Inside Annie Mac’s club night for ravers who need sleep
The radio DJ’s London party ‘Before Midnight’ gives ravers the chance to dance at an authentic experience 7PM-12AM
image via @anniemacmanus on Instagram
words Patrick Heardman
Fancy experiencing the euphoria and exhilaration of a great night out, while also hitting the sack at a reasonable hour? DJ, radio personality, and music industry heavyweight Annie Mac is giving punters the opportunity to do just that with her new clubbing venture, Before Midnight.
The project offers clubbers the chance to enjoy all the benefits of a real rave, without sacrificing their beauty sleep. The night simply shifts set times to earlier in the evening, ensuring that the event finishes before 12am.
Dubbed by Mac as ‘the clubnight for people who need sleep’, Before Midnight made its debut at Islington Assembly Hall in London this week to wide praise. “It’s like I’m doing some kind of public service,” Mac told The Guardian, before embarking on a marathon four-hour set.
“Here’s the lowdown,” Mac said announcing the project: “Nightclubbing is not designed for people who need sleep. So I’m shifting the time parameters forward, and bringing you a fully authentic clubbing experience that starts at 7pm and ends at the strike of midnight.”
She added: “I can’t tell you how excited I am about this. I know there’s an appetite for it because I’ve had so many messages from you who’ve grown up with me and listened to me on the radio every Friday night, who adore the clubbing experience but don’t want to wait until 1am in the morning to see me play, who need to be sharp and useful at the weekends and just can’t afford sleepless nights.”
Jo Marsh, 52, who was in attendance in Islington, told Woo why it was special: “It was the collective energy of dancing with the crowd. We’ve been living with so much self restraint during the pandemic and it was liberating and joyful to be back clubbing again.”
“Annie Mac has pitched it perfectly. Before Midnight is inclusive, it speaks to a new context and need. It feels like a new movement which I feel part of - that’s exciting.”
The concept of early club nights isn’t entirely novel, with south east London’s Printworks having offered high-octane dance nights from some of the biggest names in the industry for several years now, all of which end at 11pm. However, the 5,000 capacity venue is due to be turned into luxury flats, an all too familiar tale in a city with an ever-depleting stock of live music venues. You can sign a petition to help stop this development here.
Following its roaring success in Islington, however, Mac has confirmed there will be more iterations of Before Midnight to follow, with tickets going up for sale the week after next.