News 13.05.2019

The programme team of Dance House Helsinki selected

Three experienced performing arts professionals have been selected for the team responsible for planning the programme of Dance House Helsinki: Faith Tan from Singapore, Mikael Aaltonen from Finland and Pia Krämer from Germany. The selections were affected by the candidates’ extensive experience in programme planning, production understanding, international networks and vision.

"It’s great that we got these experts to build the content of the house. The team has a strong understanding of the different operating environments of dance and the opportunities we have at hand. The programme team is responsible for planning the programme of Dance House Helsinki together with our partners. The content will vary from dance performance to events and projects involving audience development. In the autumn, we will begin to draw up the guidelines for our practical operating models, internal and external processes and the programme for the opening seasons," says Matti Numminen, Director at Dance House Helsinki.

International experience and vision

Faith Tan (Master of Arts, Arts & Cultural Management) has 16 years of experience in planning performing arts programmes, managing an arts organisation, producing and curating at the Esplanade – Theatres on the bay in Singapore. Of the Esplanade’s stages, Faith has been in charge of the dance programming for the national centre’s venues including the theatre stage with 1,950 seats and the theatre studio black box with 220 seats, she helms an international dance festival which presents and commissions productions, and leads a team of 9 programmers and producers for dance and theatre for the year round presentation of festivals and series. At Dance House Helsinki, Faith will be appointed as the Head of Programme Development and acts as the supervisor for the programme team. In addition, she is a member of Dance House Helsinki’s Executive Board. Tan’s employment relationship is fixed, running from 1 November 2019 to 30 October 2020.

"The arrival of Dance House Helsinki is an important milestone not only for the scene in Finland but, as a new venue with fresh energy and perspectives it also has great potential to contribute to developments in dance internationally through its programming. By assembling a team of individuals from different countries with our respective knowledge and experiences of best practices and networks, it will enable a dynamic conversation to plan the work the house can do, and I will be on sabbatical leave from Esplanade so as to spend the next year in Helsinki with Matti and the programme team to establish its approach and structure for programming before the venue opens its doors in 2021," says Tan.

Mikael Aaltonen (Master of Arts, Dance) is known as the Artistic Director of the Moving in November contemporary dance festival and the Artistic Director and Producer of the Kiasma URB Urban art festival. He has engaged widely in the fields of dance art and culture as a teacher, performer, producer, curator and expert. At Dance House Helsinki, Aaltonen will be appointed as the Programme Manager. Aaltonen’s permanent employment will begin on 1 September 2019.

"I am excited to join the programme team of Dance House Helsinki. This project is unique in Finland and it will be hugely important for the future development of dance as an art form and its increasing significance and cultural impact in the wider field of performing arts. I am positive that the team will have the drive and insight to respond to the challenge," says Aaltonen.

Pia Krämer (Master of Arts, Dance & Psychology) is the President of the European Dancehouse Network. She has worked in the field of dance as a choreographer, producer, teacher and programme planner, most recently in the Espaço do Tempo residency in Portugal. At Dance House Helsinki, Krämer is a Senior Advisor who focuses on strengthening the house’s relationships with European dance actors and co-operation projects. Krämer will be working part-time from 1 September 2019 to 31 August 2020.

"I am thrilled to be part of this wonderful team of professionals. The Dance House Helsinki comes right on time to foster, develop and highlight the dance sector in Finland and be the window for extraordinary international dance productions. I believe in dance as an archetype of empathy and connectedness, something we need to see and experience in times of social and political extremism," says Krämer.

Exceptional recruitment process paid off

Already in the summer 2018, Dance House Helsinki started the recruitment process for a Programme Manager who would be responsible for programme planning. The search proceeded to interviews in the autumn. In November 2018, the recruitment was expanded from personal recruitment to recruiting a team.

"We received excellent applications already in the first application round. However, we wanted to ensure the diversity of Dance House Helsinki’s programme planning right from the start. We decided to experiment with a new way of working and recruit the entire team at once. The co-operation of the now selected team was tested in a functional group interview in spring 2019. The careful recruitment process paid off because now Dance House Helsinki has three strong experts from slightly different areas of expertise," states Matti Numminen, Director at Dance House Helsinki.

Dance House Helsinki is the first stage dedicated to dance in Finland. It will open its doors in Helsinki’s Cable Factory in autumn 2021. The Erkko Stage with 700 seats and Pannuhalli with 250 seats provide spectacular settings for co-operation in the field of dance and the performance of international level events. As the operations start, the annual budget of the house will be approximately EUR 3.2 million with a permanent staff of 15 people.


Further information: Director Matti Numminen,
+358 50 467 0276,

Requests for interviews: Head of Marketing and Communications Noora Kykkänen,
+358 44 593 2460,

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