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CoverStory The Hunger The Epic Fundraiser Turns 10 By Michelle McChristie F or the past 10 years, Definitely Superior Art Gallery has hosted the most elaborate and extensive Halloween party in our city. With multiple venues, live music that spans every genre, performance art, costume con- tests, and décor that transforms familiar venues into enchanted dens or haunted taverns, The Hunger is more than a concert or a party—it is a surreal and spectacular cabaret. Sitting in their compact and cluttered office space, the team from DefSup—David Karasiewicz, Renee Terpstra, and Lora Northway—explain how The Hunger evolved from the gallery’s early efforts to increase their community outreach. In the late 1990s, a new board of directors wanted to hold more events outside of the gallery. The inaugural event, called the Diva’s Cabaret, was held in 1998 and featured multimedia and perfor- mance art, spoken word, film, a drag show, and live music that varied from folk to metal. Darren McChristie “The idea of mixing dif- ferent genres of music with Dahab performing at The Foundry 6 The Walleye The Married Singlemen performance art and film came out of several years of open house events at the gallery,” says Karasiewicz. Some musi- cians were somewhat skeptical that the format would work. “The music started out softer and progressively got heavier as the night went on with folk to death metal and everything in between,” says Terpstra. “We learned that you can’t put a solo acoustic set on after 10 pm,” adds Karasiewicz. At the end of the night, over 300 people packed The Apollo—the cabaret was an instant success. DefSup continued to experi- ment with multimedia, multi- faceted cabaret events and host- ed 35 between 1998 and 2005. They added an important new dimension to the gallery’s pro- gramming and provided an op- portunity for greater community engagement with a wide range of artists and musicians. “We always had a theme and some kind of audience participation,” says Karasiewicz. “Like the sock puppet cabaret…some themes got dark, some were light...some were insane.” Through trial and error, organizers got to know