30 YEARS BLOOD, SWEAT & BEERS – 2019 was the year we celebrated 30 years of COUNTERCULTURE within the iconic building located at 10030 102 Street NW, Edmonton, AB!
The Starlite Room is a live entertainment venue founded in 2004, open to all genres and walks of life and follows the rich musical history led by previous incarnations in the same building such as the Bronx, the Rev, and Lush. The building was designed by Herbert Magoon and George Heath MacDonald, two of Edmonton’s most prolific architects and was constructed in 1925 by the Salvation Army.
The history of the The Starlite Room began as The Old Citadel built in Downtown Edmonton one block south of Jasper Avenue, the main artery of the city. The brick building was originally formed as a “citadel” (church or place of worship) for the Salvation Army. By 1965 it was converted into the first venue of the Citadel Theatre company, with the company taking its name from the name of the building. After the company moved to a new purpose-built theatre building on Churchill Square in 1978, the building was converted into a concert hall named The BRONX. It hosted a variety of concerts including then unknown American bands Nirvana and Green Day. In 1993 the Bronx changed to the Rev Cabaret and Lush, and in 2003 the Rev closed and was reopened as The Starlite Room in 2004.
The venue has been home to thousands of iconic performances from Questlove, to Against Me!, Run The Jewels, Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros, Feist, Mastodon, MGMT, Amon Amarth, Avenged Sevenfold, Death From Above 1979, The Dillinger Escape Plan Marianas Trench, Metric, Nightwish, Propagandhi, The Smalls, GWAR & so many more. The Starlite Room has become an Edmonton mainstay to which many local concert goers have a long history and fond memories with.
Previous owner Oliver Friedman had the following to say “One thing I am most proud of regarding the years spanning 1989 to 2003, is that we were able to realize our biggest goal of creating a social gathering space for alternative subculture. This was a place where all the freaks, geeks, punks and weirdos who never fit into their school or suburban existence were able to find a sense of community amongst others who shared their influences in music, style and outlook. To this day people still come up to me and tell me that they found ‘their people’ at the club and as a result, a strengthened sense of identity and self confidence; a sense of being a part of something for the first time, rather than an outsider.”
“Live venues and clubs come and go and come and go, it is a difficult business to say the least. Having passed the torch after thirteen years to the Starlite Room it is immensely satisfying for me to see this venue still showcasing some of the best local and live music on offer; as well as providing that all important sense of community for yet another generation of Edmonton music lovers.”
Current Starlite Room owners shared the following statement during the 30 year bash of 2019 “With the live music and venue business, you are always looking forward and never looking back. The fact that the building has been hosting live music for 30 years now has kind of forced us to stop and take a moment to reflect and start piecing this journey together! It’s a little overwhelming at times when you are not only connecting your own personal experiences, but also hearing from many others, and accounting the social influences that shaped a culture that deeply impacted Edmonton as a whole. The thousands of artists and performers that have passed through the doors are part of what has made the venue iconic, but having the chance to celebrate with the people from behind the scenes, the local artists that have been the foundation, and with the fans from past to present – excited is completely understating how we feel.”
If you would like to explore the history of 6 of Edmonton’s most famous shuttered live music venues (including the REV) watch: “DEAD VENUES” – BY NTT FILMS
To view concerts that have taken place within our building prior to March 13, 2020 check out: LOST & FOUND FOOTAGE
In June 2021, in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Juno Awards, CBC Music released a documentary “If These Walls Could Talk” featuring some of Canada’s most prolific live music venues (including Starlite Room) which you can view on the CBC Gem app HERE!
In November of 2019, as part of our 30 year anniversary celebrations we began laying the groundwork for our passion project “The Starlite Sessions”, taking live music from the Starlite Room stage across the internet and into homes around the globe. Our original intentions behind the Starlite Sessions was to create an inclusive digital experience to aid in the development of emerging artists, building fan bases beyond artist’s local regions, all the while creating travel, tourism, employment and economic growth within the arts and cultural communities of Edmonton and Alberta. COVID-19 had different plans. With only the basic shell of an idea of what we wanted to create, the Starlite Sessions began streaming our first concert March 13th, 2020.
MISSION – The Starlite Sessions is a digital venue. It is a website, social media, and YouTube channel that hosts online webinars, podcasts, and concerts. We work with local musicians, live venues, and would like to work with the city of Edmonton, and the province of Alberta to build employment and economic growth for local musicians, bands, Alberta based venues, and communities by providing music-based education, business solutions, and digital exposure. Starlite Sessions hopes by developing an inclusive digital music and arts community and culture; economic growth, employment, and revenue in the live music and arts community will increase by expanding youth retention and attracting tourism.
GOALS – The goal of Starlite Sessions is to assist live music venues, artists, musicians, the City of Edmonton, and the Province of Alberta in creating and retaining viable revenue centers within the live music/arts and cultural community.
All industries and individuals involved within live music and touring face a very difficult time as an outcome of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our industry, the arts and culture community, is a very passionate group of individuals. We have chosen to launch our digital venue at this time to help our community combat social isolation and to continue to contribute to the tapestry of art and culture. Spread love. Not hate. Support local. Wash your hands. If you’re sick, stay home and log in.
View all concerts streamed over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic HERE!
If you are an Artist looking to take part in Starlite Session please visit our Artist’s Portal HERE!
RIVER CITY REVIVAL HOUSE:
In January 2018 we began renovations of the Brixx Bar. In May 2018 we re-opened as a restaurant/lounge River City Revival House. Revival is dedicated to building community through comforting food and a welcoming culture. Revival offers a wide array of different live events such as; jams, open mic night, solo artists, bands etc. These events are never ticketed and always free for the public to attend (we never have a cover charge or host ticketed events), minors are welcome until 9pm, and by Fall 2021 should be once again open 7 days a week till 2am, offering a full menu every day until 1am. River City Revival House’s entrance is located through the main double doors at the front of the building.
Live Music For The Masses. Headquartered in Alberta, Canada – ConcertWorks promotes and produces a wide range of quality live entertainment across Canada. ConcertWorks is an all encompassing Professional Production Company. Specializing in Entertainment Border Immigration, working in conjunction with theatres, festivals, fundraisers, fairs, weddings, corporate events, casino, clubs, not for profit organizations etc. Concertworks is invested in the continued development of LIVE Entertainment.
BE SEEN STREET TEAM:
With over 15 years experience in the industry and hundreds of clients, Be Seen Street Team is a modern and fresh approach to the centuries old practice of poster and street marketing. We provide printing, planning and distribution packages that target the audience needed for your campaign. We provide services to every street pole, coffee shop, campus and everywhere in between