For nearly 35 years The White Swan has been serving the LGBT scene with nights of every kind, including the UK’s biggest cabaret acts, top DJs and much more. Now there’s a new and decidedly fabulous element as the Limehouse venue brings us world-class clubbing, with Cybil’s House about to celebrate three years at the venue and U OK HUN? joining the team. Dave Cross spoke to Cybil and to Amy and Emily from U OK HUN? to get the lowdown.
Cybil War from Cybil’s House
Hi Cybil, how would you describe Cybil’s House to an alien?
Cybil’s House is exactly that – my house! It’s the type of party you go to where you’ll know some people and you’ll leave knowing a whole bunch more. It feels like that Saturday night in high school when your friend’s mum was away and you all went round to drink Lambrini in the living room and listen to music… and if you’re lucky you might even get fingered in the spare room!
How did the party come about and get to its current form?
I moved back from New York a few years ago and found that a load of my friends had started doing drag but didn’t have anywhere to go. They’d just dress up and have house parties… so we just moved the house party into a club, The White Swan and the rest is history. I just now have a lot more friends at my house party
What kind of music is played?
We have our resident DJs Vivien Mobile Disco, MSC4MSC and Grace Shush who all play a mixture of your favourite classic pop, R’n’B and alternative bangers. The type of stuff that’ll keep you dancing all night and swinging round our pole.
What makes a good Cybil’s House performer?
We have a show every month at 11.30pm and I like to keep the performances as varied as possible. We’ve had everything from drag queens and kings to world champion yo-yoers and burlesquers. Seasoned veterans and first timer babies. Our crowd is so welcoming and supportive as long as the performers are having a good time, we all have a good time.
How would you describe the Cybil’s crowd
One of the things I love the most about our party is how varied the crowd is. We welcome all genders, sexual orientations and ages and you can see that represented in who comes to Cybil’s House. Lots of people get into the themes and dress up, but equally as long as you’re having fun we don’t care what you wear. Just don’t be a dick…. or you’ll have this House Mother to deal with!
What can we expect this coming Saturday?
At Cybil’s House we believe age doesn’t limit your enjoyment of clubbing, so this Saturday we’re imagining what it’ll be like when we’re all still clubbing at age 96! Imagining disco era Studio 54 but everyone’s of retirement age. So grab your zimmer and we’ll see you on the dancefloor!
Amy and Emily from U OK HUN?
Hi Amy and Emily, so what is U OK HUN?
U OK HUN? is a camp as tits LGBTQ+ rave with a mix of quality DJs, drag queens, pole queens, surprise runways and the best vibes. We’re inspired by trash magazine culture and iconic huns. We keep things trashy and cheap at all times!
How did the party get started?
We lived in Ibiza for two years working as circus performers and club promoters. As there were no gay bars in our area, we started hosting a weekly “gay night” in our flat for our mates, complete with disco balls, inflatable unicorn balloons and George Michael blaring out of our residential apartment windows! We would say to each other “U ok hun?” if anyone was particularly wonky. When we got back to the UK, we got in touch with Bethnal Green Working Men´s Club, our first show there was a huge success and the rest is history…
What kind of crowd do you attract?
Our crowd is super mixed, super fun and super hun. Everywhere we go we get complimented on the amazing vibe our crowd brings, which makes us really proud as our aim was to unite the scene and bring people together through a shared sense of humour and love of a good rave.
Tell us about the DJs and music?
Music is really important to us and we book some of the freshest most talented DJs from both the London scene and over in Ibiza and we play ourselves as our DJ alter egos Luvved One and Victoria Peckham. We play pop remixes, sassy house, sexy disco and loads of Britney! We love getting DJs from other nights involved as we should all be supporting each other.
What about the performers at the parties?
We’ve been really lucky to have worked with some of the fiercest and freshest queens, pole dancers, strippers, porn stars and circus performers in London. We have a really diverse range of performers and will always try and give a platform to new talent and people who are under-represented in nightlife. Emily is a circus and cabaret performer herself and always wanted to create an environment where performers feel valued and are able to express themselves creatively. This seems to really work and they come and slay it every single time. Some of our favourite performers we’ve worked with include Kitty Velour, Danny Ash, Rhys Pieces, Shakona Fire, Leo Rex, Margo Marshal, Cleopantha and our new resident hunnies The Plastics.
How did the first one at The White Swan go?
It was so much fun. The venue is a total dream, we almost wet ourselves the first time we saw the art deco East End strip joint… total showgirl vibes. Our first night there was super busy and the crowd were nuts, we all had a ball.
When’s the next one?
Our next one at The White Swan is on Saturday May 4 and we can’t wait. Follow us on Instagram at UOKHUNCLUBNIGHT to find out the theme. We are making an appearance at Mighty Hoopla this year (scream!) and also have a monthly show at our fave south London venue The Chateau on April 27 and tickets for both are available on Outsavvy.