Episode two: in which I venture alone to Glamorama
Tonight I'm headed to Glamorama 2008: Pop Candy Arcade. I'm rolling solo tonight and I'm not used to travelling by myself. I step out of the car and blink in the sunlight. It's still broad daylight so I feel a tiny bit out of place standing on Hennepin dripping in fake diamonds in this ruffly teal chiffon number. Deep breath. In we go.
You forget how grand the Orpheum is. The marquee's all lit up with golden lights and the neon's flashing and it's all high ceilings and brass and chandeliers. Everyone's polished and professional and you thank the woman and flee to Mackenzie immediately after you pick up your ticket. And the you laugh because a fair amount of other folks have, too. Everyone's decked out in eighties gear. There's a girl next to you that's in a Madonna-esque strapless black and white polka dot number and long pearls and gelled permed hair. You feel perfectly at home.
Everyone's drinking normal, un-eighties themed things. Beer. Tawny and clear mixed drinks. It's all the same as always, except the last time you were here you were riding a bicycle and wearing jeans, sneakers and a t-shirt. There are regulars that look not confused but amused. They must see this all the time.
Okay. Settle up. Back into the theatre and down the long hall. It's dim, but you can hear one of your very favorite songs playing from the auditorium. So you prance down the hall and wander up and down the aisle totally confused by your ticket until you have to wave the usher over to un-confuse yourself. Watching people trickle in, it's sartorially more balanced. There are a few people here in jeans and t-shirts thinking, 'Shit, I was supposed to dress up'. It's clearly date night; there are handfuls of men looking like they were dragged here by insistent girlfriends and wives. Clutches of women on girl's night out. And I have still seen exactly zero people I know.
Minx took all the photos in this post. For more Glamorama shots, see our slideshow by James Tran.
And the lights go down. You forget that this is actually a benefit for the Children's Cancer Research Fund and suddenly you're glad that the whole place is packed. Lovely Cyndi Lauper comes out with one of the children from the pre-show video to open the show and then the screen goes up and Prince is pounding over the speakers and there are models everywhere, twirling and strutting and making clothing look good. If you have not seen real models in person, know this: they are as otherworldly and lovely and perfect as they are in magazines and on television. The women are serious and professional, and then there are the men. They're striding in from stage right and stage left, and then they're doing funny dances on their way out, and clearly having a great time.
Now, what can you say about MC Hammer that hasn't already been said? Backed up by ten dancers, he plays at leaving before he finally does U Can't Touch This. It is embarrassingly enjoyable and the crowd is losing their shit entirely. More models, lovely clothes, and you're trying to take furtive photos so the usher doesn't come up to you and give you the same verbal bitch-slap he gave the girl in front of you. And then we get a little Cyndi Lauper. The crowd's singing Girls Just Wanna Have Fun back to her and then there's sparkly confetti exploding into the audience and the show is over. It lasted a little over an hour and so much happened in that hour that I can't believe it's only 9:30.
The crush of people onto Hennepin to walk to the afterparty is thick with chatter and fancy dress. There's a man next to you talking about how he's ready for his next bump, and you laugh, because what else can you do? He asks you if you have anyone you can call and you just keep laughing. It's unclear whether he's serious or joking. Let's give him the benefit of the doubt.
So Macy's is dark and there are volunteers roping the retail areas off, guiding you upstairs. You take one look at the lines for the elevators and decide to take the escalators up to the eighth floor, which proves to be a terrible decision because two out of eight escalators you take upstairs are shut off.
This is painful in heels.
Now down the long, dark hallway to the auditorium. There's a woman pressing a glass of wine into your hand and you walk in and it's all flashing lights and spangly streamers hanging from the high ceiling. Everywhere you look there are bars and appetizer stations surrounded by people three deep. You join the line and order whatever the ridiculous blue drink the woman in front of you ordered. Why not? The wine's free-flowing and people slowly make their way onto the dance floor in front of the giant boombox the DJ's stationed atop. There is much drunken dancing.
The rooftop's open and there are breakdancers outside. You watch them for a while, on their special slippery floor and you can look across the city and see other bar crowds on lower rooftops and they are far away and small. And suddenly you're ready to go home to your dogs and your boyfriend and the bottle of whiskey waiting on the kitchen counter, so you place your now-empty glass on a passing cater-waiter's tray and you ride the elevator down, walk through the now-silent first floor and slip into the backseat of a passing cab, and you go home.