Kreutzwald meets dance

Milena Tuominen and Laura Quin

Can You imagine going to a theatre in fancy clothes, especially with high heels and maybe long dresses in case of the ladies, and finding out that to actually enter the theatre You would have to balance and find Your way across shaky rocks in the artificial creek accompanied by an enchanting sound of a water flow. I thought I was being funny when I asked whether the audience would have to enter through the creek, but turned out, this was exactly the plan for a dance performance “Kreutzwald meets dance”, produced by Theatre Vanemuine in Tartu.

I was honored and pleased when I heard that I was personally requested by the choreographer to be the photographer for this production.

While taking photos of a preliminary rehearsal few weeks earlier, Jaan pointed at blue stickers on the floor and explained that they marked the creek with real water. Of course I got curious how the ballerinas would manage while dipping their toes in the water, but I shortly figured that he might not really have the answer before actually trying it out, so I withheld my questions.

Although the couple centimeters of the water was shallower than I had anticipated, the enchanting sound of a creek flow really brought it alive. Surprisingly, the dancers did not just dip their toes in the water – by the end of the performance they were soaked with water, so was the whole scene and so was I. As for some of the photos I aimed very low angles, a lot of the time my chin or cheek was on the ground, so there was no escaping from the wet floor. And when after the rehearsal the girls went all wild for the splash à la ballerina photo, I just embraced the water flying in all directions.

Milena Tuominen with a splash Final cuts by costume designer Maarja Meeru

Kreutzwald meets dance

Rita Dolgihh as a witch Laura Quin Kristina playing with water Choreographer Jaan Ulst in a bit of a twist Kristina Ballerinas at a creek on the stage Wet footprints on the stage

Kreutzwald meets danceKreutzwald meets dance

This production was Jaan’s debut as a choreographer in the Vanemuine. For Milena this was the last project in the theatre, which I am quite sad about.

Kristina, Milena Tuominen and Tatevik Mkrtoumian

Kreutzwald meets danceKreutzwald meets danceKreutzwald meets dance

Photos taken at the Sadamateater of theatre Vanemuine at the rehearsals on May 4th and 5th, 2012.

Director and choreographer: Jaan Ulst
Stage and costume designer: Maarja Meeru
Light: Siim Allas
Photos: Ranno Rätsep
Official website

Splash à la ballerina

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