Set in an environment with strong lights and pulsing sounds that bring sci-fi films to mind, two individually powerful artists stand on their own platforms, seeking the courage to take leaps into the dark. What could result from the collision of the two artists? In order to find a shared voice, do you have to let something of yourself go?

Breath is an acclaimed duet by choreographer-dancer Tero Saarinen and musician-accordionist Kimmo Pohjonen where sound and movement spark. The creation is further enhanced by Mikki Kunttu’s stage and lighting design, Tuomas Norvio’s imaginative sound design, and Teemu Muurimäki’s bright costumes.

Tero Saarinen and Kimmo Pohjonen perform the duet for the last time at Dance House Helsinki in June. Only 3 performances, 6–8 June – get your tickets now!  Please note that  the performance includes strong strobe lights.

Choreographer's note

“Kimmo Pohjonen’s work has always intrigued me, he is a mesmerizingly intense performer and inventive composer. He has been called the Jimi Hendrix and Björk of his instrument, which I feel are quite appropriate descriptions. As I too have found my artistic voice through breaking boundaries and colliding a wide range of influences – from ballet to butoh.

We have a certain kindred spirit in the way we work, see our art and the world. After we first performed together, we both felt we wanted to explore a deeper collaboration: to see if the collision of two artists with strong individual voices would result in something new, something bigger than the sum of their parts. We wanted to step out of our comfort zones and delve into something we hadn’t experienced before, to expand the limits of our artistry.

One of the key messages of this creation is the importance of truly and openly confronting one another. We have discussed the contradicting feelings of fear of losing one’s distinctive voice and personal space, while at the same time yearning for new experiences and encounters. How to be open to influences without losing oneself?

Ultimately, to me, Breath is a study of the importance of communication and tolerance. And the often absurd and comic ways we instinctively try to shield ourselves, our mental boundaries, our privacy.”

– Tero Saarinen


6 June 2024 19:00 - 20:05


Tanssin talo, Helsinki, Finland

7 June 2024 19:00 - 20:05


Tanssin talo, Helsinki, Finland

8 June 2024 14:00 - 15:05


Tanssin talo, Helsinki, Finland

All events

After the performance on Friday 7 June we will hold an artist discussion in the Erkko Hall. Saturday 8 June will mark a special birthday performance, as we celebrate the performer’s birthdays – welcome to raise a glass for Tero and Kimmo at Dance House Helsinki’s Lobby after the performance!

”En electrified encounter of the masters --- As a viewing experience, Breath is earthmoving, all-encompassing and impressive through all the senses. Breath brings together four luminous artists who are together more than the sum of their parts.”

- Kaleva (Finland), 2022

★★★★★ ”A gigantic work accomplished brilliantly, a surrealist and sometimes apocalyptic essay — Sublime!”

- Séquences, 2018

”A hallucinated dream with futuristic touches --- magic on stage --- a daring piece on every level”

- Le Devoir (Canada), 2018

”The richness of expression of the five collaborators turns the journey into one of sublime meaning --- a profoundly human revelation.”

- Writing About Dance (UK)


Concept Tero Saarinen & Kimmo Pohjonen
Choreography and dance Tero Saarinen
Composition, arrangement, music Kimmo Pohjonen
Lighting and set design Mikki Kunttu
Costume design Teemu Muurimäki
Sound design, co-arrangement Tuomas Norvio
Choreographer’s Assistant Henrikki Heikkilä
Sound Designer’s Assistant Sami Tammela

65 min, no intermission. Note! The creation includes strong strobe lights.
12 April, 2018, Grand Théâtre de Québec, Quebec City, Canada
Tero Saarinen Company in collaboration with Tampere Hall and Alexander Theatre (Finland), residency partner Vaba Lava (Estonia)