10 Questions with Brian Estes

Have you ever wondered how your favorite FAI event comes together and who exactly makes it all happen? This series aims to answer that and more, 10 questions at a time.

We sat down with Brian Estes, Director of  F.L.A.M.E. Festival and asked him our burning questions.

1 – What brought you into the flow arts?

My first experience with flow arts started in the rave scene of the late 90’s early 2000’s. Glow sticking and stringing were popular then. After 2004 I didn’t see flow arts again until Alchemy 2011, my first burn. I saw fire poi for the first time and told myself I was gonna do that. It’s been a wonderful road of performance flow and prop manipulation ever since.

2 – What props do you manipulate?

Contact staff, dragon staff, poi, fans, fire breathing

3 – Why did you decide to become an organizer?

My love of flow arts and the community around it inspired me to act and take on more to help perpetuate this wonderful community into the future. Also my love of creating spaces and environments as a creative form of expression.

4 – Take us behind the scenes. What is a typical day like in the life of an organizer during the festival?

Pretty normal as any attendee would experience, but depending on our role we stay on 24/7. Sometimes we are answering radio calls, helping instructors or vendors with issues, inspiring fellow organizers or attendees by keeping a good light-hearted curious attitude and problem solving on many levels, but a lot of the time we are relaxing, learning and flowing with everyone else.

5 – What is your favorite class you have ever taken at a festival and who taught it?

Intro to fire breathing by Phoenix Draco

6 – If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?


7 – What book, film, or TV show has influenced your life the most?

Star Trek TNG

8 – What other talents do you have outside of flow arts and organizing?

Welding and metal sculpting, building flame effects, motorcycle customization and all things mechanical, and music–playing instruments and some electronic mixing for fun

9 – What is your favorite item to bring to a festival, besides props and basic necessities?

Flame effects

10 – What is some advice you could give to someone attending F.L.A.M.E. for the first time?

Stay open and curious. Participate as much as possible and pace yourself so you can.

Awesome! See you next week at F.L.A.M.E.!


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