1Aura of Puppets
Have you always considered puppet theatre to be just a form of kid’s entertainment? Well, it’s nothing of the sort. A good example of this is Aura of Puppets, a network of puppetry professionals whose mission it is to reveal this hidden form of art and bring puppet theatre to the consciousness of audiences.
The artists of AofP take creativity and imagination to the next level. There’s also entertainment for children, but the artists are first and foremost known for their adult performances. The personal characters and captivating stories are so enthralling, that at some point, you are sure to forget you are looking at dolls rather than real actors.
More cool stuff: Turku International Puppetry Festival TIP -Fest (6th – 10th November)
2AB Dance Company
AB Dance Company’s home stage is located on the River Aura shores, in Manilla, a bright yellow former factory building with cultural and historical value. Here, contemporary dance is alive and kicking!
Originally, the group’s repertoire was representative of contemporary ballet, but nowadays AB Dance Company is known as a versatile and high-quality contemporary dance group, which strives to bring contemporary dance to everyone. AB Dance Company’s artistic director is dancer-choreographer Urmas Poolamets, but every year audiences can also enjoy pieces from guest choreographers.
Are you intrigued by the idea of an electronic-music workshop, an experimental music festival or dance lessons? Located in an old textile factory is the Kutomo contemporary art space, which is a place you might imagine finding in the hipster areas of Berlin. Fortunately, there’s no need to travel all the way to Berlin because Kutomo is within walking distance of Turku city centre.
Kutomo is managed by the artist-driven Ehkä Productions, which facilitates and produces new works of dance and performance art, events and workshops. In addition to dance, Kutomo also presents works of visual art, performances as well as art from sound and music.
4Dance Theatre Eri
In Dance Theatre Eri, the dance, art and music combine to deliver a totally enveloping experience. The theatre is known, both home and abroad, for its impressive and original dance productions, and the founders Tiina Lindfors, Lassi Sairela and Eeva Soini take prominent roles in dancing, scriptwriting and choreography.
Eri’s works deal with intriguing themes, which contain both humour and content that touches the soul. The theatre’s 30th anniversary in 2019 begins with magnificent Polttopiste production, created in cooperation with writer Tommi Kinnunen. Also, the highly praised Passio makes a comeback. Later in spring, there’s the chance to see Alice in Wonderland.
5Åbo Svenska Teater
Situated right on the corner of the market square is the oldest theatre house in Finland, Åbo Svenska Teater. Constructed in 1839, the theatre conceals within its walls a spectacular slice of theatre history, evident the moment you first step into the lobby. The main stage, from the 1800’s, with its glittering chandelier, ceiling painting and numerous ornamental gilded details, is particularly stunning.
Part of one of the most beautiful buildings in the city, the theatre’s main language is Swedish, and all performances of operas, musicals and plays on the main stage include subtitles in Finnish, so performances are suitable for wider audiences. Truly a place where art comes to life – see the website for details of the theatre’s repertoire.
The refreshingly different TEHDAS Theatre use their unique style to inspire and awaken audiences, just as true art should.
TEHDAS Theatre is located in the magnificent milieu of Manilla, the premises of a former factory right along the banks of the River Aura, offering a stage for open-minded productions as well as alternative artistic theatre. The repertoire consists of contemporary theatre, performances and puppet theatre, which you can explore in detail online. There are also many performances for children.
7Samppalinna Summer Theatre
The old mill peeks out from the trees, along with the magnificent view as you climb the hill. At the foot of the mill lies the Samppalinna summer theatre, having performed popular and talented summer entertainment in Turku for over 50 years. Where the atmosphere has both a touch of nostalgia and a wholesome spirit – something traditionally Turku. Summer theatre is as much a part of summer as strawberries and cream!
8TNT – Turku Youth Theatre
Turku Youth Theatre is found at the edge of the city centre, in an old print factory on Ursininkatu Street. The theatre itself is by no means young, having organised theatre activities for children and young people for almost 50 years. The productions include both classical pieces and light comedy, with a repertoire suitable for all ages.
Here, the talents of children and young people expand to fill extraordinary roles and performances, with no limits on imagination – nor is the fun and laughter restricted in rehearsals. Under professional leadership, children of all ages are taught how to make learning fun by breaking with routines, which is what makes this theatre special.
“Forget formality and have some fun,” goes Linnateatteri’s mantra, and nothing could be truer. No matter what your mood, Linnateatteri will get you up and keep you entertained. Comedy is truly Linnateatteri’s forte and is surely the place for guaranteed laughs. In addition to the repertoire of plays, the theatre also hosts a great selection of concerts and stand up comedy.
Catering for the theatre house on Linnankatu Street is the charming Theatre Restaurant, with audiences also entertained on a covered courtyard stage during summer. Linnateatteri’s historic Domino theatre on Puutarhakatu Street had for many years operated as a movie theatre, and is connected to Southwest Finland’s ‘Maalaistentalo’, a famous 1920’s building designed by Alvar Aalto.
10Turku City Theatre
The home of Turku City Theatre is a theatre house constructed in 1962, and the towering theatre building is a visible and well-known landmark along the River Aura. A grand renovation of the theatre was completed in 2017 and was no small task, as even though the house has been equipped with state-of-art technology, the exterior of the building has been preserved.
Performances on the theatre’s three stages include dramas and comedies as well as musicals and children’s theatre, so feel free to explore the full repertoire on the website. The theatre also organises guided tours behind the scenes.