“We lost a lot, but learned so much,”
Those are the words of The Good Room duo Ed O’Leary and Joe Kelly, who have announced that the Kino on Washington Street will not re-open when Covid-19 restrictions are lifted.
The promoters, who also run the Live At St. Luke’s concert, series took over the lease of the Kino in September 2019.
“Unfortunately we’ve made the difficult decision to close the Kino for good,” they said in a statement issued this morning.
“We had come to a new agreement with the landlord recently to stay until the end of the summer. But due to the latest government extension of level 5 restrictions, we feel that it will likely be June or July before the live performance sector is allowed to re-open.
“It wasn’t feasible to continue paying substantial rent for the next several months in the hopes of maybe opening for a few weeks. Only to vacate shortly after in order for the building to be sold.
The venue owners said it was “devastating” to be leaving so much sooner than they had hoped, but said the timing never quite worked: “We were only six months into what was a five-year plan when Covid came along and we were forced to close last March.
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“In truth we had just found our groove and the venue was getting a great name nationally. We never got a chance to fully realise our vision for the Kino. Had Covid not come along we would be in a completely different situation.”
The promoters thanked their landlord, Philip O’Connor for his support and understanding and said they’re happy that they are leaving on good terms.
“We’re extremely proud of all the great gigs and events we put on during our tenure. So many brilliant acts, both Irish and international performed there in the eight months we were actually open. There was real heart and genuine effort from our staff, crew and all the artists, we want to thank all of them for that. It made the venue the special space that it was. Everyone was sound and great at their job!
“We lost a lot, but learned so much from the experience and genuinely loved every minute we had there. Everything we’ve learned from the Kino will all be put into practise in the next incarnation. We are exploring a couple of options in the city at the moment and hope to have a new venue for Cork before the end of the year.”
Live At St. Luke’s are scheduled to return in the autumn: “We’ll be hitting the ground running and know that we will only go from strength to strength once things open up again.”