Thousand Times Yes
experimental, feminist chamber opera
20 September 2021 - 26 September 2021

An ancient organism in the Earth’s crust starts to transform and rise towards the surface. Its movements resonate in the bodies of Minerals, Bacteria, Fungi, Gasses and the Atmosphere, causing instability and uncertainty that cluster into a web of unexpected conflicts. Our protagonist, a human called G, is unwillingly equipped with a skill to connect and communicate with different bodies and beings. She is therefore summoned to mediate between the conflicting parties – and eventually with the ancient underground organism itself. After a moment of hesitation G throws herself to the task fully, but the forces of the Universe are unexpected.

Thousand Times Yes is a philosophical, haunting and poetic investigation of the limits and possibilities of language, communication, space, and the body. The piece is a collaboration between composer and musician Marja Ahti (Turku), librettist Jenny Kalliokulju (Bjuv) and director Essi Kausalainen (Helsinki) moving fluently across different genres and disciplines. Through its multidisciplinary and intergenerational working group, the performance challenges the concept of opera and its aesthetics, as well as its hierarchical tradition. While telling a story of companionship and coexistence Thousand Times Yes makes space for alternative futures at hand.

In their practices Marja Ahti, Jenny Kalliokulju, and Essi Kausalainen seek for the state of vigilance and suppleness, an ability to exceed existing categories and genres, to land at the unknown. The multidisciplinary approach enables them to explore the world as a complex, dynamic process, as a continuous state of interaction. In their earlier works Ahti, Kalliokulju and Kausalainen have worked in dialogue with entities such as a glacier, ghosts, gardens and plant biologists. This time they set themselves in a dialogue with each other to fabulate, together with a multidisciplinary, intergenerational and international working group, alternative futures for living and working together.

A Swedish premiere of the performance will take place at Inkonst on October 8th and October 9th. Watch out for more information –

Photo credits: Laura Cemin and Sini Pelkki

Visit Marja Ahti’s webpage –

Visit Jenny Kalliokulju’s webpage –

Visit Essi Kausalainen’s webpage –

Essi Kausalainen, Marja Ahti, Jenny Kalliokulju