Working

How Does a Fireworks Designer Do His Job?

Meet Phil Grucci, the CEO and creative director of Fireworks by Grucci.

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If you’re planning on watching a major fireworks display this Independence Day, there’s a good chance it was designed by this week’s guest.

Phil Grucci, the CEO and creative director of Fireworks by Grucci, is the sixth generation in his family to design, manufacture, and engineer firework displays. His family company has made a global reputation by putting on some of the world’s most spectacular pyrotechnics shows, including this year’s Fourth of July fireworks display in Washington. As the head of the company and lead designer, Phil touches every part of that operation, from modeling out the elaborate displays to walking the factory floor. He tells Jordan all about how he started to love this business at the age of 5, everything it takes to plan a show, and what exactly is inside a firework.

You can email us at working@slate.com.

Podcast production by Jessamine Molli.