Irma Niskanen was born in Saint Petersburg and moved to Finland at the age of 12. She first studied modern violin in Turku under the guidance of Alexandre Vinnitsky, continuing with baroque violin studies at the Sibelius Academy with Sirkka-Liisa Kaakinen-Pilch. She has also participated in master classes with Petra Mullejans and Amandine Beyer. Irma studied chamber music with Andrew Lawrence-King and Malcolm Bilson among others.

Irma Niskanen is a founding member and one of the concertmasters of Ensemble Nylandia, concertmaster of The Musicians of the King's Road and a founding member of New Century Baroque. She regularly works with Finnish Baroque Orchestra, Helsinki Baroque Orchestra, Opus X and Les Ambassadeurs. She has also appeared as a concertmaster of the Finnish Baroque Orchestra and as a guest musician in Arte dei Suonatori. Irma was chosen to be a member of European Union Baroque Orchestra in 2009 and invited again the next year. With these ensembles Irma has preformed in the main concert halls and festivals around Europe and has taken part in recordings for Erato, Naxos, Alpha, BIS, ALBA, Ondine and Aeolus. As a chamber musician she has performed baroque, classical, early romantic and contemporary music in different venues in Finland, Russia, Germany, Poland, Italy, Belgium, Austria and The Netherlands. As soloist Irma has played with Baroque Orchestra of Sibelius Academy, Ensemble Nylandia, The Musicians of the King's Road and New Century Baroque. Nowadays Irma lives in Vienna.