On Saturday May 6th, The Red Pavilion collaborated with the Kollection to host a night of live performances by artists THE THING, ROMA NYC, FRANCES LEE, PRIVATE BROWSING, and MIA GLADSTONE, The night continued with sets from DJs LORD ANNA, KIAN MCHUGH, and TIMOTHY LUCENT. It was a night filled with colors, pumped by energy, and charmed by splendid candor.
The Kollection, a community united by a deep connection to music, strives towards connecting contrasting sounds, bridging gaps between artists, fans, and communities. They have hosted events with performances from the likes of Flight Facilities, Amtrac, and Chris Lake, and have produced parties for Playboy, Anheuser Busch, Anna Delvey, and Creature World. In their own words, “The Kollection is for the listener who really listens, the eye who art speaks to, and the soul who seeks to better the culture around them”.
Success does not come from going at it alone, it’s collaboration that sets the winning tone. Both the Kollection and The Red Pavilion understand this: It’s the spirit of unity that pulls us closer, and this night was evidence of their vision materializing into a musical triumph of cooperation and resonance.
The Red Pavilion was established by creative director Shien Lee and Chinese Medicine chef Zoey Gong as a platform to amplify the representation of Asian voices and cultural identity. Shien describes, “The culture of The Red Pavilion is built around our mission to support AAPI visibility by providing purpose-driven immersive food, beverage, wellness, and nightlife experiences with an Asian focus. Through this cultural exchange, we aim to shatter stereotypes and strengthen our community. All are welcome”.
"Most of our shows and events have been sold out, and I believe this is due in part because we offer experiences unique to New York that are a first of their kind. There's nowhere else one can go in the city to enjoy Chinese-specific traditional jazz, live Japanese enka, or mahjong-themed club nights.” The venue offers a radiant collection while channeling an unrelenting and pioneering spirit; like a great assortment of dragons, each with its own distinctive power and magic.
Intrigued by the venue’s energy, we spoke with the closing act of the night, queer Vietnamese-American Brooklyn-based DJ LORD ANNA (they/them) on the techno culture, their musical influences, and their drive to create and foster a safe community.
There are a few instances in our everyday life when we manage to connect to something. We connect to local area networks, wifi, routes, vibes, intimacy. We strive to connect with others, and sometimes, if we’re tuned for it, we connect to a higher stream of consciousness. Subtle states in which we feel the safest and closest to nature.
LORD ANNA has found a way to connect to the world through music. Like a tenor, strong, ascending with power and health, with glad notes of daybreak, Anna thrives in a hardcore techno environment. Energy is their main source, and music is their means of expression. As we were talking and getting to know each other, I revealed that I was in Ohio at the time of our conversation. “I get it, I grew up in Oklahoma”, they said with a chuckle. “I’m not sure at the moment, but when I was living there, there were no raves or accessible communities to do what I’m doing now."
“I had this drive for finding a resonance of my own internal feeling”.
The law of attraction states that what a person focuses on is what they attract in life. Anna is living proof of this. “Me and my friends, we always talk about the raver to DJ pipeline,” they said. Ravers are an interesting breed. Few ravers are satisfied unless they were busy the night before busting moves to filthy drops and songs filled with a bass so heavy it would rattle the speakers and shake the dance floor. “It’s always like that, you end up walking in the streets on some ungodly hour and then you hear that energy trembling almost as if it’s calling for you”, they continued.
Anna started going to raves in Brooklyn when they were 23. In that exploration, they found a community and like-minded artists that have allowed them to express their inner power. Dancefloors of Brooklyn have shaped them, and the queer community has raised them in their artistry. Breaking all social rules and being inspired to create and communicate that ardor for techno that vibrates and shakes, Anna’s influences range from trance, acid, and an occasional nod to pop culture bangers. “It varies, really. In the morning, I listen to older 90s artists. Lately, I’ve been listening to Janet Jackson, Everything But The Girl, but as soon as the sun starts setting, I start putting on a harder vibe”.
"DJs are like music super-fans. “I just want to pound out energy,” Anna says. Techno can transform itself into an invitation. An invitation to unapologetically rage at all that comes with being a human in a world filled with what we think is noise and nonsense. When talking to Anna, I was reminded of a quote by Björk: “The word "nature" and the word "techno" mean the same thing.”
“Techno puts every single thing together in flows."
“You can make techno part of your own nature. Even in an urban city like New York, you can prioritize nature by staying connected to techno”. Anna sees the world through the lens of energies. They believe that we make our own nature, and our own worlds through techno. It’s in relation to techno that we are capable of finding ourselves, creating ourselves, and encountering synchronicities that are both felt and heard. Techno, like nature, is all encompassing.
The undertone of rivers, the roar of pouring cataracts: Music tells us things that language fails to deliver. And hammering out energy, feeling the rawness of heavy percussion –a bass drum, a backbeat played by a snare or equivalent, at a tempo of 165 BPM and above, can be one of the most liberating things we can do as humans. To rave is to fill the midnight late, to bend ourselves powerless for an undeniable vitality, and to feel like one might live forever.
Coming up next at the Red Pavilion:
Shanghai jazz night is a weekly highlight, taking place every Friday from 8-11 pm. Neo-noir-themed cabaret show Lust Caution also takes place most Saturdays and features an amazing rotating cast of dancers, aerialists, acrobats, and variety acts.
For AAPI Heritage Month, the Red Pavilion has donated 20% of food revenue from their unlimited dim sum menu offering to Heart of Dinner. This organization works to address food insecurity and isolation experienced by Asian American seniors.
Please refer to their full event calendar online at redpavilion.com.
Coming up next with the Kollection:
Be on the lookout for “The Burn Book”, a monthly newsletter with a curated collection of provocative and subversive art, music, fashion, and culture.
Be Hot To Know.
- 💋💋, The K