March 4 marked Chicago's first Dapper Ball.
The eventwhich AMFM, Slo 'Mo and Boi Society presented at the Hairpin Art Centercelebrated queer culture and dapper style. Live performances by celebrated drag kings Oh, Snap and Switch the Boi Wonder, paired with hosts Fawzia Mirza and Tribble, provided an entertaining evening.
DJs Dapper and Audio Jack kept the dance floor packed while The Violet Hour's signature cocktails kept the bar line full. Notable dapper supporters included burlesque performers Jeez Loueez and Po' Chop of the upcoming 6th Annual Jeezy's Juke Joint: A Black Burley-Q review.
The ball was an extravaganza of bowties, oxfords and the most dappe r queer people in the city. It easily sold out days before the event and social media erupted in pleas for additional tickets.
The Hairpin Art Center was an amazing venue. If this event repeats ( and judging by the successful attendance, it most certainly should annually ), the organizers will need additional bar service and a later run time. Partial proceeds from the Dapper Ball will benefit Trans Lifeline, a 501( c )3 nonprofit dedicated to the well-being of transgender people.
Note: M Shelly Conner is Chicago-based writer, scholar and humorist. She is executive director of Quare Square Collective, Inc., a 501( c )( 3 ) nonprofit supporting queer artists of color. Shelly is also the creator of the DapperVista.com lifestyle website, which explores culture through a dapper queer lens, and the upcoming web series Quare Life.
Photos by M Shelly Conner