Monday, May 23, 1977

Liquor Authority Head Stops Discotheque’s Music

The head of the State Liquor Authority, Michael Roth, conducted a soft of one-man raid early yesterday and had one of the newest and most popular discotheques in the city, Studio 54, closed for selling liquor without a license.

It all started when Mr. Roth learned at a private party Friday night that the club was opened as usual despite the fact that his agency earlier in the week had cut off daily caterers’ permits to Mr. Rubell. The one-day permits had permitted the sale of liquor while Studio 54 awaited action on its application for a liquor license. But such permits are actually intended for a special function or event.

Police arrested co-owners Stephen Rubell and Ian Schrager and two bartenders on Friday night (May 20).Late Saturday night there was only fruit juice being served.

The cover charge, $8 a person, remained unchanged. To the 300 couples dancing amidst the flashing lights, it didn’t seem to matter.

excerpt from Eleanor Blau NYT 5/23/77

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