Molly Rogers has been working for and with Patricia since 1984 and is one of her closest friends and associates. Starting in Patricia’s iconic 8th street store and later operating as Patricia’s right hand on projects such as Sex and the City, (both the series and movies), Devil Wears Prada and Ugly Betty, Miss Molly Rogers has been through many phases of Patricia Field.
In the 80’s and 90’s Patricia was very active with the House of Field in the New York City Vougeing Ball culture, outlined most famously in the movie Paris is Burning and also which inspired Madonna’s single “Vogue”.
In lieu of the upcoming of the House of the Xtravaganza’s 30th Anniversary Ball on July 22nd, Molly had conversations with Patricia, the great artistic director Richard Move and DJ Richard Vasquez about a memorable House of Xtasy Ball at the club Red Zone around 1990.
HISTORY REPEATS ITSELF
I had a conversation the other night with Richard Move, NYC artistic director extraordinaire, that convinced me otherwise.
Place: RedZone Nightclub, NYC
Event: House of Xtasy vogueing ball….
Richard Move: It was snowing that night and YoYo and I were outside the club backstage, shivering in the precipitation and anticipation of our category being called at the vogueing ball inside.
We had entered in the “Divas of History” category and we were walking for the House of Field, thanks to an idea PAT had. We were poised in the wings awaiting our place in BALL history.
Richard Move and YoYo ( photo by graziano origa)
Molly Rogers: Red Zone was a club on west 54th street…The music was the message and it pumped a religion. I spoke with Richard Vasquez recently from Miami, who was djing that night. Richard was owner and DJ of “The Choice”, which took up the mantle after the Paradise Garage closed. Other notable DJ’s at “The Choice” were Larry Levan, Joey Llanos, Frankie Knuckles, and Louie Vega…apostles spinning the Gospel.
Richard Vasquez: I was the resident DJ for RedZone that night of the ball, and the DJ for the House of Xtasy. Although, the Xtravaganzas would have preferred David Depino Xtravaganza to spin that night.. I played other tracks but always came back to ”Love Break” and “Elements of Vogue” throughout the ball competition because these were the only tracks The Xtravaganzas approved of. PAT FIELD and JOCELYN BROWN were honored judges for our Famous Freestyle Dance contests.
MR: Madonna would release “Vogue” later that year. She stole, I mean, paid homage to the exploding vogue dance movement in that single, which became the best-selling international single of that year.
RV: Madonna’s inspiration for “Vogue” came from a track called “Elements of Vogue”.
Below are two mixes from youtube for all of you house music history fans.
RV: PAT’s store on 8th street was where all of the fashion was coming out of to wear in the clubs. European designers like Westwood/McLauren, Katherine Hamnett, Bruce Weber, and Keith Haring t-shirts…it was all an amazing mix of people, culture, art and fashion, and of course, THE BEATS on the dance floor.
MR: I don’t recall much about being in RedZone one night. But I was there on Ectasy in a wig and a rubber bathing suit. I couldn’t get out of the bathing suit at home that night and had to cut it off of me with a carving knife.
Footnote: I do remember I was wearing Cyd Jouny shoes.
RuPaul at RedZone featuring L’eggs. (photo credit unknown)
RM: “Divas of History” was one of the last categories called, so it must have been close to 6 a.m. Garbage trucks were running. Birds were chirping.
Although I had been dancing/working at RedZone, I was a recent transplant from rural Virginia. Now remember, these kids were seriously hardcore about the balls, and they battled fiercely. Even though I saw them almost every night in the club, there were weapons involved. You could get cut or pushed down a pesky flight of stairs if you stepped on someone’s new pumps that they had either shopped or mopped from PAT’s 8th street store. They all had the ultimate respect for PAT -BUT- we were a predominately WHITE house of FREAKS running around “their” ball. I always felt an undercurrent of tension emanating from the street kids towards us for being white, educated, “privileged “, when so many others were just surviving tough inner city lives and this was the only family they had. They were vogueing purists..it was their art form, and sometimes it felt as if we were trespassing on sacred ground.
MR: You needed to bring it to the runway that night under extreme street scrutiny.
RM: As I said, Yo Yo and I were out in the snowstorm. Did I mention we were naked? Yes, we were naked except for white flowers placed strategically over our sensitive parts.
YoYo was representing LADY GODIVA and had the extra comfort of a white, to-the-floor wig.
PAT, proving yet again how to maximize and accessorize, had rented a WHITE HORSE for us to ride in on. I guess PETA wasn’t around because the weather was bad.
I was LADY GODIVA’s attendant and the naked “horse whisperer.”
When our category was called, we mounted our steed in front of the security gate which was behind the stage. As the gate began to rise, the audience surged towards the runway and stage and went absolutely rabid when they caught sight of us….naked on a white horse in a New York City snowstorm.
We WRECKED them.
They had to close the category after our trot down the runway.
NO ONE else walked for “Divas of History”.
Don’t even TRY it.
10s ACROSS THE BOARD.
LEARN IT. SERVE IT.
We snatched that trophy, and PAT snatched my girlfriend that night…..LEGENDARY.
Classic Pat: (on right) enjoying a cocktail and a smoke with friends….and a kiki in Richard Move’s ear.
photo credit : Graziano Origa
PAT FIELD: I was not giving props to Carmen, the revered Mother of the House of Xtravaganza, who was walking in “Designer Realness” representing CHANEL with a run in her stocking. That look needed to get chopped, and I was calling the judges out on it. I wasn’t “seeing” that styling oversight. SHADE FOR THE STOCKING RUN. Bring it correct..HEAD TO TOE.
RM: Security was called and there was a near riot. Chicken wings and champagne everywhere. PAT threw a cigarette into someone’s face and she was shoved against a wall near the cashier booth, and everyone rallied around her.
Her pretty ass was booted the fuck out.
But the evening didn’t end there.
PF: I didn’t throw the cigarette, I put it out in Karim’s face after he pushed me and cursed at me and threatened me. I retaliated in self defense and smashed a cigarette into his handsome face. That’s when all hell broke loose He got in my face because he was Diandras’s (Princess Diandra’s Mother of the House of Xtasy), current squeeze and he didn’t know what he was talking about and it was his moment to make drama. Strawberry Fields brought it miles ahead. They didn’t understand that you don’t walk Chanel and have a run in your sheer black stocking. They didn’t understand that. That was not worthy of a trophy. That was worthy of a chop. Princess Diandra tried to convince me to stay, once the real story got back to her, but I said, ”I don’t stay where I’m not loved.”
We gave ourselves the hook on principle. And by the way, “Divas of History” was the first category called not the last.
Years later, David, Father of the House of Xtravaganza, attempted to sue House of Field over a small fashion project.
Needless to say, when he came to small claims court, the judge threw out the case….and that was just like getting chopped from a ball. CATEGORY: LEGAL REALNESS.
All and all, it’s a Ball and through it all…Field loves Xtravaganza!
The House of Field supports the House of Xtravaganza!
Don’t miss history, make it.
Take a look at the invitation for the House of Xtravaganza 30th Anniversary “Wrath of the God’s and Goddess’s” Ball! July 22nd, 2012! Want to walk for House of Field that night? Let us know! Email us at Ingrid@patriciafield.com!
“We all tell stories which are versions of history - memorized, encapsulated, repeatable, and safe. Stories can be rewritten, memory can’t. If each picture is a story, then the accumulation of these pictures comes closer to the experience of memory, a story without end.” - Nan Goldin