While the club boasted plenty of wild antics on any given evening, Studio 54 also loved the opportunity to throw a real party. If you think a live horse running through the dance floor is crazy enough, think again. To celebrate the premiere of ‘Grease,’ Studio 54 hired men to ride motorcycles through the crowd of patrons. At one point, the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre performed in the middle of the club.
Another time, the club organized a yacht party on the Hudson River featuring a live performance by Grace Jones. Studio 54’s party planning skills were truly unmatched. Whatever the occasion, Studio 54 always found a way to go over the top and host the best party in the city.
The Rubber Room Was Another Interesting Club Addition
Along with the much-talked-about basement, Studio 54 also featured one room entirely made of rubber. According to certain sources, the odd furnishings made the room easier to clean. With topless dancers and women running around in see-through garments, it’s only logical that the most basic instincts might get the best of some Studio 54 patrons.
If a rubber room truly existed, we’ll leave it up to your imagination to think about what might have gone on in there. Despite what was going on in the club, many celebrities continued to flock to the place, drawn in by its aura of excess and indulgence. In the end, however, Studio 54's reign as the hottest nightclub in New York City ended.
The IRS Confronted Club Owners Rubell and Schrager in 1978
From an outside perspective, Studio 54 was a dream. It was filled to the brim with the rich and famous, and many people could only dream of stepping through its doors. To the government, however, the club was an illegal operation run by criminals. In 1978, the IRS confronted club owners Steve Rubell and Ian Schrager.
Studio 54 was a safe haven for celebrities from across the country. Unfortunately, it's popularity and carefree attitude didn’t stop the government from closing its doors. The club's license was revoked, and it shut its doors for good. The owners pleaded guilty to the charges and spent 13 months in jail.
Diane Von Furstenberg Loved Attending Studio 54
Joining the ranks of other A-listers who found a home at Studio 54, Diane Von Furstenberg was a regular at the club. The famous fashion designer enjoyed the freeing environment of Studio 54, where she would often strut around in her latest designs with confidence. Von Furstenberg once told Vanity Fair that she had more fun at Studio 54 than any other nightclub in the world.
That’s quite the glowing recommendation for the short-lived disco. The fashion designer even held her own fashion show at the venue, which was a first for Studio 54. The show, which featured her iconic wrap dresses and other designs, was attended by some of the biggest names in fashion and entertainment.
Ignoring the Haters
The doors to Studio 54 were constantly met with masses of people hoping to get in and see a little bit of the action. But this hotspot wasn't everybody's cup of tea. The wild parties and hedonistic practices that infamously took place there had many people shaking their heads. Schrager recalls facing great backlash and resentment. People pegged the Studio as the poster boy for everything that was wrong with the younger generation, the economy, nightlife, and more.
Apparently, that didn't stop the place from holding more epic parties until the very end. Studio 54 remained a mecca for partygoers until the day it closed its doors. Its reputation as a den of debauchery only fueled the curiosity of those who wished to experience the wild, hedonistic atmosphere for themselves.