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Performer of the Year Application and Guidelines

Thanks for your interest.
The application deadline for POY 2025 is September 1, 2024. Watch for details.

NOTE: All POY arrangements are subject to change due to COVID-19 conditions. 

Finlandia Foundation National launched the Performer of the Year (POY) program in 1996 to assist undiscovered artists and gain exposure for entertaining programs related to Finnish and Finnish-American culture. FFN chapters are invited to host the POY for the enrichment and enjoyment of their members and guests. 

Most of the performers selected have been singers or instrumentalists. The POY may possess any talent that appeals to a range of ages and is consistent with the goals of the FFN.


The Finlandia Foundation National Performer of the Year is officially announced in the FFN newsletter, e-news and social media, to Finnish-American media and in chapter correspondence.


The following will be subject to change based on COVID-related travel restrictions that may affect the number of recorded and live presentations. 

The POY agrees to at least one recorded performance and seven appearances at FFN chapters during the year. The recorded program will be posted on the FFN YouTube channel for public viewing. The number of live performances will depend on restrictions due to COVID-19; as the situation evolves, POY and FFN will review and adjust the schedule.


The POY’s travel expenses to performances/events organized by/for the FFN chapters within the United States are covered by the FFN travel grant of $8,000. One-half of the total amount is paid to the POY at the beginning of the term in January; the balance upon approved accounting, reports, and plans for the remaining performance and travel schedule in July.


The POY is required to submit a full financial report by March 15 of the year following the end of the POY term.


The POY’s travel expenses to performances/events organized by/for FFN chapters within the United States are covered by the FFN travel grant. 

Each host chapter is responsible for providing or covering the costs of the POY for local transportation and local accommodations, and for paying the honorarium directly to the POY. The honorarium is set by the POY.

The chapter will work with the POY to fulfill required audio/visual, sound system or other staging needs.


The POY’s honorarium will be paid by the chapter/host organization directly to the POY. Each POY suggests a desired honorarium/performance fee. Most chapters charge an admission fee to help cover the cost of hosting the POY.


As performance arrangements are made between the event organizers and the POY, the POY program coordinator needs to be informed of the schedule. In case of problems or conflicts, the program coordinator may be called upon for advice.

Direct all scheduling information and questions to POY Coordinator Katariina Lehtonen at


The POY is encouraged to give workshops, if invited, for fees negotiated between the POY and hosting chapter.


Hosting chapters will make every effort to attract audiences to the performance, within and also beyond the Finnish-American community.


The host chapter/organization will promote/advertise the POY appearance within its community.

High resolution photos of the POY are available, as is a press release that may be adapted and customized to the appearance.

FFN will provide flyer artwork to the host chapters so that they may post the information and/or print quantities for publicizing the event.

Please provide information about the POY event to FFN. Following the event, high resolution photos of the appearance are appreciated. 

For photos, fliers, press release and to share information and photos of the event, contact FFN Communications Manager Kath Usitalo at


A quantity of POY brochures is available to assist with promotion and for distribution at the performance. Contact the FFN office at for brochures well in advance of your event.

Host chapters may also print their own quantities of the brochure.


To schedule an appearance or for more information contact POY Coordinator Katariina Lehtonen at