Somehow, it took us until 2011 to realize this fascinating truth: the Dirty Ball is the most outrageously fun night of the year. Who knew?
Well, I certainly didn’t, because I’ve apparently been living under a rock since 2006 when this thing first started. (And I think we were out of town for like three of the Dirty Balls prior to this one, so I believe we get a pass.)
To make this count for an Achievement, we found an ad for it in the CityPaper, which is Pittsburgh’s free weekly arts and entertainment newspaper. And, since it was advertised there, we could count it! What follows are a LOT of pictures (although not nearly as many as I could have taken) of the most fabulous night of 2011 so far.
If you’re unfamiliar with the Dirty Ball concept (as we once were), I’ll take a moment to explain. It’s an annual fundraiser that benefits Attack Theater, an amazing dance and performance troupe here in Pittsburgh. If you’ve been to the Unblurred First Friday events in the past few years, you may remember eating cheesey poofs while playing board games or four square at their old studio on Penn Ave (they’ve since moved to the Strip District). And if you’ve been to some of Pittsburgh’s free events like the Three Rivers Arts Festival, you’ve definitely crossed paths with this unique dance company at some point. (And of course, if you haven’t, IT IS TIME! 🙂
So, since we love supporting the arts in Pittsburgh (and especially dance programs), this was an easy choice for us to make. And on the fine evening of May 7, we dressed up and caught a 64 bus to Lawrenceville to dance the night away.
At the door, they ask how many times you’ve attended the Dirty Ball, and you get a pin to let the world know. Since this was our first time, we got to wear these classy ‘Dirty Virgin’ pins all night. Other pins include classic phrases like, “I’ve got 2 Dirty Balls under my belt.” Can’t wait to someday wear that one!
And here was our first view of the Dirty Ball! As soon as we walked in, I felt this immense sensory overload, like there were too many things (many of which were tutus) to look at all at once. My exercise goals have now been expanded to include ‘lose enough weight that I feel comfortable wearing a tutu in public,’ just so that I can have a new outfit for the 2012 Dirty Ball.
Here we are, ready to start dancing. There are performances periodically throughout the night, but when that’s not going on, you can dance to the DJs. This year’s DJs were our Pittsburgh favorites, J. Malls and Gordy!
At the Dirty Ball, your booze and food is included in the cost of your ticket, so you can eat and drink for free all night. They had so many good restaurant options, but I was overcome with serious joy at the sight of Papa John’s garlic dippy sauce. I love that stuff! And their white pizza hit the spot after some hardcore dancing.
The Dirty Ball has a ‘Dirty Secrets Booth,’ where you can go and (secretly, of course 😉 admit your hidden thoughts into a microphone. We got randomly pulled in by two Dirty Ball ladies, but I couldn’t come up with a secret (yet), so Michael had to tell his. Unfortunately, as we are a PG (okay, sometimes PG-13) blog, I cannot reveal these scandalous words to the world.
After we were done telling our secrets, it was time for a performance by Captain Seamus and his fellow pirate dancers! This was super fun, and I really give all the dancers credit for doing such a long piece without breaks!
As I mentioned earlier, there was a lot of sensory overload when we first walked in. The costumes people wore were just incredible! So many tutus, so many sailors, so many sequins!
These two had one of my favorite ensemble costumes of the night, the white swan and black swan from the movie Black Swan. I had to take their picture for my friend who is obsessed with that movie, and then they made me stand in the middle of a swan sandwich for a picture (that I shall never release lol).
If you needed a break from all that dancing, you could write on the Dirty Words Wall. I shall never tell what word I wrote, but I will reveal that it’s my favorite word of all time. Those of you who know me shall know the truth 🙂
Obscure Games Pittsburgh was also at the Dirty Ball, holding hourly rounds of ‘touch me Twister,’ which looks just like the above picture shows. Instead of standing on a mat, you’re standing on your friends.
Obscure Games Pittsburgh also provided the shark attack game, which was really just a chance to hand your loved ones a plastic shark, allowing them to be bitten by the human shark people. You know I got Michael to get involved in this one!
The next round of entertainment was the Dirty Ball Fashion Show, where all those ugly beautiful outfit-wearers got to parade on the stage set to my favorite TV theme song, “Filthy/Gorgeous” by Scissor Sisters (seriously, I know probably no one knows this, but it was the theme song to that short-lived classic, Kath and Kim, that I obsessively watched each week before its untimely cancellation). In this photo, you can kind of see my second favorite costumes of the night, the girls second from the left in honey badger costumes (which I mistakenly identified as beavers that night – apparently I cannot differentiate between honey badger and beaver tails lol).
And now, I can reveal to you, my dedicated blog readers, my dirty secret: I had a major crush on Boy George in the mid-to-late 80s, even though I was never quite sure he was really a boy. And also David Bowie, for similar reasons.
But sadly, all good things must come to an end, and eventually, it was time to depart the Dirty Ball. But just so we remembered the night forever, I captured my husband’s best drag queen-like entrance through pink ribbons.
So 2011 Dirty Ball, we bid you adieu, and we look forward with great excitement to the 2012 Dirty Ball, when both I and my husband shall be well equipped with massive amounts of glitter. And sequins. Oh, and tutus.