Kanuti Gildi SAAL announces 4 one-month residency vacancies in 2024! The residency offers a chance to experiment and research, rather than to realize a full performance or a piece. It is open for artists from Estonia or residing in Estonia. The residency is supported by Kulka.
Residents can choose a month to work at Cellar Hall or in Püha Vaimu SAAL, namely:
 January or October at Püha Vaimu SAAL 
March or November at Cellar Hall

We are waiting for your idea descriptions, preferred period and room for residency and CVs to, latest by December 3rd.

Maria Metsalu's new work "Kultuur" premiered at the prestigious theater festival SPIELART on October 31st. Artists such as Stefan Kaegi / Rimini Protokoll, Forced Entertainment and She She Pop have all made their name at SPIELART festival.
“Kultuur” is a co-production of Metsalu, Kanuti Gildi SAAL, SPIELART festival, TOASTER Copenhagen and Kiasma Theater and brings together an international and renowned team of artists. The sound design was created by Artjom Astrov, the costume was prepared under the leadership of Kris Lemsalu together with Varvara Boutique and the Mexican designer CRUDACRUDA, the dramaturg is Jaakko Pallasvuo, the design and artifacts were created by Nikola Knezevic and Bruno Lillemets, Henry Kasch (Kanuti Gildi SAAL) is responsible for the lighting design, Karim Boumjimar created the food design and also takes part in the final act of the performance on stage.

"Kultuur" contemplates the Sun. Performance not as thesis but as experience – something between a piano concert and a finger-painted surface.
The Sun radiates energy. The Sun might nurture life, or burn right through it. Metsalu gathers herself on the orbit of this duality.
“Kultuur” accommodates chaos and rejects it. Intensities vary between states of pleasure, indifference, suffering and hope for renewal.
Metsalu displays herself as an object of spectacle, then denies the spectacle. We face "Kultuur" as an audience, a collective body. This body will be fed, entertained and challenged.
The performance is divided into three baroque and splendorous movements – the parade at the hot dog cart, the concert of the Flower and the final consumption of the Sun, table d'hôte.
“Kultuur” is a celebration of life – of its fleeting, sensual nature. A desire for simplicity exists in tension with the allure of excess.

Maria Metsalu is an artist who uses her own body to explore contemporary issues, often employing sexually loaded means of expression. She views performance as a radical space and performing deviance as a possibility through which new ways of looking and seeing could be created. Her work seeks to proliferate meanings rather than systematize them into a clarity. She is interested in an emancipated audience and in ways the position of the spectator can be challenged, destabilised or abolished altogether. Besides her solo work she is one of the founding members of Young boy dancing group.

“Kultuur” premiered on October 31st at SPIELART festival, followed by a performance on November 2nd, also within the festival. Performances at Kanuti Gildi SAAL will take place on the 8th, 9th and 10th of February 2024. “Kultuur” will also be performed in Copenhagen and Helsinki the following spring.

The 23rd season of Kanuti Gildi SAAL will be a very special one. Starting from this season we have three new artistic directors! Our long-time project managers Maarja Kalmre, Eneli Järs and Kaie Küünal will take over as the creative team and curate SAAL´s program collectively.

This season´s programme is bringing a fresh format of short performance nights which consist of three performances by three different artists each time. The first short performance night in November will host Gregor Kulla, Anita Kremm and Liisbeth Horn.

Our programme is also focusing on in-season international guest performances.
We have invited british performance artist Kim Noble to restore and perform his piece "You´re Not Alone", which first premiered over a decade ago. The work will have two performances at Kanuti Gildi SAAL on 10th and 11th of November.

The main programme is kicked off on 27th of September by Elle Viies' thesis performance "Koodeks. The first premier of the season will take place on 29th of September with Kadri Noormets' new production "INVITATION TO THE CARPET". "INVITATION TO THE CARPET" is an attempt to break down the barriers between the viewer and performer as well as a study of the possibilities of combining these two roles in the co-composition of a performance.

The premiers of two international projects will also take place this autumn.
Maria Metsalu´s new production "Kultuur" will be performed for the first time at the prestigious SPIELART theater festival in Munich.
The collaborative production of Juhan Ulfsak, Mart Kangro, Eero Epner and the Slovenian avant-garde theater group Beton Ltd. will take stage for the first time in Ljubljana at the contemporary theatre, dance and art center Bunker. Both productions will premiere at SAAL at the beginning of the new year.

The rest of the programme will be released soon.

Due to its politically charged location – across the street from the Russian Embassy – Kanuti Gildi SAAL decided to commemorate the one year anniversary of the beginning of the war in Ukraine by inviting a war refugee Sofija Melnikova to Tallinn with her performance "Drama Queen". The performance is a story about Melnikova's exile, fear and failed love, in which she talks about her arrival to Riga as a refugee from Ukraine and the end of an eight-year-long relationship. The performance was recently shortlisted for the Latvian award "Kilograms kultūras 2022" as one of five nominees in the theater category.

Sofija Melnikova is a young Ukrainian theater-maker from the Donetsk region, who studied directing at the Kharkiv National University of Arts. After the beginning of the war in Ukraine, she arrived in Riga in April 2022, where her performance “Drama Queen” premiered at the Dirty Deal Teatro at the end of last year. Melnikova has been co-directed by one of the currently best-known Latvian directors, Valters Sīlis.

The performance is in Ukrainian and Russian, with subtitles in Estonian and English. Tickets are on sale at Fienta and also, donations for Ukraine can be made at the door.

Made in Estonia Marathon is waiting for original performances created especially for the marathon, with length up to 10 minutes. Video can also be used and of course you can rehearse beforehand. Each artist can have a rehearsal before the event (rehearsal days are 8.-10.03). Please let us know of your ideas by February 20th 2023 by filling in this questionnaire.

SAAL's most popular performing arts festivity Made in Estonia Marathon will take place for the 16th time on the 11th of March. It's a festival of short formats, where performers have a maximum of 10 minutes to do whatever they want on stage. The performance must be an original creation made especially for the marathon. Within a few hours a persona non grata can become a persona grata, a flash idea can become the end result, anyone can become an artist and the artist can become anyone. Made in Estonia Marathon is divided into four sections: blackbox, video, empty stage and punk section. The punk section is characterized by a ready-made stage design for artists who are inspired by physical space. You can see the actual space only a few days before the event which makes it a game or a challenge of its own.

With any problems or questions please contact

More information about Made in Estonia Maraton: