Politics Shut Down Dance Parties In Albany, NY

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A state judge is blocking one of Upstate New York’s electronic music venues from throwing dance parties, and it seems like this was a targeted move. Recently, a NY state judge upheld the Albany city zoning board’s right to ban “large dance parties” at the Washington Avenue Armory, effectively killing the venue. The lawyer for the Armory, Gregory Teresi, had this to say about the decision: “The problem is that the shows that the city is trying to deter us from having, these types of concerts, it’s an integral part of our ability to stay open at this point. It’s possible that this could shut the armory down, absolutely. And the city is well aware of that.

While Manhattan and its surrounding areas are swamped with clubs and theaters that can hold massive amounts of kids, my last trip to Buffalo proved that the rest of the state of New York isn’t so lucky. Kill The Noise pointed out in our interview that he often went to Toronto from Rochester to see shows, as it was the closest city with reputable acts. That’s more than 300 miles, round trip.  Must suck to live in the middle of nowhere.

But as I take a jab, you have to feel sorry for these kids. The Washington Avenue Armory is a 15,000 square foot venue that actually books quality talent, and the only debate used to shut these events down is that an auditorium is defined by its fixed seating. So removing those seats to allow kids to safely dance and move around is a measure that might effectively stop their party culture. Who wants to sit in a seat and jam out to trap music?

The decision is final though, and the Amory will be charged up to $2000 per show if they remove the seats. You can sit down for a nice play or country music showcase, but there will be no dancing in the Armory anytime soon. Local residents have complained about this venue, and this is an obvious case of bored suits flexing their political muscle to stem activity that they don’t quite understand. It’s unfortunate that these kids have to suffer.

(Times Union)