Tuesday, 29 September 2015

A Queer Revue!

Here's a cool press release about my new night happening this Friday...

The demolition of Legends is still mourned by Manchester’s LGBT community, the closing of Essential marked the last gay superclub in the city, and Kraak, home to a host of LGBT nights, has shut up shop. But sometimes in Manchester the answer as to where to put on a party can be right under your nose.

A Queer Revue! is an experimental venture mixing club DJs with a range of cabaret style performances that will take place on October 2nd at Band On The Wall. Over two centuries old, Band On The Wall began life as The George & Dragon Pub before becoming a renowned music venue in the 1930s and undergoing the change that made its Mancunian nickname official.

A Queer Revue! is the newest night to make a home there, brainchild of DJ, promoter and creative, Greg Thorpe, co-founder of Drunk At Vogue (you may have seen them launch the last two Manchester International Festivals) and resident/promoter at Off The Hook (City Life’s ‘Best Gay Night’ 2013).

‘I’ve always admired how the Vauxhall Tavern in London is integral to the identity of Duckie. It’s possible this is the first official LGBT party at Band On The Wall, but drag acts like Diamond Lil and Neville St Claire were regular performers there in the late 1950s, and that history of showgirls and servicemen, all that rowdy entertainment fits so nicely into queer history. I like that it’s in the Northern Quarter, but also on the edge of the city – that’s a very queer thing too,’ says Greg.

‘Once you’ve played at the MIF Theatre you don’t want to go backwards and at Band On The Wall we won’t have to. We have a historic venue at our disposal that includes terrific light, stage and backstage facilities that will give performers chance to shine, plus the DJs will love the soundsystem.’

The first line-up for A Queer Revue! combines three of the city’s favourite LGBT parties from the Queer Alt Manchester collective:

Bollox has been on the scene for a decade, thriving on indomitable spirit, loyal punters and eclectic playlists, and they throw in dressing up boxes, fledgling drag queens, bring-and-buy sales and more into the mix. DJ Rod Connolly and Bollox drag hostess Lill will both perform at A Queer Revue!

Cha Cha Boudoir is home to drag queen collective, The Family Gorgeous. Once a month at the Boudoir, Cheddar Gorgeous, Anna Phylactic and their troupe of queens satirise and pay homage to popular culture with their radical drag competition. DJ Danny Olsson-Lane and artiste Anna Phylactic will represent Cha Cha at A Queer Revue! with thrilling dance support from Tom Kuzniar.

Off The Hook is the long-running queer party playing hip-hop and RnB to a loyal crowd. At A Queer Revue! Greg will take the decks, with specially-commissioned dances from gifted choreographer Joshua Hubbard and the amazing Yandass from FlexN, who recently took MIF by storm.

Plus, in the beautiful adjoining Picturehouse Bar, queer short films will play on the giant screen while writer Adam ‘Beyoncé’ Lowe will be on hand performing as ‘The Telephone Poet’. A Queer Revue! will be hosted by a different guest compere each time and for the first party that duty falls to Salford’s finest drag powerhouse, Joyce D’Vision.

Greg says, ‘I like to think about the word ’Queer’ in both its old and new meanings. I like the sense of oddity and intrigue it has, and of course it’s a way for people to identify themselves on the LGBT+ spectrum. It’s a versatile and passionate word, I want people to be less afraid of it. The word ‘revue’ opens the night to all kinds of performance. In future I’d like comedy to sit alongside pop, burlesque with hip-hop, I want to make ‘vaudeville disco’ a thing…’

Friday 2nd October, 10pm till 3am
25 Swan Street, Manchester M4 5JZ, Tel: 0161 832 1111 www.bandonthewall.org