Ari Rasilainen, conductor (b. 1959), started his career as a violinist in the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra and Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra. He studied conducting under Jorma Panula at the Sibelius Academy, and later under Arvid Jansons and Alexander Labko. He made his international breakthrough in 1989 when he won second prize in the Nicolai Malko competition in Denmark. He works regularly with major orchestras in numerous European countries and the USA. In Finland he has conducted the Pori Sinfonietta, Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra, Lappeenranta City Orchestra and Jyväskylä City Orchestra and has appeared at the Finnish National Opera. Further afield he has served as principal conductor of the Norwegian Radio Orchestra and Staatsphilarmonie Rheinland-Pfalz, and has been principal guest conductor of the Aalborg Symphony Orchestra since the 2002/03 season.