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AB Dance Company

Artistic director Urmas Poolamets
Contact person Managing Director Sami Skantsi
Address Manilla, Itäinen Rantakatu 64, FI-20810 Turku
Telephone +358 (0)2 284 0100
WWW pages http://www.aurinkobaletti.fi
Email info@aurinkobaletti.fi
Year founded 1.1.1981
Funding Subsidized under the Theatres and Orchestras Act
Style Contemporary Dance
Other Style dance theatre
Artistic staff (number of) 5
Managerial staff (number of) 3
Technical staff (number of) 2
Production based ensemble No
Description AB Dance Company is known as a constantly evolving, high-quality contemporary dance group which is not afraid to venture outside the limits of its own genre. Its repertoire includes productions for both adults and children. The artistic director of AB Dance Company is dancer-choreographer Urmas Poolamets. The home stage of the company is Manilla Theatre at Manilla, a beautifully restored former factory on the banks of the Aura river in Turku.
The ensemble can be described by a sense of community, diversity, and openness to new directions. The central goal at AB Dance Company is to maintain the status of dance next to other forms of art and to take dance where it is not otherwise available. Cross-artistic productions and diverse audience development are a part of daily work at AB Dance Company.

AB Dance Company often collaborates with other dance groups and theatres, for example with Turku City Theatre, Åbo Svenska Teater, Turku Music Festival, Jojo – Oulu Dance Centre, Dance Theatre Rimpparemmi and Tehdas Theatre and Aura of Puppets. AB Dance Company takes pride in its interdisciplinary productions and its diverse audience development.

AB Dance Company has offered a stage to several leading Finnish choreographers and international artists, such as Sasha Pepeljajev, Carolyn Carlson, Boris Eifman, Andrew deGroat, Kilina Crémona, Jyrki Karttunen, Sanna Kekäläinen, Tommi Kitti, Marjo Kuusela, Jarkko Mandelin, Kirsi Monni, Ari Numminen, Matti Paloniemi, Virpi Pahkinen, Arja Raatikainen, Tuomo Railo, Sami Saikkonen, and Jorma Uotinen.

AB Dance Company tours both in Finland and abroad. In 2023, AB Dance Company started a domestic collaboration with Dance Theatre Minimi, Dance Theatre Raatikko and Dance Theatre Rimpparemm in the form of a 4X touring dance event. 4X offers a diverse range of Finnish contemporary dance and the touring event is set to continue annually.

In 2011, as Turku and Tallinn were appointed European Capitals of Culture for the year, AB Dance Company celebrated its 30th anniversary with the international production designed and directed by Sasha Pepeljajev, The Dancing Tower, rising to the skies of both cities. The large international production brought artists together from Finland, Russia, Estonia and the United States. The Dancing Tower was performed at Logomo, the main stage of the cultural capital year of Turku, and at Tallinn Creative Hub (Kultuuri Katel) in Estonia. In 2023, the AB Dance Company visited Tallinn again with Pepeljajev's piece Where to Invite Liza?, which was performed twice at Sakala 3 to sold-out audiences. In 2019, AB Dance Company and JoJo – Oulu Dance Centre co-production, A Real Prince, at the Young Dance Festival in Zug, Switzerland, and conquered the hearts of the numerous children in the audience. During the years, several dance pieces of AB Dance Company have been seen in many parts of Europe, in Palestine, and in Hong Kong.
AB Dance Company has received several awards, such as the diploma for Theatre of the Year 2003 by the Association of Finnish Theatres and the acknowledgement prize by the Turku Theatre Club Foundation in 2004.

The founder and long-standing artistic director Raija Lehmussaari has been awarded with e.g. the Pro Finlandia medal (2020), the State Prize for the Performing Arts (2011), and the Elias Lönnrot medal by the Finnish Cultural Foundation (2009). She has as well been appointed Knight by the Order of the White Rose of Finland (2007). Raija Lehmussaari and Erkki Lehmussaari, the driving forces behind AB Dance Company, were awarded the Turku City Cultural Prize in 2007. Raija Lehmussaari was appointed the Turku Cultural Citizen of the year in 2013 by Turkuseura, and an oak named after her was planted in the Samppalinna hill in Turku in her honor.
Engagements Heikinheimo, Ismo-Pekka: dancer (1984 - 1985)
Sairela, Lassi (1984 - 1989)
Saikkonen, Sami: trainee (1985 - 1986)
Romppanen, Helena: dancer (1985 - 1989)
Suominen, Kalle: dancer (1989 - 1992)
Huovinen, Tommi: dancer (1997 - 1998)
Lahti, Laura: dancer (1999 - 2003)
Romppanen, Helena: dancer (1999 - 2003)
Performances The Creation of the world (14.12.1981)
The Parade (14.12.1981)
A series of dances to the music by Debussy (14.12.1981)
Ariadne (25.10.1982)
Metamorphoses (Lehmussaari) (25.10.1982)
The Nightingale (25.10.1982)
Concertino (Sylvestersson) (27.3.1983)
A Bunch of Blue Eyes (27.3.1983)
Orpheus (27.3.1983)
How are you? (16.10.1983)
The Barks fly in full sail (13.11.1983)
Transit (Lehmussaari) (13.11.1983)
The Wash ballet (8.2.1984)
The Cage (Sylvestersson 1984) (1.4.1984)
Things happen (1.4.1984)
The Fawners (1.12.1984)
Music, Music (20.3.1985)
Not much about Väinämöinen (20.3.1985)
Any woman is a woman (13.8.1985)
A Relief (10.11.1985)
Eject (4.6.1986)
The Street games (7.10.1986)
Thin Ice (7.10.1986)
Fan Dance (7.10.1986)
Limit (6.4.1987)
The Brick bearers (6.4.1987)
A Piece of Heaven (Lehmussaari) (9.11.1987)
The Bus (14.12.1987)
Meaculpa (14.12.1987)
Without a theater II (14.12.1987)
Tha Banana place (20.3.1988)
Three nights (15.9.1988)
The Frieze of life (4.11.1988)
Kvasi (8.6.1989)
Pessi and Illusia (Lehmussaari) (28.11.1989)
Passions of a man (22.1.1990)
Love, honour and revenge (19.4.1990)
Symphone de solitude (28.1.1991)
What now, Joseph? (5.6.1991)
Alice in Wonderland (Vanhakartano) (17.11.1991)
Carmen (Lehmussaari) (8.5.1992)
An evening by the new choreographers (11.6.1992)
Sininen portti (4.12.1992)
Strange fruit (3.3.1993)
Dancer's night (7.4.1993)
Robber's pocket (10.10.1993)
A Spectator of the height (23.1.1994)
The Wonderful world of dance (17.5.1994)
V.S.O.T. Very Special Old Touch (30.7.1994)
Maan ääres (Noli me tangere) (4.2.1995)
Carmina Burana (Lehmussaari) (22.4.1995)
Tarxan (27.4.1995)
Always elsewhere (15.6.1995)
Crime and punishment (29.10.1995)
Oh, Odyssee! (27.2.1996)
The Sleeping beauty (Lehmussaari) (11.10.1996)
The Serenade (Numminen) (1.3.1997)
The Wizard of Oz (30.9.1997)
Dance.exe (13.11.1997)
Casablanca (18.3.1998)
The Hanuri (5.6.1998)
Yellow House (27.3.1999)
The Red room (27.3.1999)
There is a corridor (1999) (27.3.1999)
Something about... (9.10.1999)
Uniooma (23.11.1999)
The Ugly duckling (8.3.2000)
Reality of Six Senses (16.8.2000)
Moondrunk (2000) (7.10.2000)
Virgo (28.2.2001)
Head Down Flyer (10.5.2001)
Nightingale (Lehmussaari) (15.9.2001)
5 alkua (10.10.2002)
The Nutcrakcer (Poolamets) (21.11.2002)
A Package of dance (5.2.2003)
La Soirée (15.5.2003)
Tale no.3 (24.1.2004)
The Blue house (24.1.2004)
Supernatural (27.3.2004)
Iloaoli (26.1.2005)
Alkutuuli - Urwind (2.4.2005)
Chiaroscuro (15.10.2005)
Cinderella (Poolamets) (25.11.2005)
Kohtaus miehelle ja naiselle - kolmas kerta (3.3.2006)
Minä suljen suuni (3.3.2006)
Sellainen muistopuhe (3.3.2006)
Siellä oli käytävä (2006) (3.3.2006)
Ihmeellinen kultakala (20.9.2006)
Walkabout (8.11.2006)
Leikkejä yksinäisille (21.3.2007)
Mozartin matka Prahaan (10.8.2007)
Punaisen puun varjossa (1.3.2008)
Goldilocks and the Three Bears (12.4.2008)
Square (11.9.2008)
Shostakovitsh. Arvoitus. (8.8.2009)
H8 - renessanssiprinssi (15.10.2009)
The Beauty and the Beast (6.2.2010)
CatWalk (28.10.2010)
Dancing Tower (14.4.2011)
Shockheaded Peter (Poolamets) (9.3.2012)
Dead Tulips (25.1.2013)
Ouroboros (30.8.2013)
Keisarin uudet vaatteet (Poolamets) (14.2.2014)
Ennen viimeisiä ajatuksia (5.9.2014)
Viides taivas (12.11.2014)
Benben (11.3.2015)
Hajoava aika ei kirjoita voittajien historiaa (11.3.2015)
Ritual Union (11.3.2015)
Suutele minulle siivet (11.3.2015)
Regina - kohtalon suudelma (4.9.2015)
Saiturin joulu (19.11.2015)
Tanssinpaketti (11.3.2016)
If You Snow Away (7.9.2016)
Kymmenen laulua naisesta (30.8.2017)
Camille (Poolamets) (26.1.2018)
Nooat (23.3.2018)
Hetki tanssien (24.4.2019)
Time of My Life (5.9.2019)
Todellinen prinssi (2.3.2020)