10s Across the Board: A Ballroom Showdown for the Trophy

10s Across the Board: A Ballroom Showdown for the Trophy

photos: Frank R. Schröder. 

The Berlin Ballroom Scene has been cooking something up over the past months that finally came to light this past weekend. With the event “10s Across the Board: A Ballroom Showdown for the Trophy” the local scene took a new format to the stage of Theater des Westens that has never been done before in Berlin. It proposes an alternative to classic Balls with their competitions and battles on the runway, elevating Ballroom from the underground to the limelight of the big theater stages of the city.

Two Ballroom Legends are behind this spectacle: Mother Leo from the House of Saint Laurent and Mother Ambrosia from the House of Gorgeous Gucci. They teamed up with Tingel Tangel – the new program at Theater des Westens – to create something truly unique and fantastic.

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PLATTE Brings Voguing & Ballroom to the Runway of Berlin Fashion Week

PLATTE Brings Voguing & Ballroom to the Runway of Berlin Fashion Week

Berlin has a new space and platform for emerging local designers and what better to put yourself onto the map with the most exciting fashion show during this week’s Berlin Fashion Week.  PLATTE is a project dedicated to supporting the fashion scene of Berlin in a sustainable way by offering space, structure, and expertise to upcoming local designers and brands. The makers of PLATTE are dear of colleagues of iHeartBerlin that have over a decade of experience in the field. Sevil Uguz is the founder of LNFA which is a network and fashion store for local brands at Bikini Berlin, and Arne Eberle is a Berlin Fashion Week veteran and co-founder of OE Magazine.

In their amazing space at Memhardstraße, they will host pop-up stores, workshops, showrooms, exhibitions, events and so much more. With their first event that happened on Tuesday, they gave a preview of what’s to come and their focus on working in an interdisciplinary way. They invited members of the Berlin ballroom scene to curate a runway show of a different kind. Housemother Ambrosia from the Kiki House of Angels brought together a cast of diverse performers who proofed that models can have any size, shape, and identity and look fabulous on the runway. And European housefather David from the house of Milan put together the choreography for the show that would have spectators gagging later on.

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Voguing Against All Odds: Photos of the Superheroes Ball

Voguing Against All Odds: Photos of the Superheroes Ball

Last week, we had the absolute pleasure to co-present the first IRL Voguing Ball in Berlin since the lockdown. It was hosted by the charming David Milan who already gave us the big Pride Ball and Ocean Ball last year that we also covered. The venue was once again the Säälchen at Holzmarkt – it’s just the perfect venue for a ball of this size!

The theme of this ball was Superheroes which was without a doubt the most specific and playful theme of the series. Of course there were a lot of classic superheroes and villains such as Spiderman and Catwoman. But the call for participation asked people to be creative, so you could also see everyday heroes such as nurses, single moms, activists – we even saw the first trans presidential candidate there.

As we are still living in a pandemic the circumstance for the event was quite different: Usually, over 1000 people show up for these balls, but to comply with the current legal safety measures this time only the participants and a few fellow house members were allowed into the venue. The usual spectators were able to watch a professional live stream of the ball either from the comfort of their homes or at the public viewing at Neuzeit Ost in collaboration with Mobile Kino. The required distancing and face mask rules also had to be respected, which was hard during the performances when the energy of the voguers was taking over, but I think the crowd did a fairly good job at complying.

It was a great ball, with a lot of stunning performances, great international participants, and a powerful audience. Of course, we took some impressions for you which you can enjoy below!

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The Ball of Superheroes: A Special Voguing Event for a Good Cause

The Ball of Superheroes: A Special Voguing Event for a Good Cause

Do you miss experiencing and cheering at a proper Voguing Ball as much as I do? There have been many cancellations in the Berlin ballroom scene, but the Charity Voguing Ball of Superheroes does it differently! The ball is hosted by David from the Kiki House of Angels and European Father of the House of Milan and will be brought to you guys as a shared experience with drinks and snacks to enjoy together with fellow ballroom fans as a Livestream screened at Neuzeit Ost followed by a secret queer movie screening. 

You’ve never been to a voguing ball? Then this is the perfect event to get to know the heart of it. Our author Valerie explains the Voguing scene in more detail here. To get a visual taster you should check out our colorful animated photo sets from last year’s Pride Ball and Ocean Ball that should give you an impression of what a Voguing Ball feels like. If you want to understand more about the different categories, have a look at our Ballroom Guide.

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Voguing for a Good Cause: The Ocean Ball

Voguing for a Good Cause: The Ocean Ball

On Saturday the Ballroom scene of Berlin came together for a very special charity Ball hosted by the lovely David Angels Milan and Oliver Jopke. Following his super colorful and fun Pride Ball back in July, this was only his second Ball here in Berlin, but a massive one at that with around 1000 guests attending! The theme of the night was the ocean. In a time of climate awareness, it was a poignant gesture to this important ecosystem. But it was not just a gesture, in fact, all proceeds at the door were fully donated to the Ocean Now organization that campaigns for the protection and recovery of the oceans. We hear that it was the proud sum of 4.800 EUR that came together for this purpose.

The ocean theme, of course, saw many Voguers come up with their best oceanic outfits – we saw mermaids in fishnets, penguins, starfish, lots of shimmering scales and flowy blue fabrics. Commenting on the tragic state of pollution of the oceans there were also a couple of outfits assembled of bottles, bags and other plastic trash. The photographers of fabulous Tush Magazine were in the house as they were media partners of the event and they had quite a lot to photograph with all these crazy looks. The winners of each category did not only take home their trophies but also the latest issue of Tush as well as goodies by sponsors Bumble BFF, Weekday and The Moxy.

If you want to learn more about all the different categories and rules of Balls you should check out the recent Ballroom guide that we photographed with some members from the House of Angels. Below you’ll find our photos and GIFs from the Ocean Ball. Enjoy!

If you’re wondering when the next Ball is taking place check out our Events page and look out for the Black Magic Ball at Gorki.

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Principles of Voguing: A Guide to Ballroom Categories

Principles of Voguing: A Guide to Ballroom Categories

The Ballroom scene of Berlin is on fire right now! Never have there been more balls happening with new events popping up every other week. It’s exciting to see the enthusiasm of the young generation and how they rise up to create their own gatherings.

After we had so much fun at the last ball hosted by the charming David Angels Milan during Pride, we teamed up with him for his next ball Voguing for the Ocean that is happening this coming Saturday at Säälchen. The oceanic theme is not just meant as a dress code for the outfits of the Voguers, the event is also a charity fundraiser for the organization Ocean Now that is campaigning to protect this important ecosystem. Voguing for a good cause!

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The Ball of Superheroes: A Special Voguing Event for a Good Cause

The Pride Ball – A Voguing Extravaganza in Berlin

The Ballroom scene might very well be my favorite thing about Berlin’s nightlife right now. I’m so happy there is a lot of movement going on at the moment with multiple voguing workshops taking place and balls happening more regularly. If you don’t know what the hell I’m talking about you can read up on the ballroom culture and voguing in some earlier pieces of us here and here.

This last Friday the magnificent David Milan from the House of Milan hosted his very first ball here in Berlin at Säälchen in conjunction with Pride Week and with support by Coca-Cola and Eastpak. It was a beautiful spectacle that united all the colors of the rainbow (literally and metaphorically) under one roof. The runway was on fire that night with some of the best outfits and performances I have seen in a while. I just love how regular outfit rules of Berlin’s club scene are totally turned upside down with people going for bold, colorful, extravagant and camp instead of the trendy, sporty all-black style. For me, the voguers are like the coolest people that I can imagine, but at the same time they are very welcoming and accepting of all kinds of people, so you will see a very diverse crowd embracing different identities, cultures, and shapes at their events.

The crowd of the Pride Ball was no exception, so much beauty, my camera could not have been happier. Of course, I took tons of photos and I created probably the biggest series of animated GIFs that I ever did for an event. I’m already excited for the next ball (which is happening at Schwuz on August 23) and also look forward to more movement in the ballroom culture of Berlin.

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When The Party Becomes A Ball

When The Party Becomes A Ball

When it comes to Berlin’s nightlife you better dress to impress – or in the case of our friends from Pornceptual: undress to impress because at their sex and body positive parties less is simply more in terms of clothing.

The club life has never been as diverse, colorful and eccentric as now and we love it! So many beautiful characters that you can encounter in the dancefloor. So much to look at, so much too admire. It’s not simply just a party anymore – it’s a ball!

With their portrait series “Porn Ball”, Pornceptual not only introduces the theme of their parties but they also pay tribute to the beauty of the ballroom scene. These characters are not simply wearing outfits, they are wearing their LIVES! Their confidence is infectious!

Enjoy this fun photo series and make sure to come to the next Pornceptual party on June 8th.

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Voguing in Berlin: The Opulence Ball of the Berlin Ballroom Community

Voguing in Berlin: The Opulence Ball of the Berlin Ballroom Community

Coming from the queer black and latin underground culture of New York over 50 years ago the Ball Culture took a long time to finally arrive in good old Berlin. Thanks to the famous Paris Is Burning documentary and – yes, maybe also because of that one Madonna song – the Ballroom Community and more specifically one of its disciplines – Voguing – have surfaced from the subculture into the mainstream, also spreading the concept into many major cities in the world. Learn more about the history of voguing in this earlier iHeart feature.

In Berlin, one of the major independent theaters has embraced the local Ball Culture inviting it onto its stage. Together with the Berlin Ballroom Community, the Hebbel Am Ufer manages to successfully melt the intimate world of Ballrooms with the extroverted world of performance art. It’s a fantastic spectacle that let’s a wider audience get a peek into an otherwise quite private world, encouraging people who are curious about Voguing to join a House or even form a new one. Berlin already has a couple of “Houses” which is how a group of Voguers is called that form a fabulous little family.

This past Saturday we had the chance to join the Opulence Ball at HAU2 and of course, we wouldn’t miss the opportunity to take a couple of photos and animated GIFs. Enjoy the show!

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