A short presentation of me:
I am Saami and a professional actress and for my artistic doctoral work, I chose to make an examination of traditional humor in my Saami culture. I wanted to investigate humor in traditional stories and in yoik, and find out if it could be transferred to and used in contemporary theater.
What is a jester/a joker? A jester wants to make people laugh. A jester brings forth subjects that are difficult to talk about. A jester castigates society and is on the side of the weak. A jester makes fun of persons of authority. A jester speaks directly to the audience and makes contact through laughter. A jester speaks about things she thinks are important to talk about, and she does it with humor.
The only way to go into the questions was to do so practically, hands-on. So I had to create a funny performance based on the humor I found in yoik and Saami stories. I wanted the performance to relate to things in my contemporary world, so I had to write the text myself.
With me in the project there have been the following persons: main supervisor and director Thea Stabell, professor in acting at the Oslo National Academy of the Arts, (KHIO); secondary supervisor Harriet Nordlund, actress, director, playwright and Anitta Suikkari, actress and director.
"Guksin Guollemuorran - The Whole Caboodle"
The one-woman show "Guksin Guollemuorran - The Whole Caboodle" is created within the old tradition of the jester. A jester digs into unpleasant matters, blows the whistle on things that need to be criticized, and brings forth what is concealed. I have taken traditional humorous stories, myths, sayings and yoiks and I have created three characters of today who grew out of that material. The three characters are: the Maidie, Reindeer Snoop Deer, and Granny. They all became people with complicated, deep emotions and important stories to tell. They have all been stepped on and denigrated, but in the course of their moment on the stage they become jesters. They all start off as losers and end up as winners.
I perform in a minority language, Saami, but I have developed a means to break through the language barrier. Like a magician I run a continuous translation, line by line, joke by joke, yoik by yoik, with my Power Point. This act of translation is completely integrated into the performance and has become an artistic tool. It looks like magic and has become part of the trappings of the jester. Thus this modern Saami jester can still improvise, be in charge of the timing on stage AND communicate for real with an audience in any language: Russian?
Norwegian? Finnish? English? - you name it.
This invention, where the solo actress is in complete control of the translation in a manner totally integrated into the performance, would be of interest for other performers who want to act in their own language for an international audience.
The National Norwegian Artistic Research Fellowships Programme
National Norwegian Artistic Research Fellowships Programme is parallel to other research educations organised as academic PhD programmes. The programme intends to secure high level artistic research and leads to expertise as Associate Professor. The Artistic Research Fellowships Programme is among the first in this field in Europe. For more info: http://www.kunststipendiat.no