Niskavuoren Heta

Original name Niskavuoren Heta
Kirjoittajat Hella Wuolijoki
Original language Finnish
Premiere year 1950
Theater Tampereen työväen teatteri, TTT / Theatre of Tampere
Keywords Drama

Performances abroad

Ugala Teater, Viljandi, Estonia 14.3.1978, dir. Heino Torga, starring Heta: Leila Säälik

Synopsis

The play begins on the Niskavuori estate where the wedding of the pregnant Heta is celebrated. She is getting married to the farmhand Akusti and they are moving to a small hut in Muumäki. Heta is very determined to keep her pride so characteristic of the Niskavuori and decides: No guests will be invited to visit until the new house is built. It takes 17 arduous years to complete and when indeed it is completed, the house is a few meters longer and the estate more handsome than Niskavuori.
Akusti does not only prove himself to be industrious, but also a wise and conciliatory man of the house, who continuously expands the estate with forest trades. Heta and Akusti have three children. All of them are kept home for labour so that the wealth of the estate can continue to increase. Out of Heta’s volition, none of the children are sent to school (“hard-headed children of a farmhand”) as usually would be the case with a family owning an estate. The disagreements between Heta and Akusti deepen as the starting civil war forces both to choose sides. Heta wants to send their son to the opposite side as Akusti. Heta is ashamed that they haven’t been treated like the other estate owners, because Akusti has friends within the enemy. Regardless, Akusti has gained the respect of all the villagers (except Heta) and is appointed village counsellor.
Akusti dies. At the distribution of the inheritance the huge wealth of Muumäki surprises everyone. But Heta’s will and greed are muffled by her children. Heta has lead a selfish, ambitious and hard-boiled life, but at the end she bursts into tears. Many suspect she is mourning all the wealth slipping through her hands, but Heta replies: “I mourn what I mourn. It's my grief. Akusti is gone.”

Translations

Language Spanish
Translation name Heta Niskavuori
Translators Maritza Núñez
Julkaisija Asociación de directores de escena de España, Madrid 2001
Copies available The Finnish Dramatists' Union, http://www.sunklo.fi
Drama agency The Finnish Dramatists' Union, http://www.sunklo.fi

Language Estonian
Translation name Niskamäe Heta
Translators Linda Viiding
Julkaisija "Näidendid", Eesti Raamat, Tallinn 1984
Copies available Eesti Näitemänguagentuur / Estonian Drama Agency, ena(at)kul.ee
Drama agency The Finnish Dramatists' Union, http://www.sunklo.fi

Language Russian
Translation name Heta iz Niskavuori
Translators Aili Kukkonen
Drama agency The Finnish Dramatists' Union, http://www.sunklo.fi