Photo: Lene Stavå


Kirkenes - on the same latitute as Tromsø, but east of Istanbul. 1 km from the Barents sea, 12 km from the Russian border and 50 km from the Finnish border. It is equally as far from Kirkenes to Oslo, as from Oslo to Rome.

Kirkenes is located in Sør-Varanger Kommune and is the only municipality that borders to Russia. The municipality has around 10 000 inhabitants, and the most important industries are mining, trade and travel. Kirkenes has a close connection to both Russia and Finland.

In 2012, we got the Local Border Traffic permit for Norway and Russia. The Local Border Traffic permit gives inhabitants in Sør-Varanger, Nikel and Pechenga the opportunity to travel freely in a visa-free area that is 30 km in both countries. With this, Samovarteateret got 40 000 new potential audiences in our local area, and new possibilities for border-crossing cultural cooperations.