Gatineau is bleeding people. Whenever there’s partying to be done, folks flee the city to find nightlife elsewhere, heading to clubs and bars in Ottawa and Montreal. Long time resident DJ Rush’n Noiz (who goes by Rush) has created a new recurring event, La Cave, as a bid to stem this flow.
“There used to be gay bars in Gatineau, years and years ago, and there was a street in Hull that had a club in every building, but since they changed the laws it kind of killed [the area],” he says.
La Cave will take place every Thursday on the lower level of Le Forum, a sports bar in Pointe-Gatineau. He prefers to think of it as an event for a mixed crowd, but with a drag queen co-host (along with Rush) each night it definitely has gay appeal.
It’s certainly mixed in the sense of being a mixed bag. It’s a combination club night and variety show. Four queens — Madame Pop Corn, Jade London, Peach and Kiki Coe — each get one Thursday a month, and every second and fourth Thursday is an English-speaking night. There will be a series of acts — anything from burlesque to live singers — interspersed with drag and dancing.
Rush takes the dance portion of the evening very seriously. He looks forward to going beyond Top 40 tracks and the “ballistic Cher” he feels obliged to spin in Gatineau’s smaller venues, and playing the more intense electronic music he normally reserves for engagements in Montreal.
The inaugural night of La Cave will feature the glamorous introduction of the queens, followed by dancing, various acts (to be announced) and a performance by up-and-coming R&B, soul and hip-hop artist Nessa.
Rush hopes La Cave will strengthen the community in more ways than one. “[The first night] I’m inviting all the organizations I’ve worked with before — people like the Ottawa Knights, The Wolves, Bruce House — to see the show,” he says. “And let them know that if they want to do any kind of fundraisers in the future, we’re here to help however we can.”