A BRIEF HISTORY
You have to give huge praise to Justin Berkmann, James Palumbo and Humphrey Waterhouse for possessing the courage and the vision to open a club that was so far removed from the status quo.
Whilst house music was thriving over in America, it was still a long way from being a popular genre in the UK when the aforementioned trio decided to open Ministry.
In the beginning there was a huge amount of stress and anxiety, with nearly two years passing from the original conception to the first DJs playing there.
Berkmann, who had been heavily influenced by New York’s Paradise Garage, which was one of the first settings that championed house nights, also wanted to show his support by flying the flag for the genre in the UK. Whilst the venture was a significant gamble at the start, support for house DJs grew significantly in the 1990s, allowing Ministry to establish itself firmly in the capital, attracting the masses with a rather left-field approach.
From there the club went from strength to strength, regularly booking the finest acts from around the world and subsequently attracting thousands of people on a weekly basis.
As has been the case with other numerous other venues, surrounding development plans threatened to close the club, with an opposing tower block presenting the biggest risk.
However the two parties involved came to an agreement in 2013 which guaranteed the future of the venue and ensured Ministry could continue as one of the finest nightclubs on the planet.
Nowadays the brand has become a huge player in a variety of fields, encompassing a thriving record label, fitness studio as well as the opening of franchise clubs in places like Sydney and Kuala Lumpur.
Everything about this club from the enormous floor space to the futuristic speaker set-up is set up to provide a truly dynamic and mind-blowing clubbing experience. Wandering around the venue it is easy to see why people keep coming back, addicted to the sensational offering of impressive stage designs.
A key ingredient of any top nightclub is a stellar main room and Ministry certainly has one of those in The Box, which boasts a futuristic design, firmly ranking as one of the finest settings the see the world’s biggest DJs.
In addition the sheer size of the venue also presents an exciting and varied alternative from the sometimes static outside world.
At first the club made a name as the first venue to play house music, with Berkmann keen to introduce Londoners to the sound that had been taking America by storm in the 1980s.
Whilst house was growing in popularity across the Atlantic Ocean and starting to gain a significantly bigger fan base it needed a figure like Berkmann to give the genre a dedicated platform, like Ministry of Sound. In the beginning house icons like David Morales, Roger Sanchez and Tony Humphries played their part in cultivating the club’s identity and therein offering a unique selling point, which helped cement it’s place in London’s nightlife scene.
Since then the venue has adapted to house a whole host of different styles, with DJs flocking from far and wide on a weekly basis to play the hallowed setting. If you like trance music and the promise of that sumptuous synergy between sound and visuals which it so often provides then Fridays are the time you should visit.
Come down on a Saturday for that house fix as well as other types of electronic music like drum n bass, disco and garage. Each year some of the finest brands, like Hospitality, Together and Defected, take over the club and always stage the best parties with sensational line ups.
Ministry also caters specifically for the vast student population in the city, with “Milkshake” events being held on a Tuesday, providing a varied mix of music alongside quirky shows, like the UV paint parties.
EVENTS TO WATCH OUT FOR IN 2018
Third Party present Release Records
The Essex duo behind Third Party are set to provide an exhilarating showcase of their own label when they pass through Ministry at the end of this month. Ever since they burst onto the scene with a huge collaboration alongside Steve Angello back in 2012 Jonnie Macaire and Harry Bass have gone from strength to strength, constantly honing their big room and progressive sound. There is no doubt these two will ensure a sensational night of entertainment, given the fact they know this club like the back of their hand as resident DJs. On 29 June you can expect an impressive support including Sosumi Records head honcho Kryder, Sweden’s Sebjak and Pete K.
The Gallery: Cosmic Gate
Hailed as one of the most innovative acts in trance music over the past two decades, Cosmic Gate touch down in London during the final weekend of July. Alongside putting out numerous trance floor fillers themselves, the German duo have also amassed remix credits for household names such as Paul Van Dyk, Ferry Corsten and Paul Van Dyk. If the idea of a truly sensory and emotional experience inside one of the finest global arenas for cultivating spine-tingling dancefloor moments isn’t tempting enough Cosmic Gate will be playing a special three-hour set. Make sure to stop by Ministry on 27 July for a trance spectacular, including support from Liverpool’s Jordan Suckley.
9 OUT OF 10 – A GRANDIOSE NIGHTCLUB WHICH ONLY DEALS IN STATE OF THE ART PRODUCTION
This venue has pushed boundaries ever since it first landed in London nearly three decades ago. With four whole floors it really is hard not to appreciate the vast scale of this club whilst also acknowledging how there is not the slightest compromise on design or the experience. A prime example has to be The Box, which is the crown jewel, boasting the most cutting-edge speaker system that allows artists to control exactly where sound is sent. With features like this it is easy to see why around 300,000 people pay a visit each year.