Interview with the Silver Man

The interview was conducted on May 7, 2004. "Qs" = my questions; "Benji" = his answers.
In case you haven't seen the show, it's nightly at Palladium in Acapulco (3:30 or 4:00 am).

Qs: How many years have you been the Silver Man at Palladium? How did you get the job?

Benji: I have been doing this for 4 years. I got introduced to the owners of Palladium, told them about my plans for the show, and they gave me the job. I had performed in Mexico City, but without the silver paint - the character is originally based on the mystic dancers of the Aztec culture, but it has evolved over the years.

Qs: Was there another Silver Man before you? Did you come to Palladium and watch him and think "Man, I want to be the Silver Man!"? (Because secretly, I think that every guy wants to be the Silver Man).

  Benji (R) and I (L) at Palladium
Silver Eyeballs  

Benji: Actually, I am the original Silver Man. The idea has spread, so now there are Silver Man copycats in other cities.

Qs: What's the hardest part of the job - the costume, the fire, or the dancing?

Benji: Getting to Palladium on time. . . and the heat.

Qs: How long does it take to put on your costume and makeup? Is it uncomfortable? Do you paint every part silver? (the girls want to know if your "chile" is silver too)

Benji: It takes around 20 minutes to get ready. It's a little uncomfortable when there are lots of people in the club because of the heat and less air circulation - that makes it a little hard for me to breathe. Haha! Yes, I paint all my parts silver ;)

Qs: Have you ever had any accidents while dancing on stage with the fire? Have any of the "borrachos" caught fire? What is the craziest thing that has happened on the stage?

Benji: One time the end of the torch came off and burned a girl's hair. And I have fallen off the stage because it is very slippery with the paint and sweat.

  On Stage at Palladium
Got a Light?  

Qs: Who is the artist who plays that song that you dance to? Are you tired of the song yet? What other song would you like to dance to?

Benji: The songs are by a group from Belgium called the D-Devils. It's a mix of several songs including "The 6th Gate", "Dance With The Devil", and "Sex & Drugs & House". They're cool songs, so I don't get tired of them. I always dance like it's the first time.

Qs: Do people recognize you as the Silver Man when you are not Silver? Do you ever wear the costume outside of Palladium?

Benji: Friends and sometimes friends-of-friends recognize me as the Silver Man when I am not in costume. No, I don't wear the costume outside of Palladium. It's just a character / show. My personal life is different.

Qs: What else do you like to do for fun (other than dressing up like an Aztec warrior, dancing around in front of thousands of "borrachos", and waving around a lit torch)?

Benji: Drinking beer, going to the beach, swimming, surfing, exercising in the gym, jogging.

  The Devil's Torch
El Azteca  

Qs: What are your favorite discos or bars (other than Palladium)? What are your favorite restaurants in Acapulco?

Benji: Palladium is my favorite club. I also like Disco Beach. My favorite restaurants are Suntory, Sushi Itto, Casanova, and Mezzanotte.

Qs: What's your favorite thing about Acapulco? What is your least favorite thing about Acapulco?

Benji: My least favorite thing about Acapulco is that the government should be doing more to promote the city. The thing that I like most is that I am in paradise. I'm in Heaven here. And I am not going to take it for granted.

Qs: Can I be the Silver Man sometime. . .

Benji: No problem! :)

IMPORTANT NOTE: Due to the popularity of Benji's show, he now has numerous imposters. Follow this link for more information about the original El Azteca.

  The Silver Man