In 2004, Flow Festival’s story began in the old railway warehouses of Helsinki city centre. Organised by the music collective Nuspirit Helsinki, the festival’s focus was introducing music that the organisers personally found exciting and bringing the hottest international talents to Helsinki. This meant that while the festival was undeniably in with its times, it wasn’t one to only chase after the latest acts. The festival was named Flow. Organisers chose the name “Flow” to convey the expanding undertone that was taking over Helsinki and to promote innovative urban development. Since 2007, Flow has been organised in Suvilahti. The former power plant lot in Helsinki has created a globally unique atmosphere with its post-industrial ambience and strategic location.
Today, Flow is an internationally acclaimed, sustainable festival and event brand, with the same fire at its core that was there when it all began: good music, responsible and strong values, self-imposed art, upscale food, spectacular lighting and an ambitious and sustainable festival production.
Flow Festival has grown from a 4000 visitor downtown event into a 90 000 festival guest grand celebration. In its past years, Flow has had over 1600 performers, including Alicia Keys, Arctic Monkeys, Björk, Bon Iver, Florence + The Machine, Frank Ocean, Gorillaz, Grace Jones, Janelle Monáe, Kanye West, Kendrick Lamar, Kraftwerk, Lana Del Rey, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, Sia and many more world of the high standing artists in the world. Among the undeniably renowned performers, there has also always been room for rising talent and new phenomena. The festival has also showcased its more experimental artists by founding ‘The Other Sound’ program in 2010. With the stages, technical production, audiovisuals, area and festival production growing, one thing still remains the same – ever since the first festival, the performers and the audience have been guaranteed to enjoy themselves and experience unforgettable moments.
In addition to the main event, the past years also include a number of global conquests, never-before-seen event productions, ambitious projects and multiple recognitions and awards. Flow Festival has been held in Ljubljana, Slovenia, and smaller events have been organised in Tallinn and London. Flow has published its own magazine, had a web series on YouTube, celebrated contemporary dance at the Finnish National Opera’s Almi Hall and educated local youth with the city of Helsinki. Whether the sidetrack is a club night or an entire festival concept transported to another country, recognising the values of high quality and sustainability are always the common denominator.
Our website’s history section allows you to revisit each year’s performers and to go back in time. Take a trip to the past with our old videos, photos and other treasures from our archives!