When you think of the nightlife scene in New York City a few things come to mind: fashion, music, and the diva at the door. Recently I attended a weekly Sunday party called “Underground” by Twitch Productions where I was greeted by the “Diva at the Door.” She is always serving you realness and holds the entrance key.
Kate Kouture Durand is someone I have known for years. She has been a fixture in my life when it comes to my fond memories of going out in NYC. She was the person you looked for not just because of her friendly appeal but her style. She is always fashionable and everything a girl in NYC dreams of becoming. It’s the reason Kate is always surrounded by beautiful, intelligent, and vibrate gay men.
In recent years, I stopped going out but stayed in contact with her via Facebook where I learned so much more about the woman I would smile and laugh with on the many dance floors across NYC. She is thoughtful, powerful with words, and intelligent beyond words which is the reason I decided to sit down with “The Diva at the Door,” Kate Kouture Durand for a personal one on one.
Q. How long have you been managing the door at NYC hotspots?
A. I’ve been doing the door at predominantly gay venues in NYC for about 10 yrs now, off & on. My first door gig was at the “fag-tag” parties at the Tunnel.
Q. What has changed over the years in NYC nightlife? (if she’s been doing this for a while)?
A. The scene has changed. It’s hard to get people to leave their house & venture out, when there’s “an app for that”, you know what I mean.
Q. What makes a venue hot?
A. The music & the energy of the crowd, for sure. If you have these 2 elements, it doesn’t matter if its a hole in the wall, New Yorkers will come. At the end of the day everybody wants to have a good time.
Q. In terms of fashion, what do you see out there?
A. Personal style always trumps fashion trends. And New Yorkers are all about individualism.
Q. Have you seen any changes over the years? (if she’s been doing this a while)
A. It’s nice to see more “self expression” in clothing these days. We went through a phase where everyone looked like carbon copies of each other.
Q. Do you think there is a such thing as “urban fashion” and how would you describe it?
A. Yes, Urban fashions tend to be harsher, edgier & more confrontational. A bit bolder & more in your face. I mean you can spot a city girl anywhere just by her clothing. We definitely stand out.
Q. Have you ever let someone into a club based just on how they look? Can you describe them?
A. Good looks helps but I love the added touch. This guy walked up to the ropes like he owned the club, cropped hair, masculine body with a tight tank top, jeans with chains hanging in the back & high top sneakers. But when he got closer, you couldn’t help but notice his 80′s style gold link chain with a Butch Queen name plate in bold letters. I mean how could I not let him in.
Q. What is a definite, will never get into this club situation?
A. Don’t tell me how important you are. I couldn’t care less. And def. don’t drop names.
Q. What advice would you give to our social urbanites looking for a hot evening out in the city?
A. You’ll read about some hot spot & give it a try & most times you’ll find a bunch of boring, fake, pretentious people. So get out & find your niche. Its good to seek things out on your own. Explore the city for yourself. You never know what you may find.