Scandalesque Announces Plans to Open The Empress in Downtown Phoenix

Categories: Coming Soon

palazzo_downtown_phoenix_empress.JPG
Benjamin Leatherman
Downtown Phoenix's Palazzo, which the organizers of Scandalesque reportedly plan to transform in the Empress.
Scandalesque's Christy Zandlo and Julianna Curtis probably won't have much in the way of free time over the next several weeks. During that time, the co-founders of the local burlesque troupe have routines to rehearse, dance workshops to oversee, and a few upcoming performances to plan (including The M Show, their two-girl tribute to Marilyn Monroe at FilmBar on Friday). And then there's the biggest task on their plate: Opening Scandalesque's new performance venue within the next month or two.

On the evening of Friday, August 30, Zandlo announced on Facebook that the troupe is planning to open The Empress, a "drop dead gorgeous burlesque and live music theater" in downtown Phoenix sometime in October. Here's the kicker: Its location is the current home of infamous gothic-themed nightspot Palazzo, which will transform into its new identity in the coming weeks.

See also: Downtown Phoenix LGBT Dance Club Amsterdam to Close

Zandlo, who also performs as Pyrrha Sutra, told Jackalope Ranch that Scandalesque recently signed a deal with property owner and nightlife impresario Steven Rogers to begin leasing his Central Avenue spot.

She says it will continue to operate as Palazzo and host DJ/dance events -- including the latest edition of monthly goth/industrial party ResurrectioN on Friday night -- but only through the end of the month. Come October 1, it will be known as The Empress and will go from being a dance club to more of a supper club-like theater.

(Palazzo isn't only one of Rogers downtown nightspots that's getting new proprietors and a new concept, as neighboring gay club Amsterdam closed last month and will be transformed into a new establishment by the owners of Bliss/ReBar.)

In the weeks leading up to the transition, Zandlo says they'll be refurbishing things a little bit with some "small cosmetic changes." After its changeover takes place, however, the property will close to undergo a "full-on transformation" into a theater, which she says will serve as a much-needed home for Scandalesque.

The troupe has been based out of various Valley dance studios and other venues since it was formed in 2004 by Zandlo and Curtis, who performs as Lady Fontaine.

"We've been needing a new home for a long time," Zandlo says. "It's been like eight years, and we've been going from place to place."

While the exact date of The Empress' grand opening is still up in the air, Zandlo says they're hoping to have things up and running at the theater sometime in October.

It will host most of Scandalesque's showcases (a few will still take place at other Valley venues) as well as other "alternative entertainment" like sideshow and circus-style acts, drag artist revues, high-profile touring burlesque performers, and the occasional live band.

"We just want to be known as a place that just has this cool and different alternative entertainment," Zandlo says.


Location Info

Map

Palazzo

710 N. Central Ave., Phoenix, AZ

Category: Music

The Empress

712 N. Central Ave., Phoenix, AZ

Category: General

My Voice Nation Help
14 comments
thejeremiah
thejeremiah

 @Zander Buel @Jonny SyntheticBad form, gentlemen.  Unless, of course, your intention is to establish bad relations and thwart the possibilities of Scandalesque or other venue managers opening the doors to the cause you think you are supporting by posting such insults as you have.  

Keep in mind that with all of the problems associated with previous management, this could prompt a major improvement for future possibilities.    

TondraSue
TondraSue

I am so proud of my girls for believing in their dream and making it finally happen! I've worked as their stage manager and promoter for over 7 years and have seen them blossom into a national sensation! They work hard and are some of the best entertainment around this town! Downtown Phoenix needs more art culture and entrepreneurs like Scandalesque to make our city come alive again.  Quit hating and start supporting, lets work together to make Phoenix great! 

Jonny Synthetic
Jonny Synthetic

Other than tomorrow. But thats because I support our scene.

James Bound
James Bound

The problems they had with not enough bartenders has been addressed by drastically reducing the number of people who would go. 
I seriously wonder what the Scandalesque crowd would think if they lit up the black light paintings of vampire sex and transgenders dancing through the flames of hell that adorn the walls.


Jonny Synthetic
Jonny Synthetic

The goth community has generously hosted that group on several occasions and several venues, and this is how that community is repaid. Especially when we were the majority of their clientele. They didn't "Build" this venue either, they struck a deal with a greedy owner with little business tact. THEY ARE LEASING IT FOR ONE YEAR, NOT BUYING IT. This venture is going to fail. Even then, I can guarantee that the service is always going to suck. I have little to no interest revisiting that place whatsoever while the same management is there.

Vendettoli
Vendettoli

"Its certainly going to a change of pace from the sort of goth/industrial dance nights and fetish-friendly events that Palazzo hosted off and on for years since its opening in 2005." 

I find it quite shocking that this club was designed for the goth scene by Steven Rogers and that he did not have management taken over by someone successful in the goth/industrial scene. Maybe someday he will and make it a FULL TIME club for goth/industrial/alternative acts/touring bands and dis/80s/retro etc.. with a different format every night of the week, that would make 1000's of people in this city VERY happy! 


Kevin Flanagan
Kevin Flanagan

So do what scandalesque is doing and build something instead of complaining.

Zander Buel
Zander Buel

It's a pretty bad blow to the scene, yeah.

Jonathan Messenger
Jonathan Messenger

fuck the palazzo. I'm glad that place closed down. Hopefully the owners will be better than that place. That dude got exactly what was coming to him.

Tom Lucas
Tom Lucas

Looking forward to the new entertainment!

Zander Buel
Zander Buel

So sad to see Palazzo close for this garbage. It was an incredible club that holds many dear memories and evenings.

TondraSue
TondraSue

@Zander Buel Steve, the owner of Palazzo had to lease out all the buildings on that entire strip. His general manager ran the businesses into the ground. So regardless, it had to go.  Thank your lucky stars it was bought by someone who actually cares about persevering alternative art culture.   I know Scandalesque and co. are currently working hard to keep as well as enhance all the beauty of the building. They plan to hold some epic events and dance nights there, so trust me, it will not be garbage. For over a year they performed at the start of every Friday evening for Transylvania, long before it was ever Resurrection.  The scene loved it, it was something different, sexy, and unique.  Our little-big-town definitely needs a new art house like this, ran by incredible artists and performers that will provide the best entertainment around.  You will not be disappointed.

Now Trending

Phoenix Concert Tickets

From the Vault

 

Loading...