Society Events

…Zoliy “Miyake-Mugler” King…Back 2 Basics Ball…(Pics)


069By DeoVonte “Deo”Means

On Saturday afternoon, Chicago’s socialite -the legendary Zoliy “Miyake-Mugler” King-hosted the free Back 2 Basics ball. Many things can be said about modern day ballroom, but I must admit…This one here was a job WELL DONE!! Everyone in the know has witnessed, and are keenly aware of Zoliy body of work during the golden age of ballroom on the east coast. Walking All American Runway for the Iconic House of Mugler, the influence and respect he has garnered in and out of ballroom was enough to allure the socials out, but I was not prepared for what I walked into. Hosted in conjunction with the Fahrenheit Chicago movement, the event was partially made possible with the support from national top tier community and HIV outreach agencies such as Howard Brown Health Center, Step Up Get Tested, Harmony WellCore and Core. Zoliy’s alluring and most provocative theme of the evening was a celebration our “our” art. To uplift the community and those whom have paved the way for us. “Let’s pay homage to the amazing talents and memories of our fallen ballroom angels by knowing your status and stepping to get tested.”…And now is where it gets severe……

085My Uber driver pulls me up to a location at 21st and Wabash, located in the trendy and prestigious neighborhood of Chicago’s South Loop. A red carpet awaits to enter the building, but not before the professional security service checked bags, clad in black suits and ear pieces. As I enter the building, I realized there were three separate step-and-repeats present to be photographed at. I took a few pics and said a few “hi’s;” but the sound and siren of music consumed me…It was that raw Basement Jaxx style techno sound, but with modern clashes. In an alluring trance, reminiscent of my ballroom days in the mid 2000’s when the kids PUNKED in Gaultier in the clubs,… I followed it!…This led me to the main room. A transparent, tented porch with professional lighting, staging and seating arrangements. My first realization was that the beats were being spun by Legendary DJ Gucci Roxx, and Jack Mizrahi was about to take over the microphone.. Oh, how severe!!!

076Before the festivities began, the host took to the mic to make a well-deserved acknowledgement of Chicago’s icons. The most heart-warming aspect was when he declared over the mic, a few years ago he moved to Chicago and he is committed to Chicago. He has found his home and he’s not going ANYWHERE! This statement alone was most profound to me because so many of our born and raised talents that could’ve made a huge difference in the city, chose to run elsewhere as soon as we collectively supported them in gaining a national platform. Zoliy, in his cunning ways, brought the house back to laughter when he followed up with “this is a peaceful event. If anybody result to violence, I will not remove you. The Chicago Police Department will!!” That one statement alone sealed it. There was not one altercation while I was there. Not even an argument! In ballroom nomenclature I would say “the girls were in the building from all over!!!” The competition was high spirited but everyone took their win or loss like a true competitor. I had the pleasure of bumping into several of my pals and peers from my ballroom days and it was such a pleasure! We all smile so hard when we see each other. But most impressive was the fact that the host took time out- several times throughout the evening- to inquire if I was enjoying myself and is everything ok…See those are the characteristics of a great host when it comes to his guest…. The up-most attention was paid to details and I indulged! In closing, Zoliy and Jack did an EXCELLENT job at making sure the “money” was given out and all was fair. I really enjoyed myself. It was a very refreshing activity for my Saturday afternoon. I am proud of Zoliy and you can count The Flyy-Life as well as myself as a supporter of him and any future endeavor….Deo… Oh P.S….. def got my vote, by far for Ball Of The Year… 😉


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