Up until a few weeks ago it’s been no big secret that one of the biggest challenges local promoters, bands and musicians alike faced, was the lack of properly catered venues for live music. Except for a handful of places, who although given their limitations, more often then not went out of their way to make sure one had the best possible experience so hats off to each and every single one of them. Having said that, for as long as can remember there’s rarely been (if ever) a place you could refer to as a hub to specifically and almost exclusively cater for the needs of live music in Malta.
However that should soon be a thing of the past and it’s all thanks to the initiative of two live music enthusiasts, namely Rene Farrugia and Darren Borg.
We caught up with Rene to further discuss this project.
You and Darren have been involved in the music scene for as long as I can remember and probably even before that, how did this idea come to life, and why ‘The Garage’?
Both me and Darren are veterans in the scene, I’ve been involved through my own events and DJ’ing and Darren through Kickstart Bar. Me and Darren started discussing on how Malta lacked a proper venue for Rock Events. With the closure of coconut people started asking for a new venue while bands also stated in several occasions that they didn’t had a real rock venue where to perform. To be honest we started looking around before the closure of Coconut, but one night Darren told me about this venue in Zebbug and once we stepped in we knew this was the right place. The name The Garage came from the fact that nearly all bands whatever the genre practice in a garage, and we wanted to create a place where bands and people who attended felt home.
What were the biggest challenges in making it happen?
The biggest challenge was the timing to finish, but now thanks to the help and support of “Ziemel”, Henry, Lombardo and Darren’s Dad we’re on track and we’re looking forward to the 30th April to open and rock.
The Garage hasn’t officially opened yet, but there seems to be a lot of hype about it, what sort of feedback did you receive so far?
Yes the feedback was incredible. We had events confirmed from promoters even if they haven’t seen the venue. This was definitely the right push for us to encourage us to work harder to give Malta a new House for rock & alternative events.
Most of us know you from the metal and gothic / industrial background, is the venue targeted mainly at those genres or will you be open for other live music genres?
The Garage is open for all kinds of live, rock and acoustic music. Be it blues, indie, metal, gothic or industrial. Our motto is to be a home for everyone.
Can you tell us a little bit more about the layout and setup of ‘The Garage’?
The venue will have a spacious stage and also a proper backstage to make life easier for all performing bands. There’ll also be a DJ booth which will be setup for DJ nights.
Please tell us more about the first two gigs at ‘The Garage’, namely RMC and the official opening
The first gig came by chance. Ryan approached us and asked if we could host a birthday night for him which would feature live bands and DJs. This night will be on our first night on the 30th April and will feature Fallen Icon and Decline The Fall accompanied by DJs Nightmare, Despise and Hades.
The Official opening will be on Friday 12th May and will feature the mighty Forsaken live. Both events are with a free entrance. One can also follow the page we setup on Facebook to follow what events will be happening at the Garage. The Garage will open every Friday and Saturday and also on the eve of public holidays. From September we’re also planning to extend our opening days.
The Garage official page: https://www.facebook.com/The-Garage-233621863779452/
RMC Night event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/157514558097658/