Alpo Aaltokoski (b. 1958) majored in choreography and graduated as a Master of Arts from the Department of Dance at the Finnish Theatre Academy in 1991. During his career, Aaltokoski has created over fifty works which have been received with great acclaim.
His poignant dance works, which often study the variety and cyclical nature of life, have been moving audiences since 1991. Mostly because of his former work as a social worker, Aaltokoski has presented important human themes in his art: the inevitability of abandonment and death, the yearning to leave one’s own footprints, which, however, finally disappear and become part of a larger landscape, the importance of the subconscious and privacy but also the power of community.
In addition to the great human subjects, Alpo Aaltokoski has concentrated among other things on profoundly ritualistic and flowing studies of movement. Since the 1990s his interest has widened even further, to the seamless fusion of dance and other kinds of visual art. Audiovisual elements, especially video, have acquired for themselves an independent role in the artist’s enthusiasm for constructing visions of everyday life as well as illusions of reality that expand thought.
In addition to his private and undeniably high-level artistic career, Alpo Aaltokoski has had varied and multiple roles in the field of dance, for example, as a pedagogue both in Finland and abroad with cultural and art political influence. Furthermore, Aaltokoski was the Artistic Director of the Full Moon Dance Festival in 1995–1998 and 2009–2012, and again from 2017 onwards. The Arts Council of Finland appointed Aaltokoski Artist Professor as of 1 September 2003. In 2013 Alpo Aaltokoski received the Order of the Lion of Finland, Pro Finlandia award. This prestigious medal is awarded by the Finnish president annually to Finns who have distinguished themselves in the field of arts and science, and is one of Finlands highest honours. The award has been granted to outstanding artists since 1945.
Alpo Aaltokoski is one of the founding members of Nomadi Productions.