dispatches from the pop scene...minus the corn syrup.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Bye, Bye, G-A-Y?

Say it ain't so!

A quick zip through the message board at the official site for London club G-A-Y has revealed that the venue that's housed Europe's premiere campy gay dance party for years -- The Astoria -- has changed hands. Now, there are several differing reports on what's really going down, and quite frankly, I ain't taking the time to research to see which one is legitimate... but here they are:

* In a £23.75 million deal, the Astoria changed ownership from a subsidiary of Clear Channel Music Group UK (!) to Derwent Valley, who already own a majority of the businesses on the adjoining block. In 2008, once Clear Channel's lease is up, the venue will be converted to flats, shops and offices.

* British government is issuing a compulsory purchase order for the Astoria to convert it to a rail station: "Big railway line that will stop at Tottenham Court Road. The new station will basically fill the space currently occupied by the Astoria."

Here is a petition from G-A-Y promoter Jeremy Joseph that's being submitted to Parliament to stop the supposed Crossrail Project.

I've gotten to shake a tailfeather at G-A-Y three different times over my two trips to London -- the first time, reality TV flash-in-the-pan Alex Parks performed. The second time was a grand old "Camp Attack" Friday night last November. And the third time was the next night, to see former PWL labelmates Jason Donovan, Sonia and Sinitta perform!

All I can say is nothing is as joyous as the traditional Saturday midnight balloon drop when Kylie's "Better The Devil You Know" kicks on! Here's a brief history of The Astoria, and this talks about G-A-Y.

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  • At 5:01 AM, Blogger MrBrady said…

    Awww, that balloon photo brings back so many memories! *sob*

  • At 8:54 AM, Blogger xolondon said…

    It's like the Brit version of eminent domain - a Supreme Court ruling that will go down as one of the worst.

    Hard to believe this since that club is so popular. I suspect they'll move...

  • At 10:54 AM, Blogger D'luv said…

    Mr. Brady, have you gone back since?

  • At 4:43 PM, Blogger MrBrady said…

    I've been back quite a few times, but only on a Monday or Friday when my friend Wooski is spinning. Saturday nights don't usually do it for me there due to the usual crush that ensues, and I'm usually the designated driver on those occasions so alcohol can't help me to appreciate it in the same way that we managed it that night.

    Microwave pizza and chips, anyone?

    "Grandma" ;-)

  • At 9:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Sad but true....G-A-Y will soon be no more, there has been talk of this for a while and seeing as it is the biggest gay club (and most successful) in London im sure it will move to another location but it just won't be the same! I go there nearly every weekend and over the years iv seen some of the finest pop acts perform there - Madonna, Nicki French, Sugababes, Geri Halliwell, Dannii, and of course not forgeeting EVERY boyband ever created (Take That, E-17, Boyzone............)

  • At 10:48 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

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