Gay Boat Party returns after ‘Demon Twink’

Ty Sunderland paced, his head carefully tilted over the phone. It was 5:52 p.m., eight minutes before 500 guests were expected to board the Circle Line Sightseeing Cruises where he hosted the June 18 party, and the sound system had not yet been tuned.

Mr. Sanderland, 32, a DJ and event producer living in Brooklyn, began sending text messages to the engineer. This issue has threatened the turbulent start of “Gayflower: Spice Girls,” this year’s inaugural series of his annual Gayflower parties, which began in 2018 and are named after the Mayflower that transported pilgrims from England to Plymouth, Mass. 1620.

Since the founding of the party, each has been a homage to a different pop musical act through music and dressing. Veselici, who are mostly gay men, often appear in clothing combinations inspired by the celebrated artist. After the sound engineer had finished adjusting the speakers on board, Mr. Sanderland shared his hopes of attending a tribute to a British women’s group from the 90s, known for hits such as “Wannabe” and “Spice Up Your Life”, which originally consisted of five members. : Scary, Sporty, Ginger, Baby and Posh Spice.

“I want to see groups of five. I want to see the signs. I want to see little Gucci dresses, ”he said, referring to black dresses worn by Posh, the former nom-de-spice of Victoria Beckham (née Adams), whose career as a fashion designer inherited her time as Spice Girl. “She’s fashionable,” added Mr. Sunderland, who worked as a shopping assistant at Barneys New York before becoming a permanent nightlife. “I love fashion and it has always served.”

Mr. Sunderland, who said that he started wearing black and white because the shades made him more recognizable in clubs, that evening he considered wearing a short black dress. But instead he opted for one of his black and white hats from Stampd, which he owns close to 100, black and white Adidas tracksuits and a black Nike jacket to warm up over a Spice Girls t-shirt. Separi, he concluded, would be more suitable for turning trails in open water in the midst of temperatures that were slightly above 60 degrees.

Dressing was practically less of a concern for party guests, who were cruising Manhattan after boarding a boat on Pier 83 on the Hudson River. Ivan Lizardi, 27, another Posh Spice fan, wore a little black dress he bought at Zara. “Posh is my favorite because it does the least work,” said Mr. Lizardi, who works for the Paramount + streaming platform. “She just sits there and looks nice. So in a relationship! ”

Sean Riordan, 30, who was in California for a bachelorette party, wore clothes equally recognizable to Spice Girls followers: a Union Jack flag dress, a style famously worn by Gary Horner (born Halliwell) or Ginger Spice. A fan of the group since childhood, Mr. Riordan, who works in hospital administration, said he “had bedding from the Spice Girls, and my first Barbie was a Barbie from the Spice Girls, which got my dad horny.”

Whether they were dressed as Spice Girls or not, many participants were drawn to the event by a sense of nostalgia and a desire to celebrate the “power of the girl,” the shout of the group. Tim Fitzgerald, 27, who wore a leather jacket, hood and trousers (all black), adapted to the weather, recalled the impact that “Spice World”, a 1997 film starring five girls, had on him. as a child.

“I watched‘ Spice World ’with my best friend growing up until the VHS tape dried up,” said Mr. Fitzgerald, who works in public relations at fashion brand Coach.

Guests paid up to $ 55 to attend the four-hour cruise, most of which was set to tracks from the group’s three studio albums: “Spice”, “Spiceworld” and “Forever”. (The third was filmed without Ginger, who left in 1998 to pursue a solo career.) Halfway through, dancer and drag queen Brie Bordeaux performed in a pink mini dress that the artist described as a mix of “Baby Spice and Elle Woods”.

Among the drag show and Spice Girls songs were songs by other music artists who have been celebrated in past sequels to the party, including Lady Gaga and Britney Spears. Ms. Spears was the inspiration for Mr. Sunderland’s first Gayflower event, in the summer of 2018. Titled “It’s Britney, Boat,” that party, which he describes as the series’s “main ship,” has been held again every year since.

Those who did not attend any of the parties on board may have been introduced to them because of the 2021 event in honor of Ms. Spears, when an incident involving a naughty party unexpectedly spread on social media.

“Last night on board Britney, the DEMON shone …” Mr. Sunderland he wrote on Twitter the day after the party, using a term to describe gay men with thin hairless bodies who are typically young. “I threw a drink on the DJ equipment, I wouldn’t get off the stage unless I stopped the music,” he continued his tweet, which states another alleged transgression that is not suitable for publishing.

Post g. Sunderland encouraged the tweets of others; one included a false announcement that the character would be introduced in the new Netflix series, others called for a line of demonic twink goods. (Now there are crop cannons that contain that phrase for sale on Etsy.) Earlier this month, an incident appeared in an episode of “Ziwe,” a showtime talk show. “It was my small contribution to the gay lexicon, now we know what a demonic twink is,” Mr. Sunderland said, adding, “it made straight people aware of what I’m doing.”

However, by the time the Spice Girls traveled, the spirit of the demonic twink was largely banished from the festivities. Aside from a few fearless merrymakers who assembled life jacket containers as the ship returned to its original berth, most of the guests behaved well.

While any future demonic presence may be impossible to predict, the fate of the on-board party series is far more certain, says Mr. Sunderland, who also hosts Ty Tea, a regular onshore Sunday event at the 3 Dollar Bill Club in Brooklyn. This year’s lineup includes five more field trips, including “Gayflower: Bangerz,” for Miley Cyrus fans, on June 24, as well as another edition of “It’s Britney, Boat,” scheduled for July 30.

“I’ll be filming ‘Britney, Boat’ until I’m 50,” he said. “If people come, I sail.”

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