20th Aug 2022


Nordic Bridges unveil latest highlights of Spring programme

  • CoMotion festival artist-in-residence, Jenni-Juulia Wallinheimo-Heimonen, performing as part of Nordic Bridges 2022, a cultural festival linking Canada with the Nordic countries (Photo: Jenni-Juulia Wallinheimo-Heimonen)
Listen to article

Twenty-two documentaries by Nordic filmmakers at the Hot Docs Festival in Toronto, musical acts Jenseeraq X Uummatit, ISÁK, and Sara Ajnnak and the premieres of the dance performances Story, story, die and The Days.

These are just a few Nordic highlights — from Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, the Faroe Islands, Greenland and Åland — that will take place across Canada over the next couple of months, following the announcement of the spring programme for Nordic Bridges.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Become an expert on Europe

Get instant access to all articles — and 20 years of archives. 14-day free trial.

... or subscribe as a group

Nordic Bridges, which is a year-long exchange of art, culture and ideas between Nordic and Canadian artists, led by the Harbourfront Centre in Toronto and supported by the Nordic Council of Ministers, continues this spring with exciting premieres and events across the north American country.

"Our year-long celebration kicks into high gear this spring, with programming across Canada, and across performance genres," says Laura McLeod, director of cultural engagement at the Harbourfront Centre and lead producer of Nordic Bridges.

"Canadian audiences will have access to Nordic music, visual art, film, dance, and theatre that is either new to Canada, or a world premiere collaboration between Canadian and Nordic artists."

Highlights this Spring

There are lots of opportunities for Canadian audiences to experience both artists already well known in their home countries, and new talents, as well as other creative collaborations never before produced.

From dance performances, documentaries, theatre performances and art exhibitions, to music, workshops and talks. Here's a selection of Nordic highlights from the launch of the second phase of the programme:

• The Coastal Dance Festival in the Anvil Centre, British Columbia, with premieres by Sámi artists Liv Aira, Marika Renhuvud, Sara Marielle Gaup, and Camilla Therese Karlsen.

• The North American premieres of dance performances "The Days" by Maria Nurmela and Ville Oinonen, and "Story, story, die" by Alan Lucien Øyen and his company Winter guests (multiple locations).

• The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery in Toronto presents Sasha Huber's first solo show in North America, "You Name It".

• Theatre performances for children and families from Teatret Gruppe 38, Kitt Johnson X-act and The National Theatre of Greenland at Harbourfront Centre's JUNIOR festival.

• Feature films presented by the Toronto International Film Festival, including works by Lone Scherfig, Amanda Kernell, Iram Haq, Pirjo Honkasalo, Katrin Ottarsdóttir and 22 documentaries by Nordic filmmakers at this year's Hot Docs Festival.

• Musical acts including Jenseeraq X Uummatit, ISÁK, and Sara Ajnnak at Alianait Arts Festival in Iqaluit.

• Monthly Nordic Talks, free to attend at the Harbourfront Centre, and much more.

The CoMotion Festival in Toronto, a deaf and disability arts festival, presented a multidisciplinary programme including visual arts, music, performances, digital art, workshops, and panel discussions.

Nordic artists featured in the programme include deaf rapper Signmark, and artists Gudrun Hasle, Jenni-Juulia Wallinheimo-Heimonen and Erla Björk Sigmundsdóttir.

Multidisciplinary artist Jenni-Juulia Wallinheimo-Heimonen (pictured) from Finland is artist-in-residence at Harbourfront Centre in Toronto. She sees this as a great opportunity for spending time immersed in another culture for several months.

Wallinheimo-Heimonen says: "I have many questions for local disability activists during my Nordic Bridges residency. For example, how do we fight for our right to exist in the future? And how to restore the sense of belonging of people with disabilities in communities? How to change the phenomenon whereby people without disabilities want to help us rather than get to know us?"

See the full programme here.

Successful launch

Nordic Bridges launched in January — in the midst of Covid-19 restrictions — with the acclaimed outdoor light art exhibition Nordic Lights at Harbourfront Centre, DesignTO's collaborative visual art exhibition Shared Terrain, TIFF's national tour of films by Roy Andersson, and events during BreakOut West in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

The list of events, artists and acts will be updated continuously throughout 2022.

Keep up to date by following @NordicBridges on social media.

Author bio

Elisabet Skylare is senior communication adviser at The Nordic Council of Ministers, the forum for official Nordic Co-operation, which involves Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, the Faroe Islands, Greenland and Åland. It aims to make the Nordic region the most sustainable and integrated region in the world.


This article is sponsored by a third party. All opinions in this article reflect the views of the author and not of EUobserver.

Podcasts: Nordic voices on the green transition

How close are we to battery-powered planes? What effect has Greta Thunberg had on the attitudes of her fellow Swedes? Is small-scale farming the future? These are some of the questions up for discussion in a new podcast series.

Dialogue and action – Nordic cooperation and view on COP26

Nordic countries launched several initiatives at the COP26 climate conference which will have a real impact on the ground. Nordic and UK pension funds are to invest billions in clean energy and climate initiatives. Greenland has joined the Paris Agreement.


Nordic parliaments agree mutual defence on cyberattacks

A cyberattack against one of the Nordic parliaments will be seen as an attack on them all, MPs at the annual council of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, the Faroe Islands, Greenland and Åland agreed this week.


Nato invite sees Nordic states stepping up security cooperation

Sweden and Finland are no longer embarrassed to cooperate with Nato countries, says the Nordic Council president. With Nato secretary-general Jens Stoltenberg addressing the November meeting, it has gone from being not discussed at all - to the main topic.

For China and EU, cooperation is our only right way forward

In a world of profound changes, we believe that healthy and stable China-EU relations, especially in the economic and trade realm, can help counter the uncertainty on the global economic stage, and are conducive to global development and prosperity.

EU, wake up! Don't leave West Balkans to Russia or China

Russia's attack on Ukraine and European values must remind us how important the enlargement process is, if properly conducted, as a motor for democracy, freedom, peace, the rule of law and prosperity, write six S&D MEPs.

Dialogue and action – Nordic cooperation and view on COP26

Nordic countries launched several initiatives at the COP26 climate conference which will have a real impact on the ground. Nordic and UK pension funds are to invest billions in clean energy and climate initiatives. Greenland has joined the Paris Agreement.

News in Brief

  1. China joins Russian military exercises in Vostok
  2. Ukraine nuclear plant damage would be 'suicide', says UN chief
  3. Denmark to invest €5.5bn in new warships
  4. German economy stagnates, finance ministry says
  5. Syria received stolen grain, says Ukraine envoy
  6. Truss still leads in next UK PM polling
  7. UN chief meets Zelensky and Erdogan over grain exports
  8. Fighting stalls ahead of UN visit, Ukraine says

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic prime ministers: “We will deepen co-operation on defence”
  2. EFBWW – EFBH – FETBBConstruction workers can check wages and working conditions in 36 countries
  3. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic and Canadian ministers join forces to combat harmful content online
  4. European Centre for Press and Media FreedomEuropean Anti-SLAPP Conference 2022
  5. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic ministers write to EU about new food labelling
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersEmerging journalists from the Nordics and Canada report the facts of the climate crisis

Latest News

  1. European inflation hits 25-year high, driven by energy spike
  2. No breakthrough in EU-hosted Kosovo/Serbia talks
  3. Letter to the Editor: Rosatom responds on Zaporizhzhia
  4. Could the central Asian 'stan' states turn away from Moscow?
  5. Serbia expects difficult talks with Kosovo at EU meeting
  6. How scary is threat to Ukraine's Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant?
  7. Slovakia's government stares into the abyss
  8. Finland restricts Russian tourist visas

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us