LadyLand: Comes Out & Under The K Bridge

2019 LadyLand Festival Day 1
BROOKLYN, NEW YORK – JUNE 28: Ladyland Festival founder Ladyfag onstage during the 2019 Ladyland festival at Avant Gardner on June 28, 2019 in Brooklyn, New York. (Photo by Santiago Felipe/Getty Images)

Rayne Baron, better known as the event producer/nightlife personality Ladyfag behind the New York festival LadyLand, wanted to contribute to her community in a larger way.

While she’s been able to spotlight LGBTQ+ talent with her music festival and other NYC- based events, she hoped to find something closer to home that could also benefit her North Brooklyn neighborhood. She realized that the park under the Kosciuszko Bridge connecting Brooklyn and Queens could be used as a music venue, and that, as a state park, all the money raised doing things onsite go toward the North Brooklyn Park Alliance, which plants flowers and trees in the sur- rounding neighborhoods including Green- point, Williamsburg and Bushwick.

“Now that I have a family, I’m so much more in tune with that,” Ladyfag tells Pollstar. “It makes me really proud to be able to contribute to my neighborhood. Not just my community as LadyLand, but now I actually get to contribute to the space where I call home. It makes me feel like it’s the right fit.”

LadyLand 2023 was the first to utilize the space there, and the venue now better known as Under the K Bridge has hosted shows from Four Tet, Björk and ISOxo and Knock2. Ladyfag

came up with the idea after admiring Junction 2 festival in London, which is under an express- way quite similar to the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway. Due to its nature as a park, Under the K Bridge limits what events it can host, making it all the more special to perform there.

This year’s festival returns to Under the K Bridge in Brooklyn on June 28-29, with a lineup featuring performances by Tinashe, Arca, Tokischa, Rahim C Redcar (formerly known as Christine and the Queens), A.G. Cook, Sevdaliza, horsegiirL, Mahmood, Slayyyter and more. Julia Fox will also be appearing as a special guest on Saturday, June 29.

The event will feature food trucks, three stag- es and lounge areas for fans to enjoy the day. While previous editions of LadyLand would often go until 6 a.m., the park has an earlier stop time to respect the surrounding neighbors.

For fans celebrating Pride, the location could not be any more convenient.

“The fact it’s located close to so many other parties during Pride in Brooklyn makes it a great guest experience, as well,” Ladyfag says. “They can either pregame at another party and then come here, or the opposite. They can come to ours, then go to an after[party] until the next morning. It’s all real- ly easy to get to, and I think that’s something that also makes this venue incredible.”

Last year, Ladyfag had to come up with the blueprint of producing a show at Under the K Bridge with a small team and no help from ma- jor promoters to help figure out what the place would look like. The venue hadn’t yet hosted any large shows, and LadyLand didn’t even lock down the venue until the last moment.

“It was insane we managed to pull that off,” she says. “Me and the team still can’t believe a year later that we managed to do that.”

This time around, Ladyfag and her small team aren’t alone in their efforts. Ladyfag invited Bowery Presents, an East Coast regional partner of AEG Presents, to observe the event last year, and the company jumped on as a co-producer of this year’s festival.

“It gives me confidence to expand to two days and three stages because obviously they have so much concert production knowledge,” Ladyfag says. “We’re working really nicely with them. It’s been a great experience to work with seasoned pros on it. It was also pleasantly surprising to know that we actually did a pretty good job last year on our own with our little team.”