Fire Dancing - Oahu

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NOTE: This page is a daughter page of: Fire Dancing


Covid Warning: These events are still in flux - they change all the time. This info was last updated Mar 18, 2022, but if you show up to an event I've listed and don't see anyone, try to call me or just look around the wider area for the glow of fire as it might have changed location slightly.


The fire dancing scene on Hawaii is incredible! It's one of the greatest things to do on the islands after dark, and you don't need to pay hundreds of dollars to see it at the Polynesian Cultural center. A wonderful community of Hawaiian locals spin fire for fun, and would love you to come along and watch! Some of the fire spinner will even give you free lessons if you want to learn. This article list out the events I know of on Maui and Oahu. It might be that you're just a tourist who want to watch some incredible fire spinning on the beach.... or maybe you are really keen to learn. Either way I hope this article sets you up with an amazing first night of fire.



Oahu Fire Scene

Oahu has a wonderful fire dance community and somehow the cops don't seem to mind about fire dancing around Honolulu, probably because the tourists are already packed so tightly on Waikiki during the day, fire dancing circles don't seem so bad. I also think the cops understand that fire dancing is a great way to keep the locals happy, plus tourists who stumble upon the fire dancing around Waikiki are absolutely delighted. I honestly don't know if there are other regular events on other parts of Oahu.... I think spinning events on the other side of the mountain are one off, or special events organized by the Trial By Fire community which are invite only. The Sunday dance I list below is probably the best one for tourists to come along to and watch.



Sunday Night - Fire - Hilton Lagoon

  • What: Sall Hilton Lagoon Fire Performers
    ... sometimes cancelled because of rain, but if you're in the area swing by!
  • When: Every Sunday ~ starting at sunset just a small number of fire spinners, but feels nice and intimate.
  • Where: Hilton Lagoon Wakiki just near the car park by the water. map
  • Website: N/A


Hilton fire dancing].


Wednesday Night - Fire - Natatorium Near Kaimana Beach

  • What: (Informal) Kaimana Beach (just south of Waikiki) Fire Performers
    ... unlike Sunday, this is a little more chaotic, but it's more locals, so it's a really fun energy also! Just on the northern edge of beautiful Kaimana beach is an unused tennis court which is perfect for fire dancing on cement. It's some of the same dancers as Sunday, and it's not even that far from Sunday's event *but* this is a more local beach - not quite as touristy as Wakiki - so you have more locals watching, and since it's a bigger space you might see 5-15 people dance at once (versus 3 max at Sunday). Concrete means you can spin off on the performance areas for some amazing effects!
  • When: Every Wednesday ~ starting at sunset with just a few people, but builds up at like 8pm to a decent crowd!
  • Where: War Memorial Natatorium between Kaimana Beach and Waikīkī Aquarium. map
  • Website: N/A


Kaimana fire dancing, with more pics and a video here.


Thursday Night - Fire Jam - Kapiʻolani Regional Park

  • What: (Informal) Kapiʻolani Regional Park (just south of Waikiki) Fire Jam
    ... This is *technically* a different group from the other events. Sunday and Wednesday are "Trial by Fire", and Thursday is "Fire Jam". Fire Jam used to be at Kaimana, but has moved - at least temporarily to the eastern side of Kapiʻolani, just next the car park become some "Karen" was complaining about every week. Honestly, the new spot is awesome too!
  • When: Every Thursday ~ starting maybe 7pm... with just a few people, but builds up much later (peaking 9-10) to a pretty big group most nights.
  • Where: Kapiʻolani Regional Park eastern side "3840 Paki Avenue Parking". map
  • Website: N/A
  • Picture Pending



Friday Night - Ecstatic and Fire - South Waikiki

The fire portion of this isn't happening anymore, so I've moved this piece to Ecstatic Dance - Oahu.




"Fire Jams" and "Trial By Fire" Together ❤️❤️

What's the difference between Trial by Fire and Fire Jams? Less difference than you think, they are both awesome! One thing I love is that they both lean towards the "please-don't-drink-and-spin" - they both like to uphold safety that has gotten better and better over time under guidance by Dhevhan from Trial by fire and Jaycob/Holly from FireJam. If you're a beginner learner who wants an extra disciplined approach trial by fire does free lessons, but if you gravitate against rules you might prefer FireJam, where you can get a more spontaneous party skill share if you ask. Once you get good at spinning, you'll just pick whatever event you're most feeling that week. Some weeks I do all three! Some weeks I'm exhausted and do none. There is a great overlap in good people and these groups have more in common than they realize - you can identify with both groups - just please be responsible and respectful of others wherever you spin (even if its solo on a beach)! It might come down to music preference too. :)


My only recommendation:

  1. If you start spinning fire at least do a skim over my Fire Safety for Fire Dancing article.
  2. Respect and celebrate people's different beliefs, always. ❤️❤️


My Initiation into Fire Dancing

I first saw (I mean really saw) fire dancing on a date in on Maui in November 2020, and was immediately captivated! It wasn't until January on Oahu at a Zouk lesson that the magnificent Irina suggested I try fire dancing. I went to my first lesson on Sunday at 5pm, and the amazing Lindsey and Dhevhan taught me how to spin a wooden staff, and I bought my own stick soon after so I could practice at home. Together with the talented DJ Pairadice (Cory), Dhevhan and Lindsey started the Trial By Fire community. Within a few weeks of practice, Dhevhan invited me to a beach burn with just a few friends and I spun for the first time with fire. It felt electrifying! I got so excited I immediately ordered my own fire staff, and started helping to get extra safety equipment and learning the basics of safety (see my: Fire dancing safety manual). A few months later Dhevhan asked me to be fire marshal and help to organize some of their events.

As Hawaii gradually becomes more and more covid vaccinated, Trial By Fire has grown and it's been amazing to be part of that community. I would highly recommend to anyone to say hi to the fire spinners after the show, and most are friendly enough that they will let you hold their fire toys and encourage you to come learn in a skill share. Just remember that you should practice *unlit* for weeks before you graduate to fire! And be warned that it's addictive! :)

Just like burning man, I love the principles of inclusivity, and I've been known to randomly invite many people to the lessons! My amazing dance partner Ann Swanson was one of the first girls I introduced, and now we often dance together as a couple with fire-fingers! Actually Ann & I are writing a book together now. Wohoo. If I sent you this article, there's a good chance I want you to try fire spinning too. It's not as hard as you think..... and it might not be your thing, but hey - the best people in the world are always keen to try new things. And you are probably pretty terrific!


Sincerely,

    Andrew Noske


See Also

Links


Acknowledgements: Thanks to Irina (who helped me discover fire dancing).... and of course the biggest thanks to Dhevhan and Lindsey for teaching me fire dancing and brining me into their community. These two people are actually a large part of the reason I decided to move to Oahu. It was supposed to be just a "one month" stay, but staying was an incredible decision for me! :)