FINLAND – European capital of culture Turku launched with world’s largest fire drawing

06As part of the event Walk the Plank created the world’s largest fire drawing on the River Aura using 1.6 km of paper rope sketching out a major part of the city’s striking skyline and paying homage to the great fire of 1827 that destroyed a large portion of the country’s original capital city.

06The show, entitled “This Side, The Other Side”, was directed by Mark Murphy and took place in Turku’s historic Wartsila shipyard. “Communication” was one of the major themes spanning old-fashioned Morse code and semaphore signaling through to cutting-edge telecom technology as typified by Finland’s Nokia company. The show featured 350 people from 21 local choirs, shipyard workers, circus performers and puppetry students reflecting both the city’s past and present vibrant cultural identity.

06The soundtrack for the spectacular created by composer Nathaniel Reed fused traditional Finnish choral music with the minimal techno rhythms that have reignited the country’s   musical legacy in recent years. The entire show was broadcast live on MTV.

06John Wassell, Creative Producer, Walk the Plank comments: “Turku’s year in the spotlight as Capital of Culture has begun in grand style with an event that reflects both the city’s historic culture and its future artistic ambitions on a global platform. The opening show went without a hitch and will serve to help promote British arts and event expertise right around the world.”

Walk the Plank is renowned throughout the world for its innovative work in the field of live theatrical events and community engagement including the closing ceremony of Manchester’s Commonwealth Games.

Walk the Plank is a creative force of artists and event engineers who specialise in weaving together visual images, fire, fireworks and music to create outdoor performance and specially-commissioned events. The company works across a variety of scales, from intimate installations to large-scale theatre designed for thousands. Through touring performances and tailored site-specific commissions, their events connect people with places, and celebrate special occasions.