We did it! Last night, minutes before midnight when the campaign was due to draw to a close, we edged over our £40k target. We’re slightly lost for words this morning as this all settles in and we start to reflect on the last month and what this means to us. Not only have you financially helped secure the future of Secretsundaze, but the love and support you have shown towards us and the campaign will as a team, spur us on for years, to continue doing what we do knowing the value you guys place on it. It’s not only all of your incredibly generous pledges that have done this but your kind words, support on social media, digging out old photos and videos, sharing of memories, etc - quite simply, from our perspective, it’s been phenomenal.
We can not thank you enough! Out to all our loved ones, you our dear friends and family, especially those who came in early and got us off to a flying start, to those of you who made your pledges through the middle of the campaign when to be honest it was pretty slow and we were at times doubting ourselves a bit, to everyone who came through hard in the last 48 hours that pipped us over the line, many of you pledging for second and third times to make sure we got there. Out to all the guestlist for life crew, out to the people who’s weddings and birthdays we’ll soon be appearing at. But also equally out to to everyone who chipped in that fiver and everyone in between, you’ve all got us to this stage and we’re incredibly grateful.
We’d also like to thank everyone who’s helped with the campaign: Louis for the filming and editing of the video, Oval Space and particularly Joe for allowing us to film the video there and for letting us broadcast the live stream from there, Caterina coming with the dope Save Secretsundaze logo, Shanti Celeste with her beautiful painting, all the photographers who let us use their images for the prints, Alex for all the artwork and visual identity around the campaign, James Younger for producing the live stream, Chris for the visuals, Clare for spreading the word, all the media who featured the campaign, Ben for helping steer the ship and Bertie our man at Crowdfunder. A special shout out to Patrick for your unwavering support during these difficult times and to all our other Secretsundaze employees and crew.
We’ll be back in touch soon about getting the rewards into production etc but for the rest of this week we’re concentrating on trying to get an Arts Council application in. We’re actually struggling a bit with so if any of you have any experience of this and could spare a few minutes for some pointers then please reach out.
One last thing, as we’re still waiting on a decision on an application for some match funding, we’re having to keep the page open. That’s the only reason it’s now not closed.
Much love and thanks to you all. Your love and support will never be forgotten. Bigg ups!
James & Giles xx
We've been throwing Secretsundaze events in East London for close to 20 years now. Looking back, that’s one hell of a lot of parties - both at home and around the world - that have brought together tens of thousands of people to celebrate life and enjoy underground dance music in it’s various shapes and forms.
Today, Secretsundaze isn’t just about those parties; it's a record label with nearly 50 releases and a community music studio which gives affordable access to local music makers. We're really proud of what we have created.
The word community is bandied around a lot in dance music but our community is one of our biggest motivations; it’s what drives us week in, week out. Many people have made lifelong friendships on our dance floors and we know of countless couples who have met their life partners at Secretsundaze.
Secretsundaze as an organisation is now in very serious trouble. We've never asked for help before and with so many people suffering at the moment, it was not an easy decision to come to, but if we’re to survive this period, we need our community’s support to Save Secretsundaze.
90% of our income is generated from live events. Without that income, we are simply unable to support the team of people who work incredibly hard to help us do what we do. Unlike many other businesses we are still uncertain when that income will return. On top of that, last month, we had to vacate our studio space, our last modest revenue stream that was able to operate during the crisis, to make way for yet another East End property development.
Money raised through this campaign will help keep the Secretsundaze world alive and will go towards securing a new studio, where we’ll create a learning centre that will allow us to formally train and mentor young people wishing to learn how to make and play electronic music.
With the support you show Save Secretsundaze, we enter into a commitment to continue to do things for the right reason, striving for excellence and fairness, operating our business in an environmentally sustainable way and giving people opportunities that for some, might not be so easy to come by. If you've ever danced to one of our sets, raved at one of our parties, bought any of our records, passed through our studio or are simply passionate about dance music then please consider donating whatever you can afford. Any support you can show would mean the world to us.
We have some great rewards on offer that have been very kindly donated by some talented friends of ours, alongside some exclusive merchandise and studio sessions. Check these out on the right, and find photos of the prints and merch below.
Finally, and only when it is safe to do so, we look forward to seeing you on the dancefloor, hopefully in better days and for the mother of all parties.
Love James & Giles xx
***UPDATE*** (Scroll to the bottom for all rewards)
Having nearly reached half of our target, we thought now was a good time to go into a little more detail about what we need your support for, and some further transparency around the organisation and its position. We've also added some fresh new rewards images of which are below too..
WHAT WE NEED YOUR SUPPORT FOR:
- To help cover our monthly staff costs and other company overheads.
- To help secure and invest in a new space to move Secretsundaze Studios to.
- A new site will house Secretsundaze Studios as well as having dedicated areas purposefully designed to teach both the making and playing of electronic music.
- This space will also serve as a base to run the studio and learning centre as well as our events and label activity.
When COVID hit we could see very early on how damaging the pandemic would be to us, so we moved as quickly as possible to reduce our overheads. Since then it's become even clearer that in order for us to survive, we need to reduce our reliance on events and mass gatherings. Sadly for anyone reading this, the reality is they are not returning any time soon.
For some time now we have been planning on developing the offer of Secretsundaze Studios, the community focussed music studio that was housed in The Laundry in London Fields. Unfortunately, during lockdown we received the news that we had to vacate the premises where our studio was held as the building is to be developed. This came as a double blow as not only was it a space that we'd heavily invested in over the years, but it also represented our only opportunity to bring in revenue during lockdown and the period we are in now.
Since Secretsundaze Studios' inception, as well as offering affordable studio space to local music makers, we have offered a small program of courses as well as 1-2-1 tuition, teaching people how to write and produce electronic music. Dozens of people have completed these courses and we've received some great feedback on how it has helped people take their next steps with their productions. With the help of our in-house engineers and tutors, this knowledge sharing and access to information has been something that we've taken immense pride in hosting and it's always a side that we've wanted to pursue further.
THE NEW SPACE
In order to do so, we need to design, build and invest in a space specifically with this purpose in mind. Studios and music learning facilities are very specific in their requirements and once we find somewhere suitable, we'll have to heavily invest in the space by building rooms, partitions, soundproofing and acoustic treatment, as well as investing in the relevant equipment too.
All of this comes at a cost. We have borrowed as much as we can through business loans but we need to reach the target of this crowdfund campaign in order to complete phase 1 of the works, open and to start generating income again.
Once we've done that, we'll be back on the road to having a sustainable business once again, and will allow us to continue all we’ve done as Secretsundaze these past 19 years. We're touched that so many of you have shown your appreciation for all we do throughout this campaign.
We can't overstate how important and how thankful we are for your support at this stage. We're acutely aware of how many people across the world are facing difficulties in their lives, either COVID related or not, and it's very hard to ask you for help in this way. We've never made much money from what we do but dance music culture is something we are truly passionate about and we're determined to see this out. Whatever support you have shown or can show is immensely appreciated and will never be forgotten and with it, we hope to keep the Secretsundaze flag alive for many years to come.
- Our normal average monthly running costs were around £10,000 but we have reduced them to c. £7,000 (without laying off any staff).
- When furlough schemes end at the end of October, £21,000 will go towards keeping us afloat for 3 months.
- The remaining £19,000 will go towards the building and equipment costs of the new Secretsundaze Studios site which we plan to open in the new year.
- There is still likely to be a shortfall but at least then with the support you show, we can develop the space and hopefully come January 2021 start generating an income again which can in turn keep our staff in jobs.
Exclusive Save Secretsundaze Tote Bag
Caterina Bianchini 'Save Secretsundaze' Tee - White
Caterina Bianchini 'Save Secretsundaze' Tee - Black
Ltd Caterina Bianchini Save Secretsundaze Hoodie - Black
Ltd Caterina Bianchini Save Secretsundaze Hoodie - Canyon Pink
Shanti Celeste 'High Spirits' Print
Secretsundaze at 93 Feet East Print, 2002
Secretsundaze at The Poet Print, 2003
Secretsundaze at Shoreditch Carnival Print, 2004
Secretsundaze Summer Opening Party at Oval Space Print, 2018
Carista at Secretsundaze Villa Habana Barcelona Print, 2019
Secretsundaze 18th Birthday Party at Oval Space Print, 2019
“It's imperative that we support the key players in our scene to ensure its overall survival. Berlin has come together to do just that but London is lagging behind. For me, Secretsundaze have been enabling access to the best of underground dance music for exactly the right reasons for many many years. Edifying and reinforcing the sacred tenets that House music was founded on. I for one will be donating to this campaign because the loss of Secretsundaze would be a significant cultural loss for London.”
Gideon, DJ, Activist & Block-9 (Glastonbury) Co-Founder