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Costumes designed by Berit Marit Hætta for Beaivváš theatre plays

For 30 years, the National Sámi Theatre Beaivváš (Beaivváš Sámi Našunálateáhter) in Kautokeino, norway, has offered a repertoire that pays tribute to the sámi storytelling tradition and the Sámi language. The jubilee exhibition set up in the Sámi Museum Siida displays theatre costumes designed by Berit Marit Hætta for Beaivváš productions of the plays Faust, Hamlet, Nikio, Allaq and Ridn’oaivi ja nieguid oaidni (The Frost Haired and the Dream-seer).

Nov 30, 2011 09:22 AM
Contact Name Sámi Museum Siida
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Contact Phone +358 (0)400 898 212
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From the very beginning, the aim of the Sámi theatre has been to strengthen Sámi language and identity. Beaivváš has acquainted Sámi with various theatre traditions from across the world, such as the European and Japanese traditions. by using strong visual imagery, it has developed forms of expression that appeal also to those who do not understand the Sámi language or know the sámi culture.

In addition to sámi stories, the Beaivváš theatre has performed international drama classics, such as hamlet and faust, adapted to the sámi language. It is also characteristic of Beaivváš to use music, yoik in particular, to a great extent in the performances as well as to create a strong visual appearance through costumes, staging and lighting. furthermore, The Beaivváš theatre is known for its outdoor performances: especially, adaptations of Shakespeare’s plays in the IceGlobe theatre on the ice of Lake jukkasjärvi gained international recognition.

The point of departure for costume design in the Beaivváš theatre is provided by traditional Sámi costumes, but the traditions of other indigenous peoples are also drawn upon for ideas. Berit Marit Hætta, who has designed costumes for the theatre since 1993, is a duojár (Sámi craftsmaker), an artist, an illustrator and a designer of theatre costumes. Hætta has illustrated dozens of Sámi-language children’s books, schoolbooks and collections of poems; designed covers and produced other graphic materials. In 2000, Berit Marit Hætta and sculptor, set designer Aage Gaup received the Hedda Award, the Norwegian theatre award, for best costume and set design, for their work in the Beaivváš Sámi Theatre outdoor production of the play The Lay of Volund. All the costumes on display at siida are designed by Berit Marit Hætta.

The Sámi Museum Siida has produced the exhibition together with the Beaivváš theatre and the Giellagas Institute (University of Oulu). The exhibition is complemented with a 60-page publication in Sámi, Finnish and English, which has been written by professor Veli-Pekka Lehtola and researcher and crafts artist Sigga-Marja Magga (bachelor of culture and arts). The layout of the publication and the design of the exhibition have been created by Hannu Tikkanen. The executive producer of the exhibition is curator Arja Hartikainen from the Sámi Museum Siida.

Siida is open, from June 1st to September 19th, every day at 9–20 and, from September 20th onwards, on Sundays at 10–17. We welcome you to explore Sámi culture!

For more information, contact:
Curator Arja Hartikainen, tel. +358 40 579 3313, arja.hartikainen(at)samimuseum.fi
Director Haukur J. Gunnarsson, Beaivváš Sámi National Theatre, tel. +47 995 62 249, haukur.gunnarsson(at)beaivvas.fi

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