I was a 20-something girl from Long Island, living in the East Village in 1998 and enthralled with the creativity and grit. I met a young lad who introduced me to 'Mother', and every Saturday night we'd head there for--what seems now--some of the most liberating times of my life.
Was some of it illicit? I think yes. I won't discuss that aspect (and that aspect was due to us, not the club). But mostly it was amazing to be surrounded by such 'alternative' people, everyone--i imagine--so thrilled to have a place to go and be whatever the hell they wanted to be! The music was awesome, the place was small and packed, i could dance or just meet people, or just watch, and then we'd go home at 5 and sleep the rest of the day. No cares!
Even though i wasn't as 'out there' or alternative as many of the people at that club, my slightly-shy persona was elated at the time spent in a place where you weren't judged, and you could just 'be'. And the people at Mother were (generally) so kind, so welcoming. So unlike the icky meatmarket atmosphere of traditional dance clubs. I know you can't really compare the two, but it was exhilarating to be in a place focussed on art, self-expression, integrity. Community. Acceptance.
I've since moved on to another state, and to a less 'alternative' lifestyle, but I look back with longing and love at the 'liberation' that NYC afforded me back then. I know that some of Mother's performance shows are still performed elsewhere, and I hope everyone is still having magical nights, not quite of this world.