Elle Sofe Sara (NO)

Vástádus eana - The answer is land

Vástádus eana - The answer is land
Elle Sofe Sara (NO)

Elle Sofe Sara (NO)

Vástádus eana - The answer is land



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A more than contemporary view of self-determination and our relationship with the earth

As a Sami, Elle Sofe Sara has first-hand experience of what injustice can do to a person and his community: the Sami have no country of their own and face social, cultural, and political challenges. A large-scale production with yoiks sung live on stage.

Main program
Run time 70 minutes
Location Internationaal Theater Amsterdam
Venue Grote Zaal

Due to a pilot strike at SAS Airlines, it is unfortunately not possible to receive the company of Elle Sofe Sara in Amsterdam in time. As a result, we are unfortunately forced to cancel the performances.

Vástádus eana - The answer is land

Elle Sofe Sara took her inspiration for Vástádus eana / The answer is land from the poem with the same name, which has been placed as a work of art by the Deatnu River, on the border between Finland and Norway. The poem is part of the Kiss From the Border art installation and discusses the call for autonomy and self-government by the Sami, an originally nomadic people living in the area Sápmi, also referred to as Sámi land. Not a country in the geographical sense of the word, but an area covering the north of Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Russia.

The poem touches the core of Sami culture: living together with nature as a human being, in connection with the environment and each other. That is exactly what Vástádus eana / The answer is land is about: the kinship between people, with nature and the earth we share.

To emphasise this idea, the seven female performers begin a ritual outside, in front of the theatre, after which they take the audience inside with them. On stage, elements of traditional dance are combined with Sami rituals and everyday movements that suggest a demonstration. Dance and song reinforce each other in the performance: the dancers sing live yoiks, traditional mountain songs, most of which have been specially composed for this purpose by yoik singer and composer Frode Fjellheim.
As a choreographer and director, Elle Sofe Sara works at the interface of film, dance and theatre, regularly highlighting the social, political and cultural challenges of the Sami people. She is one of four talents in the Talent Norge filmmaker programme and founder of the Dáiddadállu Sami artist collective in Guovdageaidnu, her home and workplace.

With Vástádus eana / The answer is land, Elle Sofe Sara sends a universal message: ‘The power that emerges when we stand side by side interests me. How much stronger we are when we are part of a community.’

Gažaldat eana, vástádus eana
dušše maid dárbbaša
álmmastit miehterávdnjái,
álo njáskat
ieš min šaldi
čáhci, sáivaluohti

Land is the question, the answer is land
Only take what's needed
Scoop the water along the stream, cut the
branches along the grain
Let the river be the bridge
Clean water
, the sacred song


original cast Kajsa Balto, Julie Moviken, Olga-Lise Holmen, Sara Marielle Gaup Beaska, Emilie Marie Karlsen, Nora Svenning, Grete Daling
castUlla Pirttijarvi, Anna Näkkäläjärvi-Länsman, Grete Daling, Olga-Lise Holmen, Nora Svenning, Jule Moviken, Trine Lise Moe
artistic leader, choreographer Elle Sofe Sara
composer Frode Fjellheim
co-choreographer Alexandra Wingate
costumes Elle Sofe Sara, Ramona Salo
set design Elin Melberg
light design Øystein Heitmann
light technician Anniell Olsen
dramaturge Thomas Schaupp
sound technnician Eivind Steinholm
tour manager Ingvild Kirkvik
hat sewing Zoja Galkina, Unni Fjellheim, Sara Inga Utsi Bongo, Karen Inga Buljo Oskal, Jorunn Løkvold, Hilly Sarre
dress sewing Karen Inga Buljo Oskal, Ann Mari Sara
performance title Rájácummá / Kiss from the border by Niillas Holmberg, Outi Pieski, Jenni Laiti
producers Maiken Garder, Nordberg Movement, Siri Børs-Lind
collaboration partners Davvi Centre for Performing Arts, The Sámi National Theatre Beaivváš
co-producers Arctic Arts Festival, Norrlandsopraen
funded by Sámediggi, Norsk Kulturråd, Nordisk Kulturkontakt, Fond for Lyd Og Bilde, Dáiddafoanda, Sámiráđđi, Spenn
development grants from Troms Og Finnmark Fylkeskommune, Norsk Kulturråd
video documentation and photos Hein Creations


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