Event producer builds community

Text: Mari Lähteenmäki | Pictures: Tiina Salminen, Visual Friday

JYY’s event producer Suvi Liukkonen describes her workday as “quite calm”, even though she has already changed workstation twice. The only thing that makes a working day typical are the changes. “You never know what will happen.” 

There are many projects going on at the same time. In the event industry, they are called productions. Suvi mentions, for example, the film series at Ilokivi Venue and bigger and smaller public events. In productions, Suvi is responsible for the financial success of events and marketing communication in different channels. Often Suvi also coordinates the practical implementation. 

The work requires financial management skills and perseverance. You have to know how to make plans, and at the same time be prepared for them to change. Negotiation skills and networks are useful both during a regular working day and in case of surprises. 

Small and big things can cause changes. Sometimes the main performer gets sick and cancels the gig. Sometimes global events derail the entire industry’s plans at once. 

“You have to keep your calm in every situation and decide what can be done.” 

The cooperation between JYY’s cultural sector and Soihtu has increased in recent years. Event producer sees this as a good development. JYY presents itself as a whole more clearly to student, when JYY’s advocacy and Soihtu’s business are presented together in events, and JYY organizes events in its own premises, which Soihtu manages and develops. 

JYY’s theme this year is rebuilding the community. Suvi sees that events produced with membership fee funds should be accessible and bring the community together as well as possible. She has brough some fresh ideas to JYY’s traditional events. Renewals are required by the changing world situation and the students themselves. 

“My predecessor had to live in the shadow of a difficult pandemic period, and I have been able to tackle the reform work with a brisk hand.” 

Suvi has renewed the traditions by increasing equality and community in JYY’s events. This has been done, for example, by admission free events, introducing the principles of a safer space, and realizing students’ ideas. For example, the Horror Appro, organized in 2022, led to a Twilight marathon in early 2023. 

When it comes to traditional celebrations, at least the anniversary celebration (this time it will be a cocktail gala) and the May Day celebrations will be renewed (Minna Canth’s statue is in storage during the construction works at Kirkkopuisto, and the statue of Uno Cygnaeus will receive its student cap on May Day.) 

JYY’s subcommittee renewal seems to work well in culture activities and events. Low-threshold forums and groups have already brought new people to JYY’s culture and event planning. 

“I hope that we can offer a balancing change to the student’s demanding everyday life. I want JYY to be close to the students and do what the students want us to do.” 

“I want JYY to be close to the students and do what the students want us to do.” 

Suvi Liukkonen, JYY’s event producer

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