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Remember when you were younger and usually complaining about how boring school was and how you couldn?t wait to leave and someone would always say "School Days are the Best Days of Your Life? well yes I would agree with them now ive left and I have to live in the big wide world, act like an adult (well once a week) and be responsible for my own actions. Well thank the lord for SchoolDisco, the place you can go back to, to relive your youth. Remember the music, the dancing, the cheesy tunes, snogging behind the bike sheds (or in my case my maths class) and smoking in the toilets.... Well at SchoolDisco, you can do all of this with ease! What could be better than a night out with females of all shapes and sizes wearing tight micro skirts, or belts as my dad would refer to them as, tight shirts, hair in pigtails, stocking and suspenders and knee height boots? Surely, that would tempt you all into a night out with me now.... SchoolDisco began back in 1999 in Ormonds restaurant in London by Bobby Sanchez with an audience of 50 people. Bobby Sanchez had been sacked from his job as a DJ for playing 'This Ole House' by Shaking Stevens at a top London Club. Now in 2004 SchoolDisco is a phenomenon and regularly attracts 800 people at the Hammersmith Palais. Although SchoolDisco isn?t only limited to London, events have taken place in Dublin, Manchester, Blackpool, Leeds and even Ibiza and Ayia Napa. (",) The Rules (",) As with every 'nightclub' night out there are rules attached to the dress code and for SchoolDisco it is quite simple. ***Girls*** We have to wear a skirt or one of those pinafore dresses with a white, blue, brown or yellow shirt. There is no denim allowed. A stripy tie, which is not to be a work tie. Thankfully when I went to Kos 2 years ago I had gone to Cheadle to say with one of my closest friends and we went to her old school and bought two ties
for a bargain 50p each. Now for the feet - you have to wear shoes, boots, trainers or high heels. It is as simple as that. Unless you?re me of course. I wore a skirt which was between 9-10 inches long, something I would never have been allowed to wear at school, a very tight white shirt, stocking and suspenders which again I would not have worn to school and knee height boots for effect or FMB's as they are also known. Did it work? Yes, it did.... I got lots of attention, as did my friends and we revelled in the fact that we looked great. ***Boys*** There is also a dress code for the boys and again it is fairly simple: White/blue/grey/brown shirt with dark trousers or shorts along with a stripy School tie (not a work tie) Shoes or trainers and again no denim. When I went to SchoolDisco a few weeks ago there was a group of about 6 lads who I got talking to who wore a netball kit which amuse me somewhat, all I wanted to know was what they worse under their skirts.... Well there isn?t anything attractive about a bloke in a school uniform unless he is good looking to start with and for some reason this event attracts the geeks! (",) The Music (",) Now you've got your school uniform on, or if you?re like me, you?re newly invented what id wear for school and you've arrived, very intoxicated at The Hammersmith Palais and your ready to boogie. So, what music are you likely to hear? Well songs such as: Relight my fire by Take That always seems to get the girls on the dance floor along with The One and Only by Chesney Hawks and I think we're alone now by Tiffany again all prove to be very popular. When the cheesemeister really kicks in you can expect to hear everything from Wham's Freedom, The Foundations 'Build me up Buttercup, This Ole House by Shaking Stevens and Jeff Beck with Hi Ho Silver Lining' all of which should
only ever be played at weddings (although there is no way id ever have these at my wedding) to get the rellies up and dancing. Then we hit the dance floor with tunes like Ghetto Superstar by Pras ft Mya which is a tune and a half anyway, to Vanilla Ice with Ice Ice baby and You Cant Touch This by none other than MC Hammer. There is no one era of music played, unlike your usually nightclubs who play an hour of 80s and then an hour of 90's, SchoolDisco plays everything in no particular order and covers classic 70s 80s 90s pop, rock and disco anthems so there is something for everyone. (",) Hammersmith Palais (",) Hammersmith Palais is also known as Po Na Na to those of us who live in London and can be found in Hammersmith on Shepherds Bush Road. This venue is huge and has at least 3 main bars to be able to buy your alcoholic drinks from, well water if you?re that intoxicated. Hammersmith Palais is well known for featuring quality bands such as Queen, The Clash, Robbie Williams and Bob Marley. (",) Other information (",) SchoolDisco takes place every Saturday at Hammersmith Palais from 9pm until 3am. Tickets are available online at SchoolDisco.com or by phoning 0871 872 1234 and choosing option one. They are priced reasonably at 12.50, although there is a booking fee of £1.50. The nearest tube station is Hammersmith, which is either the Piccadilly Line, District or Hammersmith and City Line. Oh and you have to be 18 and over to attend this event. (",) www.Schooldisco.com (",) This is the official website for SchoolDisco and everything you need to know and more is on here. If your not sure about the Uniform or you cant find a stripy tie, fear not! They have their own tuck shop where you can buy an acceptable tie amongst many other things. You can also purchase CDs of songs you would expect to find played at SchoolDisco an
d yes; I do own most of them. (",) My night out (",) Well you didn?t expect it to have been so straightforward surely. Ive got many friends living in and around London, the weekend I went to SchoolDisco I had friends fly in from Glasgow and Manchester whom I went to school with which was great, friends in London who I was at University with and friends from Reading whom I also went to school with and they all brought friends with them and in total 30 of us ended up hitting the bars of Hammersmith in various uniformed styles. Lib and I, my friend from Uni days, had spent most of the afternoon on the phone discussing various idea's and styles and although she chickened out of the stocking and suspenders for fear of looking like an idiot on the tube. Well I managed to get to the tube okay, although I did feel like a prat as I walked there, but I was distracted all the way there :o) We decided on the shortest skirts we both owned and trust me I look daft in skirts which go past my knee's but ive got nice legs and always go for the shorter than short option. This time I had gone along to Miss Selfridge, seen a short skirt, and bought it without a second thought. I have to admit it isn?t something I would wear on a normal night out, it is that short! Well if I did, I could think of a few rude things I would be wanting to happen.... but that?s another story. The hair was easy to decide on, although when it comes to my hair I take hours. Every lotion and potion is used and it took me over 2 hours to opt for pigtails, then take them out, then have my hair down, then a pony tail. I stuck to the original plan and erm yes walking to the tube station was an experience (a very nice one!!) in itself. Once you get into Hammersmith you feel a fool no longer, because it is obvious where everyone is going and the bars are full of those going to SchoolDisco. There is an Edwards
Bar opposite the tube station and we all piled into there and I had to dance on the bar to win some free drinks for my friends, well im never one to pass up a challenge, I was right up there and yes I did get the drinks. I had to dance to Tight Fit and The Lion Sleeps Tonight which was hilariously funny along with two blokes who were lovely and joined in. It started off all innocent but by the end of the song, it had turned into some rude threesome with me in the middle of two men, and all for some free pitchers of Vodka and Red Bull. Once inside Hammersmith Palais and very intoxicated I was as well, the DJ asked for people to go up on the stage... yep guess who was the first one up there.... ME and I had dragged some of my more introvert friends up there with me and we had to dance to some cheesy song...Alice Cooper and Schools Out. Thankfully when I was younger I used to belong to a dance school and we did a dance routine to this song which we did all over the country and my two friends who were at the same Dance school were on stage with me and we did the whole routine to a huge applause, okay so it was mainly from the people we went out with, but it was very funny and I have never laughed so much. Sadly one testosterone filled young man got a little too excited and ended up with my hand across his face when his hands wandered too far, but other than that it is a great night out. For anyone who hasn?t yet been to a SchoolDisco event in London, either around the UK or around abroad then I would urge you to do so. It is great fun, you get to dress stupidly and get very drunk. I will certainly be going again at some stage this year. Oh and the photo's will be uploaded as soon as Matt gets the film developed which he still hasn?t done. I took my camera and forgot to use it...ooops! Oh and the website does say the use of professional camera's are prohibited.
School disco is one of the best fun nights out in London. Its a club night which is held at either the Hanover Grand (Fridays) or Po Na Na in Hammersmith (Saturdays). Its been going a while now, but is still incredibly popular. I recommend it to anyone who: Likes to dress up Loves old 80s music Remembers the A team theme tune Doesn't mind being leered at Want a laugh in a totally non-pretentious club Tickets can be booked in advance on the website and this is a good idea if there are a few of you wanting to go. Advance tickets does not mean no queuing though, so be prepared to wait a little while to get in (maybe 15 - 30 mins). Prices are £13 a ticket, and drinks prices are ok, no worse and no better than most clubs. You can queue jump if you wear a prefect’s tie, bought from the web site. Dress code is actually quite strict - you must wear school uniform, in particular the tie, or they might turn you away. They get less fussy as the evening goes on. The atmosphere is great and we got talking to loads of people - its not for the shy and retiring though as you may well get started at, especially on the way there! The music is great, very much a 80s early 90s thing, and its all good fun. Typical songs are U Can't touch this Dancing Queen Theme from Grange Hill Things can only get better Overall a fab night out
School Disco is a genuine clubbing phenomenon. Started just two years ago by DJ Bobby Sanchez - who got the idea for a cheesy retro night after he was sacked by a more po-faced club for daring to drop a Shakin' Stevens tune into the mix - it has grown from humble beginnings in a back-street restaurant to be featured on TV, in magazines, even in The Guardian, for goodness' sake. Such is its success that it now runs twice a week in London - on Fridays at the Hanover Grand and on Saturdays at Po Na Na in Hammersmith (what used to be the Palais) - and has even spread to Dublin (at the Ambassador Theatre). It recently started up in Leeds and Nottingham too, but these seem to have been suspended for the time being. There's also a New Years party at the London Arena, with a special guest appearance by The Human League. So what's the secret of its success? Two things, I guess: nostalgia for the tunes of our childhood, and (sorry, but it's true) that whole male fantasy thing about girls in school uniform. I know, I know, it's deeply sad.... so sue my Y chromosome. The formula is simple - school uniform is obligatory, and the music is pure cheese on toast. From TV theme tunes (Grange Hill, Grandstand) to disco anthems by Nena, The Human League - christ, even Falco - you'll feel 15 again. The main venue, Po Na Na, works very well. Although, in keeping with the rest of this chain, it has some weird Moroccan decor, the place is so overrun with schoolkids that it doesn't matter. There is a huge raised dancefloor in the middle, which is absolutely heaving, and comfy sofas around the edges for when it all gets too much. The good news for the blokes is that the girls seem to outnumber the boys, about 60:40 at least. In fact blokes seem to come off best all round: the girls seem to make a great effort and generally look fantastic, whereas the blokes mostly stick to the white shirt/black trousers and a tie look. Also look
out for special guests and celebrities - recent guests have included Erkan Mustafa (Ro-land off Grange Hill) and even the Rainbow puppets! Photos from each night are posted on the Schooldisco.com website - make sure you check it after the event to see if you're pictured! You can also request a song on the website. My only gripes are, firstly, the air conditioning (or lack thereof) at Po Na Na. It is absolutely sweltering. Secondly, the drinks are expensive - about £3.50 a bottle, and bottled water is also pricey. But hey, you're in London! Other things to bear in mind: *Book early: it's now ticket-only (you can no longer get tickets on the door) and often sells out 2 or 3 weeks beforehand. *Where to go beforehand? Well, Hammersmith on a Saturday night is full of groups of people in school uniform - you won't feel out of place - but a good place is Hop Poles on King Street. They play cheesy tunes to get you in the mood. *School uniform is a must. No tie, no entrance (girls as well as boys). Trainers are OK. *Have fun!
I went to London to see a friend and had never heard of this night before (where have I been?!). My friend had cleverly pre-bought tickets, an absolute godsend when the skys opened. The queues looked horrific. The security was tight and I saw people being turned away for not wearing the correct dress code - ironically you could turn up with a skirt the size of a finger nail but still had to wear a tie. Having said that, at least you knew you wouldn't have that 'did no-one tell me the fancy dress was cancelled feel'. THE UPS: The volunteers who amused us by trying their Hot Gossip routines on the stage were hilarious - especially as the booze started to hit. If you think you can do better, you just need to queue by the stage. The atmosphere was excellent - people were genuinely friendly. It all seemed like good fun. THE DOWNS: The downside was the bottle drinks were expensive - definitely drink before you go and but at least two drinks per person at the bar to avoid the horrific queues. Join the toilet queue as soon as you start to feel the need - you'll be glad of it by the time you eventually get there. THE RESULT: The music was mostly cheesy eighties style and hit the right note for the mood. Definitely recommended for girlie/bloke nights out - snogs on all round.
If you are thinking of going to school disco at Po Na Na then I was recommend booking tickets. The queue outside is about two hours long and it isn't really much fun. Even when you reach the front, they will turn you away for the slightest thing, It is strictly school uniform and you have to wear a tie, or you literlly don't get in. Once inside its is definatly worth the hassle, they play good music - if you like a bit of cheese (they even play the Grange hill theme tune!)and the atmosphere is great. But beware the bouncer with the rubber gloves who does the queue contol, when one of my mates got turned away for not wearing a tie he literlly threw her over the barrier and hurled abuse at her when she protested! I think we paid a tenner to get in and its about a pound extra to pre book. It has got its own website, schooldisco dot com and you get get more info there.
Well, I've finally been. In fact, I've been twice in a row, consecutive weekends, and I'm completely knackered because of it! I was a regular attender of SchoolDisco when it was in Vauxhall. Since it moved to Hammersmith, it's a bit more awkward for me to get to and from - although there is the advantage of night buses running from just around the corner afterwards. But the main advantage must be the added capacity. Rather than a packed little room holding 1000-odd people, there's now adequate space for 2,500 (apparently, I haven't counted). And there's balconies, and loads of bars, a games room, huge stage, and the pole-enhanced podiums ... it's a great venue. A lot of people will know of the venue as the Hammersmith Palais, but it's now run by the Po Na Na chain, and as such has had a big Moroccan make-over. Palm trees and ceilings covered with sheets certainly don't add to the schooly feel. But the decoration for the night is certainly a labour of love, with big posters of your childhood heroes (Grange Hill stars, Rod Jane and Freddy, John Craven) and a huge banner over the stage. So, the setting is unusual, but it still somehow works. It's not got the feel of a school hall like it did in Vauxhall, but it's now got the feel of one of the more refined school discos held elsewhere. And it certainly is more refined, if seedier than you'd expect from school! Musically, it still blows me away. The first week I went (on June 2nd), there was a live band playing - the 6th Formers - who were excellent. If there was enough to write about them for a seperate opinion, they'd get five stars easily. The DJs do a top job, playing all the records of your youth, but there's a bit of a downside to this. They're good at playing what they like, but not what other people have requested. There's a requests board on the SchoolDisco website (at http://www.schoold
isco.com), and for last night I reckon only about half the songs were played. A bit of a shame, when people are asking for a specific song for someone's birthday or something. And as for asking for requests on the night - forget it. You can't get anywhere near the stage because the bouncers seem unable to understand what you want, and despite asking four times I still don't know where (or if) you can put requests to the DJ. In fact, the bouncers are a major downside. I'm sure they're really lovely people, but not when they're at the club. "Can I just go to the loo before I go?" ... "Where's the games room?" ... "Have you got the time?" ... all met with a grunt and a request for you to go elsewhere - but not phrased like that, of course. Still, they don't detract from a top night out. Seeing two-thousand-odd people all dressed in school uniform is great, and even better is when one of them finds you remotely attractive. Though you can feel a bit awkward during the slow dances when the jumper you've tied round your waist starts to slip off ...