Lönnroots is both a documentary group and a Finno-Ugric folk band from Finland. Its members are Juho Hannikainen, Jaani Leinonen and Jonne Putkonen.


We make documentaries on Finno-Ugric cultures. While filming, our aim is also to plunge in to the culture as much as humanly possible: we’re eager to get involved with the community, and learn the local language. The more we learn, the merrier. Eventually we’re going to create a new folk song using only learnt language.


Many Finno-Ugric languages and cultures are severely endangered. Our aim is to learn and document the current state of the Finno-Ugric world: what is its history, where are its roots, and what are the future prospects of the language(s) and the culture(s).

Why Lönnroots is both a doc group and a band?

In many cases music is the key to the culture, and local sounds are keeping the language alive. By entering the culture through its music, we get a grip of the culture itself. Needless to say, learning a new language and trying to compose a whole new piece is extremely challenging and hilariously funny at the same time. At the end of our trip we’re going to perform our brand new folk song to locals.

Where does the name ”Lönnroots” come from?

Elias Lönnrot is the father of the Finnish epic, Kalevala. He also traveled quite a bit back in the day, and made most of his trips from Kajaani. Accidentally, we originate from Kajaani, too. What a coincidence.

Who produces this?

Lönnroots is an autonomous part of Vaara-kollektiivi, a performance arts group based in Kajaani, Finland.

When will we see more documentaries?

We aim to do more if (when!) we get a shoestring funding to film (meaning grants or production houses behind us). It might take years, but hopefully sooner than later!