In 2017, when NYC’s famous East Village dive bar Eastern Bloc closed its doors for the last time, it was a terrible loss for the crowds of regulars who frequented the tawdry, dark, and pleasantly scandalous nightspace. One of those customers was Alan Cumming, the legendary actor from TV’s The Good Wife (he played Eli), movies like the X-Men (he was Nightcrawler!), and a long list of Broadway productions that includes his 1998 Tony Award-winning performance in Cabaret.
Yes, Alan Cumming liked to hang out at Eastern Bloc, and when it closed, he wanted to keep the party going. With the help of an impressive arsenal of performing artists and nightlife promoters, and a thorough scrubbing and remodeling of the space, he re-opened the bar, and Club Cumming was born.
This nightclub was inspired by parties that Cumming hosted in his backstage dressing room—which he also called “Club Cumming”—while he was in Cabaret during a 2017 Broadway revival. Those parties had lots of booze, a little bit of impromptu song and dance, and crowds of fabulous New York glitterati crammed into the room, including cute chorus boys bouncing around without their shirts.
The current Club Cumming features live shows by legendary performers, and mixes in a bit of debauchery. Lance Horne, who was a Best of GayCities honoree in 2019 for “Favorite Cabaret Artist,” is a regular here, and legendary promoter Daniel Nardicio, who is co-owner of the nightclub, hosts raucous events that feature scantily clad lads running amok, just like Cumming’s dressing room. Occasionally Mr. Cumming himself will drop by for a drink and a song, although he is usually off filming something, somewhere.
Nardicio threw a New Year’s Eve party at Club Cumming, and sent GayCities some fun photos to share. There were a few photos that we can’t publish due to the presence of censorable body parts, but otherwise it looks like a fun bunch, don’t you think?
Related: Top 10 gay dive bars in NYC