From: Michael N+37 vowels
Subject: iT's over...
Date: Tue, 28 Nov 1995 12:50:20 GMT
Last week Amsterdam's largest gay (dance) club, the famous iT,
closed down. :-(
The iT was opened in the fall of 1990, as an exclusively gay
club. Within a few months the iT built up an image of a
place where everything was possible, and people could be
themselves without others staring at them. Transvestites,
exhibitionists, drag queens and muscle boys, everybody was
welcome, as long as they were gay or gay-friendly.
Especially in the first few years a lot of theme parties were
organised. The most famous were the Hollywood party, with
it's parade of drag queens from the Reguliersdwarsstraat
(Amsterdam's Christopher/Castro street) to the iT, and the
pool parties, when a large pool was placed on the dance floor,
and everybody was asked to wear bathing clothes.
After a year or so the media discovered the iT. Magazines
printed articles about the iT, TV's had shows about the iT,
etc. Also more and more celebrities showed up. Mostly
Dutch celebrities, but also some world famous people.
Eddy Murphy visited the iT, and Gloria Estafan even bought
a ticket to get in. Boy George was there (like LaToya
Jackson, Grace Jones and many others he even did a show
in the iT), and so where the members of Erasure. Prince
was refused admittance several times, because he wanted
to have a whole bar cleared for himself & his following.
Famous Dutch sports players visited, from the soccer
players Marco van Basten & Ruud Gullit to Holland's
#1 tennis player Richard Krajicek. Fashion designers
Thierry Mugler and Jean-Paul Gaultier came for some
But somewhere in 1992/93 the iT became too popular.
More and more people just came in to watch the (drag)
queens. First Sunday was given over to the straight
people. After that Thursday & Friday followed. The
difference between those "straight" nights and "gay"
nights were like the difference between night and day.
Straight nights became more and more aggressive.
After about 3 years only the Saturday was still a
gay night, though even on that night a lot of
"watchers" came in.
Last year (also in November) Manfred Langer, the manager
of the iT died. Manfred had done incredibly much for the
Amsterdam gay nightlife, and was loved by many people.
His funeral was incredible. He was transported through
the city in a pink car. The funeral procession attracted
thousands of people - the whole city center got blocked.
Friends were given little bottles of Vodka, and asked to
throw the empty bottles in Manfred's grave. In the
evening there was a party. Manfred had organized all of
this, just before he died.
After this the iT went downward even faster. This summer
the special passes - people who had come to the iT since
the beginning got such a card, which allowed free entrance -
were taken back, and from then on everybody had to pay to
And last week the iT closed down. The bulding is taken
over by a new club called "the Kinky Club", which is
supposed to be a place for S/M people, gay & straight.
Some of my friends went there the first weekend, and
came out screaming. The place attracts the wrong audience.
What did the iT mean to me? I started going there in 1991,
when I had just come out into the gay nightlife. Soon it
became like a second home to me, and in the first year I
often spend 4 nights per week there. Later - when the
atmosphere changed - I went there less often, but rarely
missed a Saturday. It was the place where I could do what
I wanted. Have the time of my life. Party til I dropped.
And I fell in *LOVE* in the iT. Not in love, but in *LOVE*
"Farewell iT, we had a good time together."
Michaeltje, sad and happy that iT closed down.
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