conan o'brien's visit to berghain proves controversial

Conan stopped outside the famous club with a film crew, leaving club kids divided.

by Isabelle Hellyer
06 September 2016, 1:06pm

American music producer The Black Madonna has — perhaps unintentionally — launched a fevered discussion about Berghain's increasingly global reputation, and the ethics of publicizing the space. It all began when the artist shared a photograph of Conan filming outside the club to Instagram. "Husband at Berghain. Sent a photo of Conan O'Brien who is outside doing comedy," she wrote. "Doesn't he know there's already a designated Jokeman in this town?" From what we can tell, Conan wasn't allowed inside (unlike Claire Danes).

The Black Madonna expressed concern over how Conan would frame the club: "I don't need to know what he's joking about to know that he's taking millions of people into a space that is private for a good reason. I'm not humorless about any subject. But turning a space like this into a comedy spectacle for a largely straight American audience with no context other than the club being private and gay is a problem."

"It's private for a reason," she continued, "Taking your selfie out front is one thing. Conan is a comedian that millions of people watch nightly in a country on the verge of having Donald Trump for a president. That context matters." Responses were mixed. One commenter wrote "I hope he's respectful of the people and our space!" another disagreed: "It is most definitely not at 'gay club' anymore. I think it's unfair to say Conan is making humor out of the queer safe space. Its most def a target bc of the self seriousness and bc it's the best club on the planet. Fair game."

The segment is expected to air as part of the comedian's Conan In Berlin special. 


Text Isabelle Hellyer
Image via Instagram

Conan O'Brien
the black madonna