The Theatre Museum was founded in 1962 and it is the National Specialty Museum for Performing Arts. The museum is governed by the Foundation of the Theatre Museum, a private entity founded by the City of Helsinki, the Central Organisation of Finnish Theatre Associations, and the Finnish Museum Association.
The Theatre Museum conducts its exhibition activities in its own premises at the Cable Factory in Helsinki, and through touring exhibitions, collaboration projects and online exhibitions. The Museum at the Cable Factory houses the permanent exhibitions Backstage, Theatre Attic and Arkadia Theatre, revised in 2010, as well as the temporary exhibitions in the Kantti and Studio galleries. The touring exhibitions displayed in other museums or cultural venues, loans from our collections, as well as the online exhibitions, all bring the cultural heritage of theatre and dance to the fore nationwide every year.
The Theatre Museum’s responsibility for recording is determined by its status as a National Specialty Museum. We maintain the national collection of Finnish theatre and dance, primarily focusing on Finnish professional theatre and dance activities, as well as collecting material on organisations and professionals in the field.
Values and Goals of the Theatre Museum
The Theatre Museum’s values are contemporaneity, customer orientation, quality, curiosity and collaboration. The Museum’s functions demonstrate specialist knowledge, professionalism, reliability and ability to renew itself. As an expert on learning through theatre tools, we open new perspectives and insights on performing arts to our customers and tailor our services to their needs and wishes. We encourage our visitors to be curious and to consider new viewpoints.
Important dates in the history of the Theatre Museum
1962 Foundation of the Theatre Museum was founded.
1963 First exhibition was opened in the Balder building in Aleksanterinkatu.
1981 Theatre Museum started to be managed full time.
1983 Theatre Museum expanded its premises: the archive and the office moved to Snellmaninkatu 17.
1993 Museum received new spaces for the office, collections and exhibitions in the Cable Factory.
1994 Theatre Museum became a National Specialty Museum.
1999 New permanent exhibition and Research Room were opened after renovation and expansion in the Cable Factory.
2000 Finnish Theatre Information Centre awarded the Museum the Illusionist prize.
2001 Museum was awarded the Museum of the Year prize by the Council of Europe.