Flight of the Phoenix

The Flight of the Phoenix
Jenny Hager-Vickery, Cynthia Handel and Susanne Roewer

Volcano Furnace

The performance Flight of the Phoenix will be performed in collaboration with the Volcano Furnace by Coral Lambert and The Tree of Dawn by Danielle Jenson. As the earthwork Volcano Furnace erupts, a great phoenix will rise up and be engulfed in the flames of Pele.

The phoenix itself will reference the Mercurial Bird, a symbol for the volatility of alchemy and revered for its profound powers. Its wings will spread and dancers will emerge, awakening the bird from the ashes. Equipped with the token symbols of the mercurial bird, the performance will reinvigorate its magic, power and presence.

Tree of Dawn To begin the series of the three related performances, the Tree of Dawn will focus on the earthly girl struggling to find her way. The tree will be constructed of wood and little cherry bombs will represent apples. She will collect items through her journey and make offerings to the volcano furnace, a 12 ft. tall earthwork, which is an operative furnace comprised of clay, earth and stone.

Volcano Furnace The volcano will have a 36” diameter open hole with a platform above it as the opening of the volcano. The Volcano Furnace will erupt three times, at 300 lbs. per tap, its lava flowing into pre-carved spiraling channels, which will fill pre-carved stone molds, creating a diamond shaped slab of iron into the stone.

Flight of the Phoenix As the volcano erupts the third time, the Flight of the Phoenix will begin as the 8 ft. tall bird emerges from the top of the furnace. The phoenix will be ignited by the volcano furnace itself and will become engulfed in flames. As the phoenix burns away, dancers will emerge from the furnace to create a fire dance using fire fans as wings (5-10 minutes). When the fire dancers wings burn out, the girl from the tree of dawn will collect offerings (remnants of the performance and ashes) to be placed in one of the stone slabs as offerings. The total combined performances will last three hours.