The team behind Village Underground in Shoreditch intend to restore a derelict cinema in Dalston. The former Savoy Cinema, built in 1936, will be given a new lease of life as Hackney Arts Centre (HAC).


HAC will serve the local community in Hackney, giving space and world class cultural opportunities to people in the area. It is also planned HAC will be a springboard for the next generation of creative talent; local artists, thinkers and musicians will be able to get their message to a larger audience.


The main auditorium, which has laid largely unused since the mid-nineties, will be renovated with many of its original art deco features returned to their former glory. Two other areas which have been used as a bar and cafe until recently will be given a major overhaul to give Hackney a 21st century arts centre. The three distinct areas will allow the venue to be used for a many day and night-time purposes from readings, comedy and debates, to larger theatre and music events. Similar to Village Underground, the space will be curated to span art forms and diverse genres and voices. There will also be a focus on experimental and innovative performance and art.

The news is a welcome antidote to stories of club and artist studio closures across the capital. Like Village Underground, HAC will be self-sufficient and not reliant on EU or Arts Council funding. The arts centre will have a commercial rental strand which will fund the venue’s artistic endeavours.

A committee meeting to discuss the plans for Hackney Arts Centre will be held on 20th June at Hackney Town Hall.


Hackney Arts Centre briefing

·       HAC will open a 21st century cultural centre which will service the local community and enrich London’s cultural offering
·       It will be a grassroots venue which will support emerging talent and will be a springboard for developing ideas and art
·       There will be an emphasis on experimental, inspirational work
·       The experienced programming team will bring some of the most exciting artists from around the world to Hackney
·       HAC will be self-sufficient with money from its commercial hire endeavours supporting the varied artistic offering

For more information on the HAC proposal:
For more images: For more press information, please contact