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Forums > Events, Performances and Gatherings > BE AWARE of the Middle-East email asking for performers....

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Charles
Charles

Corporate Circus Arts Entertainer
Location: Auckland
Member Since: 27th Jun 2001
Total posts: 3989
Posted:It seems a number of us have been emailed about working in the middle east at the beginning of next year.

A serious word of warning...I've heard of a number of cases where people have gone over to the UAE (United Arab Emirates) for work, performing, tradework and otherwise.

A number of them resulted in very unpleasant treatment, in particular the women, but also a number of men.

There's a number of cultural reasons why Westerners may have trouble adjusting, and sometimes the cultural reasons are genuine and sometimes garbage made up by a dodgy businessman!

If you get in trouble in a foreign culture, you often have nowhere you know of to turn to, so this situation can get very messey very quickly.

Please please please be very wary of work in this area, and try to get current references from westerners you know of who have retruned happily.

If anything seems dodgy, or too good to be true, be very very careful...

I have sent them an email asking for any NZ performers currently in NZ who have worked with this person and I for one would not go over there without talking to several people who relate good experiences.

Think of the number of dodgy club-owners/businesspeople you know of in your area and then apply that percentage to this situation.

Please, everyone, be very very careful, (especially the ladies!)

[ 08 September 2002, 19:18: Message edited by: Charles (INFERNO) ]


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Jez
addict
Location: UK, London
Member Since: 11th Apr 2001
Total posts: 642
Posted:Yeah I just assumed it was SPAM and got rid of it as I have proper channels to book our fire troupe. They probably could not afford what I would have charged them anyway!!!!!!!!

'Happiness is liking peeing on yourself. Everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth.'

'If *I* had a hammer, there'd be no more folk singers.'


Charles
Charles

Corporate Circus Arts Entertainer
Location: Auckland
Member Since: 27th Jun 2001
Total posts: 3989
Posted:Are you kidding me, Jez? There are some of the richest people in the world living right next to each other the middle east!

The dude in Dubai for example who took a patch of sand and built a giant gambling resort that is one of the worlds newest cities. He did it on a whim!

I'm not saying the money isn't there, I'm saying be very careful if you accept work from them, because the cultural issues can turn a bad gig into a nightmare.


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* Is it the Truth?
* Is it Fair to all concerned?
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adamrice
adamrice

poo-bah
Location: Austin TX USA
Member Since: 19th Dec 2000
Total posts: 1015
Posted:Thanks. I actually got that note, and I'm intrigued, but I'm also mindful of the possibility of things going badly awry.

Laugh while you can, monkey-boy


AardvarkOnAcid
member
Location: San Francisco Bay Area
Member Since: 5th Jul 2002
Total posts: 92
Posted:So I spent 3 months in the UAE about two years back. Is the mail for something in the UAE or somewhere else?

I would second what charles says. I would be wary about any job that didn't pay travel expenses there and back, and with someone whose history of paying people you can look up. One "amusing" point, is that offers and in a few cases I've heard of even contracts have a mysterious way of changing once you're actually there. Some jobs require you to leave your passport with the employer (I was doing IT for a bank). You really don't want this to be stipulated in your contract unless you're dealing with a very large and very reputable company. Oh... if they don't offer a contract before you get there, think really hard about actually going halfway across the world for a gig.

Oh, and if you have dark skin be prepared to have people look at you funny. On the other hand, blond blue eyed scandinavian types generally get treated fairly well. Also, if you're female I would strongly advise against going alone.

Then again, given tensions in the region, I personally would have issues about going there.


Is that all life comes down to? To be lying face down with an overenthusiastic guy in pink pin-striped pants sitting on top of you and grunting? -- Random MusingsSex, Drugs and Psytrance.


DarkFairyQueen
member
Location: The Underworld
Member Since: 9th Mar 2002
Total posts: 557
Posted:Thanks Charles

I was a little wary of it. While I'd love to go overseas to perform, my experience of the Middle East is also highly negative. I've only been to one part of it so I feel bad condemning the entire area, but it was truely the most dicusting holiday I've ever had.

Needless to say I'm not tempted by their offer in the slightest.


Az abouve, So below...


Fire_Emanator
member
Location: Australia
Member Since: 14th Aug 2002
Total posts: 96
Posted:I reckon it would be pretty hard for them to rip off a whole troupe, and I am also sure they would not do it in this current political clicmate...George Bush and John Howard are both itching for an excuse to bomb the crap out of anywhere as long as it is somewhere in the middle!
UAE is also one of the richest countries in the world, so they are not short of money at all, so it may seem incredible, but even US$ are monoploy money to them. I really cannot see why anyone would want to kidnap a group of fire performers..., strippers, masseuses maybe(!) but fire preformers? ( Imagine being trapped inside a dingy club made to fire breathe everyday until your lungs give out, for nothing more than bread and water and romps with the Sultan!)

I guess money up front is the way to do it, or at least a considerable deposit, that covers all expenses and then some...as for handing over your passport, there is nothing except an AK47 that would make me do that. It wil be interesting to see what transpires!


Free your mind and your ass will follow!


Fire_Emanator
member
Location: Australia
Member Since: 14th Aug 2002
Total posts: 96
Posted:On the other hand....sounds a bit like that Nigerian scam....They'll probably ask for a $25 fee to get onto their books or something like that!

Free your mind and your ass will follow!


Charles
Charles

Corporate Circus Arts Entertainer
Location: Auckland
Member Since: 27th Jun 2001
Total posts: 3989
Posted:In an interesting twist, I have a lot of work around the period they are asking (Americas Cup time in New Zealand) and cannot go on those dates anyway.

The person emailed me back and asked for me to send them a demo tape of my show.

So EUREKA!
I replied asking him to send me a stamped self-addressed envelope big enough to fit a video tape in and that I would get one out to him. I gave a PO Box number (it would be silly to give them my home address)

If that envelope actually arrives, it may be more legit than I think it is.

Just have to wait and see i guess


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Flambabe
member
Location: Los Angeles, CA USA
Member Since: 12th Jan 2002
Total posts: 16
Posted:I, too, have received this email and just politely replied that I was not in the position to go to that part of the world at this time. I think that with the anti-American sentiments in that part of the world, it is a bad idea to head out there. I would feel like a human target.

I would not even feel safe going there under American military escort and transport!!!

Of course, I am still curious as to what unfolds so keep us all posted!!



Maximus
member
Location: Upland, CA., USA
Member Since: 13th Dec 2001
Total posts: 250
Posted:I, too, got the email. Is he using the "performers for hire" part of HoP? Several of the troupes in California got offers. We're all suspicious and talking about it.
I got as far as researching the Dubai agency and I found that they have hired models from Japan and Sweden to go there.
Only one woman of all the fire performers I talked to was willing to consider going.
I'll go--but I would like to hear from anyone with experience.
Considering the youth of our art, they may have never had fire performers before now.

Maximus



clydenova
member
Location: Boston
Member Since: 17th Dec 2001
Total posts: 4
Posted:Of course, last winter winter while travelling I found that for 2-3 hours of spinning on the streets I could pull in about $200 a night in major cities in Switzerland. And I didn't have to report back to anyone else.

My accomodations - about $15 a night in hostels. Transportation - hitching rides with other street performers/people. And in addition to the money I found people would leave me beer, cigarettes, bread and chocolate from time to time which also helped keep expenses down.

And that was free spinning on my own, usually with no music.

Of course, I still might consider Dubai if things look legit.



wulff
member
Location: SA, TX, USA
Member Since: 24th Sep 2001
Total posts: 79
Posted:We(botf) recieved this e-mail as well. One of the first things I did was talk to my gf who used to live in the UAE and still has friends living there and said it should be fine. They said that they would like 2-45 minute performances per day while we are there (but didn't specify if this was to be each of the 30 days). He asked for a copy of our demo tape, and I think I will use the same method as Charles in regards to sending this.

And they did use fireperformers.com website to locate us.

I think it would be an interesting experience based on the conversations I've had with people I know who used to live in that area.

If anyone has been to this area to perform, and/or dealings with this company, we, the botf would appreciate hearing from you.

But yeah caution is always a good idea w/ business ppl.. shaddy b*st*rds heheh


wulff


swiftythefireguy
member
Location: abbotsford , bc canada
Member Since: 3rd Dec 2001
Total posts: 61
Posted:WHY DONT WE ALL GO ! THERE IS STRENGTH IN NUMBERS AND WHAT AN EXPERIENCE THAT COULD BE ALL THE HOP'ERS OUT FOR A MONTH THEN WE CAN ALL GO SOMEWHERE LIKE NZ OR AUZ OR WHATEVER AND JUST HANG BUT IN ORDER FOR ALL OF THIS TO WORK IN HARMONY WE MUST SET AN EAQUAL RATE SO THAT EVERY ONE MAKES SOME SERIOUS DOUGH AND WE ALL GO AS A TEAM WE WORK TOGETHER FOR EACH OTHER AND THIS COULD TURN OUT TO BE AN amazing expeirience!

LETS MAKE THIS WORK

ROLL CALL PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!!


dont ever ask me whta time it is ?where are we? or are we there yet? because the time is now!we here !and we wil never be there !


Charles
Charles

Corporate Circus Arts Entertainer
Location: Auckland
Member Since: 27th Jun 2001
Total posts: 3989
Posted:Hmmmmm....Perhaps someone left their caps lock on by mistake?

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SmokyDavy
Do my poi look too small in this?
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Member Since: 17th Jan 2002
Total posts: 394
Posted:Loud talker..

quote:as for handing over your passport, there is nothing except an AK47 that would make me do that.considering how many heavy assault rifles and other such weapons I saw when I was in Egypt and Morocco, I'd not be surprised if that could be arranged

I got the e-mail too, I told them there's a lot of performers closer to them that they could hire instead.

[ 13 September 2002, 16:32: Message edited by: FieryFlow ]



Maximus
member
Location: Upland, CA., USA
Member Since: 13th Dec 2001
Total posts: 250
Posted:I've been emailing the guy and checking this out. I just sent him a detailed 8-page proposal for a 20-member company. I am getting a videotape together for for him, too.
I asked for a lot of money. I think the best fire performers should be paid salaries equivalent to those in the established performing arts, such as singing and theatre.
Also, all us Americans felt we should be getting some kind of hazard pay for risking travel to that part of the world. The women are especially troubled. We have eight in the company.
And Kuwait was one of the venues he mentioned. I will not allow my troupe to go to Kuwait in case of war. And I'm not so sure about going there in time of peace, either.
So far so good, though. Anybody else sending off proposals may contact me off board.

Maximus



Bram....
member
Location: the arms of the Ganja Goddess
Member Since: 17th May 2002
Total posts: 1551
Posted:Swifty, I like your thinking. If we did it in August or even better July, I will come along if possible

You. Its whats for dinner!

As time passes, you realise all the mistakes you amde and the ones you wish you never did make.

The wave crashing on the beach


swiftythefireguy
member
Location: abbotsford , bc canada
Member Since: 3rd Dec 2001
Total posts: 61
Posted:well it was left on by mistake but it does make the point!

dont ever ask me whta time it is ?where are we? or are we there yet? because the time is now!we here !and we wil never be there !


Flambabe
member
Location: Los Angeles, CA USA
Member Since: 12th Jan 2002
Total posts: 16
Posted:I emailed with Maximus on this and of course, my opinion for MYSELF, is not to go since now the US is on alert in the middle east (when are they not?)

HOWEVER, if you are considering this gig, here are a few suggestions. Call the US embassy or your country's embassy and discuss the offer with them. Find out what to watch out for and ask what resources you have available to you in the event you run into problems. Have an attorney with international contract experience look over any legal paperwork you receive from the promoters. And if it all checks out, let everyone know where you are going and when you are excpected home - even all of us in the fire community--that way, if god forbid, something happens out there ou have a shitload of people to work here on this end to assure your safe return.

Just my two precautionary cents.



Charles
Charles

Corporate Circus Arts Entertainer
Location: Auckland
Member Since: 27th Jun 2001
Total posts: 3989
Posted:Flambabe - That is an excellent way to go about it!

I'm going to do that from now on for every international booking I get, whether it's in Aussie or Dubai.

Brilliant...


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* Is it the Truth?
* Is it Fair to all concerned?
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pozee
old hand
Location: san diego
Member Since: 27th Jul 2001
Total posts: 886
Posted:I got it to, there is too much risk involved. TRUST ME!

anyone got a light?


Maximus
member
Location: Upland, CA., USA
Member Since: 13th Dec 2001
Total posts: 250
Posted:I appreciate the way Flamebabe volunteered to watch our backs. We'll keep everyone informed and we are pooling information with the other groups putting proposals together. It is only natural that fire performers should watch out for each other.

We have Arabic-speaking persons well-traveled in the region in our company, but we would still like to hear from anyone who has done this before.

And pozee--I value your opinion on this. Exactly what are you talking about? The general threat to Americans in that part of the world in these pre-invasion hours? Or something specifically fishy about this deal?

Maximus



Goddess_Of_Pyre
member
Location: Michigan, USA
Member Since: 15th Aug 2002
Total posts: 107
Posted:you talking about this email???Hi,

we are an event management company based Dubai providing entertainments options for major festival organizers, Hotels, clubs and corporate events in Kuwait, Oman, Bahrain, Qatar and UAE.

we are interested in hosting your show in our city for one month from 15Jan to 15Feb, I would highly appreciate if you could send me your detailed proposal including the number crew, the technical and staging requirements, costing excluding tickets, cargo, food and hotel accommodation as soon as possible to enable us to prepare our feasibility study.

Thanks and regards

Maher Barakat

Director

Caprice Event Management

tel: 00971 4 2821112

fax: 00971 4 2828101

email: caprice@emirates.net.ae

P.O.box: 32553

Dubai

U.A.E

Yeah I got it..I just ignored it. I wouldnt go for a million bucks to perform in that neck of the country these days


And all my days are trances And all my nightly dreamsAre where thy gray eye glances And where thy footstep gleams-In what ethereal dances By what eternal streams. Edgar Allan PoeThe prophet is a fool and the religious man is fucking mad, and for the multitude of your sense and your inequity, and the great hatred......NANCY BOY


pozee
old hand
Location: san diego
Member Since: 27th Jul 2001
Total posts: 886
Posted:quick question maximus. i am very uneducatd in the movements of our government, but is this the same area that bush wants to go in and do crazy shit with? i could be wrong, all i know is that we are gearing up for something and that is all i cna tell ya. if it is nto the same area and you are covering ALL your asses, then it may be worth it. just be very careful. but if it is in the same area that bush wants to hit, than dont go for fear of getting stuck somewhere you don not want to be...

oh yeah and before you go we HAVE to get together...

[ 19 September 2002, 14:07: Message edited by: pozee ]


anyone got a light?


Raphael96
old hand
Location: New York City
Member Since: 8th Sep 2002
Total posts: 899
Posted:You're much safer in Tunisia anyhow.

Nice beaches there too..

Raph



tau neutrino
member
Location: singapore
Member Since: 19th Oct 2001
Total posts: 35
Posted:Hey there you guys...my two cents worth on the email.

Well I would suggest that any one intending to do this , take the necessary precautions... As you should with any business deal. *Any opportunity has its risks.* Sure the uncertainties are highr when you have to fly to another country , but you should read through the contract even if the club down the street is offering you a gig...

Any way. I dont know this particular company, so i cant help there. But where i do have little bit of knowledge is the middle east. I think alot of you will be surprised when you actually touch down in dubai or kuwait or something or some of the UAE you will be surprised how rich it is. Dubai really has a Vegas feel to it. not as glitzy (not yet). but they put in a lot of money in to making it a world class city. which means that most probably will pay well. They are probably reaching out to fire performers because they want to enetrtain the very very rich to something novel. These middle east countries spend insane amouts of money to keep the rich satisfied. You would not believe how opululent the some hotels there are. The rich there know how to live it up. My business has many dealings with the middle east , i have been there often...I find it a pity that the mental image that is conjured up of th emiddle east is one of purely one of squalor and barbarism. It would be like focusing on the ghettoes in the US, if not the bizaare church practices in the bible belt and taking jerry falwell as the yardstick for the national mood of the people. It is a more conservative place than most the US. That doenst mean everyone there is out to ripp you off or chain you and kidnap your children. I find that view unnerving...I find alot of middle east bashing going on everywhere...i got kinda edgy when i kind of felt that here...Anyway i got to thinking if the same oppurtunity was ... say.. brazil would all the responses have been the same?

Now my take is , if you take necessary precautions reading the contract, and you are travelling in a troupe it shouldnt be a big problem. And even a half up front payemnt schedule could be worked out. And the middle east like every other country has their own laws, would pay to find out what they are too. And foreigners in *any* country are under greater scrutiny than the locals...And besides its a month we can keep our tails in check till for that long..

Well if i had a crew i would do it. it would be fun. sorry if i offended anyone here. yeah i kind of went off on a rant... And yes lots of great points was raised by some of you... i hope i had some to add...



FireMikeZ
FireMikeZ

Laguna dude
Location: Laguna, California, US
Member Since: 24th Jul 2002
Total posts: 1438
Posted:[expanded from a post moved over from Pele's older UAE thread, now deleted there:]

Maximus & Charles, good to use the old "qualifying technique" of requesting a SASE -- not because you save the promo $ on the envelope, but to check seriousness of interest before you blow it on producing & copying & sending demos, & in case at the other end they just want samples for locals to learn, etc. . . DID EITHER OF YOU get a response SASE from the Dubai or other people around there?

ikarus, thanx for good heads up on da culture/biz!

& thanks for broader warnings, Charles. i see you copied over your posts from other threads too.

yes, OrangeFire got them, and maybe i got them personally too.

assuming they're for real at all, it's not clear in their offer if they are going to book us, or wonder if we want to go there booking ourselves. there's a half-reality possibility, because certainly entertainment out there does get handled by the smaller states, they do a lot of global conventions. it's flattering, though may not have much substance. but more after i see what Charles turned up, unless anyone did more, and shall we continue the discussion here, after reading Charles threads, as most up-to-date convo, rather than posting into those which are otherwise activity-dead? what say y'all?

[ 20 September 2002, 03:38: Message edited by: FireMike ]


molten cheers,

~ FireMike

FireMikeZ@yahoo.com (personal messages welcome, no promo spam, please!)
Laguna, California, US


Charles
Charles

Corporate Circus Arts Entertainer
Location: Auckland
Member Since: 27th Jun 2001
Total posts: 3989
Posted:Actually, no sign of the self addressed stamped envelope yet...

I'll give it a few more weeks and see what happens.


HoP Posting Guidelines
* Is it the Truth?
* Is it Fair to all concerned?
* Will it build Goodwill and Better Friendships?
* Will it be Beneficial to all concerned?


Flambabe
member
Location: Los Angeles, CA USA
Member Since: 12th Jan 2002
Total posts: 16
Posted:Maximus,

Yeah, I got your back. And everyone else's too.

In addition to your countries embassy, maybe we should start exploring the different resources available to us as fire performers traveling abroad and post them to this site.

Just a thought.



adamrice
adamrice

poo-bah
Location: Austin TX USA
Member Since: 19th Dec 2000
Total posts: 1015
Posted:Charles--
Just to play devil's advocate, it is not easy to send an international SASE. The post office can sell "b coupons" that can be redeemed for stamps in the destination country, but I'm pretty sure they're not available for anything larger than a letter (like, say, a videotape).


Laugh while you can, monkey-boy


Page: 12

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