Brooke Humphries: The Party Starter

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In this week's Dallas Observer we profile 30 of the metro area's most interesting characters, with new portraits of each from local photographer Mark Graham. See the entire Dallas Observer People Issue here.

Brooke Humphries is standing outside the entrance of It'll Do Club on Elm Street a few weeks before the club's reopening. She's fielding questions from Red Bull reps and contractors and employees as if she's running for office. "You have two minutes of my time," she says to one. "You have one minute," to another.

She's blunt, but she has to be: The efficiency helps her juggle Barcadia and Beauty Bar, her two Henderson clubs with business partner Brianna Larson; a new McKinney restaurant called Acme F&B; the reopening of It'll Do, a former Tejano bar; and the opening of a new Greenville coffee shop, Mudsmith, in August. The 42-year-old is also working on a six-lane bowling alley on the corner of Ross and Greenville avenues, and she's always bringing DJs to town, most recently via the Meltdown Festival, with partner Jeremy Word.

When that's your schedule, the walk-with-me-talk-with-me becomes the default.

"I've been talking about a good old-fashioned nightclub for like three years, and finally this place came along," she says. With It'll Do recast as a house-music venue, she's planting her flag in a neighborhood that's ripe for expansion, especially for people with the right vision.

And Humphries has a lot of visions: She wants Mudsmith to have communal seating, so people talk to each other. It'll Do will not indulge the pretension of bottle service. "[That's] so five years ago," she says. "It's a fading, bullshit trend. I don't care if you drive up in a Ferrari. I don't care who you are. You want a drink, you walk up to the bar."

Humphries grew up in the 1990s Dallas club scene but spent five years in New York, where she befriended Michael Alig, the notorious party promoter now in prison for murder, and she was memorialized in the 2003 feature-film version of the Alig documentary, Party Monster.

Her vision is part vibe, part aesthetic, but she's hinging her new ventures on a bigger idea: "It used to be people in Dallas wouldn't leave a five-block radius. Now, if you give Dallas the product, they will drive to the product." And there's an increasingly strong chance the product belongs to her.

See the entire Dallas Observer People Issue here.

Location Info

Venue

Map

Barcadia

1917 N. Henderson Ave., Dallas, TX

Category: Music

Beauty Bar

1924 N. Henderson Ave., Dallas, TX

Category: Music

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3 comments
Lauren
Lauren

Allow me to get straight to the point, Sth14: You're an idiot.  And clearly you've never spent one second around Brooke.  She does not brag about what happened all those years ago; in my PERSONAL experience with her, when the subject was brought up she politely changed the subject and didn't even discuss it.  But hey, way to talk about something - and someone - you know nothing about as well as completely ignore all the tremendous things Brooke and crew are doing to reignite East Dallas and just judge things on misstep in what is obviously a now turned-around life.  You're awesome. Keep up the great work, Brooke.  I'm happy to keep throwing my hardworking dollars your way.

Sth14
Sth14

Because I want to support a shady club kid who slept in an apartment with a dead body for two days and likes to brag about her association with murderers. Yeah. No thanks. There are plenty of other places to go out without supporting her 'vision'.

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