SURFACE – Tiia Kasurinen

SURFACE is inspired by mermaids, plastic surgeries, the ocean, in-betweenness, the internet, heartbreak and a happily ever after. In this 2022 version of widely known mermaid stories, ‘Ariella’ dreams of a new life above the surface – including a dangerous operation.

DATES: 29/11
DOORS: 18.30
ON STAGE: 19.00

SURFACE, premiered in November 2022, is a dance performance inspired by mermaids, the internet, femininity, in-betweenness and the ocean as a thematic landscape. The work uses dance and visual transformation in order to observe different themes, such as gaze and agency.

The performance is loosely influenced by known stories describing mermaids (H.C. Andersen – The Little Mermaid and Disney’s The Little Mermaid) and looks through contemporary choreography into the themes of gaze, gender, power and identity. What do known – old and new – mermaid stories propose about agency? What kind of dance and movement does the anatomy suggest? How do known stories and tales shape our assumptions about gendered roles? How do mermaid tales and post-Internet-reality meet on stage?

The performance is targeted for adult and young adult audiences. The performance is a solo performed by Kasurinen.

SURFACE is a part of a series of works investigating visual and bodily transformations through make-up by Kasurinen.


Tiia Kasurinen (she/her) is a Helsinki-based artist/choreographer who graduated from Stockholm University of the Arts in 2017. She is interested in themes such as identity, gender, the gaze and pop culture, and explores them in her works through theatre make-up, visual transformation and motion. In her works YouTube tutorials and somatic movement walk hand in hand, creating recognisable aesthetics.

Kasurinen’s work has been presented f.ex. in Helsinki Festival and Zodiak – Centre for New Dance (ONSTAGE – The Concert 2023; I’m not entirely here (cybersad) 2020 and 2021), One Dance in Bulgaria (ONSTAGE – The Concert 2024), New Performance Turku Biennale (Live Stream 2021; The Life of Harmony: extended 2019), Gátt festival in Copenhagen (ONSTAGE 2022), Reykjavik Art Festival (Live Stream, Gátt Hub 2022) and Kuopio City Theatre/Dance Theatre Minimi (SURFACE 2022). 

When not working on her own projects, Tiia Kasurinen works as a dancer and a performer and collaborates with other artists


Concept, choreography and performance: Tiia Kasurinen
Lighting design: Sofia Linde
Sound design: Olli Lautiola
Costume design: Annukka Havukumpu
Set design: Landys Roimola
Dramaturgical Assistance: Tuuli Vahtola, Martta Jylhä
Supported by: Arts Promotion Centre Finland
Residencies: Tero Saarinen Company / TSC Residency, Vantaan Tanssiopisto
Production: Minimi, Tiia Kasurinen
Photos: Saara Taussi