With a capacity of 100 to 205, the new listening room – with unique offerings for concertgoers and bands – officially opens on May 19. Learn more and take a photo tour.
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Central to the mission of Muskegon’s new Starlight Room is what owner and operator Dan Beckett calls a “creator first mentality.”
“We will focus on booking artists who create their own content and we view the creator as our number one customer,” he told Local Spins.
“Everything we do is focused on providing the creator with the most amazing experience, from first contact through onboarding, booking, advance, day-of-show and post-show aftercare.”
Officially opening May 19 in a renovated building at 4765 Airline Highway that once housed a contemporary church, the unique state-of-the-art listening room with a capacity of 100 to 205 concertgoers will also offer live recording services to performers.
“First and foremost, we desire to provide premium experience by offering a first-of-its-kind live concert recording capability for creators in a listening room format for music lovers,” Beckett said, noting he’s passionate about recording and the “intangible energy” that can be captured during a live show.
He also stressed that Starlight Room will be “genre-inclusive,” with a goal of providing “a safe space for performing, recording and creating, no matter the genre.” The space also will be available for visual, dramatic and healing arts.
The Starlight Room also boasts a “truth-in-ticketing” policy which doesn’t charge any additional fees or surcharges: “The price we advertise is the price paid. Period.”
LARGE STAGE, STATE-OF-THE-ART TECHNOLOGY, ‘SERIOUS SPACE’ FOR MUSIC
The venue itself stands out for other reasons:
• The large stage – 40 feet long and 12 feet deep – features a grand piano and Hammond B3 organ, and can accommodate bands with up to 16 members;
• While most shows will feature seating for 120 people – with 10 to 15 four-person tables comprising premium reserved seats – the room can be reconfigured to accommodate 150 seats or for up to 205 standing-room-only attendees;
• The venue asserts that its “state-of-the-art” technology offers 12 monitor mixes on stage, with performers able to use in-ear monitors or stage monitor wedges;
• Alcohol won’t be sold during most shows at The Starlight Room, though “locally sourced” non-alcoholic beverages will be available. Some select shows will feature pre-packaged catered food and others may include alcoholic beverages sourced “in partnership with local non-profit” groups. “We have no concerns about supporting the venue with or without alcohol sales,” Beckett said. “Our business model is not and will not be dependent on concessions to remain viable.”The venue hosts a “Liftoff Launch Party” on May 19, followed by a May 20 performance by the Grand Haven band Fire in the Attic, led by 20-year-old guitarist Avery Jorgensen.
In June, The Starlight Room will feature West Michigan’s Asamu Johnson & The Associates of the Blues on June 10 ($25-$35) and national touring artist and singer-songwriter Chelsea Berry on June 17 ($25-$35).
Fifteen additional concerts are booked from July through Thanksgiving; get the full lineup and tickets online here. Most shows will start at 7 p.m. and end at 9 p.m., with doors opening at 6 p.m.
The Starlight Room also aims to help raise funds for local public schools, home-schooling and private instruction, hosting an “Enhanced Recital” on June 3 in partnership with Music Everyday of Spring Lake.
“We are also creating a unique destination with an experience unlike any other,” insisted Beckett, who grew up in Pontiac and also operates a cybersecurity practice. “The moment you enter our lobby, you will be standing under our suspended starfield in a retro-vintaged-themed gathering space.
“We are not a bar or restaurant, we are not a nightclub or dance hall, and we won’t be featuring concert-style, flashy lighting or pyrotechnics at most shows. While we have state-of-the-art lighting capabilities, we will be using it to create grenre-appropriate moods that reinforce our goal to be a serious space for creating and engaging with music.”
PHOTO GALLERY: The Starlight Room in Muskegon
Photos by Chelsea Whitaker