Tannhäuser 2017
Latvian national Opera

Our Tannhäuser was a mixture of its Paris and Dresden versions.My approach to the staging was continously the question about the conditions of love in a opressive cultural context.

Daniel Filippo 2017
Helsinki, Kanneltalo

Daniel Filippo is a work of three young Finnish composers. It is an opera about divided personality, broken mind and absurdity. It asks us about the conditions where our identity was born. Daniel Filippo is a monologue opera for two voices; countertenor and baritone.

Hänsel und Grätel 2016
Musiikkitalo, Helsinki

The traditional fairy tale opera Hänsel und Grätel combined with Einojuhani Rautavaara's Christmas fabel was staged for the Sibelius Academy Opera Studio.

The Gift of the Magi
(Tietäjien lahja) 2016
Musiikkitalo, Helsinki

Kaivos
(The Mine) 2016
The Hungarian State Opera

Two new creations were produced in the Hungarian State Opera to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the 1956 revolution. Einojuhani Rautavaara's Kaivos was composed in 1957 but was never produced, before today, because of its political content. It is a sombre story of a miner society that fights desperately for its freedom.

Szerelem
(Love) 2016
The Hungarian State Opera

Judith Varga's opera Szerelem from 2016 gives a different point of view to the 1956 events. It comforts us with its warmth and compassion.

Indigo 2016
Finnish National Opera

Perttu Kivilaakso and Eicca Toppinen are members of the Apocalyptica heavy metal music ensemble. Their opera Indigo includes some heavy elements but is essentially a traditional opera.It is a story of greed and love larger than life. It is about faith in technology and the downfall of a scientific community.It shows the commitments and choices that people make when they are driven by events rather than their own free will. The World premiere was in January 2016.

L'Incoronazione di Poppea 2015
Finnish National Opera (Almi hall)

This masterpiece of Monteverdi, full of charm and seduction, was produced in co-operation with the Finnish National Opera, Finnish Chamber Opera and Helsinki Baroque Orchestra. This opera proves again that Amor has the power on us.

This intense opera by Hindemith is a story of devotion and insane passion to creation. It asks the question: who is the owner of the beauty? Can the artist own his own creations? Cardillac was produced in the spirit of 1920s expressionism.

Nabucco 2015
Tampere Opera

In Verdi's Nabucco I wanted to ask: from where does the faith arise? Who has the right to name gods? Is the idea of freedom only an illusion?

Frida y Diego 2014
Musiikkitalo, Helsinki

Frida y Diego by Kalevi Aho and Maritza Nunez is a carnevalesque and surreal opera about passionate idealism and love. The world premiere was in October 2014.

La Voix Humaine 2014
Carelia Hall, Joensuu, Finland

I wanted to produce this monologue opera as bare and clean as possible to show the Woman's desperate struggle with her dependence.

Kekkonen 2013
Ilmajoki Festival

This new creation describes the recent history of Finland through its controversial leader Urho Kekkonen. The world premiere was in June 2013.

Bluebeard's Castle 2013
Finnish National Opera

In the two operas; Bluebeard's castle and Pagliacci, that were performed as a pair, I was studying the illusion on stage and in the drama. What are the conditions that make people believe, love, hate...

Akseli 2013
Finnish Chamber Opera , Ateneum Helsinki

The new creation by Kimmo Hakola and Pekka Hako is a mono-opera dedicated to the Finnish national painter Akseli Gallén-Kallela as well as to our world-famous baritone Jorma Hynninen. The world premiere of this double portrait was in February 2013.

The Consul 2012
Sibelius Academy / Helsinki Music Centre

My point of view into this modern tragedy was on Magda. A simple woman whose primary devosion is to her family. She is not political but vulnerable to strange forces and she becomes victim of totalitarianism and bureaucracy. The Consul was premiered on November 2012.

Viisi naista kappelissa
(Five women in a chapel) 2012
Finnish Chamber Opera / Helsinki Festival

Viisi naista kappelissa is the first opera of Uljas Pulkkis, one of the leading composers of the new generation in Finland. The opera is based on Arto Seppälä's comedy, where a middle-aged business man, before taking his own life, has sent out invitations to the five women that had been closest to him. They are to be the persons present at his funeral held in a small chapel...World premiere was on the 1:st of September 2012.

la Fenice 2012
Savonlinna Opera Festival

This new Finnish comic opera composed by Kimmo Hakola was a study of the buffa tradition translated in to our time. I wanted to bring on stage all the most beloved elements of the melodrama and clown play. The world premiere was on the 6th of July 2012.

Tannhäuser 2012
Tampere Opera

Our version of Tannhäuser was a mixture of its Paris and Dresden versions; we opened the opera with Parisian Venusberg. My approach to the staging was built around a central question: the conditions that make love and loving possible in a cultural context, where the idea and role of a woman is violentely divided into that of a saint or a whore. The opera was premiered at the Tampere Opera on March the 1:st, 2012.

Eugene Onegin 2012
The Vaasa Opera

In this production I wanted to portray the nonchalant way of life of the people living on welfare in a modern society. The action was brought to our time and the entire life of Larina's family; the emotions and human relations, the way of being, was based on consumption. On stage Larina's clean, nearly aseptic house and garden, was surrounded by a dump. A place for a childish game that turned into a rude reality. The premiere was on the 5th of January in Vaasa City Theatre.

Tango Solo 2011
Finnish Chamber Opera

Tango solo, written by Maritza Nunez, takes us to a special mental plane. The protagonist Nicole is a metaphor for an entire society. In her we see the personification of Argentina's disturbing recent history in the 1970's. This opera monologue by Timo-Juhani Kyllönen was first performed by the Finnish chamber opera on January 12, 2011.

Un ballo in maschera
(A Masked Ball) 2010
Finnish National Opera

Un Ballo in Maschera by Verdi premiered at the Finnish National Opera on March 19, 2010. The version presented was the so-called Boston version and explored why Riccardon/Gustav III is murdered at the end of the opera. Since the opera explores power on a private and general level, the interpretation was firmly modern and media-influenced.

The Fall of the House of Usher 2009
Finnish Chambre Opera

The Fall of the House of Usher was a production made by the Finnish Chambre Opera, which premiered on November 22, 2009. This intimate chamber opera was realised in a minimalistic spirit. We experimented with new stage setting techniques with for example overhead projectors.

Macbeth by Giuseppe Verdi is a classic study of the mechanics of power and violence. It premiered at the Royal Opera in Stockholm in 2009.

Acis and Galatea 2008
Helsinki University Old Fest Hall

Handel's Acis et Galatea was a co-production by the Finnish Chamber Opera and Helsinki Barock Orchestra. It was performed at the Helsinki Universities old Fest Hall. The classisist architecture of that hall created a facinating tension with the production's Happening type theater activity.

La forza del destino
(The Force of Destiny) 2006
Stadttheater Bern

Giuseppe Verdi's La Forza del Destino at the Stadttheater Bern. We produced a critical edition which Philip Gossett had reworked from the so-called St. Petersburg original version from 1862. The unforgettable premiere was in Bern on April 2, 2006.

Ratsumies
(The Horseman) 2005
Savonlinna Opera Festival

This classic of Finnish modern opera returned to the Savonlinna opera festival in 2005 and 2006. The production did a guest tour at the Bolshoi opera in Moscow in the autumn of 2006.

Pikovaya Dama
(The Queen of Spades) 2005
Finnish National Opera

The opera premiered at the Finnish National Opera on January 15, 2005. I had set the main character Herman's story into a fictionalised version of modern Russia, a society of ultra-modern technology and new money. I see the opera as the story of a man trying to make his way up in a socially unequal society. The opera re-premiered at the Finnish National Opera on February 13, 2007.

Rigoletto 2004
The Göteborg Opera

Rigoletto by Giuseppe Verdi at the Gothenburg opera, premiere on November 20, 2004. I wanted to bring the events of the story to a modern setting to emphasise how defenseless the protagonist is when facing destruction by his own wrath.

Rasputin by Einojuhani Rautavaara is dedicated to Matti Salminen, who played the titular role in the premiere. The world premiere of the opera was on September 19, 2003 in the Finnish National Opera. The opera is set during the last years of the Russian empire. I sought tension to my direction from the intimate and public relationship of power. The opera was staged at the Finnish National Opera in 2003 and 2005 and did a guest tour at the Mariinski theatre in May 2005.

Carmen 2003
Tampere Opera

The modernised Carmen premiered at the Tampere Opera in April 2003 and set Carmen in to the present time. A car bomb has exploded in Sevilla infront of the cigarette factory and the police, soldiers, factory workers as well as Carmen and don Jose are there...

La fanciulla del West
(The Girl of the West) 2001
Finnish National Opera

La Fanciulla del West by Puccini premiered in the autumn of 2001 at the Finnish National Opera.

I find Faust by Gounod to be the story of Marguerite's struggle. It is the story of a woman who has been reduced to an object of commerce under a man's gaze, but also a story of the strength of faith. It premiered at the Savonlinna Opera Festival in 1999, and was revived for the 2000 and 2002 festivals.

Aleksis Kivi 1997
Savonlinna Opera Festival

Einojuhani Rautavaara's Aleksis Kivi opera telling the story of the Finnish National writer got its world premier at the Savonlinna Opera Festival in July 1997. Since then it has been performed at the Opéra National du Rhein, Strassbourg and Mullhouse, as well as at the Teatro A. Rendano in Cosenza.