Saturday, as soon as it’s dark, suddenly the mass of 50,000 people and numerous art cars that were running around in chaotic directions up to now all start to migrate to one place.
The middle of the city is where the Man stands. And tonight, he burns.
You sit down as close to the man as you can. Rangers stand guard to protect the inner perimeter. Drinks are passed, you make new friends with the people sitting next to you as you pass the time.
Suddenly, you hear a drum beat. a procession of drummers and keepers of the flame walk around the inner circle
The processional members eventually reach their destination in various places around the man.
The man, for the first time all week, has his arms reached above his head.
And as the drums pick up from a slow beat into a tribal rhythm that you can feel through the ground you are sitting on, the Conclave starts.
The Conclave is the word for the fire performers who perform at this special moment.
Troupes from all over the country and world apply to be part of this. They work on their choregraphy and costumes for over half a year.
when they are done, fireworks will engulf the Man and he will burn.
and guess what….
I’m going to be part of it!!!!
I joined the philadelphia fire conclave group!!!! I’m equal parts scared and excited. Many of the people in the group are just OUTSTANDING artists, and I’ll have to bust my ass from now until Burning Man (last week of August). But I’m excited about how much better I’ll be by then, and the people in the group are amazing and supportive.