As a working-class conservatoire dropout, Mikko Perkola, tenor viol, initially found it very strange to be playing consort music with Phantasm. In getting to grips with consort performance he confronted a steep learning curve, which, once surmounted, has had positive effects not only in becoming a more active member of society but learning to feel equal to others. In this context the experience in Phantasm has been fantastic. Being initiated into secrets of English viol music under the shelter of Oxford University and Magdalen College during the decade of Phantasm’s residency there, and finding ways to ease tensions which inevitably occur between group members have been two of the luckiest strokes in Mikko’s life.
This journey has seen him travel to performances and make recordings the world over, and provides a contrast to rather different arts projects in Finnish prisons, asylum centres and hospitals in which he is also involved. Poetry is Mikko’s great love and most of his own undertakings are built around that, including the compilation of his own poems. Mikko is father of three, and in addition to childcare collaborates with artists in different fields, from early music to multimedia.