This event was part of our 2019 Edition

Phoenix Eric Minh Cuong Castaing / Shonen

Irish Premiere

France / Palestine

Open a window into two realities – one innocent, the other deadly.

© Sebastien Lefèvre

This piece for drones and dancers evokes two opposing realities – one of innocent childhood play, the other of deadly modern warfare.

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€22 full price / €18 conc.


Project Arts Centre, Space Upstairs

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How long?

50 mins approx. (no interval)

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Post-Show Talk: Sat 11 May

From the show

© Sebastien Lefèvre
© Sebastien Lefèvre
© Sebastien Lefèvre
© Sebastien Lefèvre
© Sebastien Lefèvre
© Sebastien Lefèvre


Not a dance piece, not a performance, not a conference, but a little bit of all that. Indefinable, disturbing, intriguing. [With the potential] to change the perception of Gaza. And maybe even that of dance.


Phoenix unsettles by its distinction into two universes (...) that do not seem made to converge.


A dozen tiny drones, while passing in front of the microphone, write the notes of an unpublished musical score.

Le Figaro

The artistic miracle often takes place where you do not expect it (...) It is the choreographer Eric Minh Cuong Castaing we owe this epiphany.

M Le Magazine du Monde


This piece for drones and dancers evokes two opposing realities – one of innocent childhood play, the other of deadly modern warfare.

At first playful, the swarm of surveillance drones on stage interact with three dancers. They cross paths, approaching and retreating from the microphone, to create the work’s unique and unsettling soundtrack. Then, connecting in real-time via Skype with artists in Gaza, Phoenix opens a window into another world where the roar of drones, and the threat they represent, are ever present.

These artists speak and share their dances with us – their artform, an act of resistance. Using video footage, the audience also follows the breakdancing collective, Myuz GB Crew, as they practice their acrobatic parkour in urban areas of Gaza.

A collaboration between the Palestinian artists and the Shonen company, Phoenix continues choreographer Eric Minh Cuong Castaing’s exploration into the interplay of dance and technology.


  • Concept & Choreography Eric Minh Cuong Castaing in collaboration with the dancers
  • Performers (On Stage) Jeanne Colin, Nans Pierson, Kevin Fay
  • Performers (Via Skype/Video) Mumen Khalifa, Myuz GB Crew (Meuse Abu Matira, Hamad Abu Hasira, Mohammed Abu Ramadan)
  • Drone Pilot Scott Stevenson
  • Translator Tamara Saade
  • Dramaturgy & Design Assistance Marine Relinger
  • Dramaturgical Advice Aloun Marchal, Alessandro Sciarroni, Pauline Simon, Anne-Sophie Turion
  • Lighting Sébastien Lefèvre
  • Sound Design Gregoire Simon, Alexandre Bouvier
  • Technical Assistance Julien Léo David, Mahmoud Alhaj
  • Cameraman (Gaza) Mostafa Abou Thoria
  • Video Pierre Gufflet
  • Video Editing François Duverger
  • Coordination (Gaza) Suzanne Groothuis, Ingrid Rollema, Pieter de Ruiter
  • Production Juliette Raffier
  • Administration Maxime Kottmann

Phoenix was created by the Shonen company, in collaboration with Palestinian artists living in Gaza. The piece notably includes a video work made by the breakdancers collective Myuz GB Crew, who practice acrobatic parkour in the urban areas of Gaza.

Co-commission by Ballet National de Marseille | Festival de Marseille | Pôle Arts de la Scène - Friche la Belle de Mai | Charleroi danse, Centre Chorégraphique de Wallonie – Bruxelles | Via-Danse-CCN de Bourgogne Franche-Comté à Belfort | Institut Français du Liban | Tanzhaus-nrw (Düsseldorf) | 2 angles (Flers) | Hellerau – European Center for the Arts Dresden | CCN de Créteil et du Val-de-Marne / Compagnie Käfig direction Mourad Merzouki dans le cadre de l’Accueil Studio | Support DRAC PACA - Direction Régionale des Affaires Culturelles Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur | Institut français in Paris and Marseilles city | Fonds Transfabrik – franco-German fund for live entertainment | Participation DICRéAM | Groupe de la Caisse des dépôts et Consignations | Hope Foundation in Gaza | studio lending Laboratoires d’Aubervilliers.

  • Embassy-of-France