EartH (Evolutionary Arts Hackney)

We are a new cultural venue for London. Help us transform our basement into an education space for young people in our community.

£15,380 raised of £50,000 target 31 %
124 supporters 9 days left
This project is using Flexible funding and will receive all pledges made by 5:00pm 4th October 2018

This project is using Flexible funding and will receive all pledges made by 5:00pm 4th October 2018

On a mobile? Scroll to the bottom to see our rewards. They include exclusive EartH launch season t-shirts, totes & prints, front row gig tickets and dinner for two in our restaurant, EartH Kitchen. For groups there’s Christmas lunch for your team or a cocktail making masterclass in our bar.

What is EartH (formerly Hackney Arts Centre)?

We are the team behind Village Underground. 12 years ago we took over a disused Victorian coalstore in Shoreditch, which had fallen into disrepair. Over time we restored and built it into the live music and cultural venue you know today.

Back in 2015 we discovered another hidden gem. On the busy streets of Dalston, faded into obscurity stood a huge forgotten Art Deco Cinema called The Savoy. We weren’t looking for it, but we knew we’d found our next challenge.

The next step was finding investors and partners who would believe in our vision of what The Savoy could become. The Arts Impact Fund (Nesta), Big Issue Invest and Triodos Bank all backed our project in support of the arts and social impact plans we had developed. Together with our partner Community Music, London’s leading charity for music and young people,  we will engage with hundreds of young people aged 6-25 years – particularly those who are socially excluded – giving them new experiences and training in music, and providing positive learning opportunities to create routes into education and employment.

Interior shot of the original Savoy cinema auditorium

Since raising the funds, we have been busy restoring the building, returning many of its original art deco features to their former glory. The new venue is made up of three main areas: The Theatre is the seated venue, the stalls of the cinema have become The Concert Hall, and a new restaurant and social space occupies parts of the original cinema lobby.

The Theatre before renovation

This September, we’re launching with our first season of shows. The work-in-progress name has been Hackney Arts Centre, but we recently unveiled our new name. Hackney Arts Centre will now be known as Evolutionary Arts Hackney (EartH).

Why Evolutionary Arts Hackney? Because art has the capacity to offer us ideas, progress and change. EartH will be curated to span art forms and a multitude of genres and voices encompassing an international live music programme, performance art, special talks and debates, comedy, and film.


Why are we crowdfunding?

With the three main venue areas nearing completion, we’re focussing on our fourth space and home to our social impact work. We are turning our 100 square metre basement, as yet untouched by our renovation work, into Earth Studios – a modern education centre for young people in our community.

Right at the core of EartH, this will be a place where young people can develop their creative skills, through free and low cost music training and education programmes delivered by our partner, Community Music. As a working venue, these programmes will feed directly into what we do. There’ll be opportunities for young artists to perform on our stages, for budding technicians or arts managers to shadow our staff through apprenticeship schemes. Local aspiring musicians will benefit from free rehearsal space, there’ll  be music mentoring from professionals for young bands in our community.

Number of annual apprenticeship opportunities for young people at EartH Studios

Number of annual apprenticeship opportunities for young people at EartH Studios

Free or low cost tickets to our shows will be made available to our studio participants. We will particularly seek to engage young people who are socially excluded - giving them new experiences and training in music, and providing positive learning opportunities to create routes into education and employment.

Number of free or low costs tickets we will make available to EartH Studio participants each yearNumber of free or low costs tickets we will make available to EartH Studio participants each year

Having successfully fundraised for the main restoration and building work, we’re now turning to our community to help us build what we’re calling Community Music at EartH Studios

EartH aims to be a springboard for the next generation of creative talent. 

And we need your help to get us started.


What will the money be spent on?

We need to raise £50,000 for our start-up year, to transform our basement into a fully equipped production suite and two rehearsal studios, where the education and training programmes we’re planning will be run.


Of that target, £24,000 will be used to purchase the kit and musical instruments we need. We will buy:

  • 9x individual iMac computers 
  • 9x AKAI Professional keyboards
  • 9x Logic Pro X
  • 7x Focusrite Scarlett interface
  • 1x Universal Audio Arrow interface
  • 9x Beyerdynamic & Audio-Technica headphones
  • 1x BenQ projector + Duronic screen
  • KRK monitor speakers + stands
  • 2x Natal Arcadia drum kits + Zildjian cymbal sets
  • 3x guitar amps (Boss Katana, Fender, Blackstar)
  • 2x Lacey keyboard amps
  • 2x tc electronic bass amps
  • 4x SM58 microphone bundles + 1x Aston microphones spirit
  • 2x Yamaha PA sets
  • Studio furniture

The remaining £26,000 will cover the complete renovation works in the basement, which will include reconfiguring the space with a new layout, putting in toilets and plumbing, rewiring the electrics, damp proofing and soundproofing the rooms, and of course painting and decorating so that our education space becomes a comfortable and inspiring space to be creative.

Who are Community Music?

Community Music has worked for 35 years in London helping young people with little or no access to resources to make modern music.

They provide free rehearsal space, music mentoring from professionals, performance opportunities in safe environments, sound engineering and music production training, instrumental tuition and recording opportunities. This gives thousands of children and young adults access to creative learning and career paths that are often difficult to find a way in to.


Community Music are experts at what they do and are excited to be expanding their services with a new dedicated education space in the heart of Hackney.

What education and training programmes will we run?

In our first year, Community Music will run four education and training programmes at Earth Studios. By year five this will grow to 12 annual programmes. In our start-up year, we aim to engage 100 new participants in these creative activities. This number will rise to over 250 active participants per year by our fifth year.

Annual number of education and training programmes at EartH

Annual number of education and training programmes at EartH

Number of annual participants at Community Music at Earth Studios

Number of annual participants at Community Music at Earth Studios

We will offer two venue-based training courses in our first operating year. This will expand to six annual courses by year five.

Number of annual venue-based training courses at EartH Studios

Number of annual venue-based training courses at EartH Studios

We will actively seek to engage NEET young people (Not in Education, Employment, or Training). Our aim is to engage 60 such participants in our structured training programmes in our start-up year, increasing this to over 150 per year by our fifth year. We expect 75% of our NEET participants to gain qualifications through these programmes.

Annual number of NEET participants gaining qualifications

Annual number of NEET participants gaining qualifications

What positive outcomes will we see?

Community Music have a proven track record. Through their education and training programmes at EartH,  we know that children and young people will develop their creative, expressive and musical abilities. Their self-belief, confidence, creativity, ambition, and belief in a more positive future will grow. 

We will see better achievement and attendance at school, higher personal aspirations, improved employment potential and better awareness of the benefits of positive community participation through working with role models, peer mentors, and volunteers.

Environmental sustainability at EartH Studios

We have been working closely with Julie's Bicycle who recently awarded us a 3 Stars Creative Green rating at Village Underground. Their case study on Village Underground details all the initiatives we have taken so far – from procuring 100% green energy to banning the use of plastic straws in our venue. We plan to replicate this at EartH and EartH Studios.

We are committed to:

  • keep to a minimum the carbon emissions and waste usually associated with construction projects (EartH and EartH Studios are located in a repurposed building)
  • be a low carbon building and become more energy self-sufficient
  • develop a Sustainable Procurement Policy
  • act as a model of environmental sustainability, and inspire all stakeholders to make changes

The topic of environmental sustainability could also be added to the training programme – masterclasses will be held by EartH and VU members of staff or music producers concerned with the impact of the music industry on the environment.


We’ve put together some brilliant rewards to say thank you to everyone who helps fund this project. 

*JUST ANNOUNCED* We have just added a new design that we think you're going to like - French illustrator and animator George(s) did a brilliant illustration of EartH for us to commemorate our launch, exclusively for this campaign. We're printing it on t-shirts and tote bags plus 50 limited-edition screenprints, so be quick if you want one of those. See more of his work on his Instagram account @call_me_georges

Some of our other personal favourites include adding your name to our ‘Wall of Support’ in the new Earth Studios (with any luck, we’ll have to cover multiple – if not all – of the new walls), and the original EartH t-shirts and tote bags we have had especially designed for this campaign. From these, you have two options of each to choose from, see which ones take your fancy:

Another exclusive EartH launch season design that we commissioned for this campaign is this A2 flouro screenprint:

We are getting just 50 copies of these printed by local North London printing service Positive Press, who specialise in high quality eco friendly water based printing inks. Be quick if you like it or think you know someone who will.

We think ‘Front Row for Two’ would make a great romantic gift with front row seats to a show of your choice in The Theatre in our first year of programming (there are even a limited number available to sold-out shows, so be quick). If it’s a really special occasion you could go for our ‘Make a Date of it’ reward and enjoy dinner together first in our new restaurant – the bottle of wine is on us. For larger groups looking for their Christmas party venue we’ve got two great options at EartH with Christmas lunch in our restaurant or a cocktail-making workshop in our bar. 

We hope you find something you like.

Please support us by sharing widely on social media and with your network. Please tag us:



#earthstudios #crowdfunder #hackney

Any questions at all, contact us on




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