Photo By WILSONMODELS

Italo Lopez

Manager at The Monster Piano Bar 路 Lounge 路 Club

Italo Lopez has been in the bar business since he was 18 years old, and he has been the manager at the famous and iconic Monster for the past two years. He has many responsibilities and loves his customers and fellow staff.

I met Lopez during a Get Out! event and loved him immediately. He made me and others who were involved feel welcome and right at home. It seemed that he went well out of his way to make us feel comfortable and to make sure we had everything that we needed and asked for, going above and beyond all of our expectations.

 

What鈥檚 it like working with the gay community?
I鈥檝e been working with the gay community since I was 18.

At The Monster?
No. The first gay bar was when they opened up The Tunnel for the first time in 1985.

How long have you been working at The Monster?
I鈥檒l be working there two years. It鈥檚 more fun working at a gay bar. Everybody is more friendly, and you know, I really do love working with the gay community. Ninety-nine percent of my friends are gay.

Me too! When you鈥檙e not working at the bar, what is it that you like to do?
I like to relax at home, or go out to dinner, or go to a movie.

What exactly is it that you do at The Monster?
I am in charge of everything.

Which night do you enjoy most at the bar?
The most fun night I think is Thursday and Sunday. Sunday is the disco night, and Thursday is the Spunk night.聽 Every single day is busy. A lot of people don鈥檛 know that we have a dance floor downstairs. I鈥檓 trying to change that.

Tell me a little about you.
I鈥檓 easy going. I鈥檓 very friendly. I like to make friends, and I like to talk a lot. Originally I was born in Ecuador. I came here because I didn鈥檛 have a choice. My father brought me. I came here when I was 10 years old, and I was raised in Brooklyn, in Greenpoint.

What do you like best about working at The聽 Monster?
My favorite thing about The Monster is that it鈥檚 really like a family. We all get along. We all talk about ourselves; even my customers like to talk. They are always looking for some nice advice, and I鈥檓 here for them.

I hear a lot of nice things about you. When can someone find you there, say if they need to talk or get some advice?
They can find me here from 11 o鈥檆lock until 10 at night, but if I have something to do, I鈥檓 here later than that.

Who is your most popular bartender?
They are all very popular. I don鈥檛 have a specific one. They are all very popular, and that鈥檚 why they are working here.

In case someone wants to buy you a drink, what is your favorite cocktail?
I call them lemonade. It鈥檚 Stoli Orange with tonic and sour mix. I invented it myself.

If you could say something to your patrons, what would it be?
I would say life is short, so there has to be happiness. We cannot be sad. We have to be happy, because we don鈥檛 know what will happen tomorrow.

Good advice. Is there anything that you would like to promote concerning the bar?
I would like to invite everybody here, because we have something every day for everybody. Every day there is something different. My customers, my bartenders and even myself are very friendly. I want people to get to know us better, because a lot of people think that we aren鈥檛 very friendly, but we are very friendly!

I love The Monster! Thank you very much.

Celebrate Italo鈥檚 Birthday on Friday, October 14th聽 8pm-?

THE MONSTER
Piano Bar 路 Lounge 路 Club
80 Grove Street, Greenwich Village
New York, NY 212.924.3558 | monsterbarnyc.com

Eileen Shapiro

Best selling author of "The Star Trek Medical Reference Manual", and feature celebrity correspondent for Get Out Magazine, Louder Than War, and Huffington Post contributor, I've interviewed artists from Adam Ant, Cyndi Lauper, and Annie Lennox to Jennifer Hudson, Rick Springfield, LeAnn Rimes, and thousands in between. My interviews challenge the threat of imagination....

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