Finnish Season

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Finland, just like Brighton Fringe, has a reputation for doing things from a refreshingly different perspective, there is more to things than meets the eye.  

All City Movement

'All City Movement' is series of street paintings which indicate motion. The paintings appear around the city; they work as individual pieces of art or can be viewed as linking together to generate a continuous installation, which serves as a tribute to the natural world and a statement in support of the efforts to protect and conserve the environment, also within the urban sphere. Jussi TwoSeven is a Helsinki based contemporary artist whose artistic roots originate from traditional graffiti and street art fused with his unique technique of making art with stencils, spray can and acrylic paint. 

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Dance performance 'Blackpool' takes the audience on a journey to the tough world of competitive ballroom dancing and reveals the rugged everyday life to be found behind the glamour. The performance smells like self-tanning lotion and rasps like a suede sole shoe brush. Old wounds that have already healed are reopened, poked fun at and shared, uncensored, with the audience. Choreographers Milla Virtanen and Jaakko Toivonen are both former Finnish national ballroom dance champions and experiences from their ballroom dance youth and the Blackpool Dance Festival serve as inspiration for the work. 

Blackpool (teaser) from Leevi Lehtinen on Vimeo.

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Dark Side of the Mime

'Dark Side of the Mime' explores the grotesque like nothing else. It mixes together clowning with classic pantomime, porn, splatter, and violence. In its core lies the foundation of our common culture and it’s taboos – we simultaneously gasp with horror and tremor with laughter because we all know we’re seeing the same things, even though the images are conjured up using only gestures. This is possible since we all have a dark side and Dark Side of the Mime exposes this darkness in a very raw, unhinged, and hilarious way. A clown-splatter-porn-mime-show! 

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The Fabulous Bäckström Brothers 

UK premiere of the Finnish international musical-comedy hit, combining opera, pin-sharp musical variety and stomach-crampingly funny physical comedy, directed by Spymonkey’s Toby Park and Aitor Basauri. Baritone Jouni Bäckström has invited his brother Petri to spend some quality time cruising across the States, as only opera-singing brothers can, on the famous Route 66. Petri has other ideas - in order to rehearse his big role as Siegfried, he has brought his pianist Jukka Nykänen with him, who is working on his magnum opus The God Particle. Richard Wagner meets Johnny Cash in a Ring of Fire. 

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Gender Euphoria  

'Gender Euphoria' is James Lorien MacDonald's second solo stand-up show, and this time he's taking on as many aspects of gender as will fit in his chaotic, mesmerising brain. These are not the dick jokes you're used to. To begin with, he's a transgender, gay immigrant in Finland. From the joys of fake-it-til-you-make-it masculinity, to the things you can (or should never) do with a detachable penis, expect a load of stories so hilarious they simply must be true. If, by the end of the show, you aren't questioning your own gender and sexuality, you must be truly immune. 

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Queer Homo   

Queer Homo is an award-winning stand-up show about a straight guy who fell in love with another man. Juuso Kekkonen’s autobiographical tale about polyamory, BDSM and finding happiness has delighted thousands of people since its premiere in 2012, and now it’s finally the UK’s turn. Ranging from teenage traumas to transgender issues, and from gorilla sex to the depths of the human mind, Kekkonen’s show takes the audience on a mind-bending trip from the Big Bang all the way to the end of the universe. 

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Sound Barrier

The whip was the first human invention that broke the 'Sound Barrier'. Finnish circus artist Katerina Repponen turns whip-cracking into an art in this astonishing piece. Her precision in hitting targets is matched by her visually arresting presentation that proves that the whip can create something beautiful, elegant and soft as well as scary, loud and dangerous. Sound Barrier explores the sounds, rhythms and movements of the whip and explores its literal and metaphorical power in relation to the human body and mind. 'Sound Barrier' is definitely unlike any show you have ever seen before. 

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Relationships are subject of Kate and Pasi's superbly skilled acrobatic show. How can a 50kg woman win a 100kg man? And what kind of a relationship is there between such an unlikely duo when the two encounter each other? Who is leading and who is following? How do they influence each other? Amazing Finnish acrobatic duo Kate and Pasi literally juggle each other in this show about love and relationships. Expect heart-stopping acrobatics, sensitivity and lots of self-irony in this endearing portrait. Suitable for family audiences and a perfect Bank Holiday treat. 

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Väkevä / Lyydia (Double Bill)

Circus up close: experience the power of the strongman and the beauty of the aerial artist in this world premiere from Finland. Audiences are invited to enter a little dome tent to get a very special glimpse into the worlds of these circus disciplines. Meet Sasu the Strongman who performs gut wrenching stunts from circus past and Lyydia the aerialist who climbs and swings gracefully all over the tent. As circus celebrates its 250-year anniversary in the UK, be sure not to miss this stunning re-invention of circus tradition from Finland. Both shows are 30 minutes with an interval in between. 

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Wolf Safari

What is it like to be wild? In 'Wolf Safari' we learn to look at the city through new eyes: those of the wolf! The wildness of a wolf can be seen as noble or dangerous, depending on our point of view. On one hand, one of the most socially developed and organised creatures. On the other, one of history’s most hated animals. The question of the wolf divides opinions on a politically fundamental level. In this nocturnal wandering performance, participants will get under the wolf’s skin and learn to see their surroundings in new ways. There are 3 parts: Wolf School, The Hunt, The Return/Discussion. 

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