Anu Sistonen

- Anu Sistonen - choreographer


Anu Marjukka Sistonen is a Finnish dancer, teacher and choreographer. After training at the Finnish National Ballet, she joined the school company and was casted in the principal roles of classical ballets like Romeo and Juliet, Swan Lake and The Nutcracker.

She subsequently turned to modern and contemporary dance to broaden her horizon with acclaimed choreographers like Mats Ek, Jiri Kylian, John Neumeier and Ohad Naharin.

After a substantial period working with Finland‘s most outstanding choreographers at the time – Jorma Uotinen and Tero Saarinen – Sistonen moved to Paris, and then to London, with a view to exploring her relationship with choreography and nurture her interest in teaching. She has taught all over Europe (Germany, Finland, France, UK, Luxembourg, Sweden) and has returned to the Finnish National Ballet repeatedly as an invited guest.

Anu Sistonen is now based predominantly in Luxembourg and pursues her choreographic work with the Centre de Création Chorégraphique Luxembourgeois – TROIS C-L and the Ballet de Lorraine. Her new pieces regularly feature on the programmes of Luxembourg‘s various cultural venues and institutions, including the Grand Théâtre de la Ville de Luxembourg, which recently dedicated three evenings to Sistonen‘s work. In November 2013 Anu Sistonen‘s piece Against the flow won the audience prize at ‘(Re)connaissance 2013’ a festival and competition organised by Le Pacifique Choreographic development Centre (CDC) and Maison de la Danse Grenoble (FR).

Anu Sistonen has been actively working as a choreographer since 2000. Her creative approach has always been defined by a strong focus on the mutual relationship between music and gesture. By making this particular element the centrepiece of her choreographic expression Sistonen seeks to evoke the right emotions for the performer as well as the audience. A number of her works require the presence of musicians on stage. These live music performances add sensitivity and emotional intensity to the danced elements and allow Sistonen to create a unique relationship between dancers and musicians and to make that bond visible. The choreographic language takes on a new dimension. This original approach to choreography has frequently led Sistonen to work with artists from other disciplines including the composers Emre Sevindik and Asko Hyvärinen, the musicians André Mergenthaler (cello), Benoît Legot (bass) and Beata Szalwinska (piano), and Miikka Heinonen - a video artist and photographer who has partnered up with Sistonen on countless choreographic projects.

In 2012, in her usual inquisitive and pioneering spirit, Anu Sistonen took on a new challenge: a first piece for young audiences. Duo Duu opened to rave reviews in Luxembourg and has since been shown in several other countries (France, Germany, Liechtenstein, Belgium).


Collaborations : Cullberg Ballet, Tero Saarinen Company, Stuttgart Ballet, Finnish National Ballet.

Creations: Shivering (2003), Unison (2003), Sibelius (2004), Timeline (2006), Contaminated (2008), Yours Truly / Moving Light (2008), LIFE (2010), Image X (2011), Duo Duu, Show for young audience (2012), Against the flow (2013), Gives life / Takes life (2013), Trois femmes / Tone Hazard (2014)