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Development of cross-border activities in dance and theatre
Funded by Euregio Karelia Neighbourhood Programme 2001-2006

Objective of the project

The aim of the project was to develop cooperation in the artistic fields of theatre and dance in the Republic of Karelia, to improve the cross-border he cross-border awareness and know-how of dance. The aim was also to strengthen cooperation between Petrozavodsk National Theater and Joensuu City Theater.

Main activities

• Organizing a dance workshop week in the Petrozavodsk Cultural Institute and various different workshops in Finland • The implementation of children's play called Koivuhiiri ja Päästäinen (The Birch Mouse and the Shrew) in Joensuu and Petrozavodsk. • Testing of performance locations to improve the visibility and marketing of theatres • Organization of the festival of Finnish theatre in Petrozavodsk


The dance part of the project organised a dance workshop week in the Petrozavodsk Cultural Institute, where a dance teacher from the Outokumpu College taught modern dance to Russian dancers and a dance teacher from the Petrozavodsk Cultural Institute taught character dance to Finnish students. Also, dance artists from St Petersburg gave lessons to a mixed group of Finnish and Russian students. During the workshop week, Finnish dance students performed twice in the Petrozavodsk National Theatre. A documentary was made of the workshop week. Various different workshops were also organised in Finland, where Russian dance teachers from, among others, the Petrozavodsk Cultural Institute and Theatre of Dance gave lessons to Finnish professionals and recently graduated students of dance and theatre. Russian teachers also supervised some final dissertations of a few dance students. A significant result of the dance section were the new contacts made by the Outokumpu College and deeper cooperation with our eastern neighbour. With an easterly orientation, the College has been able to create an individual profile in Finland. In the theatre section, a children's play called Koivuhiiri ja Päästäinen (The Birch Mouse and the Shrew) was directed as a theatrical cooperation production at both the Joensuu City Theatre and the Petrozavodsk National Theatre. Mr Timo Ventola from the Joensuu City Theatre directed Russian actors in the Petrozavodsk National Theatre, and a Russian director Ms Lidia Tolstova directed Finnish actors in Joensuu. The directors had access to similar staging equipment and texts, but the plays turned out to be very different from each other. In addition to director exchange, an international aspect and comparisons of ways of making theatre, the cooperation of the play brought training and working life closer together and offered the students opportunities to learn at work. The play also tried to make a difference to people's attitudes with theatrical means: the play dealt with issues such as racism and tolerance. The project surveyed the technical details of the primary performance locations of North Karelia and the Republic of Karelia to facilitate cultural production exchange across the border. Performance locations were also tested in cooperative productions, thus increasing the marketing and publicity of the regional theatres. The theatre section also included the design work for the festival of Finnish theatre, implemented by the Union of Finnish Theatre Directors. The festival was organised in Petrozavodsk in May 2008.

Basic information



2006-11-01 - 2007-10-30

Total Budget / Programme funding

147 683 € / 138 734 €

Lead partner

The North Karelia Educational Federation of Municipalities/North Karelia College in Outokumpu
Lead partner web-site


Petrozavodsk National Theatre
Karelian College of Culture and Arts