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Travel & Nightlife

Q & A with Matt Harvat


What are the three golden rules for throwing a great party?
1. Better liquor than everyone else.
2. Better music than everyone else.
3. Face time with your public before the event!

The biggest no-no?
Treating the press poorly. Even if they hate you in print or online, smile and invite them back every time and keep moving forward.

Madonna or Gaga?
Without question, Madonna. Lady Gaga may be considered (by some) better vocally, but her constant barrage of shtick is working my nerves.

What was the first record you ever bought?
Oh, man am I old. The single of Don McLean's "American Pie" for $0.64 at Grant's department store with my allowance.

Which dance track is a guaranteed crowd pleaser this summer?
There are two tracks coming off of the soon-to-be released new album by DJ/Producer Tony Moran that are going to shatter windows, crack bass speakers and send dance floors around the world into complete chaos.

What time does your day start, and how?
Usually around 6:30am with a wet-nose nudge and/or lick from the two puppies. Crawl to the coffee maker, check CNN, check email, check myself for lumps, bruises or missing limbs then head out the door to the floral wholesale markets to purchase flowers for my floral company for the day's orders. So, flowers first, then the randomness of the rest of my life kicks in with dance parties, charity events, outdoor landscaping clients, booking strippers, DJ contracts, vendor meetings and before you know it, it's 9PM.

What are you doing for Pride?
I have six amazing clients that I produce Pride parade floats for including dancers, sets, music and costuming. That's on Sunday, June 26, but on Friday, June 24, I am throwing a massive dance party.

What's the single most ridiculous thing that's happened to you while on the job?
Probably falling onstage in front of a sold out crowd of 1,800 party boys and girls during my show for Winter Party, Miami, in 2010 and ripping the ACL in my right knee in half.

What would your advice be to someone who'd like to break into party promotion?
Dream big, but start small. Perfect your game one event at a time.

How do you like to spend your down time?
What is this down time you speak of?

What are the can't-miss events of Summer 2011?
Chicago's hottest society ticket is the"Sea Jellies" gala on June 11, 2011. I am honored to design and produce the talent and dance party portion of this sold out event.

What's the strangest piece of swag you've ever received?
I probably shouldn't share that piece of information with our audience.

30 Years of Out100Out / Advocate Magazine - Jonathan Groff and Wayne Brady

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