It's been almost four months that I've spent in my hometown Helsinki, and a lot has happened. Working as a hired actor for a great immersive theatre piece The Real Health Centre, joining a new improvisation group, researching, reading, working jobs, finding my place. The town is beautiful and the conditions great – why not to stay here?
The only thing that has been bothering me about Finland is the lack of international projects and connections, and the feeling of being alone here in a monocultural bubble. However, to my great joy and surprise, I have found out that Finland has changed a lot since I last lived here permanently in 2009 and even from my last embarkment of 2013, and the city is starting to find its way into multiculturalism. New projects and communities are starting to form, and a working language can well be English or other, in addition to the traditional Finnish/Swedish duo.
I have also been extremely lucky to have started to receive my international colleagues here, who sincerely want to come and work in Helsinki and other parts of the country. Working last week with my colleague Tom Bailey from the Mechanical Animal Corporation (Bristol), exploring new themes in the rehearsal room as well as in a beautifully snowy Finnish forest made me really feel closer to all my international collaborators, feel like creating multicultural work here is possible and even, extremely needed.
This week's beautiful news have been to receive my own company Spindrift Theatre and my lovely colleague-sisters in town in January 2017. We are going to start Research and Development for our new piece currently called MEN, as well as hold a lecture-workshop at Unioni, the feminist association of Finland about our feminist approach to physical theatre training. To top up the upcoming two weeks, we'll also have a chance to hold a workshop at Ilmaisukellari, the studiospace of the local Actors' Union. Things are starting to form and shape, and Finland is opening it's doors for new adventures.
As Monty Python sings: "Finland, Finland, Finland, a country where I'd quite like to be!"