Report: Art After Dark
clarissa | Sep 3, 2013 | 11:30AM |

All words: Jade Salazar
All photos: Clarissa Villondo

The Art Museum of The Americas‘ annual Art After Dark event was met with great fanfare last Thursday. It was my first time ever on the grounds at The Organization of American States or the event itself and from the moment I walked in, I could understand why the party fast became a DC staple.

>>>>>>>>>>>> Here is a Featured Event >>>>>>>>>>>>
Thursday 03/30
Carlos Mencia from Mind of Mencia @ Arlington Cinema N Drafthouse
$30 / $30
Carlos Mencia is undoubtedly one of today’s most popular entertainers and comics. Whether it is man-on-the-street interviews, studio comedy, commercial parodies, nationwide sold-out tours, or films, Mencia demonstrates an extraordinary ability to connect with a wide and diverse audience. Mencia comes from a humble background, born in San Pedro Sula, Honduras, the 17th of 18 children. His parents sent him to the United States when he was about three months old, where he was raised in Maravilla Projects in Los Angeles, California by his aunt and uncle. In his early teens, Mencia moved back to Honduras because his family wanted him to avoid the destructive gang culture of East Los Angeles. When Mencia later returned to Los Angeles, he showed such educational prowess that he was immediately promoted to the tenth grade. Soon after, he successfully graduated from Garfield High School. Mencia began his career doing stand-up on amateur night. After he found success on the L.A comedy circuit, Mencia was named “International Comedy Grand Champion” from Buscando Estrellas (the Latino version of Star Search). This led to appearances on “In Living Color,” “The Arsenio Hall Show,” “Moesha” and “An Evening at the Improv.” In 1994, he hosted the HBO comedy series “Loco Slam” and in 1998 he hosted “Funny is Funny!” on Galavision. Mencia released a comedy album in 2000 called “Take a Joke, America” that showcased his brand of humor. Mencia continued his journey up the comedy ladder by headlining “The Three Amigos” tour with Freddy Soto and Pablo Francisco in 2002, which sold out in record time around the United States. He was also featured in the independent films, “Outta Time” and “29 Palms” and starred in guest spots on “The Shield” and “The Bernie Mac Show,” among others. In 2002, he received a CableACE Award nomination for Best Stand-Up Comedy Special for his HBO special. That same year, Mencia was featured on “Comedy Central Presents.” Mencia remained busy and after the success of his solo dvd, “Carlos Mencia: Not For The Easily Offended,” “Mind of Mencia” went into development. The show was an instant hit and after the first season, Comedy Central signed Mencia back for his own original stand-up special, “Carlos Mencia: No Strings Attached.” The special was the first Comedy Central Stand-up Special DVD to achieve Platinum sales status. “Mind of Mencia” debuted on Comedy Central in early 2005. It became one of the strongest shows in the network’s history, averaging about 1.5 million total viewers. “Mind of Mencia” was executive produced by Carlos Mencia and Robert Morton (“Late Night with David Letterman”). In the summer of 2007, Mencia starred opposite Ben Stiller and Michelle Monaghan in the Farrelly Brothers’ hit feature film, THE HEARTBREAK KID (DreamWorks). In the fall of that year Mencia headlined a nationwide comedy tour titled “Carlos Mencia Live Presented by Bud Light.” The highly anticipated tour brought Mencia face-to-face with his fans from September 2007 through December 2007. Shortly thereafter, Mencia taped a new comedy special for Comedy Central, “Carlos Mencia: Performance Enhanced,” that aired in May 2008. Since 2007, every holiday season Mencia has embarked on a USO Tour to the Persian Gulf to entertain the troops serving overseas. For his 2008 trip, Mencia visited Kuwait to host “Operation MySpace,” an exclusive concert for American Troops in the Middle East alongside Jessica Simpson and The Pussycat Dolls. The special aired on FX in April 2008. Mencia’s 2009 USO tour had stops in Turkey, Kirkuk, Baghdad, Qatar, Afghanistan, and many other countries. In July 2008, Mencia began his tour, “At Close Range” at Red Rock Amphitheatre in Colorado. The tour was sponsored by Bud Light and co-promoted by Icon Entertainment and Live Nation. Larger than all of his previous tours, Mencia performed in 80 cities across the country. In the summer of 2009, he kicked off a nationwide comedy tour entitled “The Administration of Laughter” which brought him to excited audiences all around the country. In March 2010, Mencia starred in the family comedy OUR FAMILY WEDDING (FOX Searchlight) alongside America Ferrara and Forrest Whitaker. In the last couple years, Mencia chose to go back to his comedic roots, performing at a number of comedy stores throughout the country – allowing him to share his newest material with smaller and more intimate audiences.
>>>>>>>>>>>> Ok, back to the article! >>>>>>>>>>>>

The landscape of the OAS was breathtaking and beautiful and as played out as it is by now, the gardens surrounded by beautiful architecture and fountains made you instantly feel as if you were at a Gatsby party–a r real one though, not the one your friend threw in their basement after the movie release. From the moment I walked in, alcohol was flowing and Nellie’s was kind enough to sponsor a vodka bar which was also well equipped with wine.

Art After Dark

At the beginning, everyone mingled and met up with friends, getting a chance to hear DJ Shea, of Mixtape glory, do his set and take in the event. Most also took that time to wander around and check out the “Fusion” art installation or sign up for AMA memberships.

Right about the time everyone was getting comfortable, Dangerous Muse took the stage. Over the years, Dangerous Muse has turned from two friends playing music to an entire collection of traveling artists putting on a show of music, fashion and performance art. Frontman Mike Furey explained this during his interview with BYT last week but it was something you had to see to believe.

Art After Dark
The band started their set by giving the AAD attendees an advanced screening of their new music video “Fame Kills” by displaying it on the building. The rest of the performance featured music from their EP “Red,” the first of three EPs that will make their first full length album, a display of visuals being projected onto the building by Mojo Videotech and of course, the incredible dancers and performance artists running around the stage in elaborate costumes. The performance was definitely an eye opener and I saw more people with their mouths agape or their cameras out than I saw dancing, in a good way.

Art After Dark      Art After Dark

The night ended with another DJ set. At this point everyone had already enjoyed their drinks, been to the food trucks lined up outside at least once, given up on trying to walk gracefully in the gravel and taken pictures of themselves and friends amongst the beautiful backdrop. At this point in the evening, everyone just let go and relaxed and danced; there were definitely a few songs played that made my friend and I jump up and down as they shot us straight back to high school.

The night ended with people slowly trickling out and getting in their free Uber ride home. Those who were worn out got a free ride home and those who were still beaming from the excitement of the night got their ride to Nellie’s for the official Art After Dark Afterparty. All in all, the evening was definitely a night to remember and an incredibly unique experience for D.C.

Art After Dark

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