This August, the Shadow Electric Bandroom – that versatile Abbotsford Convent summertime haven – will become a permanent fixture. It’s a massive one-up for Melbourne’s live music scene and great news for anyone who enjoys playing ping-pong while listening to great local bands.
The Shadow Electric was launched in 2012 by Jay Rayner and David Chestwig in partnership with the Abbotsford Convent Foundation, with a vision to have the venue become host to theatre and live performances.
Since then, it has built a catalogue of much-loved artists including locals like Courtney Barnett, Lost Animal, Worlds End Press and Tex Perkins, as well as international acts Mac DeMarco, Kurt Vile and Prins Thomas.
The Bandroom will launch on Friday, August 8 with Melbourne band Rat & Co, and will open initially four nights a week. As the weather heats up, the Shadow Electric’s Open Air Cinema will screen five nights a week, and will also put on an array of live shows and matinees.
If you’ve never been, the Shadow Electric has a stripped-back, industrial aesthetic with stainless steel light fittings, stripped floorboards and hanging succulents. It offers a cosy contrast to the historic grandeur of Convent – which is also fun for some spine-tingling exploration after dark.