An exclusive secret society needs new blood.
The Illuminati — the clandestine club that, according in-the-know individuals, controls the world through sub rosa machinations — is recruiting new members during a midnight ritual at Williamsburg bar Baby’s All Right on April 24. Members of the hush-hush fellowship said they will perform age-old rituals of dance, disc jockeying, and performance art to weed through potential recruits. And though the cloak-and-dagger group may fly under the radar, the key to getting elders’ attention is being as garish as possible, said a source inside the shadowy society.
“We want anybody who acts like they’re not totally basic,” said Stephen Franco, half of emcee duo Prima Primo and self-proclaimed high-ranking member of the Illuminati. “Just because you show up doesn’t mean you’ll end up in the Illuminati. It’s sort of like a frat pledge without the terribleness.”
Costumes and a penchant for hip-hop hand signs will also score brownie points, another society member said.
“Showing up in any type of Illuminati attire is going to be favored,” said Russ Marshalek, a member of record-spinning collective Adventures who describes himself as low in the Illuminati hierarchy. “Throwing their diamonds up — a la the Roc-A-Fella — is going to be favored,” he added, referring to hip-hop mogul and Brooklyn native Jay Z.
Recruiters will spin tunes by Jazzy and other reported Illuminati, including Madonna, Beyonce, and Kanye West. And occult dance music trio A Place Both Wonderful and Strange will close out the night with a live performance, Marshalek said.
For the uninitiated, the Illuminati traces its origins to an Enlightenment-era Bavarian social group of the same name. Its goals once included opposing “obscurantism” — keeping knowledge from other people — but the secret society now revels in the obscure, members said. Other well-known fraternal societies include the Freemasons, a group with links to 14th-century masonry guilds, and the Stonecutters, which made actor Steve Guttenberg a star — but the Illuminati controls those groups like puppets, one recruiter said.
“The Illuminati isn’t fully definable,” said Janet Castel, who is the other half of Prima Primo. “It’s a secret society that kind of controls everything — like Clear Channel but more with glitter.”
The clandestine clan took a page from the Freemason’s playbook when it decided to hold the open recruitment, Marshalek said.
“I was once walked through a soup-to-nuts Freemason night where people were welcomed, judged, and decided upon, and I thought it was awesome, because so bitchy and judgmental,” he said.
Illuminati Recruitment Ritual at Baby’s All Right (146 Broadway between Bedford and Driggs avenues in Williamsburg, babys