The Auckland Pride Festival will open with a tribute to the past, with a reunion and revival party for ‘golden era’ venue Staircase. Organisers say the event is not only about celebrating the bar which spanned three venues over three decades, but also the contribution that Dennis O'Brien and Stuart Buckley made to the community. The Staircase revival will be held on both levels of K’ Rd’s Legend bar, recreating the infamous Piano Bar downstairs and the popular night club upstairs. DJs Tony Young, Alex Taylor, Bevan Keys and James Leuii will be on the decks. Bertha Tess Tickle and Buckwheat will host the night, and will put together a show collaborating with other former Staircase showgirls. Bertha has written an open letter to all her ‘glbt brothers and sisters', which we share in full here: When I think of The Staircase I am always filled with a rush of emotions, ranging from happiness to embarrassment. That iconic institution will always be a place of 1st for me. The first time I saw 2 men kiss; the 1st time I was kissed (but definitely not the last); the 1st time I got drunk on rum (and definitely the last!) and the 1st time we became legal with the Homosexual Law Reform in 1986. The Staircase is the place where not only Bertha was born but Buckwheat, Tess Tickle, BustOp, Bambi, Shanice and sooooooo many others. Remember the Troll Dolls with Coco, Bella, Judith van Thunder Thighs? Or our very own DJ diva Wanda? But The Staircase was more than a school for budding young drag queens. The Staircase was always a mix of young butch leather male spit shine your leathers and let those feathers and beading breathe again. It's time to party! We hope you'll join us to celebrate The Staircase Reunion, with a tribute to Dennis calculate the $$$ spent in nipping or catch a glimpse of your hot crush from last century and maybe…finally…do exactly what you should have done years ago; or sit back sipping your cocktail while remonstrating on why you never go out any more surrounded by a rapt audience (eye roll); and laugh as you see yourself in our photo montage of images from the past and of images of those who have now passed on to that big Gay disco in the Sky. Whatever your reason, just make sure to be there….or be queer. It won't be a party without you. The Staircase….it's more than a nightclub. IT'S A FEELING! Love, Bertha Ticket details will be released soon.
Credit: GayNZ.com Daily News staff
First published: Thursday, 2nd January 2014 - 11:45am
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