KOKO; is the Camden venue a new hotspot with Liam Gallagher set to perform and Prince William spotted?
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With Liam Gallagher announcing earlier today a one off show in August, PeopleWorld were not too surprised to see where the former Oasis frontman would be performing this intimate show - the hallowed halls of Camden’s vibrant KOKO.
The venue recently played host to Take That’s intimate War Child performance last week and to top it all off, Prince William was spotted partying with entrepreneur Guy Pelly - who happens to also be a friend of Prince Harry.
You could call it a comeback - in 2020, a fire ripped through the former Camden Theatre during renovations but thankfully was contained to the roof area. Thankfully, the 1,410 capacity venue stood tall, allowing Arcade Fire to perform the venue’s first show after re-opening in support of their sixth studio album, “We,” back in April 2022.
Originally opening its doors on Boxing Day in 1900, it quickly became one of the largest theatres in London, boasting a remarkable capacity originally of 2,434 (seated across all four levels). Designed by the renowned theatre architect W. G. R. Sprague, the theatre received praise for its grandeur and dedication to presenting high-quality productions.
Throughout its early years, the theatre hosted notable performers, and even the esteemed actress Ellen Terry graced its stage. The Camden Theatre gained a reputation for its commitment to excellence, presenting standard works that garnered the approval of both critics and the public.
It became a BBC Studio at one stage, with the legendary The Goon Show recording their final work, “The Last Goon Show of All”, which was attended by several senior members of the royal family and which was filmed and recorded
From The Camden Palace to The Music Machine
In 1977, the venue underwent a transformation and reopened as The Music Machine, embracing its new identity as a live music venue. During this time, it became a hotspot for the emerging new wave and punk scenes, showcasing renowned acts such as The Clash and The Jam.
In 1982, it rebranded once again back to Camden Palace, where it continued to make its mark in the music scene - Madonna even chose Camden Palace for her first UK performance, solidifying its status as an influential venue.
This era marked a shift towards dance and new wave club music, with influential events like "Delerium" and "Clockwork Orange" taking centre stage. Artists such as Hüsker Dü, and Steve Marriott performed unforgettable shows, captivating audiences.
Rave Culture and beyond
The 1990s brought a vibrant rave music scene to KOKO, with the venue becoming a mecca for enthusiasts. It was a time of UV lights, state-of-the-art sound systems, and iconic events like "Frantic" and "Peach," which attracted renowned DJs and live bands such as The Prodigy and Blur.
Following a period of disuse, KOKO experienced a revival in 2004 when Oliver Bengough and Mint Entertainment took on the task of restoring and modernising the venue. The restoration process, which lasted over six months, transformed KOKO into a space that seamlessly blended historic charm with contemporary comforts.
Throughout its history, KOKO has played host to a multitude of iconic performances and events. From secret shows by Prince to the global broadcast of Hannah Montana's Live in London, KOKO has been a stage where important “happenings” have occurred and continue to be made.
Today, KOKO stands tall as a testament to resilience, revitalization, and the enduring power of live music;. its doors are once again open, welcoming both established acts and emerging talents to share their art with audiences eager to create new memories within its historic walls.
As KOKO continues to make its mark on London's vibrant entertainment scene, it remains an iconic destination where unforgettable experiences are born. Which is why we can imagine Prince William and Guy Pelly are now frequenting the establishment.
Where can I get tickets to see Liam Gallagher perform at KOKO?
Pre-sale access to see Liam Gallagher perform at KOKO on August 9 2023 will take place on July 5 at 10am BST and will be offered to all fans who pre-order a copy of “Knebworth 22” before 3pm on July 4 BST.
The pre-sale access code will be sent via email at 5pm BST the same day.