Venue Down: NYC’s Highline Ballroom To Close

Perhaps you’ve seen me make the statement “New York City doesn’t want to be New York City anymore” on some of our social networking posts on Facebook or Twitter when it comes to places that I enjoy spending time and money at. The email statement that I am sharing came to the site email just a short time ago and to sum it up, the Highline Ballroom will close up soon. Read on.

highline ballroom logo

The Official Statement:
Unfortunately after 12 years our landlord has decided not to renew Highline Ballroom’s lease. For over a year we were led to believe that a renewal was imminent, however it is now clear that the landlord has other plans for the building. This is obviously a growing trend within the New York real estate market impacting various entertainment venues and businesses.

We plan on reopening Highline Ballroom at a new location in the Chelsea/Meatpacking District and are currently looking at options. We hope to be able to announce our plans soon. In the meantime our final show date and programming will be announced shortly.

We have been very fortunate to present some of music’s biggest names in a small club atmosphere; Lou Reed, Paul McCartney, The Killers, Amy Winehouse, The Black Keys, Artic Monkeys, Adele, Rihanna, Lady Gaga, The Roots and so many more have performed on the stage at Highline Ballroom. It is a shame that we have to close our doors, though we are grateful for the support we have received from fans and artists over the years in making the original Highline Ballroom location a truly unique experience.

Steven Bensusan, Owner, Highline Ballroom

*** end of statement ***

PiercingMetal Thoughts: I’m proud to say that I’ve been covering shows at Highline Ballroom since 2007 and we’ve enjoyed so many amazing Metal and Hard Rock bands in this space. The first show was The Cursed but there was also stuff like Sleepytime Gorilla Museum, Epica, Destruction, Alestorm, Soilwork, Misfits, Tremonti and just so many more. All of our website references to the venue in terms of contests, listings and reports can be perused via THIS LINK. The bookings of my scope of coverage have lightened up over the last couple of years so we haven’t been there a lot during that time but that is how the music scene works. The Bensusan Family also owned the now shuttered B.B. King Blues Club which I lamented in THIS POST. That closure also appeared to be landlord based after a lengthy tenure of residence and I will not lie and say that it still stings me just a little bit. Thanks to the marketing teams of that venue and Highline Ballroom, we did about “80” contests for B.B.’s and “25” for the Highline. It’s my hope that Bensusan does find a new location and opens a venue there to keep the diverse event programming coming in. He had said a similar thing about B.B. King’s but during the final show had addressed the crowd and said that maybe it will come back someday but right now the emphasis is on Sony Hall. If Highline can come back its going to need to do right by the fans of the Heavy Rock and Metal side of the fence in terms of programming because the Sony Hall has left many of our readers disappointed. We’ve recently observed shows that would have been locks for the former B.B.’s and now Highline have booked at The Iridium. Only time will tell and you readers can surely chime in with your thoughts about this news and maybe share some special memories about it.

I guess we shall be adding another post when they actually post a final show and date but in these days of landlords the closure could be tomorrow, the week after, or two, three months from now. They tend to like to use their muscle to get their way and put the next chain of whatever the heck in place of something that brought some coolness into the area.

Official Website:

One thought on “Venue Down: NYC’s Highline Ballroom To Close”

  1. Yes, it does stink that another venue for rock is closing but this place has been going downhill for years, just like BB Kings. The sound was getting progressively worse and the entrance policy was terrible where you didn’t know if you would be in the front or the back. They’d make up their mind the day of the show how the set up would be. Plus $15 for a slice of pie that is half the size of my hand? No thanks. I’m at a rock show. I’m not there to wine and dine. I wanna rock. I can eat beforehand. Do not force me to overpay for a minimum at a table I didn’t want because you changed the entrance policy 5 min before doors. If they re-open, they better do it right. I’ve bailed on this venue many times recently in favour of others.

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