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A Week In Finland

Program

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Workshops

Thu 21.00 - 22.30Folk Dances Workshop #2Great hallWorkshop
Fri 10.00 - 12.00Creating Characters from Real Life BiographiesFateplayWorkshop
Fri 10.00 - 12.00Designing Politics in LarpTurku SchoolWorkshop
Fri 10.00 - 12.45Contemporary Magic 101Great HallWorkshop
Fri 14.00 - 16.00Avatar Laboratory – How to Control HumansFateplayWorkshop
Sat 10.00 - 12.30Pre-larp WorkshopsGreat hallWorkshop
Sat 12.30 - 14.00Fighting the Good FightGreat hallWorkshop
Sat 12.30 - 15.30Trance Mask Technique – Tasting the TranceDogma 99Workshop
Sat 14.00 - 16.00Early Dances and SuchGreat hallWorkshop
Sat 16.00 - 17.00Whack, Boff, Boom - What do Finns do with Padded Weapons?Great hallWorkshop
Sat 17.00 - 19.00Folk Fantasy WorkshopGreat hallWorkshop
Sat 18.00 - 20.00Costume Designing for Larp - Hands on workshopArs AmandiWorkshop
Sat 18.00 - 20.00Future Now! - Building Visions of the Future Through Collaborative TalksFateplayWorkshop
Sat 19.00 - 20.20Dig deeper into your character, while having sexGreat HallTalk Workshop
Sun 10.30 - 12.30Contacting the Characters Within YouGreat hallWorkshop

Folk Dances Workshop #2
Thu 21.00 – Thu 22.30, Great hall, Workshop
Organizers: Dominika Kováčová, Marion Bræstrup Løsnes
Dance is for everyone, anytime. Fun and entertainment are more important than skill. Dances from Scotland and France to Russia and Israel, from fast rhythms to soft moves. Lame- and beginner-friendly. Bring comfortable clothes.

Creating Characters from Real Life Biographies
Fri 10.00 – Fri 12.00, Fateplay, Workshop
Organizers: Morgan Jarl, Johanna Raekallio, JP Kaljonen
A workshop in how to create characters from real life people and their stories. For the larp Dublin2 Stockholm – an activist, performance art larp about asylum seekers – we intend to use interviews and written autobiographies from real asylum seekers and border guards as the basis of the characters. This workshop is about how you can go about the process of creating a character, but also the ethical responsibility and consideration. How will you debrief a real person when the person is still out there? Come share your thoughts on this design concept and help us refine it.

Designing Politics in Larp
Fri 10.00 – Fri 12.00, Turku School , Workshop
Organizer: Osher El-Netanany

Venice, at the height of the Renaissance. Iceland during the Sagas. London, 1899. Tel Aviv, 1948. Helsinki, yesterday. What is common to all those? A: All those are possible settings for an interesting larp. All of them involve people. Those people rarely want the same thing at the same time (otherwise our larp will not be interesting). The result is a political situation. This workshop is intended to help you understand politics and how it can enrich the design of a larp. The purpose of this workshop is to give larp designers, GMs and players tools to understand politics and use them in the game as part of the design.

Contemporary Magic 101
Fri 10.00 – Fri 12.45, Great Hall, Workshop
Organizer: Tova Gerge, Malin Axelsson, Moa Backman
We make up contemporary (white, grey and multicolored) magic ceremonies, possibly with the help of an automatic magic generator. We try them out together and discuss if and how they work. Our definition of magic is here the practice of shaping the world to our will. This might include telepathy, telekinetics, communication with other worlds/other aspects of this world, and spiritual possession. We welcome anyone who has an enthusiasm for suspension of disbelief, is interested in testing ideas, likes discussing game design from a non-narrative perspective and can stand profane, speculative and dilettantesque (but loving) use of magic.

The workshop is a part of a research process for a performance piece directed primarily towards children (9-12 years old), but whatever we come up with during those hours can and should of course be used for whatever purpose you can come up with in your life as gamer/game designer.

Avatar Laboratory – How to Control Humans
Fri 14.00 – Fri 16.00, Fateplay, Workshop
Organizers: Ebba Petrén, Gabriel Widing, Jakob laCour
An invitation to experiment with different means to take control of each others’ bodies. With “avatar” we mean a body that chooses to be controlled by an outer force, which means that the avatar will experience life without making its own decisions. This workshop offers you both the sensations of being the avatar and of controlling the avatar. Ebba and Gabriel have worked with a performance where the audience is turned into avatars listening and obeying a series of instructions. Jakob experiments on how to program human bodies. We share our experiences and try out some work-in-progress in a playful workshop.

Pre-larp Workshops
Sat 10.00 – Sat 12.30, Great hall, Workshop
Organizer: Peter Munthe-Kaas
System Danmarc, Totem, Delirum, Kapo. All games based on pre-game workshops with a large amount of player inclusion. This workshop is an introduction to the radical version of pre-larp workshops, that has been used for these larps, and why we find it meaningfull to design this way. The workshop will be a mix of lecturing, practical exercises and discussion.

Fighting the Good Fight
Sat 12.30 – Sat 14.00, Great hall, Workshop
Organizers: Johan Lundby, Emma Wieslander
An explorative workshop that starts with a simple technique for standing wrestling and seeks to develop a system for friendly hand-to-hand fighting. We're using it in Between Steel and Glass for fighting within a group, both to establish status and for in-character practice. The method, an ars martius, might also be used for resolving combat in other settings. We invite you to explore with us. The method does not require a lot of physical strength or experience of wrestling or fighting but might be physically challenging. One thing we want to find out is how to make a technique that creates the physical feeling of having been in a fight.

Loose and comfortable clothing is preferred.

Trance Mask Technique – Tasting the Trance
Sat 12.30 – Sat 15.30, Dogma 99, Workshop
Organizer: Alex Fradera
Many cultures have used masks as a ritualistic tool to facilitate trance states and conjure entities from beyond. Here we explore a Western 20th Century tradition that borrows from these roots. It strips away the religious requirements, but is not without its mysteries. Masks are a way to access something powerful that is immediate and obvious to bystanders. This technique is less about "performing to" than about "being amongst", which perhaps makes it a better fit for a larp instead of attempting to tame it for the stage.

This session allows participants to taste the technique for themselves, choosing between masks and discovering connections. Beginning with a short periods, the session will eventually allow participants to explore longer periods as well in this state if they choose. Note that participants will not be spending the majority of time in the mask state, with good reason - it can be incredibly tiring, especially when new to the process.

The session will involve observation of other mask wearers as well as group warm-up and focus exercises. This technique was originally developed by Keith Johnstone and outlined in the seminal text Impro. It has been kept alive by his student Steve Jarand, and the lineage continues through a new generation of mask-workers. Leading this session, Alex Fradera has been working with masks for three years in Europe, Canada and the UK. He is a trained psychologist.

Early Dances and Such
Sat 14.00 – Sat 16.00, Great hall, Workshop
Organizer: Tonja Goldblatt
A selection of historical and historically inspired dances, which are commonly danced in larps all over Finland. Fun and easy - no prior knowledge of early dancing needed (but you won’t be kicked out if you know the steps already).

Whack, Boff, Boom - What do Finns do with Padded Weapons?
Sat 16.00 – Sat 17.00, Great hall, Workshop
Organizer: Tapio Pellinen
Padded weapons and larps used to be closely knit in Finland, but not anymore. Where did the boffers go, and what became of them? A short lecture will be followed by dubious amount of weapons made available for your pleasure.

Folk Fantasy Workshop
Sat 17.00 – Sat 19.00, Great hall, Workshop
Organizer: Mike Pohjola
How do you turn the your cultural heritage into a fantasy world? It’s not just about lifting monsters from your national mythology, but also about taking pop culture, history, stereotypes, politics, art and rock’n’roll, and giving them the fantasy make-over. . The Anglo-Saxon culture’s Robin Hood, Shakespeare, King Arthur and elves pretty much make the core building blocks of fantasy literature and roleplaying games. What if other cultures got a similar fantasy treatment? The aim is to create unique fantasy worlds that may deal with topics more relevant than orcs and elves. Novelist and larpwright Mike Pohjola will give your country a total fantasy make-over.

Before attending: Please read Folk Fantasy – Escaping Tolkien from the new Solmukohta book.

Costume Designing for Larp - Hands on Workshop
Sat 18.00 – Sat 20.00, Ars Amandi, Workshop
Organizer: Anna Nummi
The workshop will introduce you to the basics of costume design with some examples. We will work in groups on over all costume design for an imaginary larp concept. Ideas will be discussed together to find good and weak points of work. You do not need to have visual design or costume design experience! This workshop will show you that everyone is capable of taking costume design into consideration in larps. Anna Nummi has done costume design for theater, short films and larps, most recently for Konquistadoren in Germany, 2011. She studies fine arts in the Turku Arts Academy.

Future Now! - Building Visions of the Future Through Collaborative Talks
Sat 18.00 – Sat 20.00, Fateplay, Workshop
Organizer: Morgan Jarl
For the larp 2027 we intend to play a 15 year span from now into the future – to be able to do that we want to create several scenes and paths for people to take, but also workshops to fill up gaps between the scenes and flesh out the story. In this workshop we want to collaboratively design the general path to the future that will later on be the story to build the scenes and workshops around.

Dig deeper into your character, while having sex
Sat 19.00 – Sat 20.20, Great Hall, Talk, Workshop
Organizer: Hanne Grasmo
Do you think playing out sexual feelings at larps take focus away from your character? Quite the opposite: “Just a little lovin’” used sexuality as an engine for a wide range of emotions, relations and reasons. Come see for yourself! In a mix of lecture and workshop the organizer Hanne Grasmo will give you some theory and demonstration of our meta-sex-design. A good warm-up for tonight’s big party! (Come in designer clothes if you so like). “Just a little lovin’” – the larp about the summer aids came to New York City, was held in Oslo last summer and will be remade for Stockholm in June 2012.

Contacting the Characters Within You
Su 10.30 – Su 12.30, Great hall, Workshop
Organizers: Mike Pohjola
For over a decade we’ve talked about the positive, even healing, effects of roleplaying. We’ve theorized about when exploring different roles through play you’ll have a wider scope of possible roles in everyday social situations, as well. Now it’s time to put these thoughts into practice! This workshop flirts with the traditions of yoga, psychotherapy, meditation, improvisation, self help, drama therapy and larp.

We’ll explore the roles and characters we have inside our heads right now, and try to see if we can use those to our benefit. What positive effects can your dark elf wizard character have on your daily life? It’s time to find out!

Wear comfortable clothes you can move around in.

Solmukohta 2012 | info@solmukohta.org