an international career that ran from 1989 to 2010, making him the only male footballer to play an international in four different decades. He is widely considered to be Finland's greatest football player of all time. He was chosen as the best Finnish player of the last 50 years by the Football Association of Finland in the UEFA Jubilee Awards in November 2003. Litmanen also finished 42nd in the 100 Greatest Finns voting in 2004. The Association of Football Statisticians' compendium of 'Greatest Ever Footballers' listed Litmanen as the 53rd best footballer ever. In Finland, he is often called 'Litti', which dates from his early years, and is also known as 'Kuningas'. During his club career, he represented Reipas, HJK, MyPa and Lahti in Finland and Ajax, Barcelona, Liverpool, Hansa Rostock and Malmö abroad. Once considered one of the best attacking midfielders in the world, he became the first Finnish footballing superstar while playing for Ajax in the mid-1990s, winning the Champions League in 1995, the peak year of his career.

Darude

Trance Artist

Ville Virtanen, better known by his stage name Darude, is a trance producer and DJ from Eura, Hinnerjoki, Finland. He started making music in 1996 and he released the hit single "Sandstorm" in late 1999 and subsequent album Before the Storm in 2000. His music is characterized by its progressive/uplifting style.

Katri Helena

Singer

Katri Helena is a Finnish singer who has been performing since the 1960s. She has been married three times and is now living as a single mother. In terms of commercial success, Katri Helena is one of the most popular singers in Finland. During her career, she has sold a total of over 630,000 certified records, which makes her the second-best-selling female soloist in Finland behind Madonna and places her also among the top 20 best-selling music artists in the Finnish market. Katri Helena has had various hits, including "Puhelinlangat laulaa", "Katson sineen taivaan" and "Syysunelma". She has twice represented Finland in the Eurovision Song Contest: in 1979 with her song "Katson sineen taivaan" and 1993 with her song "Tule luo". She also took part in the International Sopot Festival in 1969, singing "Valssi" during the Polish day. In the search for the 100 Greatest Finns of all time, voted in the summer of 2004, Katri Helena placed 43rd. Katri Helena has 3 children, 2 girls and a boy, with her husband Timo Kalaoja who died of a heart attack in 1988. His death affected her so much that she withdrew from public view and stopped performing and recording albums for four years. Her only son, Juha Kalaoja, also died of a heart attack at the age of 33, on 29 April 2009.

Tove Jansson

Novelist

Tove Jansson is a novelist, painter, illustrator and author.

Ari Vatanen

Racing driver

Ari Pieti Uolevi Vatanen is a Finnish rally driver turned politician and Member of the European Parliament 1999–2009. Vatanen won the World Rally Championship drivers' title in 1981 and the Paris Dakar Rally four times. Since 2013 Ari Vatanen is the President of the Estonian Autosport Union.

Irwin Goodman

Blues Artist

Irwin Goodman was a popular Finnish rock and folk singer. In the late 1960s he was widely known as a protest singer. He recorded over 300 songs, most of which were his own compositions, with lyrics written by Vexi Salmi. Irwin Goodman started as a protest song singer in the folk boom of the mid-1960s, his humorous songs, often mocking the authorities, became favorites of the Finnish people; to such extent that small "Irwin singalike" contests are continuously arranged by some pubs for entertainment. Goodman had continuing troubles with Finnish tax authorities and had ever-worsening problems with alcohol. His escapades were eagerly followed by sensationalist magazines such as Hymy. Goodman died of a heart attack while on the way from Vyborg to Hamina, Finland. The story of his life was turned into a feature film, Rentun Ruusu, in 2001. Irwin's most famous songs include "Poing Poing Poing", "Haistakaa Paska Koko Valtiovalta", "Rentun Ruusu", "Ei Tippa Tapa", "Työmiehen lauantai", "En Kerro Kuinka Jouduin Naimisiin" and "Tyttö Tuli". He won the Syksyn Sävel contest twice.

Sami Hyypiä

Soccer

Sami Hyypiä is a Finnish football manager and former defender. He is the current manager of German Bundesliga club Bayer Leverkusen. Hyypiä began his playing career with Ykkönen side Kumu and soon moved to Veikkausliiga outfit MyPa. He spent four years at the club, helping them win the Finnish Cup in 1992 and 1995. He moved to Willem II Tilburg in 1995 and spent the next four years there. He became the team captain and was nominated their player of the year after helping them qualify for the UEFA Champions League. In 1999 Hyypiä moved for ten years to Liverpool, the team he supported as a child, in a deal worth £2.6 million. He quickly established himself in the first team, partnering Stéphane Henchoz in defence. By 2001, he regularly captained the team and that season Liverpool won a slew of honours, completing a cup treble of the League Cup, FA Cup and UEFA Cup, in addition to winning the UEFA Super Cup and FA Community Shield. He became first choice captain in the 2001–02 season and was part of the Football League Cup winning team in 2003. Steven Gerrard superseded him as captain in 2003 but Hyypiä still occasionally captained the side in his absence. Hyypiä won his highest football honour in 2005 as a part of Liverpool's victorious 2004–05 Champions League campaign. He is fondly remembered by many fans as a Liverpool legend. From 2009 to 2011 Hyypiä played for German Bundesliga side Bayer 04 Leverkusen.

Simo Häyhä

Military Person

Simo Häyhä, nicknamed "White Death" by the Red Army, was a Finnish sniper. Using a modified Mosin–Nagant in the Winter War, he has the highest recorded number of confirmed sniper kills – 505 – in any major war.

Olavi Virta

Singer

Olavi Virta was a Finnish singer, acclaimed as the king of Finnish tango. Between 1939 and 1966 he recorded almost 600 songs, many of which are classics of Finnish popular music, and appeared in many films and theatrical productions. Of his most acclaimed tangos are Punatukkaiselle tytölleni, Ennen kuolemaa and Täysikuu, while standouts from his other popular music are Poika varjoisalta kujalta, Hopeinen kuu, Eva and Kultainen nuoruus. He was also the second tenor of the quartet Kipparikvartetti in the early 1950s. At the beginning of his career he received three gold records for the songs Ennen kuolemaa, Tulisuudelma and La Cumparsita. Olavi Virta's career was cut short by a scandalous arrest for drunken driving in 1962, after which the press mockingly called him "The Singing Meatball." Ten years later he succumbed to alcoholism, living his final years in poverty.

Eero Saarinen

Architect

Eero Saarinen was a Finnish American architect and industrial designer of the 20th century famous for varying his style according to the demands of the project: simple, sweeping, arching structural curves or machine-like rationalism.

Aki Kaurismäki

Film Director

Aki Olavi Kaurismäki is a Finnish screenwriter and film director.

Michael Monroe

Glam punk Artist

Matti Antero Kristian Fagerholm, best known by his stage name, Michael Monroe, is a Finnish rock musician and multi-instrumentalist who rose to fame as the vocalist for the glam punk band Hanoi Rocks, and has served as the frontman for all-star side projects, such as Demolition 23. and Jerusalem Slim.

Vesa-Matti Loiri

Singer

Vesa-Matti "Vesku" Loiri is a Finnish actor, musician and comedian, best known for his role as Uuno Turhapuro, whom he portrayed in a total of 20 movies between the years 1973 and 2004. Loiri became an actor in 1962, when he had a role in the movie Pojat, directed by Mikko Niskanen. Loiri did most of his work with Spede Pasanen. In 2005, he starred in the film Shadow of the Eagle, which was directed by Timo Koivusalo. Six films starring Loiri are in the top 20 list of the highest-grossing domestic films in Finland. Total amount of tickets sold to the screenings of these six films is 3,715,948. As a musician, Loiri has performed Perttu Hietanen's compositions, Eino Leino's poems, Carl Michael Bellman's drinking songs and Juha "Watt" Vainio's songs. Loiri also plays the flute, a talent he put to use representing Finland at the Eurovision Song Contest 1980 in The Hague/Netherlands with the song "Huilumies", dedicated to his flute. He finished last in a field of 19 participating countries. During his career, Loiri has sold over 730,000 certified records in Finland and is currently the fifth-best-selling soloist and ninth-best-selling artist of all time in the country. He was the voice of the Genie in the Finnish dub of Disney's Aladdin, even performing the musical number Friend Like Me.

Urho Kekkonen

Politician

Urho Kaleva Kekkonen, was a Finnish politician who served as Prime Minister of Finland and later as the eighth and longest-serving President of Finland. Kekkonen continued the “active neutrality” policy of his predecessor President Juho Kusti Paasikivi, a doctrine that came to be known as the “Paasikivi–Kekkonen line”, under which Finland retained its independence while maintaining extensive trade with both NATO members as well as those of the Warsaw Pact.

Mikko Hirvonen

Racing driver

Mikko Hirvonen is a Finnish rally driver currently driving for the Citroën Total World Rally Team in the World Rally Championship. He placed third in the drivers' championship and helped Ford to the manufacturers' title in both 2006 and 2007. In 2008, 2009, 2011 and 2012 he finished runner-up to Sébastien Loeb. Hirvonen's co-driver has been Jarmo Lehtinen since the 2003 season.

Miikka Kiprusoff

Professional Ice hockey Player

Miikka Sakari Kiprusoff is a Finnish former professional ice hockey goaltender who played for the Calgary Flames and San Jose Sharks during his National Hockey League career. He was selected in the fifth round, 116th overall by the Sharks in the 1995 NHL Entry Draft. He also played for TPS of the Finnish SM-liiga as well as AIK and Timrå IK of the Swedish Elitserien. He represented Finland several times on the international stage, earning silver medals at the World Ice Hockey Championships in 1999 and 2001, as well as leading the Finns to a surprise second place finish at the 2004 World Cup of Hockey. He also helped the Finnish national hockey team win the bronze medal at the 2010 Winter Olympics. Kiprusoff began his professional career with TPS in 1994, and was named the best goaltender and best player of the playoffs in 1999 as he led them to the SM-liiga championship. He moved to North America in 1999, and after two all-star seasons in the American Hockey League, made his NHL debut with the Sharks where he served primarily as a backup. A trade to Calgary in 2003–04 brought Kiprusoff into a starting role and he set a modern NHL record for lowest goals against average at 1.69 as he helped the Flames reach the 2004 Stanley Cup Final. He won the Vezina Trophy as the best goaltender in the NHL in 2006 along with the William M. Jennings Trophy for giving up the fewest goals in the league. He played in his first NHL All-Star Game in 2007 and is the Flames franchise record holder in wins and shutouts.

Jari-Matti Latvala

Racing driver

Jari-Matti Latvala is a Finnish rally driver competing in the World Rally Championship. His co-driver has been Miikka Anttila since the 2003 Rallye Deutschland. He is well known for his aggressive driving style, which earns him many plaudits, and comparisons to the late Colin McRae.

Tuomas Holopainen

Symphonic metal Artist

Tuomas Lauri Johannes Holopainen is a Finnish songwriter, multi-instrumentalist musician, screenwriter and record producer, best known as the founder, leader, keyboardist and songwriter of symphonic metal band Nightwish. He has also studied jazz and classical styles, but prefers to be influenced by harmonic film music. He has also played in the bands Nattvindens Gråt and Darkwoods My Betrothed. His current side projects are the gothic metal band For My Pain... and the band of Timo Rautiainen. Holopainen has written several songs that have been included in movie soundtracks, including recent collaboration with Nightwish bass player, and male vocalist Marco Hietala on "While Your Lips Are Still Red", for the Finnish film Lieksa! in 2007. He also co-wrote Nightwish's own film, Imaginaerum, released in November 2012.

Henri Toivonen

Racing driver

Henri Pauli Toivonen was a Finnish rally driver born in Jyväskylä, the home of Rally Finland. His father, Pauli Toivonen, was the 1968 European Rally Champion for Porsche and his brother, Harri Toivonen, became a professional circuit racer. Toivonen's first World Rally Championship victory came with a Talbot Sunbeam Lotus at the 1980 Lombard RAC Rally in Great Britain, just after his 24th birthday. He had the record of being the youngest driver ever to win a world rally until his countryman Jari-Matti Latvala won the 2008 Swedish Rally at the age of 22. After driving for Opel and Porsche, Toivonen was signed by Lancia. Despite nearly ending up paralysed at the Rally Costa Smeralda early in 1985, he returned to rallying later that year. He won the last event of the season, the RAC Rally, as well as the 1986 season opener, the Monte Carlo Rally, which his father had won exactly 20 years earlier. Toivonen, driving a Lancia Delta S4, died in an accident on 2 May 1986 while leading the Tour de Corse rally in Corsica. His American co-driver, Sergio Cresto, also died when the Lancia plunged down a ravine and exploded. The fatal accident had no close witnesses and the only remains of the car were the merely blackened spaceframe, making it impossible to determine the cause of the accident. Within hours of the accident, Jean-Marie Balestre, then President of the FISA, had banned the powerful Group B rally cars from competing the following season, ending rallying's popular supercar era.

Kari Tapio

Singer

Kari Tapani Jalkanen, better known by his stage name Kari Tapio, was a Finnish schlager and country & western singer. During his career, he was one of the most popular singers in Finland for decades; having sold over 830,000 certified records, he is the best-selling soloist in the country. Tapio was born in Suonenjoki, Finland. In the 1960s Tapio performed in his home town Pieksämäki with the local bands ER-Quartet and Jami & The Noisemakers. In 1966 he took singing lessons from Ture Ara. After Tapio's first single "Tuuli kääntyköön"/"Niskavuoren nuorimmainen" in 1972, he performed in Ilkka "Danny" Lipsanen's show. In the beginning his role was to take care of the snake that was used in the show. Before music became a job for Tapio, he worked as a typesetter in a printing house. In 1976 Tapio finally broke through with his single Laula kanssain, which was followed by Viisitoista kesää and Kaipuu. In later years Olen suomalainen, Myrskyn jälkeen, En pyydä paljon and the newest Paalupaikka, among others, were among his most popular songs. In 2003 the Iskelmä-Finlandia award was given to him.

Juha Kankkunen

Racing driver

Juha Matti Pellervo Kankkunen is a Finnish former rally driver. His factory team career in the World Rally Championship lasted from 1983 to 2002. He won 23 world rallies and four drivers' world championship titles, which were both once records in the series. Sébastien Loeb has since collected more world titles, but no driver has so far been able to repeat Kankkunen's feat of becoming a world champion with three different manufacturers. Kankkunen was signed by Toyota in 1983 and he took his first WRC win in his third year in the team. His performances got him a deal with the defending champions Peugeot for 1986, and Kankkunen was soon crowned the series' then youngest-ever champion. As Peugeot withdrew from the championship following the ban of Group B, Kankkunen moved to Lancia and became the first driver to successfully defend his title. After a two-year stint back at Toyota, he returned to Lancia and won a record third title in 1991. In 1993, Kankkunen re-joined Toyota and won his fourth title. Following Toyota's disqualification and 12-month ban in 1995, Kankkunen did not return to active participation in the series until joining Ford halfway through the 1997 season replacing an underperforming Armin Schwarz. After moving to Subaru for 1999, he took his first win in over five years. Before retiring after the 2002 season, he competed part-time for Hyundai.

Kirka

Singer

Kirill "Kirka" Babitzin was a popular Finnish musician. Kirka's most famous songs include "Hengaillaan", "Leijat" and "Varrella virran""

Tarja Halonen

Politician

Tarja Kaarina Halonen is a Finnish politician who was the 11th President of Finland, serving from 2000 to 2012. The first female head of state in Finland, Halonen had previously held two appointments as a minister and served as a member of the parliament from 1979 to 2000 until her election to the presidency. In addition to her political career, she had a long and extensive career in trade unions and different non-governmental organizations. Her work for advancing human rights has been notable. She was, among other things, an early proponent of gay rights, chairing the main Finnish gay rights organization Seta in 1980-1981. Halonen rose from humble beginnings, having lived through the wartime as a daughter of a single mother in the Kallio working-class neighborhood in Helsinki. She graduated from the University of Helsinki, where she studied law from 1963 to 1968. She was active in student politics and served as the Social Affairs Secretary and Organization Secretary of the National Union of Students from 1969 to 1970. In 1971 she joined the Social Democratic Party and worked as a lawyer in the Central Organisation of Finnish Trade Unions until she was elected to parliament in 1979.

Marcus Grönholm

Racing driver

Marcus "Bosse" Grönholm is a Finnish former rally driver. Driving for Peugeot, he won the World Rally Championship in 2000 and 2002. After Peugeot withdrew from the World Rally Championship, Grönholm moved to Ford for the 2006 season and placed second in the drivers' world championship, losing the title to Sébastien Loeb by one point. The next year he again placed second, four points behind Loeb. He and his co-driver Timo Rautiainen retired from rallying after the 2007 season but returned to the championship in 2009 driving a private Subaru for a short period of time. Grönholm also won the 2002 Race of Champions, taking home the Henri Toivonen Memorial Trophy and earning the title "Champion of Champions". At the 2006 Race of Champions, he formed team Finland with Heikki Kovalainen and the pair won the Nations' Cup.

Marco Hietala

Symphonic metal Artist

Marko Tapani "Marco" Hietala is a heavy metal vocalist, bass guitarist and songwriter. Internationally, he is most known as the current bass guitarist, male vocalist and secondary composer to Tuomas Holopainen, of the symphonic metal band Nightwish. He is also the vocalist and bassist as well as composer and lyricist for the heavy metal band Tarot.

Janne Ahonen

Ski jumper

Janne Petteri Ahonen is a Finnish ski jumper who competed in the World Cup between 1992 and 2011. He is often considered as one of the most successful athletes in the history of ski jumping. Ahonen's most notable achievements include five World Championships, two World Cup overall victories and a record-breaking five victories in the Four Hills Tournament. He is the all-time leader in World Cup points, podiums and Top 10 appearances. With 36 World Cup victories, Ahonen is the all-time fourth, behind Gregor Schlierenzauer, Matti Nykänen and Adam MaƂysz. In 2005, Ahonen was named the Finnish Sports Personality of the Year. In 9 World Ski Championship Games, 9 Ski-Flying World Championship Games and 5 Olympic Games, Ahonen won a total of 19 medals, equalling the medal count of Matti Nykänen. Despite his success, Ahonen has never won an individual Olympic medal, placing 4th three times. In Olympic team competitions, he won two silver medals. Ahonen announced his retirement from ski jumping on March 28, 2008. His farewell competition was held in Lahti on July 9, 2008.

Jarkko Ruutu

Professional Ice hockey Player

Jarkko Samuli Ruutu is a Finnish professional ice hockey player. Ruutu is currently playing for SM-Liiga team Jokerit. His younger brother, Tuomo Ruutu, currently plays for the Carolina Hurricanes in NHL - his other brother, retired player Mikko Ruutu, currently scouts for NHL team Ottawa Senators. He is also a second cousin of Hanno Möttölä, who became the first Finnish basketball player to play in the NBA. Ruutu's cousin, Raul Ruutu, plays bass in a Finnish pop rock band Sunrise Avenue.

JJ Lehto

Racing driver

Jyrki Juhani Järvilehto, better known as "JJ Lehto", is a racing driver from Finland. He won the 24 Hours of Le Mans twice, in 1995 and 2005. He is also a former Formula One driver. He was a protégé of Finnish 1982 Formula One World Champion Keke Rosberg, who first suggested that Jyrki Järvilehto would abbreviate his name to the more manageable JJ Lehto, much as Rosberg had done before him.

Esa-Pekka Salonen

Conductor

Esa-Pekka Salonen is a Finnish orchestral conductor and composer. He is currently Principal Conductor and Artistic Advisor of the Philharmonia Orchestra in London and Conductor Laureate of the Los Angeles Philharmonic.

Tommi Mäkinen

Racing driver

Tommi Antero Mäkinen is a now retired Finnish rally driver, born in Puuppola, Finland near Jyväskylä on 26 June 1964. As of 1999 he lived in both Monaco and Jyväskylä, married, with two children. Mäkinen is one of the most successful WRC drivers of all time, ranking second in championships, tied with Juha Kankkunen and behind Sébastien Loeb, and fifth in wins. He is a four-time World Rally Champion, a series he first won, and then successfully defended, continuously throughout 1996, 1997, 1998 and 1999, on all occasions driving the Ralliart Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution. He also aided Mitsubishi to the 1998 world constructors' title as well as winning the 2000 Race of Champions. Mäkinen's navigators include compatriots Seppo Harjanne and Risto Mannisenmäki, the former retiring from alongside Mäkinen having previously served 1985 champion, and fellow "Flying Finn", Peugeot's Timo Salonen.

Renny Harlin

Film Director

Renny Harlin is a Finnish film director and producer. His films include A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master, Die Hard 2, Cliffhanger, The Long Kiss Goodnight and Deep Blue Sea. Harlin's movies have earned $506,543,064 in the United States as of January 2013, making him the 87th highest-grossing director in the American market. His film Cutthroat Island held the Guinness world record for "Biggest Box-Office Flop of All Time".

Juha "Watt" Vainio

Singer

Juha Harri "Junnu" Vainio, also known as Juha "Watt" Vainio was a Finnish lyricist, singer, composer and teacher. With the lyrics or music to over 2,400 songs to his name, Vainio is as one of Finland's most prolific lyricists along with Reino Helismaa and Vexi Salmi. Vainio enjoyed a short professional career as a teacher at Kymenranta Primary School. Vainio began writing songs in the early 1960s and continued until his death. Apart from his home town Kotka, he lived for several years in Helsinki and Espoo. In his last years Vainio lived in Gryon, Switzerland, where he died of a heart attack in October 1990. He is buried in the family grave in Helsinki. He was given the nickname "Watt" on account of a song on his first solo record, the 1964 Paras rautalankayhtye. Never used by itself, the nickname was always part of "Juha Watt Vainio".

Markku Alén

Racing driver

Markku Allan Alén is a Finnish former rally and race car driver. He drove for Fiat, Lancia, Subaru and Toyota in the World Rally Championship, and held the record for most stage wins in the series, until Sébastien Loeb overtook it at the 2011 Rally Catalunya. Alén's phrase "now maximum attack" became well-known. Alén never won the world championship itself, despite being for a long time the driver with the most wins to his credit. However, he did win the FIA Cup for Drivers in 1978, the precursor to the World Championship for Drivers established in 1979. In 1986, he was the world champion for eleven days, until Peugeot's appeal went through and the results of Rallye Sanremo, which Alén had won, were annulled.

Teemu Pukki

Soccer

Teemu Pukki is a Finnish footballer who plays currently as a forward for Scottish Premiership club Celtic and the Finland national football team. He operates mainly as a centre-forward who often plays on the wings.

Osmo Vänskä

Conductor

Osmo Antero Vänskä is a Finnish conductor, clarinetist and composer. He started his musical career as an orchestral clarinetist with the Turku Philharmonic. He then became the principal clarinet of the Helsinki Philharmonic from 1977 to 1982. During this time, he started to study conducting with Jorma Panula at the Sibelius Academy, where his classmates included Esa-Pekka Salonen and Jukka-Pekka Saraste. In 1982, he won the Besançon Young Conductor's Competition. Vänskä became principal guest conductor of the Lahti Symphony Orchestra in 1985, and chief conductor in 1988. He concluded his tenure with the Lahti Symphony Orchestra in 2008 and is now the orchestra's Conductor Laureate. His complete set of Sibelius symphonies with the Lahti Symphony Orchestra, also on the BIS label, has gathered widespread acclaim. He has recorded extensively with his Lahti orchestra for the BIS label, including music of Kalevi Aho, Einojuhani Rautavaara, Bernhard Crusell, Uuno Klami, Tauno Marttinen, Robert Kajanus, Sofia Gubaidulina, Joonas Kokkonen, Jan Sandström, Jean Sibelius, and Fredrik Pacius. Vänskä was chief conductor of the Iceland Symphony Orchestra from 1993–1996. In 1996, he was appointed chief conductor of the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, and served in that capacity until 2002. With the BBCSSO, he made recordings of the complete Carl Nielsen symphonies for the BIS label.

Paula Koivuniemi

Singer

Paula Koivuniemi is a Finnish singer who started her singing career in 1960's. Koivuniemi released her first hit single "Perhonen" in 1966. In the 1970s her career was in decline, but during the 1980s she had many hit singles in Finland - she received nine gold albums and one diamond album. During her career, Koivuniemi has sold over 345,000 certified records, which places her among the top 30 of best-selling soloists and top six of the best-selling female soloists in Finland.

Markoolio

Pop Artist

Marko Kristian "Markoolio" Lehtosalo is a Swedish-Finnish multi-platinum selling recording artist, singer, musician, songwriter, actor, and comedian. His stage name Markoolio is a portmanteau on his first name Marko and the stage name of the world renowned American rapper Coolio.

Kiira Korpi

Professional Figure Skater

Kiira Linda Katriina Korpi is a Finnish figure skater. She is a three-time European medalist, the 2010 Trophée Eric Bompard champion, the 2012 Rostelecom Cup champion, a two-time Cup of China medalist, and a four-time Finnish national champion.

Timo Tolkki

Power metal Artist

Timo Tapio Tolkki is a Finnish musician best known as the former guitarist, songwriter and producer of the power metal band Stratovarius. With his tenure lasting for more than twenty years, he was the longest standing member of the band before his departure in 2008. After leaving Stratovarius he formed two supergroups named Revolution Renaissance and Symfonia, both of which have since disbanded. In a 2011 article by Guitar World magazine, Tolkki was included in the all-time top 50 list of fastest guitar players in the world.

Jari Kurri

Professional Ice hockey Player

Jari Pekka Kurri is a retired Finnish professional ice hockey right winger and a five-time Stanley Cup champion. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2001. He is currently the general manager of Jokerit and the Finnish national team.

Krista Siegfrids

Pop Artist

Kristin "Krista" Siegfrids is a Finnish singer. She represented Finland in the Eurovision Song Contest 2013 with her entry "Marry Me". Siegfrids' debut album, named Ding Dong!, was released in May 2013.

Mika Waltari

Novelist

Mika Toimi Waltari was a Finnish writer, best known for his best-selling novel The Egyptian.

Einojuhani Rautavaara

Composer

Einojuhani Rautavaara is a Finnish composer of contemporary classical music, and is one of the most notable Finnish composers after Jean Sibelius.

Lasse Virén

Olympic athlete

Lasse Artturi Virén is a retired police officer and a Finnish former long-distance runner, winner of four gold medals at the 1972 and 1976 Summer Olympics. Born in Myrskylä, Finland, Virén recaptured the image of the "Flying Finns" promoted by runners like Hannes Kolehmainen, Paavo Nurmi, and Ville Ritola in the 1920s.

Carola Standertskjöld

Singer

Carola Christina Standertskjöld-Liemola, professionally known as Carola, was a Finnish jazz and pop singer. Her style was partially inspired by American singers of the 1950s. Simultaneously, it was in the spirit of the modal jazz scene going down in Europe in the 1960s. Mostly, Carola's jazz repertoire consisted in idiosyncratic versions of American songs in English, while her most famous jazz track "The Flame" was an original composition by Esa Pethman and the lyrics by the singer herself. As the vocalist for Esa Pethman's quartet and Hazy Osterwald's sextet in the early 1960s, Carola made fame in Finland and Sweden, and toured Poland, Czechoslovakia, and Switzerland. Her most significant recording is a session with the Heikki Sarmanto Trio from 1966, which the Finnish Music Information Centre considers among the original blueprints of Finnish jazz. Carola's recordings have been credited for the accosting tone of her contralto voice and her phrasing. The singer also co-produced the groovy approach of her supporting orchestras. In late 1960s and early 1970s, she performed in nine languages and a wide variety of styles, including chanson, schlager, Latin, rock'n'roll, and soul. After her death in Alzheimer's disease in 1997, Carola's music was revived in 2004 with two Best of albums and Carola & Heikki Sarmanto Trio reaching the Finnish charts.

Tom of Finland

Visual Artist

Touko Laaksonen, best known by his pseudonym Tom of Finland was a Finnish artist notable for his stylized androerotic and fetish art and his influence on late twentieth century gay culture. He has been called the "most influential creator of gay pornographic images" by cultural historian Joseph W. Slade. Over the course of four decades he produced some 3500 illustrations, mostly featuring men with exaggerated primary and secondary sex traits with tight or partially removed clothing.

Karita Mattila

Singer

Karita Marjatta Mattila is a leading operatic soprano. She was born in Perniö, Finland. Mattila appears regularly in the major opera houses worldwide, including the Metropolitan Opera, the Royal Opera House in London, Théâtre du Châtelet, Opéra Bastille, the Lyric Opera of Chicago, San Francisco Opera, Houston Grand Opera, Vienna State Opera, Toronto Roy Thomson Hall and Großes Festspielhaus, Salzburg and with top orchestras. During her career, Mattila has sold over 150,000 certified records, which places her among the top 50 best-selling female soloists in Finland.

Olli Rehn

Politician

Olli Ilmari Rehn is a Finnish politician, currently serving as European Commissioner for Economic and Monetary Affairs and the Euro and vice president of the European Commission. He had previously served as Commissioner for Enlargement. He has held a variety of political positions in European institutions as well as in Finland.

Rauli "Badding" Somerjoki

Schlager Artist

Rauli "Badding" Somerjoki was a Finnish rock singer born in Somero to a family of five children. His nickname Badding was derived from Paddington Bear. His records were published on such labels as Love Records.

Hector

Folk rock Artist

Heikki Veikko Harma is a Finnish singer-songwriter who has also distinguished himself as a translator of song lyrics, but has written popular lyrics of his own too. To the public he's better known by the name Hector, which he has used since the release of his 1965 debut single "Palkkasoturi", a Finnish translation of Buffy Sainte-Marie's "Universal Soldier". His 1974 album Hectorrock I became the fastest selling record in Finnish history, selling 50,000 units within a few months. Hector was at the height of his popularity in the first half of the 1970s, but his steady string of recordings provided occasional hits well into the 1990s. In 2000s he made strong comeback to popularity with his album Ei selityksiä. That album became one of his most successful albums. In 2007 he made a farewell tour on big arenas, but has performed occasionally after that too. Some of Hector's songs are considered classics of Finnish popular music, such as "Lumi teki enkelin eteiseen", "Mandoliinimies" and "Olen hautausmaa", and he can be considered a primary contributor to Finnish rock music of the 1970s. He has also written song lyrics to other Finnish singers. His song "Juodaan Viinaa" was covered by Finnish folk metal band Korpiklaani on their 2009 album "Karkelo."

M. A. Numminen

Schlager Artist

Mauri Antero Numminen is a Finnish artist, who has worked in several different fields of music and culture.

Spede Pasanen

Film Director

Pertti Olavi "Spede" Pasanen was a film director and producer, comedian, humorist, inventor, TV personality and practitioner of gags. During his career he directed, wrote, produced or acted in about 50 movies and participated in numerous TV productions, including the comedy Spede Show and the game-show Speden Spelit. Much of his more commercial work was in collaboration with Vesa-Matti Loiri and Simo Salminen. Pasanen's films and TV shows, often made fast and inexpensively in a conveyor-belt mode, usually didn't gain much recognition from the critics but were extremely popular among Finnish audiences from the 1960s onwards. He was the owner of his own film production company, Filmituotanto Spede Pasanen Ky. He is noted as the main influence of many who make an attempt to break into the Finnish comedy scene. Spede also had a long, strained relationship with Suomen elokuvasäätiö, a government financed film-funding organisation, which continuously refused to fund his movies.

Arto Paasilinna

Novelist

Arto Tapio Paasilinna is a Finnish writer, being a former journalist turned comic novelist. One of the most successful novelists of Finland, he has won a broad readership outside of Finland in a way few other Finnish authors have before. Translated into 27 languages, over seven million copies of his books have been sold worldwide, and he has been claimed as "instrumental in generating the current level of interest in books from Finland". Paasilinna is best known for his 1975 novel The Year of the Hare, a best-seller in France and Finland, translated into 18 languages, awarded three international prizes, and adapted twice into feature films. Arto Paasilinna's brothers are authors Erno Paasilinna, Reino Paasilinna and Mauri Paasilinna.

Lill Lindfors

Schlager Artist

Maj Lillemor "Lill" Lindfors is a Swedish singer. Born in Helsinki, Finland she has been performing in Scandinavia with minor and major success since the 1960s. She debuted as a revue actress in Uddevalla in 1960 and the following year as a recording artist. In the most recent decades, Lindfors has been known in Scandinavia for her "one-woman shows" in which she mixes music with a lot of comedy. She was one of the first artists who sang samba in Sweden, and she was also one of the first Swedish performers who did stand-up comedy in her shows. She was married in 1969 to director Peter Wester, with whom she has one child. The couple divorced in 1973. She lives in Stockholm, Sweden.

Olli Jokinen

Professional Ice hockey Player

Olli Jokinen is a Finnish professional ice hockey player currently an alternate captain for the Winnipeg Jets of the National Hockey League. He was selected by the Los Angeles Kings third overall in the 1997 NHL Entry Draft with whom he made his NHL debut. He has also played for the New York Islanders, Florida Panthers, Phoenix Coyotes, Calgary Flames and New York Rangers. He began his professional career with KalPa and then HIFK of the Finnish SM-liiga. Additionally, he played for EHC Kloten of the Swiss National League A and Södertälje SK of the Swedish Elitserien. He also holds the records for most points and goals for the Panthers. Jokinen began his professional career in his native Finland in 1996 and in 1997 won the Jarmo Wasama memorial trophy as SM-liiga rookie of the year. He won the Matti Keinonen and Jari Kurri trophies in 1998 as the most effective player of the regular season and most valuable player of the playoffs, respectively. He moved to the NHL full-time in 1998–99 and played his best seasons with the Panthers, with whom he served as captain from 2003 to 2008 and played in the 2003 All-Star Game. Jokinen played almost 800 NHL games before making his first playoff appearance in 2009; in 2012, he played his 1,000th game.

Laila Kinnunen

Singer

Laura "Laila" Annikki Kinnunen was a Finnish singer. She was one of the most popular Finnish singers of the 1950s and 60s, and represented Finland at the 1961 Eurovision Song Contest, the first time Finland participated in the contest. She spent her childhood in Sweden as a refugee from the Second World War, returning to Finland at the age of ten. Her first album, published in 1957, was a success, and she continued to publish music until 1980. Her daughter is Finnish singer Milana Misic.

Mika Kallio

Man

Mika Kallio is a Finnish Grand Prix motorcycle racer. He debuted in the 125cc World Championship with the Finnish rookie team Ajo Motorsport in 2001 and was awarded the "Rookie of the Year" in 2002. After moving to Red Bull KTM during the 2003 season, he finished runner-up in the class in 2005 and 2006. In his first year with KTM in the 250cc class, Kallio took two wins and finished seventh. In 2008, he led the championship throughout the first half of the season, eventually having to settle for third place. For the 2009 season, he moved to the MotoGP class, racing on a Ducati Desmosedici GP9 for Ducati's satellite team Pramac Racing where he finished 15th in his first season in the top class and obtained the "Rookie of the Year" award. However 2010 was less successful, struggling with injury and lack of confidence, resulting in a lowly 17th. Kallio looked to rediscover his form in 2011, competing in the Moto2 World Championship for the Marc VDS Racing Team riding a Suter.

Tony Halme

Professional Boxer

Tony Halme is an actor.

Anna Falchi

Actor

Anna Falchi is an Italian-Finnish model and film actress.

Vissarion Belinsky

Literary critic

Vissarion Grigoryevich Belinsky was a Russian literary critic of Westernizing tendency. He was an associate of Alexander Herzen, Mikhail Bakunin, and other critical intellectuals. Belinsky played one of the key roles in the career of poet and publisher Nikolay Nekrasov and his popular magazine Sovremennik.

Andy McCoy

Blues Artist

Antti Hulkko, better known as Andy McCoy, is a Finnish musician. He is most famous for his role as the lead guitarist and main songwriter of Hanoi Rocks, but has also played with Iggy Pop. Artistically McCoy's works cover a wide range of music forms, including rock 'n' roll, punk rock, flamenco, glam punk, glam rock, blues rock and hard rock.

Valtteri Filppula

Professional Ice hockey Player

Valtteri Filppula is a Finnish professional ice hockey forward, currently playing for the Tampa Bay Lightning of the National Hockey League. He has previously played for the Detroit Red Wings, with whom he won the Stanley Cup in 2008. He is the younger brother of Ilari Filppula.

Kaija Koo

Singer

Kaija Kokkola, better known by her stage name Kaija Koo, is a Finnish singer. Kaija began her career when she was 17 years old, as a member of a band Steel City, later known as Kaija Koo Band, until it broke down and Kaija Koo became a soloist. Her debut solo album Kun savukkeet on loppuneet was released in 1986. The next album Tuulten viemää, created with her then-husband Markku Impiö, released in 1993, was Kaija Koo's major breakthrough. It sold 175 000 copies, making it the sixth-best selling album of all times in Finland. Kaija has also participated in the Finnish qualification of Eurovision Song Contest 1981 as a member of the background choir in Frederik's song "Titanic". Since her breakthrough, she has been very active and still successful, releasing a new album every few years. The lyrics were written by Kaija and Markku together and songs are composed by Markku. However, they divorced in 2006. During her career, Kaija Koo has sold over 530,000 certified records, which makes her the 16th-best-selling music artist, the ninth-best-selling soloist and the third-best-selling female soloist in Finland. In June 2010, she signed out of Cosmos Music Group and started under Päijät-Hämeen Sorto ja Riisto, an independent label established in September 2009 by the members of the Finnish rock band Apulanta. In 2010, she released the number-one single "Vapaa", which belongs to the album Irti, released shortly after. Irti has thus far peaked at number two on the Finnish Albums Chart.

Jope Ruonansuu

Comedian

Jorma Olavi "Jope" Ruonansuu is a Finnish actor, impressionist, musician and stand-up comedian. He won the Best performer Venla award in 2010. He is also known for being with the Finnish band called "Anssi Umpikela" and one of his most famous songs - "Pontikka" [Finnish for Moonshine].

Topi Sorsakoski

Singer

Pekka Erkki Juhani Tammilehto, better known by his stage name Topi Sorsakoski, was a Finnish singer. His father was tango singer Yrjö Johannes aka "Ylli" Tammilehto. Sorsakoski started his career together with his brother, Antti, who had played in various bands together with Juice Leskinen, in the Kalle Kiwes Blues Band. Some of Sorsakoski's cousins are also musicians: Seppo Tammilehto, who has played in Alwari Tuohitorvi and later had a solo career, and Juhani Tammela, who has played old dancehall music in his quintet in the 1960s. Next Sorsakoski worked as the guitarist in the band The Boys. In the 1980s, he started performing together with the band Agents, also singing songs earlier performed by Olavi Virta. Sorsakoski later had a solo career and also worked with the band Kulkukoirat. He returned to for a time to the Agents beginning in May 2007.

Isac Elliot

Dancer

Isac Elliot Lundén, professionally known as Isac Elliot, is a Finnish pop singer, songwriter, dancer and actor. He is best known for his track "New Way Home" which peaked at number one on the Finnish Singles Chart. His debut album Wake Up World has also peaked to number one on the Finnish Albums Chart. Elliot's father is Fredrik "Fredi" Lundén, the lead singer for the band The Capital Beat.

Antti Tuisku

Singer

Antti Tapani Tuisku is a Finnish pop singer, made famous by the 2003 Idols talent show, the Finnish version of Pop Idol. Although Tuisku finished third in the show, he has easily become the most popular artist of the three. Currently Tuisku lives in Helsinki. Tuisku has sold over 220,000 records in Finland during his career, which makes him one of the 80 best-selling artists there. He has said that his idol is Madonna. He is the first artist in Finland to release two albums on the same date; upon release, they held the top-two spots of the Finnish Albums Chart.

Kari Peitsamo

Musician

Kari Juhani Valdemar Peitsamo is a Finnish musician whose style has changed over the years from acoustic avant-garde pop to electric rock. His best-known song is probably "Kauppaopiston naiset" from 1977. Kari Peitsamo started his career with the EP Kari Peitsamo ja Ankkuli, which was created with the assistance of Juuso Nordlund and Kaj Martin, the backing group of Juice Leskinen, on the studio time left over from Leskinen. Kari Peitsamo's debut album Jatsin syvin olemus was still performed as a trio but the following albums would be solos where Peitsamo performed his songs accompanied only by an acoustic guitar. Later on Peitsamo's acoustic guitar was switched to an electric one, and he was joined by the band Ankkuli, with its other members Harri Siirtola and Yrjö Majamaa. After this Peitsamo, who had recorded for Love Records, moved to Poko Records, and changed his band to Kari Peitsamo Revival, which was influenced by Creedence Clearwater Revival and Status Quo. After the Revival period Peitsamo played rock with his new band Kari Peitsamon Skootteri between 1985-1994. Another ensemble of his, Kari Peitsamo & Hirttämättömät, also released one album in 1998, called Bubblegum Warriors In Faded Jeans.

Linda Brava

Actor

Linda Magdalena Lampenius Cullberg, better known by her maiden name Linda Lampenius and international stage name Linda Brava, is a Finnish classical concert violinist and recording artist.

Elastinen

Hip hop Artist

Kimmo Ilpo Juhani Laiho better known by his stage name Elastinen is a Finnish rap musician and also known as one of the founders and is the CEO of the Finnish independent rap label Rähinä Records. Together with his colleague Iso H, he forms the Finnish rap crew Fintelligens. He has also released three solo albums.

Christel Sundberg

Pop Artist

Christel Martina Sundberg, known by her stage name Chisu, is a Finnish pop artist, songwriter, and producer. She wrote her first single, "Mun koti ei oo täällä", to the soundtrack of the movie Sooloilua. The song was a hit in Finland in Spring 2008, peaking at number one on both the Singles Chart and the Downloads Chart and spending seven and nine weeks atop, respectively. She released her second album Vapaa ja yksin on September 23, 2009. Her third and latest album, Kun valaistun, was released on October 5, 2011, through Warner Music Finland. Chisu has also written songs for Antti Tuisku, Tarja Turunen, Jippu, Kristiina Brask and Kristiina Wheeler. During her career, Chisu has sold over 210,000 certified records, which places her among the top 90 best-selling artists in Finland. In November 2012, Chisu was connected to a copyright controversy in Finland when a nine-year-old girl's home was raided by the police and had her laptop confiscated due to allegedly downloading Chisu songs. The controversy was named as Chisugate by media.

Jyrki Katainen

Politician

Jyrki Tapani Katainen is the Prime Minister of Finland and the chairman of the National Coalition Party.

Simo Puupponen

Novelist

Simo Tapio Puupponen better known by the pen name Aapeli, was a Finnish writer and novelist. Aapeli was a journalist for the Pohjois-Savo and Savon Sanomat newspapers. In 1959 Aapeli won the Eino Leino Prize and the State literature prize. His novels were turned into films and plays after his death in the 1970s. In 1977 his historical novels of the Aika hyvä ihmiseksi series were made into a feature film.

Jussi Jääskeläinen

Soccer

Jussi Albert Jääskeläinen is a Finnish football goalkeeper, who plays for English side West Ham United in the Premier League. He holds the record for being the longest serving foreign player in the Premier League after playing for Bolton Wanderers from 1997 until 2012. At age 38 in season 2013-2014 at West Ham United, he is the oldest starting goalkeeper for the Premier League. He left Bolton for West Ham at the end of the 2011-12 season after turning down a contract extension. He earned 56 caps for the Finland national football team before retiring from international football in 2010.

Antti Niemi

Ice Hockey Goaltender

Antti Niemi is a Finnish professional ice hockey goaltender who is currently the starting goaltender for the San Jose Sharks of the National Hockey League. During the 2009–10 NHL season as a member of the Chicago Blackhawks, he became the first Finnish goaltender to win the Stanley Cup. Niemi signed a contract to play for Pelicans Lahti in the SM-liiga in Finland during the 2012–13 NHL lockout.

Mixu Paatelainen

Soccer

Mika-Matti Petteri "Mixu" Paatelainen is a former Finnish international football player and the current manager of the Finnish national team, having started the role in April 2011. He scored 18 goals in 70 appearances for the Finnish national team, which makes him Finland’s all time thirteenth most capped player and fifth top goalscorer. Paatelainen had a 20-year playing career, playing for nine different clubs in four countries. Most of his career was spent in the Scottish leagues, with Dundee United, Aberdeen, Hibernian, St. Johnstone and St. Mirren. During a spell with English club Bolton Wanderers, Paatelainen became the first Finn to play in the Premier League. After retiring as a player in 2005, Paatelainen became manager of Scottish club Cowdenbeath, where he helped the club win the championship of Scottish Football League Third Division and earn a promotion. After a season coaching in his native Finland with TPS, Paatelainen returned to Scotland as manager of Hibernian. He left that position by mutual consent after 18 months. After a year out of the game, Paatelainen was appointed manager of Kilmarnock. He is the eldest of three brothers, all of whom have played professional football. Their father Matti was also a Finnish international.

Redrama

Hip hop Artist

Lasse Mellberg, better known by his stage name Redrama, is a Finnish rapper. He made a breakthrough in 2003. Redrama, who performs in English, was part of a hip-hop group Alien Allies which also included the Norwegian Paperboys and Madcon. Redrama won the English-language Finnish championship of rapping in 2001 and he also won the Finnish Grammy award for The Best Hip Hop Album in 2005. His first EP, Redrama EP, was released in 2001. The EP included seven tracks and it was released by Incredible Productions. In 2002, Redrama signed a recording contract with Virgin UK and his debut album, Everyday Soundtrack, was released in 2003. His second studio album, Street Music, was released two years later. In 2005, Redrama won an EBBA Award. European Border Breakers Awards is presented annually to ten emerging artists or groups who have reached audiences outside their own countries with their first internationally released album in the past year. After winning the European Border Breakers Award, Redrama joined Gang Starr as a supporting artist on their European Tour. In 2007, Redrama recorded his first duet with another popular Finnish hip hop artist, Paleface. The single "Still In Charge" reached number 4 on the Finnish Single Charts and was the start to the collaboration between these two most successful English-speaking rappers in Finland. In 2008 and 2009, the collaboration expanded when Redrama and Paleface were joined by a reggae musician and singer CapeNape and a Swedish hip hop artist Promoe of Looptroop Rockers. The four rappers toured around Finland under the name Conscious Youth. The group released one album in Finland.

Jarno Saarinen

Man

Jarno Karl Keimo Saarinen was a Finnish Grand Prix motorcycle road racer. He is the only Finn to win a road racing world championship.

Mikael Granlund

Professional Ice hockey Player

Mikael Antero Granlund is a Finnish professional ice hockey centre who is currently playing for the Minnesota Wild in the National Hockey League. He previously played professionally in his homeland with Oulun Kärpät and HIFK of the Finnish SM-liiga. He was the ninth overall pick, selected by the Minnesota Wild, in the 2010 NHL Draft. He is the older brother of Markus Granlund.