June 14, 2020 10:09 AM   Subscribe

30 Years of Philly Ballroom documentary and Philadelphia Inquirer feature article. In the article, legendary voguer Madelyn recalls being schooled by "Mother Hands" Dee Dee who sat down in a chair near the judges, crossed one leg over the other, and battled Madelyn with one hand: "She ate me to smithereens, I'd never seen somebody make so many shapes and movements and in one hand ever in my life. I was more in awe than I was devastated.”
posted by spamandkimchi (7 comments total) 24 users marked this as a favorite
Ballroom culture and history previously on MeFi.
posted by spamandkimchi at 10:10 AM on June 14, 2020

This is awesome, thanks for the link.
posted by some chick at 10:42 AM on June 14, 2020

This is so lovely, and I'm glad there are people dedicated to preserving the history and the ephemera of the scene. I share their concern as to what will happen after their time.

Maybe one of the "good" things about televised drag bringing ballroom culture into today's mainstream is that it might generate enough public interest to fund an archive and pay the salary of a couple of archivists.
posted by Pallas Athena at 1:55 PM on June 14, 2020 [3 favorites]

This is fantastic! The mutual community support is inspiring.
posted by StickyCarpet at 5:09 PM on June 14, 2020

This is really great. My son (high school junior) just wrote his big US History research paper on ball culture, so he's been immersed in this stuff all semester, and we've all learned more as a result. It's really fascinating.
posted by Ben Trismegistus at 6:39 AM on June 15, 2020 [1 favorite]

Love this! Also a good place to share one of my favorite youtube videos. Voguing Train Always puts me in a good mood.
posted by WeekendJen at 10:42 AM on June 15, 2020 [1 favorite]

OMG there really should be an archivist for ballroom history. The ONE National Gay & Lesbian archives at USC is on the west coast, but clearly has an ambit that would include this. Barnard's zine library is not the right kind of ephemera but also has the scrappier DIY history from below.
posted by spamandkimchi at 11:14 AM on June 15, 2020

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