The Vampyria Trilogy: an insider view

The Vampyria trilogy was born on 24th August 1997 under the shadowy light of a last quarter moon. By tarot-guided numerology, we can ascertain particular influences for any given date in time. These influences fall into four categories: Personality, Soul, Growth, and Growth Cycle. Although this work is usually applied to people, it can be useful in analysing an event cycle like Vampyria because of its manifold nature. We shall deal with the Personality and Soul numbers individually, and look at the Growth and Growth Cycle patterns later.

From the date of the event itself we can derive a Personality number and a Soul number: Personality representing the outer appearance of the person, or in this case event – how others perceive it; Soul representing the inner workings and meaning which guide and inspire the person or event – how it perceives itself.

In the case of Vampyria I, the Personality number was 13, which equates to the Death card in tarot, which – contrary to popular misconception – represents transformation and change far more often than it indicates an actual death. It is a positive card, not a negative one, indicating a rebirth from the past into the future. V1's Soul number was 4, the Emperor, who is a pioneer of new ways of doing things, someone who looks to the future and seeks to initiate change.

Taken together, this gives us a clear indication of what V1 was numerologically starred to do: it was a pupal stage in the life of vampire events. Whilst drawing on, and indeed celebrating, the traditional form of the vampire as denoted by the figure of Dracula, it did something which no-one previously had dared to do. It suggested that Dracula was not the be all and end all of the vampire, it brought newer, rawer elements into play as well – blood in a stage ritual was at that time a novelty feature of vampire events, and Black Metal was unknown to most of those who considered themselves vampires.

As the Maiden, V1 pandered to the Dracula mythos without bowing down submissively to it. As the day opened, the appearance of the vampire and his three brides through the rising floor of London's spectacular Hippodrome gave an indication of where this event was really coming from. It was rising from the bowels of Mother Earth, from the rejuvenating cauldron of the Crone who takes us all in as we die. This was a birth, a re-birth, and the world of the vampire was changed forever...

Vampyria II occurred on 27th September 1998, at the junction of the new moon into its first quarter. Using the same individual datings, we arrive at a shared Personality and Soul number of 9, the Hermit. This conjunction suggests that the inner workings of the event were much more widely appreciated by those looking at it from outside, and this is borne out in the greater media attention this event received, and the larger number of people who flocked to the event. One could be cynical and say that of course it was bigger, since one of the biggest bands on the planet was headlining, but many more people came just because it was a Vampyria, because it was already known as the place to be if you wanted your vampires visceral, sexy and over the top. At first sight, the Hermit might seem to contradict this idea of media monster, since our popular conception of a hermit is of someone who hides away from the real world and seeks solitude. This is undoubtedly true, but there is more to the Hermit than this. By looking within for the answers, the Hermit is in the best position to light the way for those without, and he is both illuminator, wise oracle and guide.

As the Mother, V2 enacted this hermitic role to perfection. It shone a great and glorious light upon the inner workings of the vampire, even showcasing an Ancient Egyptian resurrection ritual, and the glorious multi-tiered womb-like venue of The Camden Palace (even the name suggests the residence of a supreme Goddess!) acted as the perfect place to blazen the name of the vampire to its heights. This event could not be topped – it was the crest of the circle, and it was time to spin a little darker...

Myth, the evolution of Vampyria III, took place at the dark of the moon on 5th December 1999 at the appropriately named Complex venue. Sharing the same conjunction of Personality and Soul number 9 with Vampyria II, it continued the twin themes of enlightenment and oracle, a fact given even more significance by the fact that this had become – by a sequence of unforeseeable occurrences – the Crone event of the trilogy. Darker, more mysterious, with an emphasis on self-learning rather than being preached at from a centralised stage, Myth confused some, but delighted almost all. If anyone walked away from Myth dissatisfied, it was because they had learned nothing from the cycle so far and had failed to understand what Myth was about.

Myth returned the vampire to its underground roots. Instead of presenting everything in a blaze of glory on a single stage, instead of feeding images and information to the masses, it demanded a more interactive approach from its audience. To get the best out of it, you had to be prepared to find your own entertainment. There was much to choose from. Each floor of the venue had a different ambience, a different function. In the basement you could experience the materialistic end of the spectrum, buying items of vampiric interest from a selection of stalls; on the ground floor you could witness bands and the electric atmosphere of a more conventional 'gig'; the second floor hosted a superb dungeon, with the emphasis on audience participation for those brave or open-minded enough to try it; the top floor was home to small ritual and fetishistic performances and even a bit of sauce!

Like the Crone, Myth could be all things to all people. There were no boundaries to what you could experience except those created by your imagination or inhibitions. You could indulge all your senses – watch people, listen to music, explore your own darkest desires. The learning curve has turned, and it was time to assimilate what the trilogy had taught you. Many people – attendees and crew alike – have stated that the atmosphere at Myth was the best of all the events. It was more friendly, more open, more accessible to chatting and meeting people, ultimately more Pagan than any of its predecessors. A worthy conclusion to the trilogy...

Or was it? On 8th December 1999, under the influence of the last new moon of the millennium, Vampyria III happened. It was unexpected, unprepared and completely unscripted. It occurred at a small venue in Norwich, with maybe only 60 attendees. Even I was not there! This event, though being in essence a gig (featuring Myth headliners Théâtres des Vampires), had all the friendly atmosphere and vampiric openness of a Vampyria event, and when Vampyria host Louis Ravensfield took to the stage and announced that Vampyria III was happening here and now, the crowd yelled its agreement.

V3's Personality number was 12, the Hanged Man, another hopelessly misinterpreted card of the tarot. The Hanged Man is all about sacrifice, but a sacrifice given freely and willingly in order to gain knowledge and wisdom. For those closest to the source of the Vampyria trilogy, this is a concept we can all relate to. The Hanged Man also suggests rites of passage, karmic lessons learned and resolution. V3's Soul number was, appropriately enough, 3, the Empress, a fitting conclusion to a trilogy which has been modelled on the divinity of the three-fold Goddess.

To ascertain the Growth number and Growth Cycle of the events which made up Vampyria, it is perhaps most appropriate to look at them as a trilogy, even though there were four parts to this trilogy! The cycle began with V1, which appropriately enough fell in the first year of the Hierophant cycle (a cycle lasts 10 years). The Hierophant is a teacher, a guide, an instructor – and it is this spirit of communicative learning which has been the watchword of the Vampyria trilogy throughout. We have never been content with presenting clichéd formulae and tired imagery, but have forged ahead to create something new, unique and hopefully revelatory to many. By V2, the cycle has reached the year of the Lovers in the Hierophant cycle, a perfect point for the highlight of the trilogy and the one which best captured the spirit of the Mother. Myth and V3 both fell in the year of the Chariot in the Hierophant cycle, which represents a sense of balance, the solution between light and darkness, good and evil, publicity and secrecy. If by the time of Myth and V3 you had not begun to learn the message of the trilogy, it was probably too late – hence the few letters of complaint we received from some quarters. For most, however, the lessons had begun to sink in, and this is the message of the Chariot: control, balance, acceptance. A fitting conclusion to the cycle, but do not make the mistake of thinking it is over just yet... for where one cycle ends another begins, and the next card dealth in the pack is 8, Strength. Wait and see...

see also on this site: His Vampiric Eminence Vampyria II Twins of Evil Vampire Society

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