Where HAVE you been, son?
Yeah, I went to the Black Party – the annual springtime celebration of rebirth. I danced and danced and had loads of fun. I didn’t get home until after the sun had been up for hours. If you really wanna know the dirty details, hit the jump!
The night started when I met up with my posse in a new friend’s apartment in Chelsea. Crazy fun Brazilians fed me champagne and beer until it was time to go to the party. At 1 am on Sunday morning. Fully decked out – some of us in new gear, others in well-worn outfits, we enter the Roseland Ballroom. Oddly enough, I run into a friend from San Francisco on the way to coat check (where people were checking a lot more than just coats). I need a beer – conveniently, the bar is at the top of the stairs for the low low price of $7. Hey, cheaper than at a Yankee game.
After acquiring a beer and using the restroom, we entered the dance floor. Seriously, 5000+ super hot men from everywhere in various states of sexy costumed glory. Let’s dance! The lights and riggings were incredible; rivaling those I’ve seen 10 years ago at the mega-clubs I went to in Portugal. Huge mirror-ball in the center, lasers, spinning lights. Production values were high all around, the centerpiece being the mountain constructed on stage with a central cave which was even outfitted with a fireplace (which was from Bed Bath & Beyond I think). Later on the cave entrance would be used to slaughter a woman dressed as a pig and was the stage for a white-afro wearing diva. Who was she anyway?
My crew coalesced up front toward one side, which became known as “lost children”. This served well as a space to return to after wandering the halls and witnessing the various “acts”. Some of these acts were sanctioned performances and others were spontaneous. Some acts involved sports gear, metal hooks, fluorescent paint, camping tents and mini-flashlights. I’ll let you put all that together, but it was a decadent, hedonistic affair in many ways. I hung out for a while with the balcony DJs because they were playing awesome tunes. Much better than the “thud thud thud” on the main floor. There were some bright moments on the main floor. I loved hearing “Like a Prayer” and “Where the Streets Have No Name” and dance hardest when they played. Friendly faces surrounded me the entire time and the vibe was nothing but great fun.
There were stage shows at various times, some of which were previously mentioned. I was making a valiant attempt to make it until the third DJ took over for the “Morning Music” set I was promised. Patiently I waited with the other dancers, many who just arrived at 9 or 10 am specifically for the morning set. The transcendent, light, flowing disco music never appeared. Slowly, my compatriots left to go sleep. I made it until 11:15 am only because I was walked over to the buffet table for some cookies and fruit. Still, I was tiring of the relentless thumping that kept interrupting my attempts to dance to the music I wanted to hear. I took my sore back down to coat check, retrieved my fleece, and walked home from midtown. Thank God I packed my sunglasses in anticipation of the cruel outdoors.
To say the night was memorable is a gross understatement. I was in awe of the spectacle of the thing, and had a tremendous time. I’m glad they don’t have one every week, because I couldn’t take that kind of living more than once per year.