Opera Lisbeta

Lisbeta thou shalt not suffer a witch to live is an opera about misogyny and superstition. A magpie’s laugh echoes across Sund as the parish priest and the new district judge rile up the locals to fear the unknown. Soon, seven women will be executed for a new crime: communing with the devil.

Lisbeta – thou shalt not suffer a witch to live is a musical celebration in which 17th century women accused of witchcraft take power over the logic of hate rhetoric. For Åland's 100th anniversary of autonomy, we are giving Lisbeta and her sisters in woe a voice through a newly written, modern opera.

We say their names.

  • Lisbeta Skarp from Persnäs
  • Karin Persdotter from Emkarby
  • Maria Nilsdotter from Emkarby
  • Ebba Hindrichszon from Finby
  • Anna Bengtzdotter from Högbolstad
  • Ingeborg Olsdotter from Västansunda
  • Margreta Mårtensdotter from Norrby

Executed for the crimes the men of power dreamed up. Stripped of their rights, feared by their peers, for witchcraft notorious.

Premiere July 15, 2021 at 7 pm in Alandica Culture & Congress, Åland. Subsequent performances will be 16 July and 17 July, at 7 pm.

Ticket prices: 50€ regular price, 45€ for pensioners, 30€ for people 26 years old and under, 20€ for individual seats on the balconies. A service fee will be added.


  • Lisbeta - Sofie Asplund, soprano
  • Psilander - Philip Björkqvist, bass-baritone
  • Kjellinus - Dan Karlström, tenor
  • Karin - Jenny Carlstedt, mezzo-soprano
  • Ebba - Therese Karlsson, soprano
  • Per - Aarne Pelkonen, baritone
  • The magpie - Veli Kujala, quarter-tone accordion
  • Estonian Sinfonietta
  • Choir

Artistic team:

  • Music: Karólína Eiríksdóttir
  • Libretto: Carina Karlsson and Ida Kronholm
  • Conductor: Anna-Maria Helsing
  • Chorus Master: Pipsa Juslin
  • Director: Ida Kronholm
  • Choreography: Soledad Howe
  • Scenography: Maria Antman
  • Costume design: Matilda Karlström
  • Mask design: Emelie Eriksson
  • Lighting design: Pernille Plantener-Holst
  • Repetiteur: Dmitri Tyapkin
  • Producer: Barbro Sundback
  • Finance Manager: Rosi Djupsund

Tickets may be purchased from Alandica Culture & Congress. Buy tickets here — welcome!

Check out press coverage in Media och bilder (Media and pictures)!


A star-studded ensemble in the anniversary performances of the opera “Lisbeta”

The Katrina Culture Association reveals the singers who will be in the anniversary performances of the opera “Lisbeta”, 15–17 July 2021. The ensemble includes Åland’s foremost opera singers. Sofie Asplund will play the role of Lisbeta. Philip Björkqvist will carry the role of Judge Psilander. Dan Karlström will be the priest, Kjellinus. Jenny Carlstedt will sing the role of Karin, the woman who was the first victim of the witch hunt. Therese Karlsson will portray the honorable Ebba. As Lisbeta’s husband, Per, we will get to hear Aarne Pelkonen. The most unexpected role as the magpie will be played by accordionist Veli Kujala.

The opera will be performed only three times. Buy your ticket well in advance. https://www.alandica.ax/en

Check out what the press has written about the ensemble in Media och bilder (Media and pictures).

Interview with the main characters on Radio Åland.


ESTONIAN SINFONIETTA is an orchestra connecting creatively active musicians, who have played together for years, and performed in the most prestigious European concert halls like Golden Hall of Musikverein in Vienna, Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Philharmonics of Cologne and St Petersburg, Flagey and Bozar of Brussels as well as at many festivals - Ars Musica in Belgium, Festival Internazionale Pianistico di Brescia e Bergamo, Mittelfest and Festival Emilia Romagna in Italy, Iitti Music Festival in Finland, Musikfest Kreuth am Tegernsee in Germany among others.

Performing together has taken the musicians to tours in Europe, South-America and Middle East, in addition to many Estonian music festivals and concert series.

Estonian Sinfonietta’s configuration depends on it’s repertoire. Therefore, the orchestra forms a flexible ensemble, which enables to play substantial part of the world’s musical heritage from different eras, performing large symphonic pieces and take part in opera projects.

Presenting Estonian music and artists to the world, holds great value to the orchestra.
In addition to performing with world-renowned musicians, giving constant opportunities to our own members to play as soloists is a high priority for the Estonian Sinfonietta and is taken into account when creating programs for the concerts. Estonian Sinfonietta also partners up with experienced soloists and conductors to create a performance of music with an unique soundscape that appeals to the contemporary listener.
Since year 2019,  the concertmaster of the orchestra is Johannes Põlda.


JOHANNES PÕLDA, violin, concertmaster

Johannes Põlda is graduated from his Master’s studies at Sibelius Academy in Helsinki under the supervision of Mari Tampere-Bezrodny.

He has also studied in US at Eastman School of Music in the violin class of prof. Oleh Krysa and taken conducting lessons in the orchestra classes of Mark Scatterday and Mark Powell.

He has been successful in competitions, the more recent ones including the special prize in the Andrea Postacchini violin competition in Italy in 2015 and the victory in the chamber music competition at Eastman School of Music in 2017.

In addition to be the concertmaster of Estonian Sinfonietta , Johannes Põlda is concertmaster of Kuopio City Orchestra since January 2021. 


C Eesti Sinfonietta 2021