WHS is a visual theatre / contemporary circus group from Finland, founded by visual artist/magician Kalle Nio, juggler Ville Walo and set & costume designer Anne Jämsä.
The productions of the group have been a crucial factor behind the rise of Finnish new circus that has rapidly occurred in the past decade. In the performances of the group new circus has become a very modern, independent and continually changing form of expression, that other arts, especially video image, compliment. In the press the performances have been called avant-garde also in the larger contexts of theatre and art in general. The performances have been on the sharp edge of the latest developments of theatre as well as circus.
The circus group has grown known for the juggling style of Walo that balances on the boundary surfaces between juggling and puppetry, and the scale of expression of Nio that reaches from visual arts to magic. The group has taken their performances across more than 30 countries, visiting over a hundred world-famous festivals, circuses, theatres and puppet theatres in Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republics, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Serbia, Slovak, Spain, Switzerland and Ukraine, as well as Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Columbia, Mexico, USA, China, Macau, South Korea, Taiwan and Japan.
WHS works in Teatteri Union, a old cinema theatre in the center of Helsinki.
WHS has been supported by: Ministry of Education and Culture, Arts Promotion Center Finland, City of Helsinki Cultural Office, AVEK, Finnish Cultural Foundation, Kone Foundation, Alfred Kordelin Foundation and CircusInfo Finland
Kalle Nio is a visual artist and a magician from Helsinki. In his work he examines different kinds of expression possibilities provided by video image and its capacities related to time and space.
Ville Walo is a pioneer, innovator and reformer of contemporary juggling, who in his work explores new juggling techniques and physical and spatial movement in juggling. Walo has expanded the expression range of juggling towards visual theatre and object theatre.
Anne Jämsä is a costume and set designer. She is interested in developing visually expressive ways of using objects on stage.
The shape and the form of the group has evolved over the years with every project.
Various professionals from different fields of art have been cooperating in different WHS productions:
Kimmo Pohjonen, Samuli Kosminen, Heikki Iso-Ahola, Mikko Linnavuori, Joonas Pehrsson, Matias Boettge, Teemu Liakka, Milla Ahola, Liisa Valonen, Marianne Lagus, Ainu Palmu, Jani-Matti Salo, Meri Ekola, Antti Rehtijärvi, Jere Mönkkönen, Harry Salmenniemi, Vera Selene Tegelman, Jyrki Karttunen, Katariina McAlester, Micke Rejström, Mila Moisio, Kaisa Rissanen, Salla Hakanpää, Susanna Keski-Kohtamäki, Netta Lepistö, Reija Tapaninen, Maarit Utriainen, Tom Hakala and Ruj Jovanovic Hyvärinen.