In celebration of Southern Decadence, the largest LGBTQ gathering in New Orleans, Ace Hotel New Orleans hosted four nights of events at their personal music venue, Three Keys. From August 30th – September 2nd, Ace Hotel New Orleans was the go-to destination for dynamic, inclusive, thought-provoking and radical Decadence events.
THURSDAY, AUGUST 30
HARD | soft presented by Edgeslayer featuring Ms. Boogie and Marcelline
Opening this year’s CAKE program was an all-black, death by chocolate affair. A black women-centered fetish ball that creates space for all femmes during Southern Decadence Festival. HARD | soft celebrates the importance of strong feminine sexuality and promotes the free-spirited indulgence that is Decadence Fest. Featuring performances by flamboyant, ferocious lyricist Ms. Boogie (NYC), DJ set by Marcelline for girls that stop traffic (Philadelphia), and hostess with the mostess, Edgeslayer (New Orleans).
FRIDAY, AUGUST 31
BlazeLikeFyre presents Crescendo
A series created and hosted by BLAZE LIKE FYRE through the use of sound and visuals, the CLIMAX or “crescendo” is thoughtfully designed, making every CRESCENDO a unique event, not just a party. CRESCENDO places the spectrum of Black and Brown Queer and Trans identities at the center, and strives to create a safe space for Femme identified folx and folx of Femme expression. Socialize + Dance + Liberate. Featuring Guest DJ RiMarkable (Dirt Tech Reck, Detroit / NYC), a special live performance by CAKES da KILLA, plus resident DJ Pr_ck (Ascendance) and Host/MC Lord Chilla (Pink Room Project).
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 1
Intersection Freedom: The Liminal Space of Femme Identity in a Social Media World
Visual artist Jesse Ray Guillory hosted “Intersection Freedom”, a monthly talk series that raises the question: What is one’s relationship to freedom when you exist in the paradoxical space of privilege and marginalization? This series featured a dynamic roster of guest speakers from various fields of study who are committed to tackling necessary and controversial subjects of intersectional identity, colorism, black mysticism, and gender politics.
Attendees were treated to a discussion with interdisciplinary artist Jamal T. Lewis (Fat Femme) and artist/writer Keni Anwar to celebrate and honor the femme bodies of color who have historically stood at the forefront of our revolutions and embodied what it means to stand in one’s freedom.
Big Queer Pod Fest
Big Queer Pod Fest was an audio extravaganza putting together the best of queer podcasts with game shows, interviews, special guests, and a live taping of all sorts of shenanigans, co-hosted by Jeffrey Masters of LGBTQ&A and Fran Tirado of Food 4 Thot, Ira Madison, Jake Shears and Dennis Norris. Proceeds benefited the Transgender Legal Defense & Education Fund.
House of Kenzo wsg DJ Edgeslayer, in association with Horse Meat Disco
The House of Kenzo (HOK) is a multidisciplinary art collective with foundations in dance. The collective is dedicated to fearless expression in order to help realize awareness with movement. HOK supports the overall art scene by organizing dance classes, workshops, competitive dance environments, lectures, conceptual performances and dance parties that sustain the ever growing creative community. New Orleans’ Edge-snatching high femme selectress with passion for the otherworldly, Edgeslayer mixes vogue, bounce and trap beat to warm up the set for the Club Athletes.
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 2
A decolonized podcast for lovers on the margins. Resident sexuality educator Ericka Hart and Deep East Oakland’s very own Ebony Donnley, discussed black queer love, ethics, pop culture, house plants and a sea of books with Shaquita Griffin and Camille Roane of Black Girl Giggles.
Nicole Lynn Foxx presents Thrills & Wonders: A Decadent Circus Cabaret
“Thrills & Wonders” was a sexy, circus-themed cabaret show series featuring some the sexiest drag, burlesque and sideshow cabaret acts you’ve ever seen. 2013 King of Burlesque – Ray Gunn (Chicago) returned for his second appearance to join an all-star cast including performer and “Headmistress of the New Orleans School of Burlesque,” Bella Blue, New Orleans drag icon and “Miss Pageant 2016,” Neon Burgundy, “International Black Bearded Beauty” and Chicago Nightlife Award Winner, Lucy Stoole (Chicago) and New Orleans’ own “Thrills & Wonders” producer and host, Nicole Lynn Foxx.
Get into these photos.