Salon.com Features New Report on Phoenix Rising

Jun 01, 2007

Posted by EdwardTLC
Uncategorized

Online publication Salon.com has a new report online, chronicling the Harry Potter conference that took place in New Orleans last month. “Potterpalooza” gives us an in depth look inside the event with interviews and insights from many who attended Phoenix Rising. Among the many things the article highlights is Wizard rock, with such bands such as the Whomping Willows, the Remus Lupins and the Parselmouths performing throughout the conference. Other things featured were the various panels at the conference.
While many facets of canon were explored, panels that debated the many types of character, shipping, and others that drew parallels between Harry Potter and other centuries or great works, came to the forefront of the academic discussions. However, it was the character of Severus Snape that brought the most fire to one of the panels. The article notes that:

The debate was fabulous. It centered on whether Severus Snape, Rowling’s ingeniously ambiguous character who concluded the sixth book by knocking off his staunchest defender, is a good guy or a bad guy. It’s the question that for me — and apparently for many of the couple hundred people filling up the ballroom — is at the crux of Rowling’s narrative.

If Snape were really a baddie, pro-Snape playwright Meg Belviso pointed out smartly, it would be something of an anticlimax, considering that at the end of the last book, he killed the series’ most benevolent protagonist. Good point! But, countered the anti-Snapist Nick Rhein, “it will be a much deeper and a much better written book if she doesn’t redeem him.”

Also, the topic of Journalism was also mentioned in the article. A panel featuring three of TLC’s editors spoke on the convergence of Potter fans and professional journalists into the fandom, and how it has evolved. Our own Melissa Anelli was interviewed on her many experiences in the article, giving insight on the background of the fandom, the plans for a hetic summer, and her plans for the future.

Finally, the Masquerade Ball, the final event of Phoenix Rising, was a convergence of most every part of the fandom. Salon.com reports on this highlight of the event noting: “There was someone carrying an inflatable goat, dressed as Hog’s Head barman Aberforth Dumbledore; a silvery mermaid was in a wheelchair; a woman who looked like Mr. Tumnus scampered around with hairy haunches and an overexposed upper body.” Wizard rockers played into the night and one attendee summed it up saying, “…this is better than prom.”

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10 Responses to Salon.com Features New Report on Phoenix Rising

Avatar Image says: YAY!!! I'm on page 3!!!Avatar Image says: do you have to login to read the whole article? the article cuts off. :(Avatar Image says: Thanks for passing this along. Looking at the excerpt in the TLC post, the mind boggles. IMO, Snape doesn't have to be "redeemed", i.e., turn out to be pure and kind and wonderful, to have been working for Dumbledore in truth. In his shoes, I'd simply want to be rid of that Dark Mark control and move on with my life. He's still a loathesome sort of person, to handle his students the way he does. Being exacting is one thing, but he's outright insulting and demeaning and doesn't think twice about it. Then there's the whole blame / hatred thing he lumps onto Harry because of James. Despicable, really, as I reckon it's not just a handy cover he maintains as a double agent.Avatar Image says: Oh this gives the impression that all that was going on at Phoenix Rising was fan girls drunkenly screaming and everyone talking about Snape. I was there and there were some great academic papers delivered raising some excellent points and showing us some of the themes and patterns that have appeared in the books to date. I give a big thumbs up to Phyllis Morris's excellent paper on how Jk does misdirects us through the books but never cons us, it was most enlightening. Also Robin Martins paper on literary sponsors in books was an eye opener. And even though I hate Snape with more venom the Sirius Black, it was extremely interesting to attend one of his lectures regarding the ability of Good Wizards to perform dark arts. Which kind of backfired a bit because by the end I was convinced by his argument, but also noted it meant that he was evil and bad, so I went away happy if nothing else. Of course later I was most aggrieved when I was deducted 10 points, for turning up at the ball as the unnamed Gryffindor, by a Snape who was slow dancing with a women, most disconcerting that image will haunt me for ever. But my most enjoyable memory was watching the The Malfoys and Sirius Black disco dancing. I guess a family that plays together stays together in the end. Phoenix Rising was a great Conference, informative educational and fun, it was more then the wizard rock and the Snape panel. I can't wait for Terminus, thanks again the organisers of Phoenix Rising it was a pleasure and honour to present three round tables for you. Avatar Image says: "Wizard rockers played into the night" Just have to point out hat Wizard Rock wasn't played at the Masquerade Ball. :P The cloeset we got was when i requested them to play 99 Red Balloons. ;)Avatar Image says: Just a question to people who went. At the ball were the volunteers dressed up as characters etc or the attendees? ThanksAvatar Image says: As a fan who didn't attend the conference, I enjoyed this article quite a lot. The writing is good, and the writer obviously knows her Potter.

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