History

In 2018 we opened one of the most significant arts and events venues to land in London in recent times: EartH (Evolutionary Arts Hackney). 

A buried treasure, this discarded, long forgotten and beautiful Art Deco gem has lain hidden in Dalston for decades.

Scarface was the last film to play on the theatre’s old screen, back in 1984. Since then the building has been broken up: part community wedding venue, part snooker hall, while the main auditorium was locked up and left derelict for 40 years. 

With funding from the Arts Impact Fund and the Big Issue, Auro Foxcroft and the team behind Village Underground began renovating the space in early 2017.

EartH Theatre in 2017, looking out onto the main stage, pre-renovations. Photo by Luke Hayes

After extensive renovation works taking place across all levels of the building, we were able to launch EartH in September 2018. At a time when so many cultural centres face closure or cutbacks, we’re immensely proud to open this gargantuan space up to thousands of visitors every year.

On the ground floor lies Earth Hall, a multi-purpose 1200 capacity dedicated events space. Upstairs, EartH Theatre is a 750 capacity tiered seated venue with jaw-dropping, original Art Deco features throughout. Lastly, there’s our newly renovated 60-70 cover restaurant space, EartH Kitchen.

With the main body of works for the venue now complete, our restoration levy looks to raise funds for ongoing works in the building. 

As this space’s new guardians, we are keenly aware of the scale of our undertaking and will continue to fundraise for costs of both maintaining and improving the venue and its facilities. 

The majority of these funds will be raised via a small restoration levy on tickets to EartH shows. This will be spent on music education projects for community use, artist studios and maintenance to keep the building functional, as well as improving access facilities for each space.

EartH Theatre ceiling details. Photo by Luke Hayes

“One year in, 200 shows on, we’ve evolved from a pigeon-filled art deco ruin to a new arts venue. It’s been a rollercoaster ride to bring this place back from the brink and to fill it with creativity, and people, and life once again.

The building has come a long way and the construction work has just moved underground: we’re about to renovate the basements into EartH Studios, full of music-making equipment and inspiring education facilities.

We’re excited to continue focusing on building our programmes with artists from around the globe over EartH’s second year, breathing even more life into our ever-expanding cultural centre.”

Auro Foxcroft, Founder of EartH and Village Underground

EartH Theatre and what would become seating for Theatre guests. Photo by Luke Hayes

In our first year of shows, we’ve already played host to breakthrough acts and new sounds, established favourites at EartH theatre and concert hall with thriving community events. 

We launched with a formidable performance from Ethio-jazz originator and legend Mulatu Astatke, and further sold out shows and stand out events from Lianne La Havas, Kate Tempest, Erol Alkan, Aldous Harding, Fatouma Diawara, Johnny Marr, Julia Holter, Oumou Sangaré, Richard Hawley, Songhoy Blues and Villagers. 

Your help enables us to pave the way for many more performances like these for years to come.

Thank you!

Art Deco details from EartH, pre-renovations. Photo by Luke Hayes