On Stage in Finland Now!

What’s going on in Finnish theatre at the moment? Here you’ll find a selection of current projects, including a brief introduction and a link to further information on the theatre company’s website.

Murder on the Orient Express

Murder on the Orient Express

Inside the sturdy walls of the Suomenlinna Summer Theater, an avalanche derails a train travelling from Istanbul to Paris, and one of the passengers is found murdered. But fortunately Hercule Poirot, the dapper and meticulous detective with his waxed moustache, walking stick and little grey cells, is on the scene.

Poirot quickly discovers that everybody on the train has a watertight alibi, but also something to hide. With each new clue, even for the experienced Poirot the case just seems to get more and more twisted. When the knot is finally unraveled, Poirot is faced with an unprecedented dilemma, the greatest and most difficult moral choice of his career.

Agatha Christie is known for her vivid descriptions, masterful plotting, and unexpected solutions. At the Suomenlinna Summer Theater you can enjoy one of the all-time best murder mysteries, a feast for the eyes, which will keep you in suspense right up to the very end!

Agatha Christie, Murder on the Orient Express
adapted for the stage by Ken Ludwig
Finnish translation by Laura Raatikainen

Directed by Juha Kukkonen

On Stage: Kristo Salminen, Minna Suuronen, Johanna Kokko, Sara Paavolainen, Helena Vierikko, Jari Virman, Toni Wahlstrm, Joel Hirvonen, Asta Sveholm and Lasse Viitamki
Set Design: Janne Siltavuori
Lighting Design: Ville Mkel
Sound Design: Jussi Krkkinen
Costume Design: Ninja Pasanen
Makeup Design: Pia Mikkonen

Photo: Mitro Hrknen

Director: Juha Kukkonen
Author: Agatha Christie
Dramaturge: Ken Ludwig
Theater: Suomenlinnan kesteatteri
Premiere: 11.06.2019

The Seven Dog Brothers

The Seven Dog Brothers

Learning simply will not penetrate the thick skulls of the canine Jukola brothers. Should the young dogs live free in the wilds or in the community, adhering to the civilised ways of men who can even read? This is the constant wrestling match that occupies the minds of Juhani, Tuomas, Aapo, Simeon, Timo, Lauri, and little Eero.

The original novel of The Seven Brothers is the masterpiece by Finland’s national writer Aleksis Kivi, a work still entirely topical some 130 years after its first appearance. The play is based on Mauri Kunnas’s doggerel version of this much-loved Finnish classic. For Rovaniemi Theater the director Johanna Sorjonen has written a brand new version full of hassle, dazzle, dance and ditty.

On stage: Vesa-Matti Komonen, Onerva Krkkinen, Kylli Kngs, Markku Kngs, Paula Miettinen, Outi Nevanlinna, Helka Periaho, Anniina Piiparinen, Marko Syysmaa, Timo Vuento, Jonne Kaaretkoski, Minna Siitonen, Henrietta Heiskanen, Krista Karttunen, Ritva Puolamaa

Original Novel by Aleksis Kivi
Adapatation: Mauri Kunnas
Director & dramaturge: Johanna Sorjonen
Staging: Minna Kauhanen
Coreography: Hanna Korhonen
Conductor & musician: Minna Siitonen
Costume design: Elina Vasko
Make-up design: Kaisa Myllri
Stage props: Elina Ntynki
Sound design & projections: Taito Kantomaa
Light design: Kari Penttinen

Photo: Kaisa Sirn

Director: Johanna Sorjonen
Author: Mauri Kunnas
Dramaturge: Johanna Sorjonen
Theater: Rovaniemen Teatteri - Lapin Alueteatteri
Premiere: 10.04.2019

Medusa’s Room

Medusa’s Room

Medusa’s Room is a new stage production by internationally acclaimed Finnish author and theatre maker Saara Turunen, who is one of the strongest new voices in contemporary Northern European art scene. Her previous plays have been staged around the world. Turunen has dealt with such topics as art, identity and social norms. In Medusa’s Room, she focuses on the themes of authority and power related to gender.

In Greek mythology, Medusa was a beautiful maiden, who was raped by Poseidon in Athena’s temple. As a punishment, Athena turned Medusa into a monster and her gaze became lethal. 

Medusa´s room is a fragmentary theatre piece inspired by the myth of Medusa. It´s a dreamy collage of images that deal with power and gender inequality. The production pierces into its subjects with humour, music and strong visual images. 

Written and directed by: Saara Turunen
On Stage: Elina Knihtil, Tommi Korpela, Katja Kttner, Aksinja Lommi and Ylermi Rajamaa
Set Design: Milja Aho 
Lighting Design: Ada Halonen 
Costume Design: Suvi Matinaro 
Sound Design: Tuuli Kyttl
Choreography: Janina Rajakangas

Photo: Aino Nieminen

Director: Saara Turunen
Author: Saara Turunen
Theater: Q-teatteri
Premiere: 21.02.2019

Making of Lea

Making of Lea

Making of Lea, a new comedy by Juha Hurme, introduces us to a group of delightful, fierce and desperate people. They are brought together to stage the world premiere of Lea, the first play ever in Finnish by Aleksis Kivi, the national author of Finland.
 
Despite their best efforts, almost everything that can go wrong, does go wrong.
 
The rehearsal room is filled with signs of doom and Babel-like mix of languages; under the palm trees passions are roaring. The rehearsals are made even more hellish by Aleksis Kivi’s looming madness and alcoholism.
 
The premiere date is closing in. Mrs Charlotte Raa, a Stockholm native, is cast in the leading role, although she doesn’t speak a word of Finnish. Two of Kivi’s worst critics, misters Ahlqvist and Meurman, are sharpening their pens in advance.
 
Making of Lea is essentially true, and it depicts almost accurately how both Finland and Finns were brought into being in 1869. In doing so it also shows where we are coming from and who we are as modern day people.

Authors:
Paavo Kinnunen, Jarkko Lahti, Vilma Melasniemi, Sara Melleri, Juho Milonoff/Niko Saarela ja Eeva Soivio/Ria Kataja.

Photo: Noora Geagea

 

Director: Juha Hurme
Author: Juha Hurme
Theater: KOM-teatteri
Premiere: 15.02.2019

Don Quixote

Don Quixote

The swashbuckling comedy of friendship and idealism
 
Breathtakingly talented actors Timo Ruuskanen and Tuukka Vasama have been touring in Finland for the last five years and charmed audiences with their popular theatre shows. Now the duo brings on stage the adventures of Don Quixote and his loyal, but equally unprepared, companion Sancho Panza.
 
Taking up a lance and sword, Don Quixote sets out on a hilarious journey across medieval Spain, defending the helpless and vanquishing the wicked. Hopelessly unprepared and increasingly losing his grip on reality, with each calamitous adventure the two hapless heroes experience, the romantic ideal of Quixote’s books seems further away than ever.
 
Along with being widely regarded as the world’s first modern novel, Miguel de Cervantes’ Don Quixote is also a loving – and brilliantly funny – tribute to both the power of literature and the joy of the imagination.
 
The Red Nose Company is a Helsinki-based touring theatre company best known for their hugely popular productions Juoksuhaudantie (Trench Road), Punainen viiva (The Red Line), Keisarin uudet vaatteet (The Emperor’s New Clothes) and Babylon.

The production first premiered at Open Doors Theatre (Helsinki) on 24 January 2019.
 
On stage Timo Ruuskanen & Tuukka Vasama
Written and dramatized by Miguel de Cervantes and team
Finnish translation by Jyrki Lappi-Seppl
Directed by Otso Kautto
Light design Jere Kolehmainen
Production Niina Bergius, Anna Jauhola and Mika Vainio
Photo Tero Ahonen

Director: Otso Kautto
Author: Miguel de Cervantes ja tyryhm
Dramaturge: Tyryhm
Theater: Red Nose Company
Premiere: 24.01.2019

Marat/Sade

Marat/Sade

The roaring years after the French Revolution. On stage two grand world historical figures: Jean-Paul Marat, the hero of the Jacobins, and Marquis de Sade, a French aristocrat and disputed philosopher who borrowed his last name to sadism.

The fictitious rendezvous between Marat and de Sade is organized by the patients of Charenton mental hospital. They are preparing a play about Marat’s death and the historical circumstances that led to it. The play is directed by de Sade - who is a Charenton patient himself.

Accompanied by the merry pottering around of the patients, the play intensifies around the conversations between Marat and de Sade. Through deep talks between the two, the timeless text deals wittily and brilliantly with major topics:  the tension between individualism and political activism, power and violence. Some attention is also dedicated to the justification of democracy and to the question of people’s role in democracy.

Three Finnish-Swedish theaters join artistic forces and create their own version of Peter Weiss’ (1916-1982) well-known play. The captain of the crew at the Universum Theatre’s stage is Juha Hurme, beloved theatre-maker, author and winner of the Finlandia Prize 2017. Hurme shakes the 1960s classic to a new, surprising position, but remains true to the original text in one essential point: music plays one of the main roles in Marat/Sade.

Director: Juha Hurme, Directors assistant: Meimi Taipale, Text: Peter Weiss
Visual Design: Raisa Kilpelinen & Kalle Ropponen
Sound design and musicians: Martin kesson & Mirva Tarvainen
On stage: Paul Olin, Wilhelm Grotenfelt, Paul Hollnder, Fabian Siln, Jon Henriksen, Dan Henriksson, Carl Alm, Alma Pysti & Martina Roos.
Production: Klockriketeatern, Sirius teatern, Teater Mestola

Director: Juha Hurme
Author: Peter Weiss
Theater: Universum
Premiere: 20.10.2018

Nora

Nora

Nora – moving away from Henrik Ibsen’s A Doll’s House – is a performance about the acts, roles and boundaries that the woman won’t fit in. The performance returns to the core of humanity; the longing for freedom and the inner urge in all of us to simultaneously protect and destroy everything. How can you live with a conflict like that? Is the only solution to be all alone to understand yourself and everything else?
The 140-year-old classic play by Ibsen is still current. This performance is an attempt to find out what A Doll’s House is really about and what happens after it. Does the play something to laugh at?
 
The concept: the ensemble
Director: Alma Lehmuskallio
On stage: Rosanna Kemppi, Kreeta Salminen
Text: Marie Kajava, Henrik Ibsen and the ensemble
Dramaturgy: Marie Kajava, Alma Lehmuskallio
Sound design and music: Viljami Lehtonen
Scenography: Veera-Maija Murtola
Light design: Viljami Lehtonen, Veera-Maija Murtola, Saku Kaukiainen

Photo: Marko Mkinen

Director: Alma Lehmuskallio
Author: Henrik Ibsen, Marie Kajava and the ensemble
Dramaturge: Marie Kajava, Alma Lehmuskallio
Theater: Teatteri Jurkka
Premiere: 07.09.2018

Tainaron

Tainaron

Tainaron paints a picture of the future – a future which is already here, but hard for us to see.

Newly arrived in the city of Tainaron, our narrator discovers its strange way of life. Here, transformation is part of the daily routine, blurring the boundaries between people, animals and plants. As a place, Tainaron is hard to pin down: totally unrecognizable and yet disturbingly familiar. It is a realm populated by sapient insects, apparently doomed to imminent destruction. The outsider observes the city’s way of life with curiosity, and sends letters to those of us who are still here, in the world we know, blindly immersed in our own reality.

Against a magical dystopia full of poetry and hope, the work explores life’s process of mourning the past, encountering the unknown and accepting change.

The live music has been especially composed for the piece by Aino Venna. Leena Krohn is one of Finland’s most internationally acclaimed authors, and Tainaron is her breakthrough novel from the 1980’s.

On Stage: Kati Outinen and Aino Venna
Original Novel by Leena Krohn
Director: Essi Rossi
Adaptation: Iida Hmeen-Anttila and Essi Rossi
Dramaturges: Essi Rossi and Iida Hmeen-Anttila
Set and Lightning designer: Milla Martikainen
Video designers: Milla Martikainen and Aino Venna
Costume designer: Auli Turtiainen
Music by Aino Venna
Sound designer: Pauli Riikonen
Make up designer: Krista Karppinen

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Director: Essi Rossi
Author: Leena Krohn
Theater: The Finnish National Theatre
Premiere: 29.08.2018