A NYC Nightclub Empress

CHI CHI VALENTI has spent over four decades shaping and chronicling New York City’s nightclub demi-monde. Since 1980 she’s participated in alternative nightlife as a producer and performer of Jackie 60, Click + Drag, Night of 1000 Stevies, Low Life @ Howl! Festival and the Muscle Opera events. A frequent commentator and panelist on NYC club issues, Valenti is best known for nightlife events of a niche nature, including themed spectacles in NYC and elsewhere.

As a journalist for the Village Voice, (the original) Details, ID Magazine and Interview she wrote one of the first articles on the emerging Ballhouse Voguing culture. A venue owner of the seminal MOTHER from 1996-2000, she continued a legacy begun as a doorperson at the early 80s venue The Mudd Club. As the publisher of Verbal Abuse Magazine and The Motherboards NYC she nurtured writers and performers both emerging and iconic. She founded THE MOTHERBOARDS NYC in 2001, an online forum for nightclub history and modern NYC nightlife, and still actively presides there.

With her husband and partner DJ JOHNNY DYNELL and the costumer/fashion designer KITTY BOOTS, Valenti formed THE JACKIE FACTORY in the early 1990’s – a creative collective focused on nightlife experiments and new hybrids. Most notably, the group produced the JACKIE 60 club weekly throughout the 1990’s, 450 themes executed in tongue-in-cheek fashion. From 1996-2000 “The Factory” also co-produced the cyber-fetish Saturday Click + Drag in the alternative club mecca MOTHER owned by Dynell and Valenti in the then-ascending Meat Market.

Valenti remains an active contributor to NYC culture as a show producer and Mistress of Ceremonies, most notably at the Factory’s NIGHT OF 1000 STEVIES events. Still based in New York City’s East Village, she is a part-time resident of the Marigny neighborhood in New Orleans, where she and Dynell are restoring an 1880s house.

For Chi Chi’s current projects and shows, visit the links below.

Photo: Chi Chi onstage at Night of 1000 Stevies 25, video still by Jeremy Rocklin/NY Lives, 2015