Towards All Forms of Equality

Equally European is not an abstract ideal but a driver of change. We are curious, asking questions, exploring and experimenting together, and we also want to embody equality through the arts.

Photo: Olli-Pekka Latvala

Our concept Equally European reaches out beyond our borders to engage all Europeans to discuss equality with us. What does equality mean for us, and for all Europeans today? What can we do, in particular, to use equality as a transformative power in culture and the arts? Our Cultural Programme is based on a broad notion of culture. Programme is made of six different elements. Our four programme lines address equality in different contexts: (R)EVOLUTIONS, EQUALLY YOURS, VILLAGE HOPPING and WILD CARD. In addition to the four programme lines, we have two other programme entities “Equalizer” and “Party Time”.

Programme lines:


(R)evolutions uses arts and culture to probe historical developments and the present situation of equality in Tampere and Europe. What are our pressing social concerns, and how can we interpret Tampere’s evolution to a modern democratic city in relation with various transformations in Europe?

Photo: Vesa Holmala


Equally Yours celebrates the diversity of culture and arts. Fine arts, cultural heritage, popular culture, grassroots culture, and counterculture are equally appreciated realms of artistic expression. How will culture look like if we collect projects from diverse walks of life, advocating cultural equality?

Manserama at Hiedanranta. Photo: Visit Tampere / Laura Vanzo


Village Hopping views equality through regional lenses, promoting access to high-quality culture in the regions – which is a big European theme. We send artists and their audiences hopping from one village to another, developing our region through territorial approaches. What will we experience if we study European identities together with local micro-identities?

Photo: Piritta Suominen


In Wild Card, we give nature an equal standing. Equality is not only a political issue – in times of many ecological crises we have to challenge our very understanding of culture as only a human phenomenon. Promoting ecological awareness, teaching environmental skills, and translating ecological thinking to everyday practices constitute the actual challenges of culture in the 2020’s.


Tampere Flamenco Festival. Photo: Olli-Pekka Latvala

Programme entities:


In addition to our programme lines we have, first, our capacity building programme “Equaliser” preparing us for a successful implementation of our artistic projects. Second, we provide seasonal flagship weekends under the label “Party Time” – not intended as an entity separate from our programme but as a reader-friendly way to point out some of our international flagships.

Finnish Sauna day at Rajaportti sauna. Photo: Visit Tampere / Laura Vanzo

The three core ideas of our artistic vision – we want to be:


Can we really be equal – let alone Equally European – if we don’t break free from our comfort zones, exposing ourselves to Europe? We are curious to face our fears and overcome them, learning new things. Equality means thus expansion, moving from excessive introversion to encounter and dialogue.


Crossing over means breaking the boundaries, and it means reaching out. We celebrate cultural diversity, we encourage crossovers and dialogue, such that artistic excellence may flourish through inclusive culture, and inclusive culture through artistic excellence. We promote a better understanding and a broader, more inclusive experience of the arts by fusing them with science, beauty with knowledge, aesthetic enjoyment with public education.


If we really want to be Equally European, we must challenge prevailing power structures – to rediscover the natural grit and edge we’re known for. Impressive art need not be beautiful and solemn, but it can also be a bit crazy – and certainly rough around the edges.

Read about our concept Equally European and explore more about the Cultural Programme in our new bid book!

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