The High North Tour 2021: Establishing A Kven Theater Stage

In Nordreisa, Project Manager Inger Birkelund is working with the establishing of a Kven theater. (Photo/film: Arne O. Holm)  

Storslett: Theater history is written in Nordreisa, in a language few people speak, lest say understand. Establishing a Kven theater is yet another manifestation of the international Arctic.

“Because it will be a nomadic theater, a theater crossing borders”, says Project Manager Inger BIrkelund.

“We need a Kven theater for the Kven people and Kven culture to become more visible in the democratic Norway. We need it so that our story is heard, too. We are to be a touring theater, based here in Nordreisa but touring the Barents region.”

The theater is a collaboration with a series of institutions, such as e.g. Hålogaland Theater [in Tromsø] and the University of Tromsø.

"We are primarily to work for the Kven who live here, in the Kven core area, but also for Kven people in other parts of Norway. And we will cooperate with our brother people.”

So far, no all-Kven theater plays have been written. That is groundbreaking work, too. As goes for the process of finding actors speaking Kven.

The pandemic has caused challenges for this new establishment.

However, Inger Birkelund has a plan for both recruiting and for what plays to set up on this new, artistic stage.

See the whole story about the Kven theatre in the film on top of this page.

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This article was originally published in Norwegian and has been translated by HNN's Elisabeth Bergquist.