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Renovated Club Marcella to reopen on Friday

It might be a stretch to credit the iconic Theatre District EDM hotspot Club Marcella with launching the dance music craze in the region, but when owner Joe Guagliardo opened the doors to Marcella in 1995, the area was largely the province of live alternative rock bands, and the adjacent Chippewa Strip had yet to become a DJ-based Mecca. Marcella changed all of that.

Guagliardo left Buffalo for the Miami region a decade back, where he managed successful dance clubs Mekka and Heart. Now, he's to town to oversee a renovated and revamped Club Marcella. The club's grand reopening is at 10 p.m. May 19.

You can expect much of what made Marcella a popular spot from the mid-'90s forward – electronic dance music blasted through a state-of-the-art sound system, abundant lights and visuals, and an LGBT-friendly atmosphere featuring the weekly drag shows for which Marcella became renowned in its initial incarnation.

What has changed is the décor and amenities, both of which will reveal what Guagliardo learned during his 10-year tenure in Miami.

"The new space includes an updated lounge, coffee and sandwich bar and modern décor inspired by the Miami nightlife scene," according to a press release.

Joey Guagliardo returns to Club Marcella, which will have a grand reopening Friday. (Harry Scull Jr./News file photo)

There will also be "semi-private VIP lounges with banquette seating have been added where customers can enjoy personal bottle service with a private server," in addition to a 10-foot-by-5-foot LED video wall, and two distinct dance floors with separately dedicated sound systems.

"I loved my time in Miami, but it's time to come home and invest in Buffalo," Guagliardo said in the press release. "The new Club Marcella has a fresh, modern look and I can't wait for everyone to see it."

The event will feature sets from Miami's DJ Carlos G and Buffalo's DJ Charles Masters. The cast of Buffalo's "Life's A Drag" will perform at midnight. A 10-week series featuring DJs from Miami will run on consecutive Saturdays, beginning May 20.

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