Restoration & Launch
Launch Festival - 21st – 26th Sep
A North London landmark is about to rise from the ashes….
Following a multi-million pound make-over, the legendary Camden Palace
is to be relaunched as KOKO, with a free
week-long music festival for over 10,000 people in September, it was announced
today (21st July) by the Mint Group.
A six-night statement of intent, the festival is a sparkling showcase
of the diverse and exciting nights to be expected at
London's most exciting new venue – a host of A-list artists ranging
from the likes of Groove Armada to exciting live acts
brought to you by Club NME and the smooth grooves of Kitsch Lounge Riot
all rounded off with a sexy salsa carnival
(full details to be announced in late July/August).
• 21st – 26th September
• 1A Camden High St, Camden, London, NW1 7JE - Nearest tube station:
Camden Town / Mornington Crescent
• To apply for tickets go to www.koko.uk.com (available from 14th
Ramshackle @ KOKO
Club NME @ KOKO
Groove Armada @ KOKO
Kitsch Lounge Riot @ KOKO
TBA @ KOKO
The festival will be the culmination of a six month, multi-million pound
refurbishment programme by the Mint Group - the specialist nightclub operators
who invested in the old Camden Palace in March - and the name behind Infernos
and The Clapham Weekender (Lovebox on Clapham Common; Latin Splash; The
Common Ground Festival).
"The aim of the refurbishment is to return the old Camden Palace
to its former glory", comments Eddie Hill, Marketing Director, Mint
Group. "While few people who witnessed the pitiful state of Camden
Palace over the past decade would believe it, the building was a first
class venue with an incredible heritage that had simply fallen into disrepair.
"The festival demonstrates we intend to host a regular programme
of events to do justice to this heritage. Everyone from Chaplin to The
Goons; from the Sex Pistols to Madonna has played here - and we intend
to add to this considerably.
"In short, KOKO will give Londoners a central live music venue that
befits the capital – classy yet unpretentious / up market but without
attitude; large yet unimposing; smart yet not overpriced; diverse but
not eccentric. In short, we want to create a venue for Londoners to see
great music - not a place for people to go to just to be seen.
"It sounds simple, but we believe this will be a ground-breaking
new live entertainment venue for London... and, of
course, we're inviting everyone to come and have a look: for anyone wanting
to apply for free tickets, go to
www.koko.uk.com to fill out the form... " (available from 14th August)
KOKO began life as a Victorian theatre back in the late 1800s. Then known
as Palace Theatre, it acted as a stepping stone for the likes of Charlie
Chaplin – remaining a popular venue until the late 1940’s
when it was transformed into a radio studio, with the BBC using it as
the home for the Goon Show throughout the 1950’s.
After a brief spell as a cinema in the 60’s, the building was reincarnated
as a music venue and as The Music Machine, enjoyed notoriety in the 1970’s
by providing a platform for many of the first-wave punk bands such as
The Sex Pistols and The Clash. Subsequently bought by Steve Strange and
Rusty Egan of Visage in 1983, The Camden Palace was born – the venue
holding court to the leading figures on the New Romantic scene and in
the process hosting the earliest gigs of the Eurythmics and the first
UK performance a rising star named Madonna.
Moving with the times Camden Palace entertained the rave generation –
the scene to a series of long running early house and trance nights –
all the while falling into an increasingly pitious state of disrepair
until its closure in February 2004.
The Clash Live at Music Machine – July 1978 Madonna Live at Camden
Palace – June 1983 Stage area being refurbished – June 2004
Artists impression of new KOKO interior
The six month multi-million pound restoration project, overseen by renovation
experts Red House Design, has been
planned according to a singular brief – to create a 21st century
entertainment venue from the ruins of a beautiful 19th century building
that had fallen into disrepair – and in doing so, restore one of
North London’s historic venues to its former glory.
The majority of the work is centered around three main areas: Firstly
to repair the damage inflicted on the venue over the past two decades;
secondly to remove all the outdated 80’s industrial / metallic features
cluttered around the venue and restoring the palace to its original theatrical
style; and finally to replace the cream colour scheme with a warmer and
richer deep red and palatial purple-orientated scheme.
Come September, the all-new KOKO will represent a versatile, 21st century,
state-of-the-art venue, adaptable for use as anything – from small
intimate comedy to international awards; from intimate gigs to 1,500 capacity
headline rock concerts; from stylish cabaret evenings to thumping club
THE GROUND FLOOR
A sweeping, tiered dance floor leading up to the main stage, surrounded
by 3 main bars. As well as the main dance
floor, this multifunctional area can be used for intimate gigs and cabaret
events, as well as corporate dining – adaptable enough to ensure
that even a crowd of 200 people could create the appearance and vibe of
a busy environment.
THE UPPER LEVELS…
The ultimate scaleable option for party organisers and event managers.
The first and the upper circles will provide
additional add-on areas for VIP’s, special guests and private parties
to enjoy the entertainment in luxurious and secluded areas.
THE FIRST CIRCLE
The first circle offers the perfect self contained VIP area – with
xxx bars and xxx is the perfect add-on to any event. The design incorporates
8 individual areas featuring clear stage views and can be hired as the
ideal gallery and exhibition space ranging in size from 25-250 guests.
THE UPPER CIRCLE
Invisible to the lower levels unless illuminated, the upper circle serves
as yet another individual add-on for approximately 200 people. With a
separate sound system, revelers can be entertained in their own acoustic
BACKEND / STAGE / BACK STAGE
The entire stage and backstage reflects the design quality found throughout
the venue. The performance area will
include a cutting edge JBL sound system and state of the art lighting
with perfect site lines from each level. The
notorious Camden Palace backstage has also been transformed into what
the designers believe will be the best
greenroom in London, with a luxury bathroom suite, bar, dressing room
and plasma screen with DVD entertainment allincorporated.
KOKO’S REGULAR NIGHTS
The entertainment programme has been created to take full advantage of
Koko’s potential to become central London’s biggest music
venue. Spread over five regular nights the entertainment on offer will
cater for all tastes – ranging from intimate indie gigs to full
scale rock concerts; from romantic / mellow jazz to stomping club nights.
TITLE TUESDAY NIGHT @ KOKO
HOSTED BY RAMSHACKLE – the UK’s leading alternative club night
FEATURING **TO BE ANNOUNCED**
STYLE The young and trendy indie night will play a range of alternative
and fresh yet familiar sounds to a
devoted, cool, urban crowd on a weekly basis.
TITLE WEDNESDAY NIGHT @ KOKO
HOSTED BY CLUB NME - NME music group
FEATURING **TO BE ANNOUNCED**
STYLE Highly anticipated by avid music fans and the music industry alike,
NME will be bringing a series of
varied weekly ensembles featuring an explosion of contemporary music and
With acts varying from unsigned showcase bands to prominent artists, as
well as new album
launches and one-off prodigious parties, KOKO is set to be one of the
most attractive and
comfortable places to watch live music.
TITLE THURSDAY NIGHT @ KOKO
THEME INDUSTRY NIGHT
Wednesdays will be devoted to corporate entertainment and events, taking
advantage of the venue’s
convenient location just five minutes from the City or the West End and
a stones throw from Kings
Cross and Euston.
This combined with the extensive facilities make it THE optimum site for
anything from awards
ceremonies and product launches to corporate dinners, receptions and galas.
TITLE FRIDAY NIGHT @ KOKO
HOSTED BY KITSCH LOUNGE RIOT
FEATURING **TO BE ANNOUNCED**
STYLE The essential attendance for the coolest crowd. Already a favourite
London club night, KLR is the
definitive live music extravaganza; crowds can expect to be wooed by a
range of smooth vocal
talent, hot DJ mastery, slick tunes and stylish performers, creating a
unique and unforgettable night
TITLE SATURDAY NIGHT @ KOKO
HOSTED BY KOKO
FEATURING ** TO BE ANNOUNCED**
STYLE Saturday Nights will be geared towards a lively gathering of local
trendies and fashionable partygoers;
this will be a DJ led celebration of contemporary favourites, classic
hits, and funky anthems
which is sure to become a definite must on the London social circuit.
1A Camden High St,
Opening: 21st September 2004
Tube: Camden Town