If you are looking to make a big splash at your next event, you want something high energy, dramatic and fun. Depending on your theme a fire show might be the perfect answer – but where do you start? I am a fire performer with fifteen years of experience in the industry, and I’m here to offer a little help in planning your big Fire Show with all the necessary safety measures.
6 Tips on hiring fire performers
1. Get a recommendation
If you are lucky, one of your friends or family will have hired a fire performer in the past or know someone who has. It’s worth asking around to find out if someone might have a lead on a good entertainer in your area; recommendations are most likely to lead you straight to the best talent.
2. Permits & liability
Who is responsible for making sure the venue and the performers have their permits and insurance in order? You are! If your fire dancers are any good, they will likely offer to do the legwork for the permitting and talk to the local fire prevention authorities on your behalf. They have the experience and the knowledge in this area so let them take care of the red tape, but make sure you get a copy of all the documents. Many states and provinces have fines for performing with fire and without an open flame permit and you could be on the line for big money if you get caught. Better safe than sorry.
3. Minimise Distractions and Maximise Focus
No matter how good the performers might be, if your guests are distracted they might blink and miss the show. Fire shows are stunt and trick based so if you look away for a moment, you are likely to miss something amazing. Do your best to make the experience a good one for everyone by making sure there are no visible distractions around the performance area and that the performers are given a proper announcement to help direct the attention of your guests to the spectacle about to begin.
4. Check Out Your Performer
It is reasonable and recommended that you ask your fire performers for proof of insurance, a safety plan and references. Not only does this give you added peace of mind, if they have these documents on hand it is an indicator of an experienced, professional, full-time performer who is likelier to give you a quality show.
5. Googling for Performers
Anyone can put together a nice looking site in minutes these days. Don’t be fooled by stock photos and website templates. Look for lots of pictures and videos of your performers doing their show in front of many different audiences. Look for awards and quotes on the website, and make sure this is not their first rodeo. You don’t want to accidentally book a newbie for the price of an experienced professional.
6. Read the Safety Plan
Your fire performer should provide you with their safety requirements. This will include information like fueling systems, the distance the performer must be from the audience and whether you will be asked to provide a fire extinguisher on site. If you have agreed to these safety requirements and don’t follow through, the performer may refuse to perform. That’s no fun for everyone, so please read the safety plan and the performers requirements.
That’s it! Fire shows are beautiful and impressive, making them a great choice for many galas, festivals, and corporate events. However, they can be dangerous if performed by inexperienced amateurs. These steps will help protect you from liability and harm and make sure you get the most out of your artists.