Finnish National Opera Receives FEDORA Next Stage Grant

By Francisco Salazar

The Finnish National Opera and Ballet’s XR Stage Project has received the international FEDORA Next Stage Grant.

The grant was launched in 2021 by FEDORA and Opera Europa to trigger change and recovery in the opera and dance sector. The grant provides financial support and skills development to boost innovation through sustainability, inclusivity, and digital transformation.

It also gives financial support for projects that help create new industry standards and opportunities.

Upon the announcement of the grant Lilli Paasikivi, the Artistic Director of the Finnish National Opera said, ”The XR Stage Design Platform strengthens the planning process of stage productions. The sharp 3D image of the stage, set in a custom virtual space within each venue, is informative and adaptable and ensures an artistically and technically viable end result. The creative team can explore and find inspiration in the virtual space in the early part of the artistic planning process. Performers, too, can study the stage in advance. This empowers their performance, saves stage rehearsal time, and improves occupational safety. It’s truly exciting to be part of a development process that benefits us all, from designers to performers to technical staff and the audience,”

Tapio Säkkinen, Head of Set Workshop and Environmental Head at the Finnish National Opera and Ballet added, “From a sustainability point of view, the virtual model allows artistic teams based in different countries to work together, considerably reducing the need for travel. This also improves the reliability of final plans, preventing the production of unnecessary sets and last minute changes. This means less wasted materials and less work.”