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In order to answer some of the more frequently asked questions, we've put together this glossary of terms relating to the fire arts - and other FAQ's.

If you have any further questions, please don't hesitate to contact Clare through info@firepoise.com


GLOSSARY


Fire Dancing / Spinning / Twirling
Choreographed fire dancing is what FirePoise is all about.
We use a number of fire props to create patterns of fire, which our performers choreograph to music.

Poi
A weight on the end of a tether. In the case of fire poi, this is a Kevlar wicked ball on the end of soldered chain, held in each hand using a leather loop handle.

Staff / Double Staff
One or two sticks (usually made from aluminium), with Kevlar wrapped around the ends. Fire staff performances often use a 'burn-off' at the beginning (outdoors only). This creates two big, brief balls of fire - replicating the effect of fire breathing - very dramatic.

Fans
Held in each hand, fire fans are very beautiful, creating lovely fluid patterns. Our fire fans are five thin metal tubes with Kevlar wrapped around the ends.

Fire hands
Very effective for starting a show, fire hands create a much smaller flame that appears to sit in the hand of the performer. Similar to fire hands is an 'orb' - a smaller flame that appears to be floating between the hands.

Hula Hoop
The addition of fire to an adult-sized hula hoop creates fabulous patterns and looks great as part of a larger show. Metal prongs are securely attached to the hoop at various points, and Kevlar is attached to the ends.

Clubs
Club swinging with fire uses many of the same movements of poi. They can also be held perfectly still and used as a beacon or torch.


Fire Juggling
Juggling with fire is another popular form of fire performance. Jugglers use clubs to create their own patterns, which can be as a solo or double passing routine.

Fire juggling is quite static, so we don't use it too often as part of our shows. However, we have worked with some fantastic fire jugglers and are happy to include them in any show you wish to create.


Fire Eating & Breathing
Fire eating is the art of extinguishing a flame in the mouth.
Fire breathing is the art of expelling fuel from the mouth to create a large burst of flame.

FirePoise performers do not use fire eating or breathing as part of their shows, however, if you do require a fire eater, we can provide one.

Fire breathing, on the other hand, is extremely dangerous - even the most seasoned fire breathers are reluctant to perform this regularly. We have found that the burn-offs created from fire staffs more than make up for the visual impact of fire breathing.

OTHER FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS


What happens if it is bad weather?
FirePoise are very flexible and will wait for a reasonable amount of time for a break in the weather (we have rarely been rained off completely). However, outdoor fire performance should be considered in a similar way to fireworks, so in the event of heavy rain or strong winds (where the performance would be unsafe), we would not be able to perform.


Can you perform inside?
Yes, we can. All FirePoise performers are covered by full public liability insurance which covers us for indoor fire performance. However, this is subject to the venue (smoke detectors/heat sensors may have to be isolated with the venue's permission). The area should have a ceiling clearance of at least four metres, with no overhanging obstructions. There should be a clear performance space, with no through traffic. We often carry out a site survey before an indoor show.


Is it safe?
Safety is the top priority for FirePoise performers. All props are checked carefully before the show, routines are rehearsed thoroughly and the performance space is checked for trip hazards. All fuels are stored safely away and for each FirePoise performance, we bring a fire technician - who looks after and prepares our props during the show. A fire blanket and fire extinguisher is present at all performances.


Why do you need a fire safety/technician?
FirePoise are a professional fire performance group and we are very proud of our perfect safety record... this has been made possible to a large extent because we always supply a fire safety technician to look after the safety of the audience and performers and to take care of the fire props and fuel. Fire dancing is very different to fire juggling - there is considerably more fire involved which regularly travels behind the back of the performer... Any fire performer you hire to attend your event should consider safety their top priority and we can do our best to ensure this by bringing our own safety crew. Having our safety crew at each show is also a requirement of our Equity insurance policy.


How much does it cost?
The cost of a fire performance varies greatly depending on the number of performers, complexity of the show and distance required to travel. Please contact Clare via info@firepoise.com to discuss your idea.


Do you do charity work?
We are asked every week to perform for free for a charity event. While we would love to support every charity that contacts us, it would just be impossible to do so. As a result, we have chosen two charities, Macmillan (www.macmillan.org.uk) and Marie Curie (www.mariecurie.org.uk), who we continue to work with and support.


Is travel extra?
FirePoise are based just outside Belfast in Northern Ireland, so travel within the Greater Belfast area is included in the price. Anything outside this will incur an extra charge to cover petrol costs. In addition, if the performance is a considerable distance from our base, we may require accommodation to be provided.


How long do the shows last?
The standard time for an outdoor choreographed fire show is just over 20 minutes. We find this is the best amount of time to really wow the audience. An indoor fire performance can last between five and ten minutes. However, for meet and greets and nightclub performances, we can perform 'freestyle' for much longer.


Can you provide insurance and risk assessments?
Yes, all FirePoise performers are covered by full public liability insurance, specific to fire performance. Performers also carry child protection training and all performers are proud to be members of Equity. Risk assessments specific to the event will be provided on confirmation of the booking.


Do you work as an agent for the other acts listed on the site?
No, FirePoise is not an agency - we specialise in providing fire performers. The other acts listed on this site are among the best performers operating in Ireland today and we are delighted to have worked with many of them in the past. If you wish to hire them alongside a fire performance, we will look after the booking. However, if you do not wish to hire a fire performer, then I will pass on your details to the act you are interested in.

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