- Summer weekend's programme (pdf)
- Updated information: www.turku2011.fi/en/summerculmination
- The Culture 2011 Tall Ships Regatta:
www.tallships2011.fi/en | www.turku2011.fi/en/culture-2011-tall-ships-regatta_en
Turku summer of culture concludes with the last August weekend
Turku’s extremely active Capital of Culture summer season concludes at the last August weekend, i.e., on 25–28 August. The River Aura is set to witness yet another massive public event – much like the Capital of Culture opening event in January, with the exception that the weather will be much warmer and the expected audience numbers of the weekend will surpass those of the highly popular opening night.
In August, The Culture 2011 Tall Ships Regatta will pay homage to the Capital of Culture year and bring grand sailing ships to Turku. Following the actual Tall Ships Races sailing event, the cultural regatta is the first thematic Tall Ships Race ever organised in Finland.
“We are very happy and proud that the Sail Training International organisation, which puts together sailing events, decided to set up a race with this theme to honour the Turku Capital of Culture year,” says Kimmo Hyyppä, project manager for The Culture Tall Ships Regatta.
The dozens of ships arriving at the River Aura in August include the Russian four-masted barques Sedov and Kruzenshtern, two of the largest sailing ships in the world.
Access to the sailing ships is free of charge. In addition, the regatta area, Varvintori Square and the area around the Swan of Finland museum ship will host several free concerts and other programme. On Friday 26 August, dashing fireworks will be launched from Korppoolaismäki, starting at 11 pm.
The Swan of Finland surroundings will set a magnificient stage for the MILjazz concert on Saturday evening. A swinging marine and summery atmosphere is guaranteed as the MILjazz bands take to the stage. The performers include the Navy Orchestra featuring Emma Salokoski, the Air Force Big Band with Lenni-Kalle Taipale and the Conscript Band of the Finnish Defence Forces together with Jussu Pöyhönen.
“When Turku applied for the European Capital of Culture the vision was that Turku will become the creative centre of cooperation in the Baltic Sea region producing and providing art and science,” says Cay Sevón, CEO of the Turku 2011 Foundation.
During the last weekend of August, Turku will fulfil the promise by uniting people around the Baltic Sea in celebration of the Night of the Ancient Bonfires. It will be an occasion to say your goodbyes to the summer, to thank the sea for calm waters and winds as well as to make promises for the well-being of the sea.
“We have made an effort to communicate this novel, responsible, yet cheerful way to celebrate the Night of the Ancient Bonfires to other countries surrounding the Baltic Sea that are not familiar with the tradition. Our own promise is that we will ensure the continuation of this work also in future years,” says Sevón.
This year, the ancient fires will be introduced to Turku city centre for the first time. The bonfire floating in the River Aura will be lit on 27 August at 9:30 pm from the Theatre Bridge. After this, the bonfire will be transported along the river toward the sea.
Culture on, along and about the River Aura
The fascinating Fantasy Armada is set to sail the River Aura. Created by Dance Theatre ERI and artist Jan-Erik Andersson, the fantastic floating artwork will have a trail of dozens of floating statues created by Turku children and youth. Other River Aura attractions include the Flux Aura environmental artworks and the SaunaLab artistic saunas Hot Cube and Sauna Solaris.
Saturday night will be topped off with the impressive The Elements circus performance set on and above the river, featuring aerial acrobatics, fire art, music and light show. The performance is produced by the Helsinki Circus Professionals’ Association. Before the spectacle, Turku will get to enjoy international circus through the Future Circus festival, which concludes on Friday 26 August with a grand gala in the Circus Finland tent in Kupittaa Park.
The Dream Park, part of the Central Park of Culture and Exercise project, will open in the Sports Park on the eastern side of the river on Saturday morning. The opening event for the active art park features all kinds of programme, various activities and rest stops around the park. On the other side of the river, in the Turku Castle courtyard, the Henrik and the Hammer of Witches folk opera on the 1600s witch hunts will take place. The opera, based on actual events, is composed by Ulf Långbacka and will be performed by more than one hundred performers and contributors. On top of all this, there will be plenty of other programme in Turku and the neighbouring areas as well.
The majority of the events during the final weekend of the culture of summer will be free of charge. Over 300,000 participants are expected over the weekend. The huge figure will also have an effect on the traffic arrangements near the river – using private cars should be avoided if possible.
After this spectacular weekend is over, the Capital of Culture year will continue with full force as the autumn season kicks off at the Paavo Nurmi Stadium with Kari Heiskanen’s epic production The Battle.
- Cay Sevón, CEO
Turku 2011 Foundation
tel. +358 40 764 9541
- Suvi Innilä, Programme Director
Turku 2011 Foundation
tel. +358 50 559 0186
- Kimmo Hyyppä, Project Manager
The Culture 2011 Tall Ships Regatta
tel. +358 50 559 0180