Dear Studio 54,
This is where things get a little tricky; obviously we can’t technically “reach” you, especially considering what we want to get in contact with is a place and a time in a previous era… Think of this more as an ode to the best time of nightlife; where Jay Gatsby’s parties were put to shame, modern icons like Andy Warhol and Liza Minelli had dance-offs (at least in our minds they did), and disco was the only thing that mattered on a 54th street corner in New York.
The motto was simple: “The key to a good party is filling a room with guests more interesting than you.” Which is what owners Steve Rubell and Ian Shrager were so successful at doing. Populated by celebrities such as Michael Jackson, Rod Stewart, Woody Allen, Bianca Jagger (on a white horse on her birthday, mind you), Diana Ross, and Liz Taylor, the club’s 33-month existence hosted the best parties of their lives, literally. It was literally the best way to party your life away.
Almost 40 years after the most popular nightclub opened, we are mourning nightlife, and everything it has to offer. “Fun” is defined by the amount of “party treats” you take, or the people you know, or the newest outfit you put on; the higher the heel, more intense the make-up, the better. And yes, Studio 54 did represent the most obscene appearances and extravagant riots, however at least the place had people moving to the beat on anything they could find, to anything they heard, minus the stares that makes one feel like they are doing the most absurd thing one can do at a night club: dance.
“All of us knew that night that we weren’t at the opening of a discotheque but the opening of something historical, that was going to change the shape of the way people lived or played … There were no rules.” Now, we’re surrounded by them…
Collage by Damlasu Yasa