Black Party NYC 2014

Are you truly ready for this year's Black Party? NYC's Roseland Ballroom will be hosting the raucous affair for the last time; here's what you need to know

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Photograph: Peter Lau

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Photograph: Klaus Enrique

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Photograph: Caryn Waechter

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The Black Party

The Black Party, NYC's reliably raunchy annual celebration of the arrival of spring, turns 35 this year—and oh, how it’s blossomed, from its humble beginnings in the East Village to a sprawling multi-day celebration of seasonal hedonism.

RECOMMENDED: Top things to do in New York this spring

Officially titled Rites XXXV: The Black Party, the massive dance/performance/kink party lasts more than 12 hours and draws some 5,000 revelers to the Roseland Ballroom annually. In keeping with the Black Party's tradition of fusing nightlife with arty conceptualism, the theme for this year's party is "unHOLI Rites” with performances and aesthetics inspired by the ancient Hindu religious festival of Holi.

And the weekend is not just about the Black Party itself anymore. The official opening event on Black Party weekend is the International Escort Awards—better known as the Hookies—on Friday night. This year you can watch Mr. New York, Boomer Banks, compete against comers (pun intended) from cities around the world for the title of Mr. International. The Black Party marketplace, where celebrants could stock up on gear, lube, porn and more isn't returning this year (there's really no shortage of places to shop for that stuff in NYC anyway). But the Black Party has named the sprawling OUT NYC complex as its first official hotel, with events including the Hookies taking place in its various nightlife spaces (the megaclub BPM among them).

When is Black Party 2014? The Black Party begins at 10 PM on Saturday, March 22, 2014, and continues until Sunday afternoon March 23.

Where is Black Party NYC? The Black Party takes place at Roseland Ballroom, 239 West 52nd Street.

For those on the fence, this will be a good year to go: It's the last Black Party ever to happen at iconic NYC venue Roseland, its home for more than two decades, which is closing for good this spring. But fear not: The producers promise that the party will go on. It just wouldn't be spring in New York without it.

Black Party NYC 2014 coverage

LGBT

Photos: The International Escort Awards

Boomer Banks took home the top honor at this year's Hookies, hosted by funny guy Leslie Jordan and drag diva Shequida.

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LGBT

The Black Party: How not to make an ass of yourself

Experts and survivors of the annual bacchanal tell you how to make the most out of Rites XXXV: The Black Party

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LGBT

International Escort Awards 2014 nominees

Meet the men competing for top (and bottom) prizes at this year's Hookies.

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LGBT

Interview: Boomer Banks

The designer, porn star and bacon fanatic gets ready to represent NYC at the International Escort Awards.

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LGBT

Images: 24 Years at Roseland (NSFW)

Black Party producer the Saint at Large looks back at more than two decades of events at the iconic venue through these boundary-pushing posters.

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Black Party NYC 2014 events

LGBT

Rites XXXV: The Black Party

Black Party weekend culminates in this all-night and most-of-the-next day celebration of debauchery. Make sure to dress the part (hint: no sneakers), and be prepared to have your mind blown by sexy-scary performances and DJ sets from world-class spinners. This is the final Black Party at Roseland—Lady Gaga officially closes the place down starting next week.

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24 Years at Roseland

Black Party producer the Saint at Large has been creating epic bashes at Roseland for nearly a quarter century. Now that the iconic Manhattan venue is closing, take a look back with this multimedia installation of art-and-commerce-blurring posters from the Black Party, the White Party and plenty of one-off events. Work from BP photographer Robert Zash will also be on view.

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LGBT

The International Escort Awards

Better known as the Hookies, this annual awards show kicks off Black Party Weekend by honoring the top (and bottom…) male sex workers around the world. Head to the website to vote for your favorite hunks, most of whom are porn stars, and all of whom will be willing to spend some time with you for a fee. (Check out their profiles at Rentboy.com, the event's sponsor.) This year, character actor (and general character) Leslie Jordan returns as host, ant the hunky Boomer Banks represents us as Mr. New York.

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Nightlife

Horse Meat Disco

Josh Wood Productions brings the disco daddies of Horse Meat Disco all the way from the South London headquarters of the Eagle for a night of sweaty fun. This time, they're here for Black Party Weekend, so be prepared for an especially wild (and extra gay) scene at Cielo.

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Past Black Party Weekend coverage

LGBT

Black Party Expo at Roseland Ballroom (slide show) (2013)

Kinksters, porn stars and curious onlookers mingled at the Black Party's sexed-up marketplace. Black Party Weekend keeps getting bigger—in addition to the main event itself, the annual blowout features the Hookies and a two-day marketplace packed with gay-porn-star meet-and-greets, x-rated demos, vendors hawking fetish gear and gallons of free lube samples. This year, the Black Party Expo (BPX) at Roseland also hosted a performance by legendary alt-disco siren Billie Ray Martin, and a fashion show filled with eye-popping kinkwear. You might also like Photos: The Black Party Expo 2012 (NSFW) Photos: The International Escort Awards (NSFW) Video: Papa NYC Trailer More LGBT nightlife galleries

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LGBT

The International Escort Awards at Roseland (slide show) (2013)

Gay porn stars and rent boys were honored at the Hookies, an annual celebration of male sex work. The International Escort Awards (better known as the Hookies) helped kick off Black Party Weekend, as it has for the last few years. Drag superstar Sharon Needles and downtown scenester Cole Escola served as hosts of the Rentboy.com-sponsored show; presenters included the charmingly shameless Michael Musto and the possibly immortal Robin Byrd. Blond hunk Christopher Daniels was crowned Mr. International, the evening's top prize—which is not to be confused with Best Top; that honor went to Austin Wolf. Head to the Hookies' website (link NSFW) to ogle all of the winners, and to find out how you can reserve a little time with them. You might also like Photos: Dworld Underwear Party The best gay nightlife in New York Photos: HustlaBall More LGBT nightlife galleries

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LGBT

2013 International Escort Awards nominees (slide show) (2013)

Here are the guys up for for this year's International Escort Awards (a.k.a. the Hookies). Every year, Black Party Weekend officially gets going with the International Escort Awards (better known as the Hookies). Sponsored by Rentboy.com, the Hookies honor the best and brightest among male sex workers, with categories such as Best Ass, Best Top and Best Twink, as well as the Mr. International prize, chosen from the winners of regional competitions—including this year's Mr. New York, Ivan. Click the links above to check out each guy's Rentboy profile, then head to the Hookies website to vote for your favorite hustlers. See who comes out on top when Sharon Needles hosts the International Escort Awards at Roseland on March 22. You might also like Black Party posters (NSFW) Art from the Leslie-Lohman permanent collection Photos: HustlaBall (NSFW) Photos: Mr. Paddles 2013 (NSFW)

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LGBT

Black Party posters (slide show) (2013)

Every year, the Black Party unleashes a promotional poster that pushes sexual and artistic boundaries. Take a tour back in time through the creepy, hot images. RECOMMENDED: All Black Party coverage In 1981, the Saint nightclub hosted the first Black Party in the East Village, a two-night bacchanal celebrating the arrival of spring. A poster featuring a pair of unsettling—yet hot—Robert Mapplethorpe images let revelers know what they were in for: This wasn't going to be your average night at the disco. More than three decades later, the Saint at Large's Black Party (and the Black Party Expo) has continued to push the envelope with these images, many of which blur the line between high art and lowly porn. The best of them—from 1983's frightening S&M vampire by artist REX (who also designed this year's poster) to 2011's disturbing "fuck yourself" vision—leave us both creeped out an turned on. Recently, the Saint at Large has expanded into other media with its controversial ads, including "trailer" videos. Check out this year's (NSFW) short film, directed by Justin Monroe. You might also like Black Party Weekend guide Interview: François Sagat NYC's best LGBT parties and nightlife LGBT nightlife photos

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Luna Park: The Black Party 2013 Trailer (NSFW)

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LGBT

Photos: The Black Party Expo 2012 (NSFW)

Roseland became a kinky marketplace for Black Party Weekend For the last few years, the Black Party Expo has offered kinksters a one-stop, last-minute shopping mecca for gearing up for the big night. In addition to access to all sorts of purchasable attire, porn and more lube than you ever thought existed, the Expo features demonstrations and some pretty kinky live performances—like an especially naughty "pie" eating contest. @TimeOutNYGayTONY Gay on Facebook

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LGBT

The 2012 International Escort Awards nominees (NSFW)

Meet the hustlers competing for cash and glory at this year's Hookies Voting has closed for this year's International Escort Awards (a.k.a., the Hookies), but the boys will be in town all weekend. Take a gander at some of this year's nominees, above, and, if you like what you see, click the (extremely NSFW) links to schedule some quality time with him. @TimeOutNYGayTONY Gay on Facebook

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Nightlife

The 2012 International Escort Awards red-carpet video

Watch a video of red-carpet interviews at the Hookies 2012 International Escort Awards. brightcove.createExperiences(); You might also likeBuy Mila Jam’s music on iTunes.Follow TONY Gay on TwitterTONY Gay on FacebookSee more in Sex & Dating

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The 2011 International Escort Awards nominees

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Photos: Black Party Expo 2010 (NSFW)

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Photos: The Hookies 2010 (NSFW)

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LGBT

2010 Black Party Expo preview

Meet some of the folks you'll meet this weekend. Boy ButterEyal Feldman has been hawking this cheekily named lube since 2003, and the line of products has expanded to include such delights as You'll Never Know It Isn't Boy Butter along with the all-natural Boy Butter Bonerz Male Enhancement products. Feldman and Boy Butter have been sponsors of the Black Party for six years because: "I want to support the Black Party, 'cause it has always supported Boy Butter." Kyle ApplegateA ten-year veteran of the NYC fetish scene, Applegate has been the official bootblack at the Eagle for six years. He also offers spiritual counseling at sacredjourneyhealing.com. Mike Dreyden EventsTireless promoter, porn star and cub-about-town Dreyden will be meeting fans, posing for pictures, signing autographs and handing out goodies, including videos and Wet lube—all this in addition to getting ready to perform at the main event that night. His pal Ryan Moller will help run the booth, since no man can do all this alone. Rentboy.comLooking for man-candy? Head to this booth at the Expo. Porn stars will be flexing their goods for the world's largest male-escort website, whose slogan is "Money can't buy you love, but the rest is negotiable." Robert Zash Photography Don't even think about sneaking a camera into the Black Party (what happens here needs to stay here). The only guy who's allowed to snap pictures is official event photographer Robert Zash, who's at the Expo promoting his book of Blac

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LGBT

Here's where to shop for your Black Party gear

The Leather Man111 Christopher St between Bleecker and Hudson Sts; 212- 243-5339, theleatherman.com In business since 1965 (that's before Stonewall, kids), this far--West Village spot has long been a go-to resource for folks into leather (and latex and rubber and sex toys and more). Stop by here for basics like a leather biker cap ($79.95) and kinkier items such as "hole punch" latex shorts, featuring a convenient opening for your backside. Nasty Pig265A W 19th St between Seventh and Eighth Aves; 212-691-6067, nastypig.com Too embarrassed to walk into a straight-up fetish shop? First of all: Get over it! But until that happens, head to this Chelsea retailer, which is more like a cute boutique with a slightly kinky twist. Stock up on Black Party essentials such as a rubber harness ($95) and chaps ($160--$199), but you'll want to come back all year for the trendy, ultrabutch street clothes and accessories. Nasty Pig gear is also available at a variety of worldwide clothing retailers. Purple Passion211 W 20th St between Seventh and Eighth Aves; 212-807-0486, purplepassion.com You'll find all the sexy gear and toys you've ever wanted (plus plenty of stuff you never had any idea you desired) at this overstuffed store. Strap on a black leather hood ($165) or lock your junk in a metal chastity cage ($60). Got a gal pal heading to the BP with you? Bring her here for a rubber corset ($448) or a pair of latex stockings ($65). Slick It Upslickitup.com Pour yourself into thes

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LGBT

Forbidden fruit: Black Party 2009

The Black Party goes back to the garden in honor of its 30th anniversary. When an expected 5,000 men gather this weekend for the Black Party—the annual fetish-themed circuit event that marksthe vernal equinox with dancing, sex and a dark, tribal spirit—it will mark the 30th anniversary of the legendarybacchanalia. But revelers shouldn't expect a night of nostalgia. "Retrospectives get old quickly," notes Stephen Pevner, owner of the Saint at Large, the company that produces the Black Party and strives to carry on the legacy of the Saint, the gay temple of dance that shut its doors forgood in 1990. The party's theme this year is Eden—with a twist. "It's basically Eden without Eve," he says. "So instead of looking back at 30 years of gay life, this is like the new beginning." The actual beginning was at the Flamingo club, in the 1970s, which hosted its own early version of the Black Party. When Bruce Mailman opened the Saint, he paid homage to it by offering his own spin on the event, presenting it as two parties in a row, Rites I and Rites II, in one crazy 1981 weekend. That doubleheader featured DJ Roy Thode and photographer Robert Mapplethorpe, who shot portraits of guests. "The idea was that there would be a pagan ritual that would always happen on the vernal equinox, and be a time for exorcising demons, shedding skins and entering spring renewed," explains Pevner. "Everybody is encouraged to dance and be as dark as possible." (That includes revelers famou

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Art

Black Party posters (NSFW)

A look back at more than three decades of Black Party poster madness. In 1981, the Saint nightclub hosted the first Black Party, a two-night bacchanal celebrating the arrival of spring. A poster featuring a pair of sexy-scary Robert Mapplethorpe images let revelers know what they were in for—this wasn't going to be your average night at the disco. More than three decades later, the Saint at Large's Black Party (and, for the last three years, the Black Party Expo) has continued to push the envelope with its promo images, many of which blur the line between high art and lowly porn. The best of them—from 1983's frightening S&M vampire to last year's unsettling "fuck yourself" vision—leave us both creeped out an turned on. And for the last few years, the Saint at Large has expanded into other media with its controversial ads. Check out this year's Black Party "trailer."

Read more

Comments

2 comments
LeNairXavier
LeNairXavier

For a time, I was fascinated and bought into all of the hype about the Black Party. Even tried to become a performer during my time as a gay porn actor. But now that I am older and wiser, I see The Black Party for what it really is --- a den showplace for prostitutes, which is by no means cute. I am, and probably always will be PRO-exhibitionism. I will never be pro-prostitution. And most, if not all of the performers for The Black Party are prostitutes.

The reason why I am against prostitution is because there's an emotional and mental disconnect in it. And that disconnect is what paves the way for the rampant drug use that The Black Party and most circuit parties are known for. That drug use and praise of prostitution is also why the gay community is so overwrought with emotional cripples. Our community needs something that celebrates sexuality, and uses more POSITIVE role models to do it. And using doped-up porn actors who are just there for the money is not that positive image to give gay males, young or old, about sexuality. Making them front and center representation does more harm than good.

We also should consider the FACT that every year, there's a story that brings notoriety to The Black Party. The problem is the story is 90+% DRUG-RELATED. To this day, the story that I can't forget, and made me start seeing the Black Party for the mess that it is was the story of how someone defecated on the dancefloor.

I would be all for the Black Party if exhibitionism was its message. But it's not. For the times that I went there, I don't know if it ever was. And that saddens me. Making me feel that my hard-earned money went to lost causes trying to turn a big profit by giving bread crumbs and scabs to a greater cause.

LeNairXavier
LeNairXavier

For a time, I was fascinated and bought into all of the hype about the Black Party. Even tried to become a performer during my time as a gay porn actor. But now that I am older and wiser, I see The Black Party for what it really is --- a den showplace for prostitutes, which is by no means cute. I am, and probably always will be PRO-exhibitionism. I will never be pro-prostitution. And most, if not all of the performers for The Black Party are prostitutes.

The reason why I am against prostitution is because there is an emotional and mental disconnect in it. And that disconnect is what paves the way for the rampant drug use that The Black Party and most circuit parties are known for. That drug use and praise of prostitution is also why the gay community is so overwrought with emotional cripples. Our community needs something that celebrates sexuality, and uses more POSITIVE role models to do it. And using doped-up porn actors who are just there for the money is not that positive image to give gay males, young or old, about sexuality. Making them front and center representation does more harm than good.

We also should consider the FACT that every year, there's a story that brings notoriety to The Black Party. The problem is the story is 90+% DRUG-RELATED. To this day, the story that I can't forget, and made me start seeing the Black Party for the mess that it is was the story of how someone defecated on the dancefloor.

I would be all for the Black Party if exhibitionism was its message. But it's not. For the times that I went there, I don't know if it ever was. And that saddens me. Making me feel that my hard-earned money went to lost causes trying to turn a big profit by giving bread crumbs and scabs to a greater cause.