Flaming flares

Juggling bottles and blowing fire aren’t in most people’s job roles.

For Angela Robledo, or Angel as she prefers to be called, it’s all in a days work.

A flair bartender at Jillians, the Brazilian born 26-year-old can frequently be seen juggling bottles and swinging burning balls of fire while aptly mixing a heady cocktail.

As well as a flair bartender Angel entertains crowds as a fire performer at special parties and events.

‘I love every minute of it,’ Angel says of her more unusual job.

A resident in Cayman for the past seven months, Angel says she initially became drawn to the art when she organised a flair bartender to perform at an office party in Brazil.

‘From that moment on I knew that was what I wanted to do,’ Angel quips, adding that she quit her ‘pencil-pushing job’ there and then.

She explains that she promptly enrolled on a three-month course to learn the art of bar flair and says she hasn’t looked back since.

That was five years ago and since then Angel has been travelling the globe demonstrating her fire throwing and bar flair skills.

Tools of the trade are minimal. Poi fire sticks – a two foot stick or metal chain with a paraffin soaked ball at the end – cocktail bottles and obligatory lighter fuel and matches are all that are required.

‘You have to practice a lot in the beginning,’ Angel explains. ‘If you practiced all the time you could be good after a month, but some of the more complex moves take longer to master.’

Angel adds that the easiest move is to blow fire from your mouth, but stresses that it still takes practice.

‘You have to be shown by someone, otherwise you will hurt yourself. It’s easy to accidentally burn yourself,’ she warns.

Angel must be a natural. She hasn’t burnt herself once, she says.

Asked whether she would return to her ‘pencil-pushing job’ she laughs.

‘No way,’ she says, explaining that her hope is to one day open her very own flair bar.

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