At Home with Jann Keir-Haantera

Part of our QSO AT HOME series

Blog ·

At Home with Jann Keir-Haantera

You may not be able to see them performing on stage, but while our musicians are at home they’re sharing an insight into our daily lives in isolation. Meet violist Jann Keir-Haantera!

#Hello!

My name is Jann Keir-Haantera and I play viola in Queensland Symphony Orchestra. In truth I have found the first few weeks without the routine of orchestra more difficult than I thought. But, I have many hobbies as well as tasks to do around the house so I have been gradually adjusting. 

#My embroidery

I have rediscovered my embroideries after 20 years or so (quite a few of them were unfinished!).

I have always enjoyed doing the Danish designs of cold climate plants such as red currant bushes, Rowan berries and Iceland poppies. This one on the right is a Danish counted cross-stitch which is worked on very fine linen, so fine in fact that I had to venture out to the chemist and buy some magnifying glasses! Another style of work I really like are the designs by Jennifer Pudney – a lot of bright colours and quirky ideas. I have inherited a love of embroidery from my mother who is still doing hers at the age of 87.

#My lounge room

The lounge room is one of my favourite rooms in which to sit and do my embroidery and knitting. The floor is mixed hardwood that gives it a spacious feeling and goes with the Finnish ceramics that my husband and I have collected over the years. It has a beautiful view towards Mt Coot-tha and looks over our lovely garden that is very green at the moment. Time stands still when I do handcraft and I find it very relaxing. It is also another way to be creative when my body needs a rest from playing the viola.

#My cooking

One of my other passions is cooking, and I spend a lot of time preparing and looking through my cookbooks and magazines. I prefer cooking savoury dishes rather than baking cakes, however the viola section cake roster gives me an opportunity from time to time! I enjoy using vegetables creatively and incorporating a wide variety of grains and pulses to keep things interesting. One of my favourite vegetables to use at the moment is kale. I put it with pasta and mushrooms, including dried porcini, cream and parmesan. I also enjoy cooking Finnish food including sourdough rye bread and salmon. 

#In my bookcase

These are some of my cookbooks that I keep in the kitchen. As I have had time, the shelves are looking tidier than usual. My favourite author is the New Zealand cook Annabel Langbein – she has many inspirational recipes and great ideas for preparing sauces and pesto to have ready in the refrigerator for nights when time is limited. I also love the Delicious and Dish magazines from New Zealand.

Of course, I am playing the viola and also teaching my Conservatorium students via Skype which is a new experience and has forced me to get a little more "with it" where technology is concerned! Let’s hope we get back to normal soon.

Ms Helen Sotiriadis supports Jann through the Music Chair program.

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