Artsy social club Soho House taps the electro duos for an invite-only showcase in L.A.
On Friday night (Aug. 23) fashionable music fans of Los Angeles descended on the newly-renovated Mack Sennett Studios in Silver Lake for a night of short performances by electro bands Holy Ghost!, Classixx and De Lux, surrounded by installation art and enhanced by an open bar at a private party hosted by Soho House West Hollywood. The multi-city members-only club partnered with the FYF Fest for its second ever Satellite Nights, an invite-only showcase for new music and installation art away from the confines of the house and on a different side of town.
With its 11 locations in four countries, a notorious reputation for exclusivity, and guests that range from the ultra-famous to the ultra-rich, it’s assumed Soho House has it all. But according to the club’s official Under 27 Membership Manager for its West Hollywood location, Jake Santelli, the lack of a proper performance space on-site was inhibiting.
“Soho House as a venue is hard,” Santelli explains. “We wanted to take the shows offsite to be able to maximize the performance elements," Santelli explains.”
Thus, the mission to expand Soho’s musical events required a move to off-site locations – ones that would not only offer a better musical experience, but appeal to potential members in other parts of town, namely east side of Central L.A.
“We are a creative club,” says Santelli. “Our whole mission is to engage the creative community in which each of our houses are. [Satellite Nights] became an opportunity for us to showcase a band that we really like or is part of the community.”
Santelli teamed up with FYF Fest to curate the night’s musical guests L.A. natives Classixx and Holy Ghost!, whose members Nick Millhiser and Alex Frankel (both longtime Soho House members) were in town for FYF Fest the next day. Each group, along with newcomers De Lux played short sets with lengthy interludes of recorded house music between them, making it clear that this was not so much a concert, but a strategically crafted showcase of music, art and a brand.
“There are a lot of misnomers about Soho House,” Santelli says. “People get the sense that we’re elitist and it’s really expensive to join or nobody gets [admitted to membership] when in actuality you do have to have certain qualities to be a member of Soho House but if you’re a cool, creative, young professional, there’s no reason why you wouldn’t get in. Satellite Nights are an opportunity to engage a demographic that wouldn’t normally see Soho House for what it really is.”
Still, an element of exclusivity remains, as invitations to Friday night’s event were limited to those chosen by Soho, FYF, and the event’s various sponsors. An average fan without an inside connection was not getting in.
Classixx, who spoke of their affection for their hometown of Los Angeles when they talked to CODE in June, could not have been more at home on Friday night. Holy Ghost! are friends of theirs, as is Mack Sennett’s owner (and producer of Sam Sparro and BANKS), Jesse Rogg.
"[It] was a really fun way to kick off FYF weekend,” the group’s Tyler Blake told us. “The crowd that Soho House attracts is beautiful and sophisticated. All in all we had a great night."
The first Satellite Nights in March featured performances from Le Youth, Capital Cities and Robert DeLong so Friday night’s lineup affirmed the series’ affiliation with electronic music, specifically of the synthpop variety. However, according to Santelli, with future installments planned for Soho’s other houses in New York, Miami and Toronto, there might be an opportunity for other genres of music. Ultimately, who performs at Satellite Nights is a somewhat flexible aspect of an event series. It’s designed as a pop-up playground for chic new member prospects, with a killer soundtrack.
As Santelli explains, “We just want to have a really fun party.”