New spaces lure fresh faces. I saunter into a very well attended Snowball gala at Avenue Road furniture store, where hosts Tommy Smythe, Suzanne Dimma and Mark Challen work the room and dinner is served under the cool blue lights of the second-floor showroom. It’s a tight fit, but the harvest tables create an intimate experience, which makes knowing which spork to use all the more important. As dinner wraps up, the auction takes place and the goal of $300,000 is met. One level down, green and yellow LED lights greet as Jim Searle and Chris Tyrell of Hoax Couture make a fine entrance, Tyrell wrapped in a delicious black coat with fur collar. “Eighteen beavers died for this,” he coos. Another level down, the lights are seductively red, and a fiery sea of up-styled men and women chat, nosh and cruise as aerialists from Zero Gravity Circus hang from the ceiling. Everything’s perfect, except for the lack of adequate bathroom facilities. Some even risk splattering freshly filtered gin and tonics on their Ferragamos by venturing outside to relieve themselves in the bushes. At least that’s what they say they’re doing.
Pitbull second Anniversary
New nights attract fresh meat. Pitbull’s second anniversary is so packed that it takes much manoeuvring to get through the crowd. At 1am there is still a line to get in. Methinks it’s the best thing to happen to fly since tear-away pants. Performer Fay Slift, lady bear extraordinaire, makes her appearance on the second-floor balcony, confusing some while delighting most. To think that this amazing creature teaches Grade 4 kids by day warms my belly. Meanwhile, same club different floor, John Walke is hawking his Superstein clothing line. It’s like a bright and sexy pop-up shop that tonight features custom Pitbull-logoed tank tops and underwear. The manly go-go guys aren’t wearing any gotchies, though, and it takes much willpower to pry my eyes off their jiggly bits as they do faux-wrestler moves in their singlets.
War Horse opening Gala
Historic events inspire new interpretations. As we enter the Princess of Wales Theatre, First World War exhibits (on loan from the Canadian War Museum) are on display. Outside, mounted police stand guard, awaiting the arrival of the governor general. It’s a big night for the gala opening of War Horse. One gay reviewer found it very campy, but don’t blame the writing; blame the language of the time — Britain, early 1900s — and the subject matter. The line “I see you’ve done this before,” spoken by a character putting a harness on the realistic puppet horse, can take on different meanings. Neigh? The play itself is an experimental artwork that weaves visual poetry through history. The celebratory wrap party takes place at the Sheraton Centre, where the many stars, such as 11-year-old Addison Holley (Emilie), are corralled by congratulators, including actor Yannick Bisson. It is interesting to watch how they work the room like pros, smiling and nodding at just the right moments. Kinda like that horse.
CarnAval @ fly
New DJs ignite old desires. Bringing in Brazil’s Bruno Pacheco to headline fly’s Carnaval party is a smart move. Not only are his beats the perfect cure for seasonal affective disorder, but as a professional model, he’s also very easy on the eyes. Stealing the spotlight away are newly recruited go-go boys in carnival-inspired mini-costumes designed and created by Sofonda, who also makes a late-night appearance. With perfect timing, Pacheco slips on the aptly named “Call Me Bitch,” by Nicky Valentine, which gets the dancefloor texting like crazy. There is something hysterical about looking down on a sea of horny men and seeing smartphone screens glowing with Squirt Mobile or Grindr. The merging of the old and the new.