Ultimately this was a far more exciting, dangerous, and interestingly programmed experience than the more sanitised circus plus orchestra concerts that have become almost as ubiquitous as film score concerts in recent years
— Limelight Magazine
In this classical concerto, fire is an instrument of the orchestra - musicians shoot up in the air performing daring acrobatic stunts, taming and manipulating fire while music literally springs to life from all corners of the concert hall.
— Sonja Schebeck, acrobatic violinist

Image by Andrej Grilic (c) 2019

Image by Andrej Grilic (c) 2019


Tale of The Firebird’ is a concerto for violin, fire & orchestra composed & created by Chloé Charody. The work was commissioned by funding from The Australia Council for The Arts in 2018. This work aims to fully integrates three art forms: modern circus, contemporary art-music & physical theatre, with a compelling narrative conveyed through movement and physicality. This work has been written specifically for Sonja Schebeck & The Freestyle Orchestra’s unique capabilities, where the music, movement, and fire performance are conceived simultaneously.

Image by AJF Photography (c) 2019

Image by AJF Photography (c) 2019


‘TALE OF THE FIREBIRD’ premiered on June 7th 2019 at City Recital Hall, Angel Place for Sydney’s VIVID Festival 2019.

Music, story & direction by Chloé Charody. Movement direction by Remi Wortmeyer. Lighting design by Peter Rubie. Rigging & aerial design by Kate Reid. Fire performance & choreography by Sonja Schebeck & The Freestyle Orchestra.

Featuring: Sonja Schebeck (The Firebird), Charlotte Fetherston (The Raven - violist) & Gemma McDonald (Mother Bird - aerialist)

Ensemble: Luke Spicer (viola/conductor), Chanda Vanderhart (piano), Claudia Cox (violin, floor movement), Antonio Chorbadzhiyski (cello/floor movement/fire), Edoardo Blandamura (double bass/fire), Ezmi Pepper (cello), Victoria Jacono (violin).


Photos by David Vagg (c) 2019

Photos by AJF Photography (c) 2019

‘Dance of The Firebird’ (Movement II from ‘Tale of The Firebird’) @ Bruknerhaus, Linz May 2018