First Reviews from Finland for ‘Sointula’ Play
The following article was published in the newspaper Lansivayla, July 4th, 2012
~ Written in Finnish by Mika Kaartinen and translated into English by Sointula’s Sirpa Terrell.
The summer theater play Sointula, performed by the Masala Youth Theater, is attracting spectators from all over the world. Among the audience have been relatives of Matti Kurikka living in Finland, descendants of some of the original Sointula pioneers from Vancouver, BC, and some current residents of Sointula on Malcolm Island, BC.
On Tuesday, the Minister of Culture and Sports, Paavo Arhinmaki, went to see the play performed.
Sointula tells the story of the charismatic Matti Kurikka and his Finnish supporters who believed in utopian values. Kurikka founded the utopian community of Sointula in Canada at the beginning of the 1900′s. Because of his interest in history, Arhinmaki already knew about Kurikka’s life work, and his interest was piqued to see the first play ever written of Kurikka’s life.
Arhinmaki had also heard from his friend, Niko Saarela, that the Masala Youth Theater is Finland’s “hottest” youth theater. Arhinmaki’s visit gave the theater group a good opportunity to thank the Ministry of Education and Culture for supporting the renovations of the Ljusdala theater house. Arhinmaki was given a tour of the newly renovated theater.
During the intermission, Arhinmaki had a conversation with the directors of Sointula, Hannele Tuominen and Tuomo Aitta. Aitta also wrote the script for the play. Both the directors and the producer, Mika Kaartinen, thanked the County of Kirkkonummi for supporting youth theater, but they also expressed their concerns about the planned zoning of the current summer theater acreage. If the zoning goes through, the acreage will be used to build houses. That means the end of summer theater in Masala.
Arhinmaki said he was impressed by the way Kurikka’s colorful life was presented and by the high quality of the performance. In addition, he was very interested in how the forest was used as an integral part of the play.
Arhinmaki said he would recommend the play to all of his 18,500 Facebook friends, and immediately after the play he posted the following message: “If you are interested in summer theater I highly recommend the play Sointula, presented by the Masala Youth Theater.”
For tickets, phone 044 3355 475 or go online to www.masalannuorisoteatteri.fi
Translatorâ€™s note: Summer theater is very common and popular in Finland. The performances are held outdoors. There are professional groups in big cities like Tampere and Turku and others, and volunteer-based, amateur groups in smaller communities like Masala.
The following article was published by YLE (Finnish Broadcasting Company), Helsinki, July 5th, 2012.
~ Translated from Finnish by Sirpa Terrell
Masala Youth Theater Tells Story of Utopist Matti Kurikka
Summer theater in Kirkkonummi is afraid for its future, because the location of the summer theater may be used to build housing.
The Masala Youth Theater’s play Sointula tells the story of Matti Kurikka and other Finnish believers in utopian values. Kurikka, who lived at the turn of the 19th century, was a writer and a journalist who founded a utopian community called Sointula in Canada at the beginning of the 1900′s.
The play was written by Tuomo Aitta, who also directed the play, together with Hannele Tuominen. Sointula is the last part of Aitta’s trilogy, and at the same time a “Thank you” to the County of Kirkkonummi and the Ministry of Education for renovating the Ljusdala theater house.
Â Summer Theater Opposes Housing Plans
The hundred-year-old house is a good fit for the needs of the volunteer theater group. However, dark clouds are now hanging over the future of summer theater.
The matter was brought up early this week when the Minister of Culture and Sports, Paavo Arhinmaki, visited Masala to see a performance of Sointula.
Kirkkonummi is planning to build houses on the current location of the summer theater. If the zoning goes through, summer theater will be over in Masala.