Nocturne for Rookery
In 2014, Neare, in collaboration with Redmond’s Arts Program Manager, Joshua Heim, spearheaded the reclamation and renovation of a bramble-clogged 4.5-acre parcel of land in downtown Redmond. She convinced the mayor and the departments of parks and public works to resurrect this one-time heron rookery. Although suffering years of neglect, it had wonderful potential as a place for community, performance, and communion with nature.
At twilight on August 21, we inaugurated the Heron Rookery as Redmond’s newest public park. Audiences joined a lantern processional from the Night Market into a grove of noble Douglas Firs where the great blue heron once nested. Here, audiences were invited to rest on blankets or in one of dozens of star-gazing beds, while menageries of luminous Grandmother Owls, Alchemist Cats and Moon-Drunk Rabbits wove a primordial evergreen rite. Nocturne for Rookery reminded a thousand audience members of the innate, enduring majesty of these regal trees—and the urgency of preserving “something of the wild” in a rapidly growing urban community.
Nocturne for Rookery was commissioned by the City of Redmond, and supported by the generosity of individual donors. Lucia Neare’s work was supported by an Impact Award from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation.
CAST AND PRODUCTION TEAM
Creative Collaborators: Lucia Neare, Rhonda Sable, John Small, Katie McKeller, Dwight Beckmeyer, Christopher Mael, Sarah Hartley, Cathy Madden, Ned Beebe, Dean Paton, Karen Lewis, Jan Wallace, Candace Frank, Christina Halverson, Katie Kovacich
Musicians: Dwight Beckmeyer, Rich Eckert, Holly Eckert Lewis, Cary Black,Toby Hansen, Dean Paton, Eric Likkel, Brandon Vance, Lucia Neare
Performers: CLOCKS: Christian Swenson, Lee Ann Hittenburger, Winfield Hobbs, Alyza DelPan-Monley, Barret Withington, Kaitlin Ziehr, Matt Aguayo, Parlin Shields, Emma Todd, Arthur Deranieau, Serena Deranieau; MOON-DRUNK RABBITS: Justice Beitzel, Marilyn Young, Dara Lillis; GRANDMOTHER OWLS: Christl Marcontell, Nasim Simmons, Fumi Murakami; ALCHEMIST CATS: Kathryn Padberg, Kristina Dillard, Calie Swedberg, Esme DeCoster; AMBASSADORS: Guy Caridi, Rico Fierro, Amy Mayes, Rachel Ferguson, Katelynn Braga, Lori Stein; SLEEPYHEADS: Kari Morehouse, Lisa Swihart, Jordan Colvard, Jenny Gerber, Wendy Samuels, Cody Strauss, Gina Coffman; HORSE MOTHERS: Robin Campbell, Kristianne Huntsburger, Lorraine Lau, Becky Stansell; SWAN QUEEN: Lucia Neare