The Haçienda


The Haçienda

Fac 51 Haçienda (better known simply as The Haçienda) was a nightclub and music venue in Manchester, England. It was the best known nightclub in the world during the "Madchester" years of the late 1980s and early 1990s. The Haçienda opened in 1982 and despite considerable and persistent financial troubles survived until 1997 - during much of this time the club was mainly supported by record sales from New Order. The Haçienda is associated with the rise of acid house and rave music.

Creation

Before it was turned into a club, the Haçienda was a yacht builder's shop and warehouse before becoming a Bollywood cinema in the 1970s, showing films to the South Asian immigrants from the Manchester area.Fact|date=November 2007

Originally conceived by Rob Gretton, it was largely financed by the record label Factory Records and the band New Order along with label boss Tony Wilson. It was located on the corner of Whitworth Street West and Albion Street, close to Castlefield, in the centre of the city. FAC 51 was its official designation in the Factory catalogue. New Order and Tony Wilson were directors of the club.

Designed by Ben Kelly, upon recommendation by Factory graphic designer Peter Saville, upstairs consisted of a stage, dance area, bar, cloakroom, cafeteria area and balcony with dj booth. Downstairs was a cocktail bar called 'The Gay Traitor,' which referred to Anthony Blunt, a British art historian who spied for the Soviet Union. The two other bars, 'The Kim Philby' and 'Hicks,' were named after Blunt's fellow spies. From 1995 onwards, the lower cellar areas of the venue were converted to create the 5th man, a smaller music venue.

The name comes from a slogan of the radical group Situationist International: "The Hacienda Must Be Built", from "Formulary for a New Urbanism" by Ivan Chtcheglov"25 Year Party Palace", [http://www.bbc.co.uk/manchester/content/articles/2007/05/17/210507_hacienda_facts_feature.shtml BBC website] , accessed 2nd February 2008] . A hacienda is a large homestead in a ranch or estate usually in places where Colonial Spanish culture has had architectural influence. Even though the cedilla is not used in Spanish, the spelling "Haçienda" was decided on for the club because the cedilla makes the "çi" resemble "51," the club's catalogue number [ [http://www.partypeoplemovie.com/legend_sub.php?section=2&subsection=4&article_id=77 24 Hour Party People ] ] .

History

The Smiths performed there three times in 1983. It served as a venue for Madonna on her first performance in the United Kingdom, on 27 January 1984. She was invited to appear as part of a one-off, live television broadcast by Channel 4 music programme The Tube. "Madonna Forgets Hacienda visit" by Simon Donohue [http://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/entertainment/music/rock_and_pop/s/127/127041_madonna_forgets_hacienda_visit.html Manchester Evening News website] , accessed 3rd Feb 2008.]

At one time the venue also included a hairdressing salon. As well as club nights there were regular concerts, including one in which Einstürzende Neubauten drilled into the walls that surrounded the stage.

In 1986, it became one of the first clubs to start playing house music, with DJs Mike Pickering (of Quando Quango M People) and Little Martin (later with Graeme Park) hosting the visionary "Nude" night on Fridays. This night quickly became legendary, and helped to turn around the reputation and fortunes of the Haçienda, which went from making a consistent loss to being full every night of the week by early 1987.

Acid house and Rave

The growth of the Madchester scene was little to do with the healthy house music scene in Manchester at the time but it was boosted by the success of the Haçienda's pioneering Ibiza night, "Hot" an acid house night hosted by Pickering and Jon DaSilva in July 1988.

Although peaking in popularity during the rise of the rave era with many events there, most of the money ended up circulating to drug dealers due to the popularity of ecstasy on the club scene. The Haçienda itself saw very little of the nightly expenditure. The resulting problems caused the club to shut for a short period in early 1991.

In the last years of the club's existence there were several shootings inside and outside the club and security and relationships with the police were a constant problem. In 1997, this culminated in a near-fatal attack on a student who was then pushed into the path of a car . A group of local magistrates who had just visited the venue witnessed the event [ [http://www.techno.de/mixmag/98.02/Gangchester/Gangchester.3.html Gangchester ] ] . Although security at the club is one of the contributing factors to the club eventually closing, the most likely cause was finances. The club simply didn't make enough money from the sale of alcohol, and this is mainly down to the fact many patrons instead turned to drug use. As a result the club rarely broke even as clubs rely on the sales of alcohol as the main source of income. Ultimately, the club's long term future was crippled and, with spiralling debts, the Haçienda eventually closed forever in the summer of 1997.

Legacy

The Haçienda lost its entertainments licence in June 1997, following a final gig with Spiritualized and remained open for a short period as an art gallery before finally going bankrupt and closing for good. After the Haçienda officially closed, it was used as a venue for two free parties organised by the Manchester free party scene. One of the parties ended in a police siege of the building while the party continued inside.

The Whitworth Street West site has recently been rebuilt as city centre flats, but has kept its iconic name. Bassist Peter Hook from New Order owns the Haçienda name and trademark, and licenced its use to Crosby Homes, the developers of the new flats. Hook has written a book about the famous club.

Michael Winterbottom's 2002 film "24 Hour Party People" starring Steve Coogan as Tony Wilson, tells the story of the Haçienda. The movie was filmed in 2001, and required reconstructing the Haçienda as a temporary set in a Manchester factory, which was then opened to ticket holders for a night, acting as a full-scale nightclub (except with free bar) as the film shooting took place.

The Manchester exhibition centre Urbis hosted an exhibition celebrating the 25th anniversary of the club's opening, which ran from mid-July 2007 until mid-February 2008. Peter Hook and many other of those originally involved contributed or loaned material.

References

[The Hacienda myebook!]

http://www.myebook.com/index.php?option=ebook&id=395

External links

* [http://www.PrideOfManchester.com/music/hacienda.htm Pride Of Manchester Haçienda memories by Haçienda DJ Dave Haslam]
* [http://www.fantazia.org.uk/Scene/orgs/hacienda.htm Fantazia.org.uk] - Profile on the club & more on rave
* [http://www.benkellydesign.com/home.php?id=2:0:24:0:0 Ben Kelly Design: Haçienda]
* [http://www.fantazia.org.uk/images/920914%20CT%20Hacienda%20Flyer%201.jpgFantazia.org.uk] - Fantazia/Haçienda flyer from 1992
* [http://www.manchester.com/music/features/hacienda.php The Haçienda Story]

Bibliography

*cite book | title=The Haçienda Must Be Built | author=Savage , J. | publisher=International Music Publications | year=1992 | id=ISBN 0863598579
*cite book | title=24 Hour Party People | author=Wilson, Tony | publisher=Pan MacMillan | year=2002 | id=ISBN 978-0-7522-2025-3


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