Fly comes undone at Victoria Hall
MUSICIANS and performers hoping to perform at the Fly By Night Musicians Club will will have to consider other options from August.
The club is currently based at Victoria Hall but the City of Fremantle reconsidered its lease in February.
Mayor Brad Pettitt said it had been a difficult decision to make, with the club being an iconic part of the Fremantle music scene.
“It had been on the scene for more than 30 years, hosting great performers and nurturing local talent. It would be heartbreaking to see it close,” he said.
“Since the National Trust decided not to renew the Fly’s lease on the Old Drill Hall in 2014, the City of Fremantle has gone out of its way to help the Fly survive, including offering half-price rent on Victoria Hall, spending more than $20,000 to improve the acoustics of the hall and giving them a $20,000 cash grant.
“The Fly has not been able to make Victoria Hall work as a profitable venue.”
The council had agreed to waive the club’s outstanding debt to the City of about $70,000.
City officers had looked into the Fly presenting shows at other venues, including the Navy Club, Fremantle Town Hall and South Fremantle Football Club event space.
Fly by Night Musicians Club board of directors chairman Steve Wells said the board would meet later this month to finalise its exit strategy from Victoria Hall and consider future directions.
“The Fly appreciates the support it has received from Brad, arts and culture manager Pete Stone and a range of other City staff since our forced move from the Drill Hall by the National Trust,” he said.
“It will be a shame if we need to leave Fremantle after all this time but that is one of the options our board is currently exploring.
“We are committed to the Fly continuing as a not-forprofit promoter of live independent music.
“We know we need to change the business model if the Fly is to continue.”
The Fly By Night club has to move from Victoria Hall.