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This is England club night comes to Sankeys

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By Jack Holmes

Sankeys will welcome Manchester’s first This is England club night tomorrow featuring classic tracks from the Shane Meadows directed masterpieces.

The original film and the follow up TV series follow a group of school kids and young adults as they find their way through life and the rapidly changing British landscape, from the original film set in 1983, right up to the final series which took place in 1990.

Each soundtrack instalment were designed to reflect their place in the British musical timeline, so you can expect to hear everything from ska to acid house, all presented by the members of the cast.

The night will be spread across two rooms, the first devoted to indie and Madchester will feature DJ Sets from Thomas Turgoose (Shaun), Andrew Ellis (Gadget), Andrew Shim (Milky) and Johnny Walsh.

The second will focus on rave, acid house and 90s club classics, with sets from Allister Whitehead and K Klass.

this-is-england-88We spoke to Andrew Ellis, or ‘Gadget’ as you may know him, about what we can expect from the This is England team’s Manchester launch.

Each instalment of the This is England story featured an amazing soundtrack, how are you going to balance the ska and reggae classics of the 80’s, with the Madchester and Acid House anthems of the 90’s?

We mostly play the 90’s anthems at the club nights. We mix in a few bits of Ska and 80’s jams in there too, it just depends what the audience (and ourselves) are feeling on the night. We always keep our sets fresh though and play some great indie and hip hop anthems that aren’t in the soundtracks too.

Other than the music, what aspects of This is England will you be hoping to bring to the night?

I’d have to say the “gang’s banter”. Myself, Andrew Shim and Thomas Turgoose are all really good mates, all the cast are to be fair. We don’t see each other as much as we’d like so we have a good night and a great laugh when we do. You’ll normally find me dancing to some indie jams, Thommo smoking outside halfway through and Shimmy just looking cool as always.

Any special surprises planned?

Nothing major really. Like I say we just join in and have a good night. We never just sit in a box and change songs. It’s a night out for us too so we make the most of it.

Can we expect to hear some of the classic tracks from the original film and as well as the latest series? Some Specials and Dexys Midnight Runners, perhaps?

Thommo loves playing “54/46 was my number”. It’s a great track and normally goes down a treat. Again, we just see where the night takes us really.

Shane Meadows (the director of This Is England) has recently hinted at the potential for a second film to finish off the This Is England series, care to comment?

I’ve heard the same as you guys really. I know Shane and everyone involved, myself included would love to do more so if Shane ever pens it we are all there for sure.

Will the cast be attending as their characters or themselves?

It’ll for the most part be us actors but once we get together and have a few drinks we tend to slip into our character and act a bit like them haha!

Is there a stand out track on the playlist for you personally?

I always play “Sit Down” by James. Its a personal fave of mine and I try and make the whole crowd sit down to it too which is… Eventful.

What made you choose Sankeys for the launch of the first This is England club night?

We launched the night originally in Sheffield a  few months back. This is actually the second night. But a fitting venue. Sheffield is the home of TIE and Manc is my home.

Which of the This is England soundtracks do you prefer the most?

That’s like picking a favourite kid really. They all have a special place in my heart to be honest. But if I’m absolutely had to it would probably be 90′ because it’s heavily influenced by my beautiful city.

Is this a fancy dress kind of affair or should we leave the bucket hats and suspenders at home?

Come as you want. There is no “fancy dress” dress code but I do love it when people do dress up. It just sets the scene more really. Sometimes i even take Gadgets hoody from 90′ on stage with me!

Should we expect the This is England club night to reinvigorate the Madchester scene?

I hope so. That music has never really died. I went to the Stone Roses gig at the “Emptyhad” the other month and it was beautiful because the audience was so varied. I was stood next to both young kids and people way into there 50’s it’s a great scene and it will be around for a long time.

Which is more fun, acting or being the DJ of your own club night?

I’m an actor, that’s my passion and I’m at my most happiest when I’m doing that. The DJing is fun and it’s great to meet the people who watch us though.

Will the soundtrack be entirely British? This is England after all.

No, we’ve got ska in there loads of American influences like hip hop etc. Beautiful music made by beautiful people from all corners of our world!

You can find full details of the night and buy tickets here and keep up on upcoming Manchester club nights through the Humanity Hallows Twitter account here.

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Jack Holmes

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