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The Hordern Pavilion, a venue full of memories

When i was a teenager in the 90's one of the most exciting things was going out to a good concert. I have seen bands such as Green Day, The Living End, The Sex Pistols, Presidents of The United States of America, Velvet Revolver amongst many others at the Horden Pavilion and have always loved the room. I thought i would share a little bit about this iconic room.

The Hordern Pavillion was initially constructed in 1924 as a location for agricultural and industrial fairs. In 1972 the internal support structure was replaced with trusses which made it more open and far more versatile. A bar and ticketing boxes were also installed. The age of the building means it's familiar old solid exterior has a certain character. It's solid character combined with the memories or past gigs punters have attended, instantly increases excitement levels upon lining up to enter. There is no denying The Horden Pavilion's influence on Sydney's live music scene. The location has hosted a variety of musical genres, including rock, pop, electronic music, and hip-hop. Live music performances are guaranteed to take place in a memorable and exciting environment thanks to the venue's roomy design and superb acoustics.

Nirvana Big Day Out 1992

Throughout its history, the Hordern Pavillion has hosted an astonishing array of well-known performers and bands. The venue has hosted acts like Queen, Nirvana, Madonna, Iron Mainden, Faith No More, Korn. INXS, Green Day, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and many more, from global icons to hometown favourites. The city's musical heritage has been forever changed by these legendary concerts, which drew admirers from near and far. The venue has fostered up-and-coming musicians in addition to showcasing headliners. Up-and-coming musicians looking to make a name for themselves on the regional and national scale are drawn to the facility because of its reputation as a prominent live music venue. Support for new talent provided by The Horden Pavilion has helped numerous artists achieve success and has helped the Sydney music scene expand.

Skyhooks Living in the 70's 1974

The Horden Pavilion's importance goes beyond just being a venue for performances. The venue's convenient location in Moore Park, next to the famous Sydney Cricket Ground and Moore Park Entertainment Precinct, makes it popular with visitors as a cultural centre and makes it easy for them to get there. Music enthusiasts from all around the city may easily attend events thanks to the venue's accessibility to public transportation and the city's plentiful parking alternatives. The Hordern Pavilion's flexibility to accommodate a variety of event sizes further increases its influence on Sydney's live music scene. The location can host both small-scale performances and large-scale concerts, giving artists the freedom to customise their performances to fit their goals. The Horden Pavilion is a popular choice for both national and international performances as a result of its adaptability. There have been numerous difficulties over the years, including as competition from competing venues and shifting music industry dynamics. However, it has managed to keep its reputation as a cherished institution among music lovers thanks to its illustrious past, devoted staff, and dedication to providing excellent live music experiences. Leaving a gig at the Horden always meant being stuck in the field carpark with your ears ringing knowing that when you got home you would not be able to get straight to sleep. You would be talking about the concert for the next week or so at school or work and be hanging out for your next favourite band to be on tour so you could do it all again. Some memorable gigs at the Horden from Maxx Music Staff:

Ben Finn:

My Most memorable gig at the Horden was definitely The Ramones in 1991. It was the loudest concert i have ever experienced in my life. I took my normal position next to the sound desk and i arrived shortly after the New Christs had finished their set. About 1 minute before the band hit the stage the front of house engineer arrived on a skateboard with a old style school ruler in his hand. He proceeded to use this ruler to push all the volumes of every channel to 100%. Needless to say the band exploded onto the stage with ear blistering force. Even though it was dangerously loud it was one of the most exciting things i have ever seen (and heard). PS: I still have a Ramones shirt and boxer shorts bought at this concert (not Big W).

Tim Walter: One of the greatest gigs i experienced was back on 14th October 1996 when the Sex Pistols reformed with the original line up and played at the Horden Pavilion. I was a teenager and went along with my current girlfriend and a couple of other people. My girlfriend turned up in a tie die shirt (yes to a Sex Pistols concert) and after getting a few funny looks she ran to the merch stand and bought an Anarchy shirt. The support acts Goldfinger and Skunk Anansie where unreal, a complete gig in their own right. When the Pistols came on the place was a mass of people from teenagers to their 60s all singing the worlds to every song. It was one of the most powerful crowds i have experienced. I took a copy of John Lydons autobiography and carried it in my pocket all night determined to get it signed. After asking several security members if they could duck out back and get the scribble for me i was pointed out to what i was told was Johns body guard. My memory tells me he was 7 foot tall dark and as solid as a Mac tuck. I asked him if he could arrange a signature, he told me to meet him after the concert at the front barrier. After the crowds had been escorted out of the room i was able to meet the guys. I had a quick hello and was able to get my book signed by all (except Glen). When i finally made it to the car park (being uncontactable) with my 5110 with a flat battery and very unhappy girlfriend and friends we went home. I was dumped shortly after but i still do have the ticket, autographed book and original concert poster.

Dave Reynolds: My most memorable gig at the Horden was when I got to play that historic venue with the band I was in at the time ( Mother Hubbard ) as part of Sydney’s Big Day Out. . The year was 1997, Soundgarden, The Offspring and The Prodigy were the headliners on the outside stages. Mother Hubbard were on earlier in the day and I vividly remember looking out from side of stage about ½ hour before our set to fairly empty Horden Pavilion. I didn’t really care if we played to nobody, we were a part of The Big Day Out and playing The Horden. A typical roadie rocker Bailey was in charge of the stage and getting bands out there on time. Backstage in our allotted room drinking beers to shake off the nerves, we would hear Bailey yell “ Mother Hubbard, 20 minutes. Mother Hubbard 10 minutes, Mother Hubbard 5 minutes” then he burst into our room and said “ time to go “, lead us up the ramp onto the stage where much to our amazement, the place was packed out. 5000 people ready for a good time.

After seeing the likes of The Black Crowes, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Crowded House, Johnny Winter and many others play that room in the past, it was amazing to be standing on that stage, in that room, looking out at what some of my favourite bands had seen and experienced.


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