FANTASTIC FEST 2022: The Stairway to Stardom Mixtape (2022)

Filmed on video in a Staten Island basement, hosted by lounge singer Frank Masi and his wife Tillie from 1979 to the early 1990s, Stairway to Stardom existed in a world that could only be before the internet. I first saw clips of the show thanks to The Found Footage Festival and they broke my brain.

AGFA has brought together some of the most amazing moments of this show, whether that means unfunny stand ups, R&B singers who can’t dance on beat or just, well, whatever people thought was their talent.

This has no host or talking heads explaining its significance. It doesn’t need it. Instead, it’s everything wonderful of the now lost world of public access, a place where anyone could be a star, but it took a lot more work to get there.

The fact that this exists and that someone out there may get to experience it for the first time makes me so happy. Allow the joy that is this show to wash over you. You’ll have “Hairdresser” in your head before it’s over.

The Stairway to Stardom Mixtape is playing at Fantastic Fest. You can get a virtual badge here.

You can download complete episodes of the show on the Internet Archive or watch clips on YouTube.

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