A full-length stage production directed by Johanna Nuutinen in collaboration with film maker Jukka Rajala-Granstubb. The multidisciplinary work explores the themes of strength, desire and survival through the mediums of dance, film and photography. IRIS includes six short dance films which work in sync with two renowned performers on stage and as a separate unit on film festivals.

The content for the piece has been collected by interviewing 17 people in their 80s – 90s. The project started from our curiosity to explore what one wants to speak about when there is not much life left to live anymore and which type of memories have been the most meaningful? What does a person with so much life experience want to tell us if we stop, listen and offer our immediate presence? We found out, that in the end of it all, each one of these women and men were sitting in front of us as heroes. Carrying the life lived like an armor on their shoulders, having received a new strength each time when figuring their way through a challenge. Heroes who carry plenty of wisdom for us to learn and be inspired by. The material from these interviews has now been distilled into five surrealistic stories which create a journey traveling between the sensitive stage scenery and raw landscapes on film.

Special thank you to Lena Labart, Svante Martin, Jukka Nuutinen, Jarkko Lehmus and many others who offered their help along the journey.


55 min


Concept and choreography: Johanna Nuutinen
DOP: Jukka Rajala-Granstubb
Script: Johanna Nuutinen, Jukka Rajala-Granstubb
Movement dramaturgy: Jarkko Lehmus
Light design: Joonas Tikkanen
Original score: Tuomas Norvio in collaboration with Tapani Rinne
Foley sounds: Stefan Backas
Editing: Mervi Junkkonen, Jukka Rajala-Granstubb
Costume design and styling: Minttu Vesala
Performers on stage: Nathalie Ruiz, Yvan Auzely or Jonna Aaltonen, Eero Vesterinen
Performers on film: Alma Äijö, Anni Koskinen, Onni Hämäläinen, Filip Forsström, Yvan Auzely, Nathalie Ruiz, Eila Ilola, Kari Harju


Finnish Cultural Foundation
Vivicas Vänner foundation
Hurber Foundation
Svenska Kulturfonden
Taiteen edistämiskeskus
City of Helsinki
SHAWBROOK Residency Centre
MALAKTA Art Factory