Oslo Fakir School Fire — UPDATE

Earlier in the week, we had the misfortune of reporting that Håvve Fjell’s Fakir School was severely damaged by a fire. The exact cause is still unknown and a complete investigation is pending, but Håvve has sent us a status update and a bunch of photos from the scene. (Note: There are a couple spots with some very minor English translation issues/phrases I didn’t understand, but nothing that should obscure the actual story.) The good news: It’s not all bad news! Håvve’s report and photos are after the jump, and for those who would like to make a donation to the cause, please visit Suspension.org for details.

“What we know is this: Saturday night, August 15, a goodbye party for a friend of ours was scheduled to take place at the school. It was still early and only about 7-10 people had arrived. Nobody but the DJ was in the main room, where he had just finished setting up. The DJ then got a call with the tragic news that his sister’s boyfriend just died. I didn’t know the DJ or anything more about the circumstances, but he explained the situation briefly and took off. Minutes later, a blast was heard and the fire was spotted. Most likely, the blast was a spraycan with make-up fixation, with the explosion the fire escalated dramatically. The box with flamable liquids situated three feet from where the fire started was removed to safety and the extinguishers right next to the box (at this point within the flames) were put to use, but they were defective and did not serve their purpose. By the time the first bucket of water was thrown at the flames, it was too late—the building was evacuated and the fire department was on the way.

We were not allowed to enter the premises until the police had concluded the investigation on Monday. We are still waiting to hear from the police and we are of course anxious to learn what conclusion they have come up with from the investigation. (On a side note to that, I find it curious they have not at any point taken contact with me.) The cause is still unknown, and the theories I have are based on hunches and my reconstruction of the contents on the shelves where the fire started.


Good news first: Not all is lost! Nobody is physically hurt! Nearly all of the Wings of Desire suspension equipment is stored at Pinpoint Piercing and is intact! Pain Solution also keeps its office and archives at Pinpoint, so the paperwork has survived! We are performing all our scheduled shows one way or another with the props that can still be used. We are presenting our first post-fire shows on Thursday (tomorrow!), Friday and Saturday here in Oslo. The rest of the season we’ll find a way to keep up with the schedule.

Bad news: We’re starting from scratch. Pretty much everything is damaged to some degree. Some things can be scrubbed and used for now, but most of the costumes and props are destroyed. With luck we’ll get the smell out of the ones that escaped the flames…

All scheduled events at the school are canceled, which means a loss of income. Worse than that is we have lost our rehearsal space, our storage (not that we have much to store at moment) and our base. We don’t have the full overview on tools and lights, etc., but every inch of the venue is black from the soot. I don’t have high hopes.

Friday morning I will be meeting the representative from the owners’ insurance company to get an estimate on the damage cost. As for us, we don’t have insurance for Pain Solution, but we’re looking into what our personal insurances might cover.

The Effect

The emotional effect is taking its toll, that’s for sure, but I don’t think whining about my depression will do any good so I’ll leave it at that. The support from our friends and the community is touching and donations are already coming in, so that gives us hope and strength to keep it up and move on. Pain Solution will rise from the ashes like a phoenix! With a little help from our friends.

Thanks to everybody for the support!

- Håvve”

12 thoughts on “Oslo Fakir School Fire — UPDATE

  1. What a disaster!
    Thanks for keeping us updated. Thank goodness no one was hurt… Still, losing everything is a miserable feeling.

  2. such a tragedy… i’ll be making a donation just as soon as my check hit’s the bank…

    and, btw…. however macabre, the photos were oddly beautiful in their own right….. beauty out of destruction….

  3. Oh god, how terrible! And I agree with Cris B., the photos were beautiful in that whole “phoenix rising from the ashes” way.

  4. It sucks big time for you guys.

    But… just like number 2 the pictures are absolutely beautiful, and if you could put up a show in the middle of that desolated place it would be for sure a super-impressive show. I was thinking of your keeping the burnt “pain soslution” banner as a reminder.

    These pic made a super strong impression on me

  5. Fires are so devastating…
    Good luck to everyone involved in getting it up and running!
    I agree with the above posters..the photo of the charred “Pain Solution” sign is quite beautiful, if sad.

  6. This is really, really shitty and I in no way want to undermine how incredibly lame this is. But I have to say, the picture of the Pain Solution sign looks pretty cool.

  7. That’s such a fucking shame.
    If they launder anything that they salvaged with a can of coke a cola
    it will take the burnt smoke smell out of it. Guaranteed.
    I know from experience…
    I wish them all the best

  8. You know what they could actually do…take the burnt reminants and use them as props…they are called “Pain Solution” it kinda fits…and those things in the pictures could actually work as great props for their shows…

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