Thursday, July 5, 2012

Paradise Garage

by Mark Thompson

The Paradise Garage (1977-1988) was a Manhattan nightclub for Gay men and their allies. It is remembered as a mythic utopia for people whose spirituality is grounded in the performance of communal Gay male folk’s dance, an iconic space in the history of underground dance music, and the professional residency of the legendary DJ, Larry Levan.
Paradise Garage celebrants ( lenny-fontana-legends-of-the-dancefloor-a-piece-of-paradise-all-episodes, July 2012)

From Parking Garage to Paradise Garage
The Paradise Garage (also known as “the Garage”) was a private club that did not serve liquor. It was open Friday and Saturday, with extended hours on Saturday that could go into early afternoon on Sunday. Originally a parking garage at 84 King Street in Manhattan, the 20,000 square foot space had what some dancers considered to be the premier sound system in all of New York. The Garage opened in September 1977 with a series of “construction parties” that lasted for at least a year as the final touches were put on the club.
Street front of the Paradise Garage (, July 2012)

Owned by Michael Brody (a Gay White man), the clientele of the Garage was mostly African American and Latin. Prospective members were interviewed, and not but a few Straight people or women were accepted. Members could bring up to four guests, but only one of them could be female. The Garage catered to a Straight/Gay mix of people on Fridays, and Saturday nights were predominantly Gay.

To read more of the article, click here.

The article was initially published by the Qualia Encyclopedia of Gay Folk Life.

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