Back in September 2012 we spoke to Mark Newton, Director at Canal Mills, and got an exclusive scope on what to expect from the launch of Leeds' freshest new venue. If you missed the interview the first time round make sure you head over to the Ticket Arena website and give it read here.
Four months on, and after an astounding first season of events, which saw the likes of SBTRKT, Jamie Jones, Maya Jane Coles, Benga, Pearson Sound, Jackmaster, Mr Scruff, Joy Orbison, Craig Richards and more take to the decks, we had another chat with Mark to see what he thought of 2012 at Canal Mills and what 2013 has to bring at the venue...
(Full Canal Mills event listings, including lineups and tickets can also be found below).
How have the past few months been for you guys behind the scenes at Canal Mills?
Really good, hectic and had to make loads of changes, but overall really positive. We’ve held some great events in here since September and have loads more on the horizon.
In just a few months you have secured a great reputation in the city, and beyond. What do you think you owe the success to?
Hard work from all our team, and some great bookings and events. The whole thing has been a learning curve in respect to the venue. We knew when the doors opened that this wasn’t the finished product that we wanted, but you need to see the place full of people and working as a venue before you can make changes and get fresh ideas. Every time people come they will see the place has little changes, I don’t know if we’ll ever be completely happy with how it is as you can always improve, but we’ve got plenty on the cards for the next 12 months to make the place an even better experience than it has been previously.
Since your relocation to London, have you been able to make many of the events and what moments stick in your memory of the ones you’ve been at?
It’s obviously a lot harder for me to get up now that I’m based down in London and working full time during the week on our festivals, but I have been up on quite a few occasions. The opening party was really special, to see all those plans and ideas come off and to see the venue full was amazing, as was the SBTRKT show in November, where the crowd went absolutely nuts throughout. After the show SBTRKT said it was his best club show of 2012 which is always nice to hear!
When we first spoke back in September before the launch you were really looking forward to having complete control over every aspect of your Metropolis and Wax:on parties. How has owning the venue affected the nights you run and can we expect more creative ventures at the venue over the coming months?
Yes its given us more freedom with ideas and if something pops up in our heads we can run with it straight away without having to wait for approval from a team of people. There will be a lot more non music based events taking place in 2013, we have film crews filming in the venue in the coming weeks, art exhibitions, more theatre, and a few more interesting bits up our sleeves
With Christmas over, I think a lot of people are already looking ahead to the summer for something to look forward to. There’s a lot of outside space at the venue, do you have any plans for some outdoor/terrace parties at Canal Mills?
We sure do ;) Something will be announced pretty soon.
A lot of people, including myself, are saying they love the quirky decor at the venue like the main room stage and the seating area. Where should the credit lie there?
Not with me I’m afraid, the Mad Ferret guys that work on Hideout and Parklife festivals doing the installations and décor designed and built the majority of things alongside one of our directors, Dan.
Looking ahead to the upcoming events, you have some huge names right across the board from house and techno to drum and bass. If you were a student living off the dregs of your bank account waiting for your late student loan and had to pick only 1 to attend... which would you choose?
I’d take my ticket money, stick it all on black, and go to all of them with my winnings!
Upcoming Events at Canal Mills
Canal Mills & Wax:On
Saturday 19th January
Jamie XX // Floating Points // Huxley // Maxxi Soundsystem // Evian Christ + more
Wednesday 23rd and Thursday 24th January
Canal Mills presents...
Friday 25th January
Eats Eveyrthing // Waze & Odyssey // Ben Pearce // Mosca // South London Ordanance + more
Saturday 26th January
Chase & Status (DJ Set) // Killsonik // Monsta // Bobby Tank // North Base // Mak
Wax:On & Canal Mills presents Phantasy Sound System
Friday 15th February
Erol Alkan // Daniel Avery // People Get Real
mono_cult 6th Birthday
Saturday 2nd March
Dixon // Scuba // Prosumer // Oneman // Breach + more