Thousands of gay men will flock to the nation’s capital this Martin Luther King Jr. Weekend for the annual fetish celebration, Mid-Atlantic Leather weekend, better known as MAL Weekend. “It’s three days of debauchery that attracts thousands from the fetish community and even more curious spectators,” explains DC’s nightlife producer and impresario Q, aka Mother Fantasy, who produces monthly mega-events in DC. His parties – including last month’s Papa Party at Karma, his biggest production yet – are immensely popular with locals and have attracted partygoers from the suburbs and from Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Delaware, New York, Miami and even Canada. He aims to do it again this MAL Weekend when he teams up with Miami international nightlife producer Hilton Wolman for the Washington DC debut of Europe’s biggest party festival, Matinée. Their event, Pervert: The Pleasure of Darkness, will take place Friday, January 17 at Karma DC.
“Matinée launched over twenty years ago in Ibiza,” continues Q from his DC home. “Since then, it has evolved internationally, gaining notoriety for its lavish, over-the-top events.
“Matinée events don’t just pump dance music,” he insists. “It is all about the awe and extravagance and re-imagining the dance floor experience.”
Matinée made its US debut in New York in 2010 with 4,000 men boarding water taxis to New York City’s Governor’s Island. Since then, parties have been held in New York, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, San Diego, and most recently, in Miami. Q sees the DC premiere as his chance to get the nation’s capital on the international party map. “The fact that Matinée chose DC as its next US destination proves we can compete with all the big nightlife cities,” he says.
It is Q’s parties that have drawn the attention of festivals like Papa Party and Matinée. His events are all about the extravagance, combining superior fantasy and theatrics. Also, Q’s vivacious and playful charisma – he is typically rousing the crowd from the stage, introducing the DJs and performers, and having a really good time – make every La Fantasy party an original.
“It’s all about creating a magical experience with exciting surprises that turn up the wow-factor and leave revelers craving for more,” he says. “I love encouraging people to get creative and to let their inhibitions go.”
If there is one-time DC’ers release their inhibitions, it’s over MAL Weekend. Events feature dark rooms, human puppy parks and exhibitor booths showcasing S&M gear and toys. “MAL creates a safe and friendly environment where everyone can be themselves without judgement. I love how real the weekend is. People come together as a community, without pretenses or restrictions.”
Q understands the importance of living life authentically. The 35-year old veteran who served in Iraq and Afghanistan discovered his love for the dance floor while attending circuit festivals around the world. “They inspired me to host private soirees in my penthouse and then invite-only after parties throughout the city.”
When his penthouse could no longer hold the crowds, he moved his parties to area clubs.
Today, his parties attract circuit professionals and nightlife celebrities like transgender model Amanda Lepore and actress Dominique Jackson from TV’s Pose. But his doors are always open to party newbies. “I love when I see a new face in the crowd,” he says. “I see the young ‘me’ and I want to throw my arms around them and say, ‘welcome home.'”
Pervert: The Pleasure of Darkness promises to be Q’s biggest and most outrageous event yet. It will feature DJs Cindel and Flavio Zarza spinning beats in dark rooms packed with loads of hunky men. “It will be a fantastic night where we all get to explore our darkest, most pleasurable fantasies,” Q promises.