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Peculiar Hand


Paul was Director of Woodford’s Fire Event from early 2003 until early 2011. He is a veteran of well over 60 Fire Events, both in the NT, and along Australia’s eastern seaboard (from Airlie Beach in FNQld as far down as Port Arthur in Southern Tasmania), with Neil Cameron Productions, between 1991 and 1998.

Our Fire Philosophy / Thanks to Our Team

Our Fire Events : synopses and pics

(Click on the images below to see larger versions)

Large lantern imagesThe Fire Event is the Closing Ceremony of the Woodford Folk Festival.

This event is an annual ritual performed on the night of January 1st. The celebration of our lives is woven into the chosen theme for the year, and features large sculptural imagery, fire effects, Firey Hour Glass Imagechildren’s lantern procession, massed choir, the Aboriginal fire lighting ceremony, dance, theatre, large puppets, bonfire, fireworks, and more... all linked to the songs, poetry and music running throughout the one hour experience.

Fire Lighting Ceremony
The Fire Event always starts with an Aboriginal Ceremony Man who, after creating fire using the traditional sticks method, gives the flame to the MC to continue our Fire celebration.

The lantern processionNot long after, the stunningly beautiful Lantern Procession appears, where more than 500 children and adults take part, carrying cane-and-paper lanterns made during the week of the festival.

Fire Choir
The Fire Choir sings from the heart, the songs that they have learnt at daily sessions each morning of the festival.
The Dreams and Wishes of the festival goers for their coming year are also recorded during the festival and ritually burnt during the Fire Event.

Clootie Cloth BurningClootie Cloth BurningClootie Cloth Burning

The ceremony culminates in the Spectacular Burning of a huge 15 to 20 metre ceremonial image with firework display as the music reaches a crescendo, then gradually gives way to a beautiful, calm serenity as the crowd reflects upon the dying embers. A truly awe-inspiring experience.

The tower in flamesExhaltant CrowdDying Embers

Delve a little deeper into the Woodford Fire Events
for which Paul has been the Artistic Director...

After the ceremony 2005

Paul & Richenda after the 2005 ceremony
... a well-earned beer and a well-earned rest!

Many wonderful photographs and short videos of
past Woodford Fire Events can be seen on Steve Swayne's Flickr and YouTube websites.