By Walter Rutledge
The Thelma Hill Performing Arts Center will present it’s second rendition of A Ramp To Paradise 2 on November 8, 7:30pm at the Kumble Theater located on Long Island University’s downtown Brooklyn Campus. The production celebrates the legendary and groundbreaking dance club the Paradise Garage. This new version of A Ramp To Paradise 2 is choreographed and directed by Walter Rutledge, and will literally take you back to the dance club in its heyday.
The work will feature a cast of over twenty-five performers. The cast will reflect the diversity and inclusiveness of the famed dance club. This new production will feature professional concert dancers, “Old Way” vogue artists, hustle dancers, free style performers and transgender performance artists.
“What we want to create is an environment, not just a pure dance or dance theatre production. The performance should not just leave our audience sitting in the dark; we want the audience to sing along with the music they remember, and at points throughout the production we want them to get out of their seats and dance onstage with the cast. A Ramp To Paradise 2 is not a urology or a mere reminiscent celebration, this is a party!” explains Rutledge.
The Garage had an extremely successful ten-year run (from 1977 to 1987) as the world’s premiere dance club and club music standard-bearer. The club outlived the public’s infatuation with disco and the subsequent abrupt demise of the disco era in the early 80’s; and was instrumental in the creation of house music and the underground club culture. The Paradise Garage also played a role in providing greater visibly for club music artists in many instances introducing them to the public and eventually the mainstream marketplace.
The doors closed for the last time on September 26,1987. The end of the Paradise Garage marked the end of an era; it was also was the beginning of the end for the mega-dance club and in a strange way the end for many it was the end of age of innocence in the emerging gay lifestyle.
The Paradise Garage left a lasting mark on dance music and the club culture. The Garage was about the music- plain and simple! The club’s unmistakable driving bass, and cutting edge music remixes created by club music vanguard DJ Larry Levan, made Paradise Garage the most famous dance club of the era.
The $25 tickets includes the performance and the after party by DJ’s Fred Pierce and Carlos Sanchez. Tickets are on sale and in demand. We encourage you to purchase tickets early. For tickets and more info call 718- 488- 1624, online at www.kumbletheater.org or visit the box office.
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