How does Jake Resnicow plan to produce what’s described as the biggest Pride music festival in history during NYC’s WorldPride?
Resnicow’s WorldPride Main Event at New York City’s Javit Center this June will be the largest event he has ever produced – and the biggest Pride music festival in history. To offer a sense of scale, the capacity at Javits is ten times larger than that of any other event being held during WorldPride. It’s a massive undertaking that has been in the works for over a year and promises to be a once-in-a-lifetime celebration with next level production, entertainment ,and surprises — all benefitting LifeBeat and the Stonewall Gives Back Initiative, the official charity of the Stonewall Inn.
So how was Jake Resnicow, a thirty-something-year-old New Yorker, tapped to produce the greatest gay show on Earth? Turns out it took years of experience.
According to Resnicow, he started emceeing bar-mitzvahs and weddings and DJing school dances at 14 years old. “I remember loading up my 1990 Toyota 4Runner with all my DJ equipment every weekend,” he recalls. “And that was when I was finally old enough to get myself to my own gigs. Before that, my parents drove me to my parties.”
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Just a Jump to the Left
Resnicow was a studious kid with an interest in government. He grew up convinced he would one day become the Chief of Staff to the President of the United States. But then a trip to Barcelona completely upended his life plan.
Resnicow attended his first Matinee event, the WaterPark party, and was blown away by the theatrics, pageantry, and, of course, the sea of gorgeous men. Resnicow knew he could recreate the magic in the states. After hammering out a licensing deal with Matinee, he launched his first event at 2010’s Pride in NYC, transforming Manhattan’s Governor’s Island into an over-the-top, all day and night, outdoor music festival. It was a huge success.Find LGBTQ-Friendly Resources
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“Just this year, I received a letter from a couple who met at that first party, got married and are still going strong today — ten years later,” Resnicow says. “That made me smile. It’s a reminder that making people happy is the most rewarding part of what I do.”
In the Mix
Creating the ideal atmosphere for an event of this size requires three vital elements, he says. First and formost is music. “Curating the right DJs and performers is crucial.” Environment plays a part as well, because “guests must feel safe, welcome and free to express themselves.” And the rest is that secret spice called originality: “Events must be unique and memorable,” the promoter confides. Resnicow approaches each event as a blank canvas — where his job is to color the party with never-before-seen moments that wow crowds.
“The element of surprise<" he adds, "is everything." That surprise factor was in full effect at last year’s LifeBall in Vienna, where Resnicow produced the Main Floor event. “It has been an honor to work with LifeBall through the years,” he reflects. “The event has raised over 30 million euros that go directly to fighting HIV/AIDS around the world.” He’s now working on a fundraising spectacular with fashion designer Patricia Field. The theme for the red carpet star-studded event? “United in Diversity”.
Who’s That Girl?
For Pride, Resnicow confirms he will also bring starpower to the proceedings with several A-List names already confirmed to take the stage. He won’t say who just yet. But he will say that acts won’t be concert-style. He prefers performances to be seamlessly integrated into the production.
And speaking of production, Resnicow promises that too will be epic. “We’re bringing everything into the venue: the lights, sound, staging and special effects,” Resnicow explains. He is employing several hundred staff to help him pull off the celebration in grand style. He’s even enlisted the production designer behind Coachella and Ultra Music Festival.
“The 50th anniversary of Stonewall is a big deal,” Resnicow continues. “Millions of people from all over the world will be coming to New York, the city that launched the modern gay rights movement. I’m psyched to bring everyone together on one dancefloor to celebrate and give back!”
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Last modified: September 3, 2019