If you were getting a little confused about the comings and goings on the Melbourne club scene, this is our attempt to demystify
As we all know, it was with much sadness that the jazz community said farewell to the old Bennetts Lane. Michael Tortoni sold the Bennetts Lane to an overseas property group who are building a residential tower on top of the club.
The name Bennetts Lane Jazz Club was sold to David Marriner from the Marriner Group. They are opening a new jazz club on Flinders Lane which is located in the Hyatt Hotel. This club will be called Bennetts Jazz Club.
The developers on the old Bennetts Lane site are not yet ready to build. In the meantime the old Bennetts Lane has reopened on the original site under Marriner’s management with Megg Evans operating the club. Megg will also operate the new Bennetts.
For the moment Melbourne has gone back to business as usual, same site, same people (except for the bar staff). Though we might add that the venue has been refurbished and there is a new sound system.
There is a new club opening in February and March by Albare Dadon which will be called Blue Beat which has a relationship with Birdland in New York. (more on that coming up in Jazz Australia).
Paris Cat now has a second room, so two rooms presenting jazz, thus an expanded program.
We should also mention that Uptown is also still in the mix and there are rumours about another club in Brunswick some unspecified time in the future.
What’s the result – an abundance of jazz and clubs in Melbourne.