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See a Queer Artist Exhibit, Go to ‘The Prom,’ Attend a Silent Disco, Learn About a Storied Detroit Gay Club

Sarah Bricker Hunt

It’s the time of year when our social calendars start begging for relief from all the graduations, weddings and late spring gatherings, but don’t let that stop you from adding some worthwhile events just for you. Break free from your mounting obligations and take in a special queer art exhibit in Lansing, attend "The Prom!" in Birmingham (and go to an actual prom at Affirmations in Ferndale), celebrate the legacy of Detroit’s Club Heaven or venture out for a night of fine dining and opera among new friends with a private social club. 

1. See a Queer Art Exhibit in Lansing

"Don't Wake Me" by Jenelle Austin. Photo: Lansing Art Gallery
"Don't Wake Me" by Jenelle Austin. Photo: Lansing Art Gallery

Venture over to Lansing for the LGBTQ+ Artist in Michigan exhibit at the Lansing Art Gallery & Education Center, on display now until June 29. The free exhibit, which is co-sponsored by Suits and the City, a nonprofit LGBTQ+ advocacy organization, features the work of local LGBTQ+ artists including Jenelle Austen, Jacob Converse and Cat Bathing. Artwork includes paintings, sculptures, photographs, fiber and mixed-media pieces focused on LGBTQ+ identity and representation. 



Through June 29, Lansing Art Gallery (300 S. Washington Square, Lansing). Learn more at lansingartgallery.org/exhibits/the-lgbtq-artist-in-michigan.

2. Go to ‘The Prom!’

“The Prom!,” on stage with Birmingham Village Players through May 19, is your chance to experience the teenage drama of high school prom all over again, through the story of high schooler Emma, who dreams of taking her girlfriend to the senior prom. When her plans are thwarted by an intolerant PTA, the community learns a lesson in tolerance and selflessness. Producer Laura Quinn said in press materials that the show is an “amazing musical” that shares an “inspiring message of love and inclusivity.”

There’s still time to grab tickets to a real queer prom — Affirmation’s Prom ReDeux is set for May 18, offering a chance for a prom night do-over in a queer-affirming space. Buy tickets at goaffirmations.org/promredeux.

May 3-19, Birmingham Village Players (34550 Woodward Ave., Birmingham). Reserve tickets at birminghamvillageplayers.com/the-prom-2024

3. Get into the Groove at a Silent Disco

A few years ago, silent discos were all the (quiet) rage, and lately, they seem to be making a comeback. It’s a unique experience, grooving up next to people who are all in their own little worlds, immersed in a closeup experience with the music pumping through each pair of headphones. Head over to Fun Girl Dance Co. in Ypsilanti on May 4 to join the experience at the Cheers to Queer silent disco night. It’s a multifunctional space — hit the bar upstairs or the social lounge downstairs when you need a break from the disco. 

May 4, 7 p.m., Fun Girl Dance Co. (117 Pearl St., Ypsilanti). Learn more at bit.ly/3wckZJ7.

4. Celebrate the Legacy of Club Heaven

Detroit Sound Conservancy Event. Photo: Detroit Sound Conservancy
Detroit Sound Conservancy Event. Photo: Detroit Sound Conservancy

Detroit Sound Conservancy, an organization that manages a music archive focused on the preservation and celebration of Detroit music, will present a free panel discussion and storytelling event featuring Club Heaven, the now-defunct legendary gay club, on May 17 in Farmington Hills. “Celebrating Club Heaven” will showcase stories shared by former clubgoers, a panel discussion with local musicians and artists, a look at the one-of-a-kind sound system created by DJ Ken Collier that drew a young Black queer crowd to the Detroit club in the early ’90s and a musical tribute.

May 17, 7 p.m., Hawk Community Center (29995 W. 12 Mile Road, Farmington Hills). Reserve free tickets at bit.ly/3y5J0Sz.

5. Have a Memorable Night at the Opera 

Culture and cannabis collide in Apotheculture Club’s The Vixen in Detroit event, which will feature a special dining experience and a trip to Detroit Opera’s “Cunning Little Vixen” production.

Creative Producer James Blaszko, a freelance director who was commissioned by Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts to create a new classical music concert this June with classically trained queens Sapphira Cristál and Monét X Change from “RuPaul's Drag Race,” tells Pride Source, "What started as a simple idea to pair cannabis with classical music has evolved into a vibrant community of artists and professionals across the country who are eager to connect and share cultural experiences while elevated. Our private events include amazing food, multi-genre music and curated conversation, followed by an epic outing in transportation we provide. We can't wait to return to the Detroit Opera House for a show that not only has gorgeous music, but large scale animations!"


May 17, 5 p.m. Tickets include transportation between the club’s private residence and the Detroit Opera House, dinner and tickets to the opera. Learn more about Apotheculture on Instagram @apothecultureclub. Purchase tickets at bit.ly/3Wjm1h3.



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