Kontulan toimintakeskus Luuppi oli mukana Kontula Electronic tapahtumassa monin tavoin! Tässä belgialaisten vaihto-oppilaidemme Deborahin ja Johanneksen kokemukset tapahtumaviikonlopusta:
The weekend of the 21th there was a Electronic festival going on in Kontula. During these days music was playing around the area, activities and other performances were there to entertain the people of Kontula. This project is mainly made for bringing the people together, to bring joy to the area and to encourage the positieve vibe in Kontula area and in the people living there.
We all know that Kontula has a bad name in Helsinki that’s why the makers of this project want to make something that helps their name give a positieve connotation again. These assumptions are made on only the bad news from the area but there are also a lot of good things going on here. That’s why we wanted to write a blog about this event. We saw the joy in people’s eyes relive again.
We will write this blog from our point of view; we are two exange students from Belgium who did our internship in the Youth House in Kontula, Luuppi. We study Social (Youth) work at the Humak University of Applied Sciences. We had an amazing experience there and finnished our time in the Youth House by being a part of Kontula Elektronic.
Music brings people together, that’s we know for sure.
As every thing in life needs a good start, this event had a good dance. It was kind of an art that they were showing, and we asked the people around what the dance meant. But nobody really knew. We think this performance was the opening to something you could interperate for yourself. (see the picture above)
MUSIC IN KONTULA
There was a lot going on these day’s in Kontula but the main thing was definitely music, more specific then; electro music. There were some amazing artists playing on the festival, not only from Finland but also some great international musicians. It was nice to hear how during the day there was some music playing outside around the shopping centre. And it was also fantastic to see how people really reacted on that. They came together, talked to each other, dunk some beers,… You could see how people were having fun. There was a very happy atmosphere and a lot of people seemed to enjoy the event.
First of all we wanted to say that were not really music professionals especially when it comes on electronical music. But the music that we heard we found really interesting and in a way very innovating.
At the Helmi Grillin terassi on Friday DJ DEE was playing his set. There was a good sound and we thought it was a nice warm up for the rest of the evening. At the bars later in the evening the music was really good and you could see that is was appreciated by the crowd. There was a lot of people and the bars were very full. In bar Fiesta there were some live bands. At the beginning of the evening we went inside for a moment and it look really nice. We decided to come back later but after that it was too bad that we couldn’t in because of all the people.
Then we went to another bar called Patajäkä, a smaller bar but really good atmosphere, people were dancing. There was a catchy vibe and nice songs. You saw people getting drunk having talks with friends and strangers, what was really pleasant to see. We saw persons connecting with each other and also with us. What we truly thought was amazing.
Then we went to MopoBaari were we actually got a little the same feeling. A very nice bar filled with nice people. I personally though that the music there was better than at Patajäkä. I could not really say what kind of music it was but I liked it and mood was good. A lot of easy going but different people coming together to have a drink and to dance on the vibes.
At Saturday there was more activities to do during the day. In the afternoon kids could come to the youth house in Kontula, were we did our internship, to be part of the kids disco. The party had a five year old DJ who was playing and it was amazing to see her! The children had a really good time and danced a lot on the music. Later on, they also could test how to be a DJ by playing some music themselves, and they made a little karaoke where everybody was signing along. It was so nice to see them have fun. A snack and a drink were provided!
After that we went to see the two bands in the skate hall. The first band called “Rainbowlicker” a Finnish band who gave a strong live performance. The music was very good both; the instrumental as the singing was really powerful. And we thought the venue was amazing, really a cool place to have a live concert! The sound and the acoustic in the place was also good. After that it was “Stylish Nonsense”, a band form Thailand, his turn to preform and put the skate hall on fire. We thought in the beginning it was a little weird but after a while we start to get the music more. The band doesn’t have his name stolen and we thought it represented the type of music they perform. Whatever that kind of music was, it was very experimental but I wound not call it actual nonsense. The mix between electronical music and alternative rock was something different and we heard that they never play a similar concert, we really could believe that.
Activities and workshops
Beside the fascinating and innovating music, there were a lot of activities where people could participate. These activities weren’t always about the music, it was also about talking to each other about philosophical things and about the Kontula area. And one activity had as a goal to realise that woman are still denigrating in society.
In the Youth house in Kontula there were 2 workshops who learned people how to make music.
The first workshop that took place on Friday the 21th, was made by a collaboration between Mehackit and Codebus Africa. We have met Tommi Toivonen and Jukka Eerikäinen, who gave us a very nice explanation about the working of Mehackit and what they do. They use the programme Sonic Pi to learn the youth and adults how to make some music by using a specific code.. For this workshop they worked together with Codebus Africa. Codebus Africa is a 100-day project all around in Africa, as a celebration of the 100th years independence celebration.
The second workshop took place in the wood-workshop underneath the Youth House. Olegrtron R2R was the organizer of this workshop. The work they were doing was quite interesting, but I think you should have an electronic background for it. They used old toys who make any kind of sound. We all had them when we were a child, didn’t we? So they took the equipment that makes the music out of it, and used all them together to create a new melody. After that they did this workshop, they played their result in Mister X (a bar in Kontula).
Both the workshops were really interesting. I mean, it’s a different way of making music. And the people just loved it in Kontula! We think it’s nice that using a code or an old toy can create some decent music. Although we found it a bit weird but we think this is essential for electronic music. Electronic music is just something totally different than jazz of blues, rock or metal. You really have to hear and feel it, to understand it. We really liked it!
SAUNA AND SPINNING ON THE KONTULA-SQUARE
In front of the Youth house there was a sauna where people could have a philosophical discussion about multiculturality, ‘How to be a good neighbour?’, and love. The conversations were already going on while we arrived, so we didn’t take part of it. I really think this is too bad because we thought this was really a nice idea. Also with the morning yoga, sounded really inspiring!
A bit further there was an activity that spread the awareness about the status of woman in society. There is a song playing, and we think that the text was being translated on a big scream. In front of the scream there were 3 exercises bikes, so that the people could ride, read and listen at the same time. I wonder if there was only this subject, or also other subjects. Because this would have been very nice to show some problems that are living around the city. If people can get aware of a problem, others might react on it and prevent it to happen again. Around the people who were biking, there were people just listening to the songs and getting aware. That was really nice to see!
We think the title was something like:’’ let’s pedal Finland back into shape.’’
While we were walking in Kontula, we saw a big map of Kontula. We thought that was a really good idea, because we wanted to see the Museum of Impossible Sounds and Visions. But had no idea where to find it. We looked at the schedule but we didn’t understand that much Finnish, so we were quite lost. That’s why we would maybe advice to give some information in English as well, so that other cultures can fully enjoy of this event.
URBAN TRANSFORMATION MUSEUM
That’s also why we were pleasantly surprised when we came in the Museum. First it wasn’t a museum like you would visualize yourself. After searching the place for quite some time, we arrived in a room where five people were talking to each other and a group of people listening. We had no idea we entered a room where they had a discussion about ‘What will happen and is happening to Kontula?’. One of the speakers was from Belgium, so we were surprised by that as well! Their discussion was really interesting. It talked about the changes in Kontula, the similarities and differences in comparison to Helsinki and Kallio for example.
They are seeing some changes in Kontula, that maybe aren’t for the best. Like for example: the banks have already left the area and the post office will leave in one year, what will be the consequences of this for Kontula? I mean, if you want to make a complaint, you have to go the whole way to the police station. The people will have to be more mobile, and go further to get to their service needed. Or they could do it over the internet, but the older people could maybe not get there. Also they saw that it made it change into an area with (groceries)shops, restaurants and bars.
We didn’t stay until the end of this conversation, although this was a really nice event. It talked about problems and solutions for this place, with people talking who studied the Helsinki area. It was also in English, so we thought that was really go. If something is in English, other cultural (minority) citizens could’ve come there and really participate to make the city a tint again. It was wear dreary so everybody could just attend to that. I think this is really a good thing in Kontula Electro, because besides the nice music, the friendly people and the good food; these moments really helps this area getting better.
In the old post office, Whanda Postti, you could get some vegetarian food that was really good! We were so hungry and only find some hamburgers in the Helmi Grillin Terassi and thought no were else you could get some food. But lucky this charming place offered us a tasty meal! I was amazed by the tastes and was really full when done. Kiitos!
We took some Mini-taco’s and the curry meal. It was really good! While eating there was one option to do, you could also make your own bag with a bunny on it. Some people made it with Kontula Elektro, some others with playboy. It was quite funny!
We thought it was a really nice idea to make some event for that purpose and in an area like this. We think Kontula is an area where there are a lot of cultures together, and that is a very good thing. Multiversity is good so that we can learn to live together, appreciate the differences and have some fun together! What we maybe did think about, was maybe making an event in Kontula Area where you could find any type of music or food, linked to their culture. Also because we thought that there were a lot of Finnish people in the bars, and not that much different nationalities, although we know they are here.
Still we think that the goal has been achieved, and that it really was nice for all the inhabitants of Kontula to have a place like this. The event took place in the middle of the centre, so that the people living around it, doesn’t have any complaints about the loud music in the night for example. It was really a good place to bring the people together, and enjoy the music and activities!
We hope that in long term period, this really makes a change in the name of Kontula!
Deborah Boon & Johannes Vanneste