Playa Choir is known for the inspiring Sunrise Performance at the Temple and our Rollicking Service at the Playa Choir Dome- but there is sooooo much more that goes on behind the scenes and before the Burn to make this all happen. One of the critical parts of the camp is the physical location itself. Not only is there a 30′ Tall Dome where we rehearse and perform, there is the infrastructure of the Camp. Each of these structures must be erected, maintained and properly stowed away to use the following year.
Our Amazing Build Team lead by Guthrie arrives the week before Burning Man. All members of the Build Team have “Early Entry Passes” and are allowed on the Playa the week before the actual event begins. All of Playa Choir equipment and structures are stored on a nearby Ranch on the “Kool Bus”. The first wave of the team, meets with the Burning Man Placement team to check out the footprint of the camp and prepare the bus to arrive on Playa. Once the bus is on Playa, the Infrastructure is built- starting with the kitchen.
The Kitchen is crucial for Build Week, as our Early Entry Team works extremely hard in the heat and must be fed and kept hydrated. During Build and Strike, meals are prepared by the Galley Crew. The complete menu, shopping and planning are all done over the summer in preparation for this week. Many meals are prepared and then frozen for on playa preparation.
Once the kitchen is built, work on the Dome and the rest of the shade structure can be accomplished. There are two teams that work during the Week- The Erection Team and the Detail Team. The Erection team does the actual building. This is heavy work, requiring climbing ability and the use of power tools. The Detail team is less physical and focuses more on making the spaces attractive and livable.
After the Dome Performance on Sunday- Strike begins almost immediately and many folks stay after the Service is over to help out. The Dome must be cleared out to prepare for the Crane which comes later that afternoon and takes down the Dome. Real “Strike” begins the next day. Everything must be inventoried and checked before it is loaded on the bus. We have to know what needs to be replaced for the following year. The Camp is taken down, sorted and packed away in bins and stored on the bus. The Galley Crew again goes into service to feed the Strike Team as they work to pack everything up. Everyone is exhausted by this time of the trip- so the work is doubly hard.
When everything is packed up- the final Leave NO Trace/ blow / MOOP session begins. Arm in Arm the team goes over the footprint with a fine tooth comb, picking up every single fleck of glitter, loose sequins or stray eyelash until our spot is returned to the playa with only footprints to show we were there. The Strike team then returns to the Ranch to store the bus for the off season and have the propane and gas tanks refilled. Everyone is on the road heading back home by Wednesday.