Mrs. Marja Ikonen, music teacher and conductor, M.A., studied music at the University of Jyväskylä from 1997 to 2001. She studied conducting at the Conservatory of Central Finland and University of Applied Sciences in Jyväskylä. Her instructors in conducting were Jorma Panula, Paul Niemistö, István Világi, Petri Komulainen and Robert J. Ambrose. Marja Ikonen has trained marching skills under direction Pasi-Heikki Mikkola, Raine Ampuja and Henry Perälä.
Marja Ikonen has worked as a music teacher at Rantasalmi since 2003. Currently she acts as an executive music teacher at Järvi-Saimaa Community College. Marja Ikonen conducts Rantasalmi Wind Band: the A-band is about grade 3 to 4, the B-band is about grade 2 and the C-band is about grade 1. She also conducts musicals in Rantasalmi Youth Theatre. She arranges and composes music for her own bands and is also published composer. In 2009 the Finnish Association of Wind Bands rewarded Mrs. Ikonen with the “Baton of the Year” award for her work in promoting wind band culture in Finland. Ikonen has been rewarded also by the municipality of Rantasalmi (2012) and the Workers' Musical Organization in Finland (2014). Rantasalmi Wind Band has been rewarded as The Band of the Year 2014 by the Finnish Association of Wind Bands and The Best Organization of The Regional Council of South Savo in 2015. The Wind Band also got the Art Prize of Alfred Kordelin Foundation in 2015.