HYPE’s 2nd Year Anniversary
by Antwyone Ingram
The lifespan of any great gay reoccurring party in this day and age is usually short-lived. Edison Farrow, a local legend with over a decade in the party promoting industry, has produced a plethora of parties and events that have certainly stood the test of time. HYPE was born two years ago, and while many competitors fell flat with their delivery of a weekly party that in fact lived up to “the hype,” this Edison creation is still here and living up to those expectations. Two years, and a venue closing later, HYPE is still pumping the beats, and giving partygoers exactly what it did upon its birth two years ago – a great time. Unbothered by mild roadblocks that could have ultimately been the demise of one impeccable Friday night party, HYPE Fridays has stood its ground. In recognition of HYPE’s 2nd year anniversary, Wire Magazine spoke to Edison about the growth and future of HYPE, as well as his thoughts on the evident evolution of Miami’s gay scene.
Are you surprised with the success of HYPE? Did it meet your expectations or surpass them? This has been a fun night since the launch two years ago at Bar 721. It took off as soon as we launched it. We had to remove the furniture from Bar 721 every week due to the overwhelming attendance. Now, at MOVA, we are still going strong!
What do you hope to accomplish with HYPE in the near and distant future? We will be adding more performances on Fridays, Pussila is our host every week and it would be fun if she performed. Plus, many local singers are interested in performing.
Edison, you’ve been around for some time and have a reputation for throwing amazing parties. Do you think the scene has drastically evolved, and if yes — how so? Absolutely. The scene has changed EVERYWHERE. First big clubs went away, not just in Miami, but in most cities. The small venues and lounges became more popular. Then, when the recession hit, people stopped going out as often.
What suggestions can you give to young and new promoters seeking to accomplish the amount of success you have with your parties? People do not realize the work and expense that it takes to get an event going when done properly. It’s not just a matter of making a Facebook invitation! You really need to put a lot of work and publicity into starting an event - especially these days.
What can your big following expect for the remainder of 2012? I am always meeting with new venues. I am interested in starting more events. But, I am just waiting for the correct venue and the right night of the week.
Being a promoter must be extremely tough, especially when things like venue closings occur, such as Miss Yip and Bar 721, which previously hosted Buck 15 and HYPE Fridays. When things like this occur, what is your immediate plan of action to ensure the party keeps going? This can be a crazy business. Sometimes, businesses close without any notice. In some cases, you can move the party. In other cases, the party just won’t work in another venue.
Many gay men say that the club scene is nothing like it used to be and people just don’t go out as much as they used to back in the prime of “gay South Beach,” before it was more commercialized. Do you feel this is true? If yes, why do you think that is? We are certainly going through a phase when big clubs are not drawing the amount of people that they used to. People want to go to smaller, more intimate venues. People are not dressing up glamorous or outrageous as they used to when they go out. I feel that music, fashion, venues are all in a “low key” phase now. When the recession changes, people will want to go out, have fun, dress up and show off again.
Your parties present a very fun and laid-back atmosphere, with very little attitude and judgments. Do you feel some clubs/promoters take themselves too seriously – ultimately resulting in the demise of their events? Absolutely. I have always treated the events as if I am hosting a party in my home and welcoming people. If you are not nice to people, they will not want to go to your event.
I imagine being a promoter is also extremely competitive, do you find that there are more quarrels between promoters in the area, or is everyone pretty cordial towards each other? I get along with most of the promoters. Being that I have been doing this for the longest amount of time. I have had incidents when new promoters have been competitive with me, imitate my events, say bad things about me, but they come and go and I am still here.