They set up a couple furnaces, as well as props or molds relevant to that year’s story. This year the story was a group of vikings battling a dragon. There is also music, either live or pre-recorded, to go with the event.
I’ll be honest though, as great as the story concepts are, they aren’t the best part. The best part is just people doing insane things with molten metal.
Pouring molds is a tiny part of it. They splash it around, fling globs of it at metal cutouts of men, pour it into wooden molds, and generally set everything in their arena on fire by the end of it.
And it is amazing. In addition to being really cool and really pretty it also grabs that bit of your brainstem that is still a monkey terrified and fascinated by fire and holds on nice and tight.
This is molten metal, the hard unyielding stuff our modern world is made of. And here, under the gantry cranes of the Steelyard courtyard there are humans playing with it.