By Zac Clark
Grab your jacket, a fistful of dollars, and your Shakespearian garb—or a bunch of flannel you college hooligans---The Globe is back in business.
The popular entertainment venue located on Kalamazoo Avenue was put out of commission when the city flushed their storm drains in early October. Excess water went into Shakespeare's kitchen and into the vulnerable, carpeted interior of The Globe. While the kitchen is made of stainless steel, The Globe...not so much. The flooring and dry wall was laid to waste. Even though Kalamazoo has a burgeoning basement scene, apparently those running The Globe weren't going for the whole "mold and grime" look that would have given Shakespeare's basement some real authenticity. Their loss.
Since then, a few major changes have been made to the space.
"It was great as a comedy club, but not as an overall entertainment venue," one employee commented.
Sean Micklin stated that the owners wanted to improve the overall feel of the Globe from its former days as a comedy club, so during the renovation primo hardwood floors were installed and the stage has been enlarged to accommodate larger acts. Tables still surround the main stage, but most have been pushed off to the sides or removed all together, leaving room for plenty of gawkers, drinkers, and music aficionados on the sparkly, new dance-floor.
For those that enjoy their music with their feet off the ground and a drink in hand, however, booths have been installed opposite the main stage and new glassware has been made available for all those fancy cocktails you drinkmeisters have been dreaming up.
"It's cleaner and nicer now," Charley "Chuck" Lovelle, sound manager and sometimes booker for the venue said.
Although according to John Alpert, the man behind the bar at The Globe, there will still be "PBR" for those who don't want to get rid of all of the grime.
Micklin a thoroughbred of a talent handler with a flush fervor that seems indicative of an entertainment host, was the manager of Shakespeare's Pub for two years up until the Globe's reopening Thursday the 16th-- when he switched places but not titles—assuming managerial duties downstairs at the Globe.
"Managing the Globe is a full time job," Micklin explained, "I couldn't do both."
And the brains at The Globe have high aspirations for the renovated venue, jump-starting the space with entertainment available for the night-hawks of Kalamazoo Tuesday through Saturday. Micklin stated that their final objective was to have "events every night of the week."
Among the acts filling out the five-night roster at The Globe entertainment are home-grown, analog-DJs , Kalamazoo Destruct. The duo, Dustin Alexander and Alexander Roelandt who bring DJs from around the state and nation to Kalamazoo--along with spinning their own tracks—are moving their 'Hard Drive Tuesdays' to Thursday nights at The Globe. Even better for all you struggling college listeners out, these shows are going to be free. Replacing their traditional Tuesday-night trance dancing event, will be an audition slot for local artists.
Sean Micklin stated that The Globe's 'Audition Nights' is going to "showcase local poets, comedians, and bands every Tuesday at 8:30 p.m." While of course all are invited and encouraged to come on down and enjoy the performances, the goal of the continual invitational is to scout-out permanent entertainment for The Globe's weekly, seven-night extravaganza—as well as giving locals a chance to strut their stuff and possibly earn a steady gig.
Along with steady plans for Tuesday and Thursday nights, there are opportunities for all the singing sensations of Kalamazoo to crack the newly re-glossed windows of The Globe with karaoke Sunday and Wednesday nights, and the first weekend and third Saturday of every month will be dedicated to comedy.
Micklin hopes that these established shows—along with the ever changing schedule of booked artists—will provide an eclectic array of entertainment that will draw "crowds from Bell's, Old Dog, and The Strutt." With a sleek interior and already a few, impressive shows under its belt displaying high-quality audio—which Chuck Lovelle only hopes to improve—they may just do so. John Alpert, with a glass in hand, bar-rag in the other, added with an air of bartender confidence "we aim to take over the music scene in Kalamazoo."
Until that conquest is clear however, it remains to be seen whether fortune and victory sit on thy helm, Globe Theatre.