Anyone who was at Burning Man in 2010 will surely remember what to me is the most amazing stage I have ever seen, anywhere. Root Society had a 5-story high rectangle, with a massive DJ booth in the middle. There were dancing girls inside the rectangle, and unbelievable visual projections on the outside. The sound was phenomenal.
Jeff, the Captain of Root Society, shared some comments over on Alyssa’s PR blog.
We were challenged even before the tix disaster:
After 8 years in a row running Root Society, we took the year off in 2011 to quietly protest some ridiculous decisions bmorg made in 2010:
This in itself indicates a problem – Root Society was the best thing there in 2010.
We asked for simple consideration given to music theme camps:
-please don’t charge us a ticket for every truck we bring into the festival with gear to build and put on 6 days of entertainment free for your attendees
I can’t believe they even have to ask. This seems like a no-brainer.
-help us with well over 100 bags of trash that get left at our camp every year.
I call this “the ass end of the gift economy”
-help us MOOP where 15,000 people have made nightly residence instead of embarrassing us with the “red map”
A very valid point. It’s the people visiting from other camps making the MOOPs, not Root Society. They can be expected to clean up their own trash, but 15,000 people per night? At most other events, the promoters pay to clean up all the trash people dump on the dance floor.
-acknowledge that music has become a wonderful addition to the BM experience. This is one of our biggest themes each year. We push (subtle but firm) to integrate both art and music (a wonderful form of art!) into the grant program so we can create a awesome interactive experience AND offset some of our costs.
The music was amazing at Root Society, but their installation was about so much more than the music. The cost of it must be staggering.
This last challenge has always been met with the same answer,
“We never intended BM to be a music festival”.
I’ve been going since 98, and I remember one of my first impressions being how much great music there was, everywhere. Music of every kind of genre (this was before dub-step!).
Burning Man is one of the best music festivals in the world, and the promoters don’t even have to fund the talent. It’s churlish of them to take the position “we don’t want music, that’s not what it’s about” when they also take the position that “Burners create the party” – clearly this is what Burners want, 15,000 people at Root Society and that’s just one stage.
Back to Jeff’s comments.
And with this simple response, comes the assumption that we will just keep on “bringing it” each year–no matter what– SO WE DIDN’T in 2011!
Did the BMorg even notice? Your fans definitely did.
We were finally told point blank “that we don’t understand the basic burning man principles” and that it is our choice to do what we do. Why not just bring a small tent and a few gallons of water”. True.
2 important principles listed below:
Burning Man is devoted to acts of gift giving. The value of a gift is unconditional. Gifting does not contemplate a return or an exchange for something of equal value.
It is laughable that representatives of Burning Man said this to Root Society. Like, really, what assholes – “you don’t understand Burner principles”. They comped 60 world-class fucking DJs to play for us for free, on one of the sickest stages of all time. They brought their own trucks in, set up and tore down that stage, did it all themselves, gifted it to all of us, and Burning Man can’t just smile and say thank you? They should be throwing tickets at these guys.
We desperately missed being there in 2011, but found solstice in sitting out and we have every intention of coming back strong in 2012. We really just don’t know where to start…
note:we have been invited to a theme camp resource meeting on Feb 15…I’m hopeful.
This is the first piece of promising news I’ve heard since the announcement of this whole sorry ticketing fiasco.