Okon Fuoko – See Me

Production info

A symphonic dance of hopes and dreams

The ballet pantomime Okon Fuoko from 1927 is one of Leevi Madetoja’s principal works, a masterpiece in neoclassic adventure with a touch of Eastern spice. Okon Fuoko is considered the Oulu composer’s last great work, and the score demonstrates his skills in adapting the fashionable trends of his time to accommodate his own tonal language.

In the original story, a Japanese puppet-master falls in love with his own creation – with fatal consequences. This ballet’s choreographer, Alpo Aaltokoski, equates the story with today’s selfie culture: “The Internet is like a cornucopia of wishes. It’s a place where we can build ourselves an ideal partner or try to create one ourselves. All around the world, people have projected their dreams onto various mental images and artificial structures.”


Choreography: Alpo Aaltokoski
Music: Leevi Madetoja (Okon Fuoko recorded by Oulu Sinfonia, Alba Music Oy 2005)
Costume design: Marja Uusitalo
Light design: Teo Lanerva (2024), Saija Nojonen (2015)
Choreographer’s assistant: Johanna Ikola (2024), Tuovi Rantanen (2015)
Dance: Johanna Ikola, Jere Jääskeläinen, Unna Kitti, Tuovi Rantanen, Jussi Suomalainen, Esete Sutinen, Jussi Väänänen (2024) /
Johanna Ikola, Unna Kitti, Ahto Koskitalo, Jouni Majaniemi, Tuovi Rantanen, Esete Sutinen, Jussi Väänänen (2015)
Graphic design: Atte Karttunen
Photographs: Ninna Lindström
Dressmaker: Sarita Vepsäläinen

Premiere: 28.8.2015, Aleksanterin teatteri, Helsinki
Second premiere: 15.2.2024 Dance House Helsinki, Finland

Duration: 80 minutes

Partners: Arts Promotion Centre Finland, Helsingin kulttuurikeskus, Alexander Theatre, The Finnish Cultural Foundation, The Alfred Kordelin Foundation, The Jenny and Antti Wihuri Foundation, Madetojan Sukuseura ry, Finnish Composers’ Madetoja Foundation, New Classics Foundation

Press reviews

Jussi Tossavainen, Helsingin Sanomat 31.8.2015

”Veteran choreographer’s new work collides a classic story and today’s selfie culture. The company’s brilliant team offer their message in a refreshing way. And then there is the darker side. The music absolutely foists the Rite of Spring theme. Oh, this performance refers to so much it causes the observer to break or burst. And yet it embodies the language and insight of the choreographer.”

Auli Särkiö, Rondo Classic 29.8.2015

”We all are puppets. The performance, which carefully hearkens the music, at times crystallizes in breathtakingly impressive, aphoristic hot spots that examine the wretchedness of self.”

Liisa Vihmanen, Liikekieli.com 31.08.2015

”If I ought to describe the performance using only one word, it would definitely be lightness.”

Tove Djupsjöbacka, Hufvudstadsbladet 31.8.2015

”Sparkling lively dance.”

Performance history:

Premiere: August 28, 2015 Alexander Theatre, Helsinki

Other performances: 29.8. (2) / 2.9. (1) / 3.9.2015 (1) Alexander Theatre, Helsinki

9.6.2019 Busan International Dance Festival, South Korea

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