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Nordic Bridges to Continue This Summer With Performances, Premieres And Events Across The Country

Events will take place on Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal and more.

Nordic Bridges to Continue This Summer With Performances, Premieres And Events Across The Country

Nordic Bridges, a year-long exchange of art, culture and ideas between Nordic and Canadian artists led by Harbourfront Centre and supported by the Nordic Council of Ministers, will continue this summer with performances, premieres and events across the country.

"As we cross the halfway point of Nordic Bridges, our 22 national arts partners have collectively programmed over 195 Nordic artists and groups on their stages and screens and in their gallery spaces. It is not an understatement to say this is a critical time for the arts worldwide, and we know that the rich artistic partnerships between Canadian and Nordic artists this year will mean incredible new work will be experienced across the country and around the world for years to come." - Iris Nemani, Chief Programming Officer at Harbourfront Centre & Executive Producer, Nordic Bridges

Nordic Spotlights across Canada in July, August and September include:

  • The best of the world's contemporary circus performers, including Norway's Dansateliers and Sweden's Portmanteau, at July's TOHU Montréal Complètement Cirque Festival.

  • Renowned musicians and emerging stars at festivals across the country including GusGus and Vök (Iceland), Nordic Council Music Prize winner Eivør (Faroe Islands), leoblu from Åland in her North American debut, Nive and the Deer Children (Greenland), Sara Ajnnak (Sapmi/Sweden), Sweden's The Magnettes and VILDÁ from Finland. Harbourfront Centre will also premiere new work from composer Jakob Kullberg (Denmark).

  • The world premiere of I Forgive You, a new play from Artistic Fraud of Newfoundland, featuring the music of legendary Icelandic band Sigur Rós.

  • Best-selling Nordic authors as part of the 43rd Edition of the Toronto International Festival of Authors.

  • The only Canadian tour stop of the collaborative, Indigenous-led international touring visual art exhibition Arctic Highways at the Yukon Arts Centre.

  • Nordic Talks, presented free by Harbourfront Centre and much more.

The next few months also includes Nordic Bridges-supported music, theatre, film, dance and more at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa.

"The National Arts Centre is honoured to be showcasing extraordinary Nordic and Canadian performing artists through Nordic Bridges, and we share its values of creativity, innovation, inclusivity, resilience and sustainability." - Christopher Deacon, NAC President and CEO

See confirmed programming details below or visit

Vancouver Folk Music Festival (Vancouver, BC)

July 15-16 |
Featured at the Vancouver Folk Music Festival this July are diverse musical groups from around the globe, including VILDÁ from Finland.


TOHU Montréal Complètement Cirque Festival (Montréal, QC)

Until July 17 |
Nordic artists at TOHU's 13th Festival include Norway's Dansateliers with FASE (combining circus and dance performance that explores mechanisms with their bodies), Sweden's Portmanteau with Piste, piste, piste (an interdisciplinary show combining contemporary circus, dance and visual arts) and PLAST from ENT, a group of artists from the Nordic region (Norway, Sweden, Scania and Sápmi) offering an exploratory circus show aimed at unusual discoveries.

"This Festival marks the great return of international circus artists to Montréal, from the Netherlands, Finland, Sweden, Guadeloupe, France, and, of course, Quebec and Canada. This panoply of artists will represent with flair the best of the world's contemporary circus with performances infused with inventiveness, rigor, risk and a touch of madness!" - Nadine Marchand, director of MONTRÉAL COMPLÈTEMENT CiRQUE


Summer Concerts| Harbourfront Centre (Toronto, ON) | FREE

Until July 24 |
Summer Concerts at Harbourfront feature more than 40 performances, including appearances by Sapmi/Finland's VILDÁ, Sapmi/Norway's ISÁK and Greenland's Nive and the Deer Children bringing international Indigeneity to the forefront of summer programming.

Other Nordic Spotlight presentations at Summer Concerts include renowned artists and emerging stars GusGus and Vök (Iceland), Nordic Council Music Prize winner Eivør (Faroe Islands), leoblu (Åland), who will be making her North American debut and Sara Ajnnak (Sapmi/Sweden). The acts take place on Harbourfront Centre's Concert Stage and Stage in the Park. Summer at Harbourfront also reflects its commitment to diversity across all programs, demonstrating its pledge to the KeyChange initiative that champions gender parity in the music industry.


Summer Music in the Garden | Harbourfront Centre (Toronto, ON)

Until August 28 |
Summer Music in the Garden programming includes Nordic artists, performing free in-person concerts at the Toronto Music Garden until August 28. Sapmi/Finland's VILDÁ, a world premiere from Kongero (Sweden) and Canada's VC2 performing a new Harbourfront Centre commission by Danish cellist/composer Jakob Kullberg.


National Arts Centre (Ottawa, ON)

July and August, various dates |
The NAC's July and August Stage Series features Grammy-nominated Swedish artist Sara Ajnnak; VILDÁ with its original blend of Indigenous Sámi yoiks, grooving rhythms and improvisation; multi-award winner Eivør (Faroe Islands); a free summer concert from Fränder (Sweden) and an appearance from four-member Swedish family band, Kolonien.


I FORGIVE YOU | Artistic Fraud of Newfoundland (St. John's, NFLD)

August 25-27 |
In October 2013, Scott Jones was leaving a bar in New Glasgow, Nova Scotia, when he was attacked, and left paralyzed from the waist down. In the months following, his story garnered international attention, not only for its brutality but also for his uncommon decision to forgive his attacker. In this world premiere theatre production, I Forgive You, Jones's words are married with a live children's choir performing the music of legendary Icelandic band Sigur Rós to tell a story of trauma, recovery and the complicated path of forgiveness. I Forgive You has been developed with the assistance of the National Arts Centre's National Creation Fund, the Canada Council for the Arts, Arts NL, the City of St. John's, Nordic Bridges and Canadian Stage.


Not Born Yesterday, Not Going Away | Harbourfront Centre (Toronto, ON)

Until September 11 |
A free visual art exhibition celebrating the long history of Deaf and disability art, connecting living International Artists with their chosen ancestors, featuring the work of Icelandic artist Erla Björk Sigmundsdóttir.


Animal Vegetable Mineral | Harbourfront Centre (Toronto, ON)

September 17 - November 20| FREE
Running counter to widely held ideas about what constitutes "fine jewellery" and what represents value, these artists embrace debris and detritus; the desecrated bones of a political decision; the overlooked and undervalued; the hidden consequences; the reclaimed, restored and memorialized. Through the catalyst of contemporary jewellery, artists use materials redolent with meaning and the body as site to confront issues of identity, social critique, and political change. This free exhibit curated by Melanie Egan features work by Bridget Catchpole (BC), Annette Dam (Denmark), Karin Jones (BC), Helga Mogensen (Iceland), Alex Kinsley (ON), Tania Larsson (Gwich'in NWT), Helena Johansson Lindell (Sweden), Anna Rikkinen (Finland), Máret Ánne Sara (Sámi/Norway), Catherine Sheedy (QC), and Despo Sophocleous (NS).

Nordic Dance Short Film Festival | National Arts Centre (Ottawa, ON)

September 18-24 |
A series of seven short films from each of the five Nordic countries will spotlight the creativity of dance-film artists and be presented on the NAC Kipnes Lantern making this festival accessible (or visible) to all.


SPHERE | National Arts Centre (Ottawa, ON)

September 22-25
This fall, the NAC Orchestra presents SPHERE co-curated by NACO Music Director Alexander Shelley and Canadian born-Iceland based interdisciplinary artist Dr. Angela Rawlings. This festival focuses on the crucial skill of Listening to the Earth in this time of climate crisis reckoning, through symphonic concerts, conversations and art installations featuring Canadian, Indigenous and Nordic composers, and performers, including Icelandic artists Halla Steinunn Stefánsdóttir and Anna Thorvalsdóttir.

Songs of the Ice by Finnish composer Outi Tarkiainen is part of the September 24 concert Become Ocean. Evoking the slow and silent breathing of the Earth's ice as it swells in winter and contracts in summer, an old-age rhythm emerges. Songs of the Ice is dedicated to Iceland's Okjökull (Ok glacier), which was declared "dead" by the Icelandic Meteorological Office in 2014. The glacier had lost almost 80 percent of its mass and was no longer a living, moving glacier. Additional programming will include Tune into Nature, Family Adventures with the NAC Orchestra on September 25 ( What do Beethoven, R. Murray Schafer and Greta Thunberg have in common? They prompt us to listen to our environment and reflect on our role here on earth. Join Principal Youth Conductor and Creative Partner Daniel Bartholomew-Poyser, the NAC Orchestra and influential leaders and artists from across Canada as they celebrate the importance of listening with empathy - to our environment, our elders and each other - in a concert featuring music inspired by nature and our creative responses to our world, the climate crisis and the times we live in.

Complete SPHERE programming to be announced soon via the NAC.


Toronto International Festival of Authors (Harbourfront Centre, Toronto, ON)

September 22 - October 2 |
Nordic authors will be among the lineup of internationally bestselling authors at the 43rd Edition of the Toronto International Festival of Authors, taking part in interviews, book signings and more, and presented at Harbourfront Centre this fall. Look for TIFA's program announcement in mid-August.


BreakOut West | Calgary, AB

September 28 - October 2 |
BreakOut West is an annual music event with an immersive music development conference and music festival hosted by the Western Canadian Music Alliance. This fall, WCMA will celebrate 20 years as western Canada's largest music industry event, with featured Nordic artists including Iceland's Cell7 and BSÍ, and Sweden's Kitka, Kid Vicious and The Magnettes.


Arctic Highways | Yukon Arts Centre (Whitehorse, YT)

September-November |
The Yukon Arts Centre, with support from Nordic Bridges, will host the only Canadian stop for Arctic Highways: a collaborative, Indigenous-led touring visual art exhibition. Arctic Highways invites viewers to explore what it means to be unbounded, spiritually and geographically, as told through contemporary Indigenous artworks. It is a borderless journey across northern Indigenous lands, cultures and traditions with a shared history and a common future. The exhibit includes work by Maureen Gruben, an Inuvialuk artist based in Tuktoyaktuk, NT, Meryl McMaster, a Canadian artist with nêhiyaw (Plains Cree), British and Dutch ancestry, based in Ottawa, ON and Sonya Kelliher-Combs, an Alaskan artist based in Anchorage, AK of Iñupiaq and Athabascan descent. The curators and artists include Marja Helander and Matti Aikio (Finland); Dan Jåma, Gunvor Guttorm and Máret Ánne Sara (Norway) and Britta Marakatta Labba, Laila Susanne Kuhmunen, Olof Marsja and Tomas Colbengtson (Sweden). Arctic Highways will also show in Washington, New York, Minneapolis, Chicago, Seattle and Snåsa in Norway before returning to Granö, Sweden in 2025. The exhibition is produced and financed by Mötesplats Granö and its founder Jan Wejdmark.


Arctic/Amazon: Networks of Global Indigeneity | The Power Plant (Toronto, ON)

September 30, 2022 - January 1, 2023
Open and free to the public, Arctic/Amazon explores the ways in which Indigenous contemporary artists take on issues of climate change, globalized Indigeneity, and political contact zones in the Arctic and the Amazon regions during a time of crisis. A constellation of new and past works by artists Sonya Kelliher-Combs (United States), Tanya Lukin Linklater (United States/Canada), Couzyn van Heuvelen (Canada), Máret Ánne Sara (Norway), Uýra (Indigenous in diaspora), Olinda Reshijabe Silvano (Peru), Morzaniel Iramari (Brazil), Leandro Lima & Gisela Motta (Brazil), Sheroanawe Hakihiiwe (Venezuela), and Outi Pieski (Finland) will be featured in this major group exhibition curated by Gerald McMaster. (nêhiyaw / Plains Cree). Encompassing a range of media, including paintings, drawings, sculpture, installation, video, and performance, this exhibition seeks to shed light on current geopolitical and environmental sustainability issues informing artistic practices in these two vastly different, yet interconnected, regions.

Nordic Talks

Harbourfront Centre (Toronto, ON) FREE

This recurring series (presented live with an audience and recorded for online viewing) provides a platform for dialogue between diverse Nordic and Canadian artists, thinkers, youth leaders, innovators and policymakers. Panelists examine various topics focusing on innovation, accessibility, environmental sustainability and Indigenous perspectives. View previous Nordic Talks, here.


The Nordic-Canadian Fellowship in Environmental Journalism

There has never been a more urgent time to document how climate change affects communities, culture and our planet. Recognizing the need to foster and encourage young voices, Nordic Bridges has created a fulsome journalism fellowship to promote best practices and fact-based reporting.

The 18-month fellowship offers the opportunity for 16 emerging journalists (eight Nordic and eight Canadian) to conduct reporting trips and contribute to an exhibition focusing on the current climate crisis. As part of Nordic Bridges, the fellowship includes mentorships with experienced journalists and bootcamps featuring keynote speakers and panelists from Canada and the Nordic Region. Learn more about the Fellows and Fellowship here.


For more information about Nordic Bridges visit or follow @NordicBridges and #NordicBridges on all platforms.

Enter to Win: Nordic Bridges with Inspired by Iceland North America is running a year-long contest offering trips for two to Iceland. The contest is open to residents across Canada, and contest details are available in English and French. Learn more here.

About Nordic Bridges |
A year-long national initiative led by Harbourfront Centre in Toronto, Nordic Bridges fosters cultural exchange between the Nordic Region and Canada and is supported by the Nordic Council of Ministers. Working with partners across Canada, Nordic Bridges supports the presentation of contemporary art, culture and ideas throughout 2022.

Nordic Bridges Programming Partners
Alianait Arts Festival | Art Spin | Artistic Fraud of Newfoundland | BC Movement Arts Society and The Dance Centre | BreakOut West | Calgary Folk Music Festival | Dancers of Damelahamid/Coastal Dance Festival | DesignTO | FIKA(S) Festival | Harbourfront Centre | Hot Docs | Inside Out Theatre and re:Naissance Opera | Mundial Montréal | Music Publishers Canada | National Arts Centre | Nuit Blanche Toronto | The Power Plant | TOHU / Montréal Complètement Cirque Festival | Toronto International Festival of Authors | Toronto International Film Festival | Vancouver Folk Music Festival | Vancouver Island MusicFest | Yukon Arts Centre

About Harbourfront Centre |

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