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Stylish new work strikes me dumb

A premiere from Susanna Leinonen is always an Event. Her dream team always serve up a genuine whole art work.

The good news is that this is perhaps the best I have seen from Leinonen Company. The bad is that half an hour feels too short! And the Line Begins to Blur is a highly polished vigorous work, in which all the parts are in just the right place.

In earlier works it sometimes felt as if Mikki Kunttu’s spectacular lighting went off a bit too much on a solo run of its own. Lighting designer Matti Jykylä fits in well with the team, however, and the same is true of Erika Turunen’s fabulous gothic costumes, which in the context of the movement and the music make the performance incredibly stylish.

The movement itself is pure Leinonen: customarily energetic, with elastically moving arms. The choreographer’s powerful movement material demands a certain kind of dancer’s quality, and here on the Stoa stage we see the best.

I was struck dumb by the performance – how could it be so amazing?

The work is very precisely choreographed with no room for improvisation. Leinonen presents slightly different types of dancers at the beginning, however, and the group’s male dancer even gets to do slightly masculine machine movement.

According to the brochure the work is a place where stark beauty and a darkly-hued view of the world meet.

The work sometimes has shades of the horror genre about it from the wild effects, which Kasperi Laine’s precise soundworld only enhances. The tension on the stage is so thick that you could cut it with a knife.

Jussi Tossavainen
Helsinki Sanomat newspaper 03.10.2009