A Stage For Youth

Nuori Näyttämö / Den Unga Scenen 2013-2015

was a national theatre project. It brought together young theatre enthusiasts to work together with theatre professionals and playwrights. Although the bilingual pilot project, organized by Työväen Näyttämöiden Liitto r.y. – TNL (Association for Amateur and Professional Theatres in Finland), was implemented now for the first time, it took its lead from similar and well-established European procedures and projects.

Production process:
Four professional playwrights each wrote a play for young people aged 13-19.
Groups of adolescents (with their own directors) created performances from these plays with the support of a local professional theatre.
All performances were showcased in a local theatre festival organized at their own professional theatre.
One performance was selected from each local festival to participate in the national festival.
All plays (commissioned by the project) were published in an anthology.

As the main organizer, TNL was in charge of fundraising and the national administration of the project. Inke Rosilo served as main producer and coordinator. TNL edited and printed the play anthology in co-operation with the publisher NTAMO.

As a result of the Nuori Näyttämö / Den Unga Scenen-project, four new plays were written in Finnish and Swedish.
Tove Appelgren: Zoo / Zoo
Anna Krogerus: Kaarna / Karin Barck och jag
Ari-Pekka Lahti: Senga sengana / Senga sengana
Tuomas Timonen: Keltainen pallo / En gul boll

Helsinki City Theatre was the largest theatre involved in the project. Its festival, comprised of 6 groups of young people, took place on 2-3 May 2015 at Studio Pasila. Jyväskylä City Theatre hosted 5 groups and the local festival took place on 8-9 May 2015. Kajaani Town Theatre hosted 3 groups for its festival, shown on the Sissilinna stage on 10-12 May 2015. Lappeenranta City Theatre co-operated with 3 groups from the Estradi art school and one group from a secondary school. The festival took place on both the main stage and the studio stage on 4-5 June 2015.
Rovaniemi Theatre – the Regional Theatre of Lapland was host to 5 groups at its festival on 17-18 April 2015. The performances took place on two stages, Paavo and Ertsa.

The local festivals culminated at Åbo Svenska Teater (the Swedish Theatre of Turku) with the simultaneous arrangement of its own local festival and the final national festival on 15-16 May 2015. The local festival featured one Swedish and two Finnish groups. The national festival showcased one group from each of the five participating local regions.

Altogether 27 groups were chosen to participate in the project. They all made their own interpretation of one of the four commissioned plays by drawing on the enthusiasm of the 450 young actors, their directors and other artistic staff. The groups came from a variety of backgrounds with different levels of skill, but they were all accepted equally into the project. The groups ranged from established amateur companies, secondary school or basic art education groups or special groups established for the purpose of participating in the project. Each group comprised 10-30 young artists with an age distribution from 13 to 25 years. During 2015, the performances were seen by about 10, 635 people.

The significance of the project was reflected in the commitment and devotion of all those who contributed to its implementation. TNL warmly thanks all the sponsors and co-workers who made this project a success.

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