Illuminated by Fire

Illuminated by Fire

lluminated by Fire – Creswick is a spectacular show of light and fire that focuses on the places we care about and the role of fire within them. A 30 minute theatre piece that features smoke, shadow and illusion, this performance provoked discussion about living sustainably in one of the most bushfire-prone regions of the world. As darkness closed in, we saw a spectacular glimpse through an ecological lens of a species adapting to the landscape.

The work of local artists Ken Evans and Rebecca Russell, this project engaged with fire ecologists from the Melbourne University School of Forestry, Creswick, and launched there on Friday October 15 at 8.00pm. It was also part of the grand opening of The University of Melbourne’s Centenary of Forestry Education Celebration.

This stunning work was also presented to large audiences on the River Terrace at Fed Square in Melbourne over three clear nights in June/July 2011.  See the program here: Creswick program

The Creswick project has been supported locally by Hepburn Shire Council.

Hepburn Shire Council logo

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Image of Ken Evans & Rebecca Russell

Ken Evans is a veteran designer, puppeteer and image maker for visual theatre. Ken was co-founder and Artistic Director for internationally acclaimed company Handspan, designing over 40 touring works for children and adult audiences, including the UNESCO Awarded Picassos Four Little Girls.

Rebecca Russell is a director and devisor of new visual and physical theatre works. In 2003 Rebecca co-founded the visual and physical theatre company Spin Sisters, producing critically acclaimed seasons of work between 2003 and 2005.

Ken and Rebecca recently moved from inner city Melbourne to regional Victoria, now operating from fabulous studios in Clunes surrounded by picturesque countryside steeped in history and new sources of inspiration.


Image of Creswick

Creswick by Ken Evans & Rebecca Russell

Creswick performance at Fed Square

27th July 2011

The 15 minute event combined the perfect night air with fire, shadow theatre, music and smoke. The piece was preformed by members of the Creswick and Clunes communities including a Dancer, fire sculptor, a CFA firefighter, a vintage engine and a champion Axeman.

The crowds were cheerful and they were warmed by the fires and the cast were warmed by their responses.

The piece explored the adaptive behaviours of plants and animals and humans to fire and the words of Fire Ecologists Kevin Tolhurst and Alan York providing insightful, challenging and provocative statements about fire.  


From the artists:

Illuminated By Fire in Fed Square was great for us.
We made art with our new Regional community and then were able to bring that work into our old town and show it! What fun!

Along the way we worked with 10 other incredible artists from across the state. At Fed Square we had a chance to spend time with them and most importantly their art too.

Our cast and crew of 12 enjoyed the opportunity and the joy of presenting the show in Melbourne.

As artists, Illuminated by Fire provided the opportunity for us to work in our Regional Community over a two year timeframe with a challenging, rich and intriguing idea: the complexity of fire. It was rigorous and wonderful.

 Creswick performance on River Terrace

In the words of Alan York:

Why there are so many different things in our world

is because they all have subtly different ways of doing things.

The trick is to be in some ways subtly different 

in the way you approach life. 



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