What the Float's gay outing
Friday, May 20, 2016 8:07 AM
By Brandon Macz
Forward Flux Productions is bringing back its What the Float for a prefunk prelude to Seattle Pride on Friday, June 24.
The floating silent dance party came to Capitol Hill last year from New York City, where the nonprofit live arts production company started. Founder and artistic director Wesley Fruge moved to Seattle two years ago.
"I live on Capitol Hill, but our company Forward Flux, we don't have a brick or mortar whatever. Our events always move around," Fruge said. "The float, the dance party we do, we partner with some friends of ours in New York City."
What the Float is a mobile dance party where music is played through Bluetooth headsets y a DJ while a float captain takes revelers to various locales, including bars celebrating Pride weekend. People on the street will not hear it.
"Everyone's dancing and the DJ pipes music through everyone," Fruges said. "It's a pretty wide taste of music. Pretty much everyone will find something they love dancing to."
Last year's What the Float in late July was so successful, Fruges said he thought it would be a good start to the Seattle Pride weekend.
"We're just doing it," he said. "It's not like an official Pride-sanctioned event."
Local drag queen Sparkle Leigh will host the event, which starts at a secret location in Capitol Hill on June 24. Partiers will meet around 8 p.m. and depart an hour later.
"The route is actually planned kind of in sync with the music," Fruges said. "If we're heading to a park, by the time we get there with a very cool view, the music will be in sync with that."
Sparkle Leigh has been involved in the Seattle theater scene for years, she said, and has been putting a lot of focus on her web series, Sister Leigh Love. The fourth season parodies the Little Mermaid, with Merm: Always a Mermaid Never a Merm! She is also a regular cast member at R Place and Mimosas with Mama.
"Now I'm a lot more involved in drag," Sparkle said. "What I do as Sparkle is basically entertain people and get them to not take themselves so seriously, and I've gotten that opportunity a lot more lately, which I really enjoy."
Sparkle said she has also been working with several theater groups that use found space for performances for more than a decade.
"It's just a really cool way of reinventing what theater is and people expectations of what it is," she said.
That's part of why Sparkle was interested in hosting What the Float, having little prior knowledge of Forward Flux Productions.
"I'm actually super stoked that I don't know much about the organization," she said, because it will give her a fun challenge. "It's kind of a fourth-wall buster that I enjoy."
There is only room on the party float for 50, and tickets go on sale May 24. For tickets and more information, go to whattheflo.at.
Another What the Float party is set for July 30 in Ballard.
"That one will have a completely different route and a slightly different feeling," Fruges said. "It might not be as gay, but let's be honest, it's always a gay time."
The live arts production company also presents new works by new artists, and will be premiering Sarah Bernstein's "The Summer House" and Chisa Hutchinson's "The Wedding Gift" at City City this fall.