Påstand: – Scenekunst i Nord-Norge vises i liten grad utenfor landsdelen

Det er snart Festspill og tid for seminar. Hvordan kan vi bli mer internasjonale, spørres det. Scenekunsten i nord skal opp av skuffen og ut av skapet. Fram i verden og inn i lyset.

Hvorfor i all verden tutler vi rundt her oppe når vi kunne tatt verden med storm?

Det spørsmålet er det ikke ett godt svar på. Det er mange. Under har jeg listet opp noen av dem. Mine forsøk på motargumenter står i kursiv. Lista er på ingen måte fullstendig og kan suppleres. Gjerne på seminar i Harstad 22. og 23. juni.

1) Scenekunst er ferskvare

og

2) scenekunst kan ikke mangfoldiggjøres

Disse er de viktigste grunnene til at scenekunst alltid har slitt med å bli regnet som kulturnæring. Det er annerledes med film og musikk. Nordnorske musikkartister og filmskapere kan vise til store internasjonale karrierer. Film og musikk kan lagres i akkurat den versjonen kunstnerne ønsker og produktene kan mangfoldiggjøres og i prinsippet selges til hele verden.

Scenekunst derimot krever flytting av mennesker, noen ganger mange av dem. Det krever frakt av tungt utstyr og scenografi. Produktet er dessuten avhengig av dagsform og spillelokalenes form.

Men, kan man argumentere, det er da mange norske scenekunstkompani som gjør internasjonal karriere. Hvorfor nesten ingen fra Nord-Norge?

3) Påstanden i overskriften stemmer ikke

Nordnorsk scenekunst vises i aller høyeste grad utenfor landsdelen. Det eneste institusjonsteatret som har fast turnérute utenfor Norge befinner seg i Nord-Norge. Det samiske nasjonalteatret Beaivváš turnerer fast i Finland og Sverige, og innimellom også i Russland. De siste årene har de flere ganger gjestet India.  Samovarteatret i Kirkenes har i 25 år turnert i Russland og etter hvert 11 andre land. Stellaris Danseteater har turnert internasjonalt enda lenger enn det. Pikene på broen kobler nordnorske scenekunstnere med samarbeidspartnere i Barentsland. Figurteatret i Nordland bringer den internasjonale figurteatereliten til Nord-Norge, skaper samarbeid her og sender forestillingene tilbake ut i verden.

Mangelen på internasjonal synlighet kommer med andre ord an på hvor man ser.

Så, da er alt bare velstand? Eller? Hvorfor er det ikke flere som turnerer? Hvorfor lærer vi ikke av dem som faktisk reiser ut? Hvorfor er det så usynlig i media at nordnorske scenekunstnere gjør internasjonale karrierer?

4) Nordnorsk scenekunst finnes ikke

Vi lever i en globalisert verden. Det moderne Nord-Norge har ikke mer til felles enn relativ nærhet til Nordpolen. Det samme gjelder nordnorsk scenekunst. Å snakke om nordnorsk scenekunst gir like lite mening som å snakke om alpin scenekunst eller kystscenekunst.

Umulig å argumentere mot.  Kanskje er dette en argumentasjon man må møte med taushet eller kontant avvisning? Man kan jo for eksempel hevde at ”Nord-Norge er ensbetydende med natur” er en tvangstrøye. Og så er det tøv at man må være lik for å kobles sammen i publikums øyne. Karl Ove Knausgård slo ikke igjennom i USA fordi bøkene hans ligner på Per Pettersons. Snarere tvert imot. Likevel var det Pettersons suksess som gjorde den amerikanske forlagsbransjen oppmerksom på norsk samtidslitteratur og dermed Knausgård.

5) Det er bare de beste norske kompaniene som får reise ut, og de nordnorske er ikke blant dem

Norge er et lite land med god kulturell infrastruktur. Organisasjoner som Danse- og Teatersentrum og nettverket BIT Teatergarasjen/Black Box/Avantgarden har et stort internasjonalt nettverk og bidrar til å sende norsk scenekunst ut i utlandet. Det samme gjør Utenriksdepartementet og ambassadene i utlandet. Og det er reisestøtte å søke og få både i Norsk Kulturråd og Fond for utøvende kunstnere. I norsk kulturråd praktiseres fagfellevurdering og god kvalitetssikring – noe som sikrer at de beste plukkes ut.

Her er det mye å problematisere.

  • Systemene forutsetter i all hovedsak en tenkning der man ser Oslo som et nødvendig siste stoppested før utlandet. Siden mesteparten av norsk scenekunst (les mesteparten av norsk kunst overhodet) befinner seg i hovedstadsområdet, er det lett å tenke seg at det beste også nødvendigvis må befinne seg her. Flertallet av de som avgjør hvem som skal reise ut, befinner seg på samme sted. De fleste bevilgningene går til gjestespill av forestillinger saksbehandlerne har sett live, som er anmeldt i de viktigste bransjemagasinene,  og som tilhører et kjent kunstnerskap.  Det er noe helt annet å se en video og lese en søknad fra noen du ikke kjenner.
  • Hva er kvalitet? Anbefaler alle å lese Thorbjørn Gabrielsens fine essay om kvalitetsvurdering i teaterutvalget i Norsk Kulturråd. Det blir man litt klokere av. Kvalitet er et relativt begrep, folkens. Det vet de som gjør jobben i Kulturrådet. Thorbjørn er dessuten nordlending.  Det som er helt sikkert er at vi her i nord kan slutte å vente på å bli ”kvalitetsstemplet”. Vi kan finne våre egne veier ut.

6) Nordnorske scenekunstnere er ikke sultne nok

Det viktigste for å komme seg ut av landsdelen, eller ut av landet, er å ville ut. Man må ha noe man brenner for, enten det er formidling av innhold eller møte med andre fagfolk. Nordnorske scenekunstnere er seg selv nok. De tåler ikke den harde jobben som kreves.  De gir seg uten å prøve.

Hmm.. Manglende ambisjoner kan også skyldes manglende selvtillit eller mangel på forbilder. Kanskje er vi preget av at koblingen til våre nærmeste naboer Sápmi og Finland over lang tid har blitt regnet som uønsket.  Norges viktigste alliansepartner befant seg på andre siden av jernteppet og det fikk konsekvenser her nord.

Kanskje mangler vi forbilder. Kanskje er vi late. Kanskje kvier vi oss for den lange kjøreturen.

 For noen er det vel også et bevisst valg om å spille for publikum her vi bor?

7) Nordnorsk som scenespråk? En sær dialekt av en av verdens minste språk? Give us a break.

 Hallo. Violet Road synger på engelsk. Mange av de sørnorske scenekunstkompaniene som turnerer i verden oversetter sine tekster til sjarmerende Osloengelsk og blir forstått. Dessuten finnes det andre strategier: Samovarteatret bruker en miks av språk i sine forestillinger og lykkes med det. I Nord-Norge er det lang tradisjon for flerspråklighet og blandingsspråk.

 I tillegg kommer  alle mulighetene som ligger i teksting. Det finnes mye kompetanse på hvordan teksting kan integreres som en del av det sceniske uttrykket. Scenekunsten i Nord-Norge har rik tilgang til ressurser og digital teknikk og kunne vært verdensledende på live teksting!

Sånn. Da tror jeg at jeg har argumentert for og i mot og hit og dit så det holder foreløpig. La oss fortsette diskusjonen før, under og etter seminaret i Harstad. Det er mange flere punkter å endevende. Jeg gleder meg!

Sjekk ut det digitale programmet for Scenekunstseminaret på Festspillene i Nord-Norge 22. – 23. juni her

(Toppfoto: Fra Mørkemodig av Katma. Foto: Mariell Amélie Lind-Hansen)

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