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  • The Bug

UPDATE: Modifyre 2020, Community Forum & Message from CC

Image: Spygel

Dear Bugs,

We know you have been waiting for news about our Burn, and your patience with us is greatly appreciated. We have been monitoring the situation closely and consulting with the relevant authorities and community stakeholders as things continue to unfold.

Since our online AGM is this Sunday (5th April), we invite our members to take part in a COMMUNITY FORUM to discuss our options, before we make a final decision about Modifyre, and the activities that BURN Arts will focus on facilitating for the next few months.

As is so beautifully put by our founder Carol “CC” McHugh below, while some in our community feel that it is best to cancel this year and come together bigger and brighter in 2021, there are still some things to consider- we are an adaptable and resilient bunch brimming with ideas, and there are plenty of options that may not look like our original plan but better suit our current situation. Rest assured that we will be advising of next steps soon, and in the meantime, we can confirm that tickets are fully refundable, and whatever the outcome, Modifyre will still be financially stable to continue in 2021.

The event page for the AGM is here, and includes instructions for making your voice heard if you cannot attend:

If you need your ticket refunded ASAP to get through the next few months, you can email and we will happily get that sorted for you.

Again, thankyou for your support, and we look forward to seeing you there!

With love,

The BURN Arts Committee

Message from CC:

Warm greetings fellow burners of Brisbane and region

Many of you will know me as CC, one of the founders of our local burner community. I had some thoughts I wanted to share with you regarding these strange times.

The virus impacts are huge, uncertainty, job losses, cabin fever, sickness and loss. All this on top of drought and then devastating bushfires. It has been an emotional roller coaster with the added anxiety about what to do with our beloved Modifyre. I do not speak for our responsible entity, Burn Arts Inc, but before any calls are made I would like us all to consider the following.

If there is one thing that describes burners, it is that the spirit of immediacy and self reliance means we can be resilient, adaptable and able to respond rapidly and with consideration to situations.

There is less urgency to a potential postponement of Modifyre than for many commercial festivals as we are in a position where money does not need to be committed until quite close to the proposed date. Should we proceed with the proposed date, there would be many reasons why some of us are prevented from joining us, from emotional weariness, financial stress or sickness. We may miss many of our old faces but a lack of ticket sales or relying on last minute sales would not substantially harm our financial footing.

Some think cancellation is the right thing to do. It is not a black or white situation. We are more flexible and creative than that. Whatever decision is made, it doesn’t have to be a negative. There are many options, from putting together a last minute Modifyre on the due date, to postponing Modifyre, or planning a smaller weekend or 1 day celebration when the time is right (like Minfyre), to taking the extra time to create an even better burn next year, or even focusing our energies on other activities. Use this page as a forum for all of you to make suggestions or raise them at our virtual AGM next Sun, then put your trust in those who have to make these decisions, those who have come to these roles through their long standing dedication, hard work and love for our burner community.

Burners have so much to offer, skills, love of community, creativity, a sense of social responsibility and a resilience that many in our wider community do not have. All of this is sorely needed in the world at this moment. My personal preference is for instead of creating Modifyre this year, for all this to be channelled into helping our neighbours, our suburbs and the vulnerable during these difficult times. This is what I will be doing. As a at-risk person I am in lock down but have managed to include necessary grocery items in my delivery for a neighbour who couldn’t afford the extra cost of delivery and delivered them to his door stop. I have taken in a grandchild to help out parents open to exposure and phoned elderly neighbours to allow them to have someone to talk to during the shut down.

There is a precedent for this when burners coalesced into Burners Without Borders (BwB) to help out after Hurricane Katrina. BwB have since been a force for good in many other calamities. There is a link below to find out more.

I am sure you can all find and share ways together to help others using this page as a starting point. In the meantime I am continuing to hand-make the Green Tags for our next burn whenever that may be and creating art for the paddock.

I wish you all well. Burn bright, let the flame be a sign of our love, give virtual hugs, and above all take care of your beautiful selves.


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