Clubbing in the age of COVID-19

Lottie Twyford 19 October 2020 13
Mooseheads

Socially distanced queueing at Mooseheads. Photo: Facebook.

If there’s anything that sums up 2020, it’s chair-dancing in your seat at a night club.

Proving revellers can be as innovative as everyone else in the age of COVID-19, entertainers say club-goers are finding new ways to enjoy themselves despite the regulations.

As restrictions have eased in the nation’s capital, popular nightlife spots such as Mooseheads and Fiction have re-opened to welcome partygoers.

There is, of course, one major difference in 2020. For most of us, clubbing is associated with the mosh pit and with dancing in a tightly packed crowd but that’s no longer permitted.

Health restrictions mean revellers are not permitted to stand while drinking, nor are they allowed to dance, congregate or mingle with other groups.

Despite all that, clubs are doing their best to encourage patrons and say people are adjusting to a new normal.

Canberran Kali Notaras (aka Kaliopi DJ), says the entertainment/music industry is hanging by a thread in the ACT but “Canberra is the only nightlife around”.

The DJ, who is likely to be found playing at Fiction over the weekend, said that while things have changed, venues were doing their best to ensure patrons had the best clubbing experience possible while staying safe.


READ ALSO: Live music lifeline a drop in the ocean for ACT venues


Even with tables installed on the dance floor, she said dancing was more than possible.

“[I’ve] seen the quirkiest, arms-only dance moves in these past few months and it does nothing but bring a smile to the faces of those on stage,” Notaras said.

“Performers are putting more effort than before into both the lighting and sound, and that’s reflected in the enthusiasm of the crowd.”

Given the year we have had, it is no surprise that people are keen to get out, party and blow off some steam. The combination of job losses, sky-rocketing rental prices and likely fee hikes mean that young people have been facing uncertainty and confusion.

One partygoer, who has already revisited her favourite pre-pandemic nightspot of Mooseheads, said despite all the changes, going out with friends was still a good night – albeit a little ridiculous because everyone in the club was also “sitting around a table doing weird chair dances”.

Mooseheads has released a light-hearted video on their social media channels instructing patrons to “go hard” but to remain seated at all times. (You can watch it on Facebook.)

A previous video posted to the club’s Facebook page laid down the ground rules for how to enjoy a night out – including socially distanced queuing and ordering, as well as using sanitiser and checking in upon entry.

Mr Wolf has been the most notable casualty of the pandemic. A post on the club’s social media accounts in late August announced that the “Wolf had left the den” for the last time.

Others, like Cube, have opted to remain closed and instead provide live streams from DJs so the party can continue at home. Notaras hopes that “with the support of the crowd they can return again”.


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13 Responses to Clubbing in the age of COVID-19
Eleanor GD Eleanor GD 8:07 pm 17 Oct 20

Olivia Thomas I’m on trend

Katy Did Katy Did 10:21 am 17 Oct 20

It was around in the 60’s. We called it ‘hand jiving’

Hamish Lardi Hamish Lardi 10:31 pm 16 Oct 20

People are just throwing house parties.

Kooms Sam Kooms Sam 9:53 pm 16 Oct 20

Senuki is this what you and your friends do now? Hahah

Sunita Rutten Sunita Rutten 9:52 pm 16 Oct 20

Neridah McMinn chair 🪑 dancing 💃🏽

Shane Phoenix Shane Phoenix 9:38 pm 16 Oct 20

Chair dancing isn't new... That's the old school I'm too out of it to stand style of dancing 😂🤣😂

Angela Catherine Angela Catherine 9:33 pm 16 Oct 20

Debbie Gabrielle you keen? 🪑

Chris Ellis Chris Ellis 9:29 pm 16 Oct 20

Here’s a weird thing. In the early 60’s we got a very strange young minister in our very small country town. He introduced dances, with exciting (for us) music (Beatles etc) but very strangely we could only thumb dance in our chairs. 🤣🤣🤣

Cat Brown Cat Brown 9:27 pm 16 Oct 20

Kris haha this is you

    Kris Leigh Kris Leigh 10:05 pm 16 Oct 20

    I’m just doing my bit to support the clubs & djs during this difficult time... 😇😇😇

Sam Ingham Sam Ingham 9:21 pm 16 Oct 20

Miss Kitka's House of Burlesque has been chair dancing for over 10 years! 😂

    Megan Munro Megan Munro 9:40 pm 16 Oct 20

    Sam Ingham it also sounds like an energy saving way to dance.

    Sam Ingham Sam Ingham 9:41 pm 16 Oct 20

    Megan Munro yep. Able bodied people take it for granted.

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