Nightclub Barbarella to move out of downtown Orlando in February

PHOTO COURTESY BARBARELLA/FACEBOOK
Photo courtesy Barbarella/Facebook

In what is the end of an era for downtown Orlando nightlife, dance club Barbarella will be moving from its current Orange Avenue address in just over a month.

"Barbarella Orlando is moving!" read a posting on Barbarella's Facebook page last Friday. "We have been playing 80's New Wave since 1984 and will continue to do so at our new spot, a short 13 minute drive from our present location. Come on out for our final weeks in downtown Orlando. We will be here at least until the end of February. Thanks to all of you who have supported us during our 37 year history! More details to follow."

Barbarella reverted back to their classic moniker in May of last year, after several years under the name "Independent Bar." On any given weekend, the venue is packed for Friday night Discothèque events and the Saturday '80s New Wave nights.

Barbarella's history and footprint downtown goes back at least 30 years, through. Orlando Weekly photographer and living repository of local music history Jim Leatherman got seriously nostalgic about the storied space: "I spent some of the best evenings of my life inside [Barbarella]. So many incredible shows happened within those walls: Sonic Youth, Butthole Surfers, Pylon, Flaming Lips, Superchunk, Teenage Fanclub, Afghan Whigs ... just to name a few of the national touring acts I saw there. It was the spot for many a great local band show too! Local heroes, like the Hatebombs, Beggar Weeds, Braille Closet, Genitorturers, Rocket 88, Naiomi's Hair, Bad Afro Experience … It was home to many a club Spacefish local music night too. Truly special musical times, in a magical musical place."

The aforementioned Discothèque club night will be held at Barbarella one last time with headliner Moscoman this Friday, Feb. 4. An "official" closing date has yet to be set as of this writing.

With Barbarella moving, Stonewall closing and Soundbar having been forced out of its Pine Street location all within the space of two months, we are seeing a sea change in downtown Orlando nightlife.



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