Sam Vaherlehto

  • Sam Vaherlehto c. Andrew MacFarlane

Sam graduated from the Ballet School of the Finnish National Opera in 2007 and after that worked for the Finnish National Ballet until 2010.He has performed in various classical ballets and works by contemporary choreographers such as Ohad Naharin, Kenneth Kvarnström, Christian Spuck, William Forthsythe, Johan Inger, Jorma Uotinen and Jarkko Mandelin. Sam has won three Finnish championships in street dance, placed second in the 2007 Nordic Ballet Contest in Sweden and in 2010 he won the men’s performing arts solo series in show dance. In 2010 he won the first So You Think You Can Dance contest in Finland (TV show), earning the title ‘Finland’s most popular dancer’. 

Sam danced with Susanna Leinonen Company, touring to China, Spain, Malaysia, Indonesia, Sweden and Finland. He also worked in Denmark with Lotte Sigh and went to Israel to learn Gaga (Ohad Naharine’s Movement language). Sam joined Phoenix Dance Theatre in August 2013-2018 (Leeds UK). He danced works by contemporary choreographers such as Richard Alston, Caroline Finn, Itzik Galili, Didy Veldman, Christopher Bruce CBE, Darshan Singh Bhuller and Sharon Watson. After Phoenix he danced and acted as a rehearsal director with SLATE contemporary dance company based in Shanghai China, where he toured to Italy and around China. Now Sam is based in Glasgow and alongside being contemporary performance maker, performer choreographer and educator, he is a trustee of the Work Room and experienced yoga teacher.