The UK Chinese/East Asian clubbing scene has reached mainstream status. The economic downturn has seen the closure of many nightclub venues across the UK, but this previously niche market is doing their part by pumping hundreds of thousands of pounds every week into the economy.
In this 4 part special, Nee Hao Magazine interviews 4 promoters from the Chinese and East Asian clubbing scene to give readers an insight into the workings behind organising an event and the people they cater for.
For the next 4 articles on this feature Nee Hao will release one profile from the following…
Lindsey Vng and Waj Vng, of Go Go Promotions, Bristol, an exciting new company set up to cater for party people in the South West of England. (Released)
Jon B of Kpop Team, London, his parties specialising in Kpop are setting a new benchmark.(Released)
Wayne Chang and Duncan Shen of PlayKrown, London, also a newly formed partnership making big waves in the Capital. (Released)
Amy Nguyen of A2 Entertainment, Birmingham, one of the biggest and most established event organisers in the Midlands.
In this 3rd part of 4, we profile PlayKrown of London which is made up of Wayne Chang, an average British born Chinese guy and Duncan Shen, quiet and unassuming, born in Hong Kong. They started their events company back in the summer of 2011, and so far it has been massively successful with 5 out of their last 7 events all sold out days before the date of the party.
What do you enjoy and not enjoy about organising a party?
We enjoy the thrill of the build up to a party, and to see the final results. It’s like a slow maturing seed, after a series of planning and organisation; the outcome is what really matters. We believe what we put in is what we get out, hence all our events we put in our best efforts with the aim of creating the best parties ever.
The most satisfying thing is hearing the reviews of our parties, so far 95% of the feedback is positive, the only negative feedback we’ve heard are, the club is too small (hey we sell out), drinks are too expensive (but we’re not Weatherspoons, and you’re in West-End of London). Other than that, it all seems positive, the atmosphere and the crowd are just amazing. We like throwing amazing parties for our crowd, them having a good time makes us strive further.
What we dislike
We dislike people being late to collect tickets. It’s true, we’re not going to lie, people usually reserve tickets to be picked up on the day, and it’s our best interest to get rid of tickets. We usually advise everyone to collect tickets before the event to make our lives and their lives easier, but the ones who do collect it on the night, waiting for them outside until last entry isn’t pleasant when everyone has gone in, and what makes it worse are people who didn’t manage to get tickets trying to bid for the last ones, it’s not an amazing feeling.
We also dislike people hanging around outside before they go in, because we get complaints all the time from the bouncers that they’re a hazard standing on the road. We ask people nicely, but no one seems to ever listen!
Anyone else involved with PlayKrown?
PlayKrown is made up of two University students; we are Wayne Chang & Duncan Shen. We both originated from ABACUS where we were President of the society. Without ABACUS we wouldn’t have become who we are today, ABACUS gave us the idea to enter this market. We also have a handful of promoters on the team who help us promote our events and they all attend different universities spread across London. We take our promoters very seriously as they are the faces of the company, without them, there is no us.
What event are you currently doing?
Our next event is Masquerade Ball at Miabella on Friday 2nd March. It’s sold out.
What is most satisfying about doing a gig?
The fact we are bringing people’s dreams to London, the stars people always see on Youtube, Facebook etc, we bring the dreams to London where they can actually see their stars live and even meet them. On the other hand, promoting the artists to different countries, and opening up their fields is satisfying to us and also in the company’s best interest. Also meeting the stars, because in reality they’re all really nice people.
Where do you want to take your brand?
We want to be known for the best parties, not necessarily the biggest party; we seek to be exclusive. We want to take the oriental crowd to better venues, which are more exclusive. A smaller party with more fun is better than a bigger party that isn’t as fun!
We also look to do concerts in the future! We did a gig last year with Traphik, Lil Crazed & Jay Differ, which went very well, hence we want to step into this market more.
Do you think that the parties you do help boost up the local economy?
Of course! Reaching a club’s high minimum spend surely boosts the economy. In addition, we personally spend money on hiring DJs and photographers at all our events, and sometimes contributing to hiring fees for the club. As well as expenditure on tickets, posters, wristbands, etc. Furthermore, the clients we bring in, they spend at the club, and usually go eat afterwards at HK Diner or 97, and probably take a taxi home, which all adds up to help the economy.
What kind of atmosphere and vibe are your parties?
Firstly, we require our guests to be well dressed before they enter; from our own experience people appreciate a night more when effort has been made. Hence we do not allow sneakers, ripped jeans or caps into our nights. Guys like looking at girls in heels and dresses, thus we require the guys to be well dressed as well in order for them to play equal parts.
We always get spenders on our nights, so as you party up on the dance floor bougie-ing to our resident DJs, you will get some guests around the sides popping champagne and bottles. Usually the amount of sparklers indicates how rich the guys are.
Our entire crowd can party, they are not afraid to be the first on the dance floor, nor are they afraid to reject a drink. You won’t get intimidating people at our events; everyone is friendly. We’ve never had a fight at any of our parties, and do not intend to, as from our experience, we will deter troublemakers.
Some of our nights ended early, due to the fact people were too drunk, as in the whole club was too drunk lol, but we’ve never had any serious complaints. One time, lights came on at 2:30am, people just left like normal, they didn’t realise it ended early, because they all had a satisfying night.
Where have you done gigs before?
We started at Tamarai, Scala, Lo Profile, Miabella, Sky Bar, Bond, and Green Carnation. We look to host at more exclusive venues in the near future. So stay tuned!
What was your last event?
We did a Chinese New Year party featuring a lion dance at the Green Carnation on Saturday 28th January. Located 1 minute from Chinatown, it was sold out days before the event, just like all our previous parties.