Thursday Doors – The Fabulous Commodore, Vancouver

This week’s Thursday Door is a little blast from my past. It’s the entrance to the Commodore Ballroom in Vancouver, a 1920’s dance hall still with the original sprung dancefloor.

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I moved to Vancouver in my early twenties after finishing university and soon settled into the city, exploring the neigbourhoods and nightlife. The Commodore hosted a lot of the bands I listened to, plus they had an excellent Disco Night every Tuesday, for the bargain basement admission price of $2.00.

When my friends and I first used to go along it was half empty, the dancefloor home to various alternative musicians, a girl who used to do jazz ballet in the corner, and a few Japanese tourists. The big screen hanging over the stage played a continuous loop from Saturday Night Fever, of John Travolta preening in his underwear. Flick, flick, his hips would turn in his black briefs as we spun around under disco lights and a DJ booth that looked like a spaceship, protruding over the dance floor. I absolutely loved it.

Then disco had a resurgence and Tuesday nights became very busy – you had to get there early if you wanted to get in. The Disco King held court every week, young and lean in his flares and feathered hat, leading a dance competition for all the flannel-clad groovers, boots stomping and bouncing on the sprung timbers. It was still awesome.

I left Vancouver not long after, but still remember The Commodore as one of my favourite places to hang out. When I went back to visit recently I had to take a photo, just for nostalgia’s sake. I don’t know if they do Disco Night anymore – it’s probably Grunge Night now, the music of my youth rewound for a new generation.

But if they did still have it, I’d be there πŸ™‚

If you’d like to see more Thursday Doors, do the hustle on over to Norm 2.0, where you can view the list or add your own…

 

22 thoughts on “Thursday Doors – The Fabulous Commodore, Vancouver

  1. What a great story, Helen. I bet those doors could tell lots of stories and the original dance floor even more. Reading this took me back to a Nightclub I went to when living in London in the late 1980s. I ended up working there as a barman for a while and met some very interesting characters.

  2. Cool! Next time I’m in Vancouver, I might just have to go find this place! I lived just a few blocks from it for a few months in 1989, but never knew about it.

    1. Oh, it’s a great venue. They also have the original pool hall underneath (hopefully it’s still there). They do still host live bands, but not sure if they do any dance nights now. If you do go, let me know! πŸ™‚

  3. Oh what a great entry Helen. I love it all, the doors, the tiled façade, the neon sign; all of it! I made sure to RT this on Twitter too.
    Don’t forget to add it to the link-up list – the pingback didn’t work so I almost missed it.
    Thanks for sharing and have a great weekend πŸ™‚

    1. Thanks Deb πŸ™‚ A sprung dance floor is also called a floating floor, and it’s designed to absorb bounce so it’s smoother to move across. The one at the Commodore is lined with horsehair and I remember some very energetic gigs where the amount of people bouncing on it caused it to move!

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