The Paradiso in Amsterdam is a world famous concert-hall were every musician wants to perform, from David Bowie to Coldplay. The building has a rich history of revolt, art and youth cultures. The first episode of our serie venues: Paradiso in Amsterdam.
From a strong religious symbol to a pop culture temple
The church was built in 1880 to be the meeting house of the Free Congregation, based on the “free-will of man”. The building was squatted around the year 1965 and three year the rise of Paradiso started: a club that embraced pop, revolt, and youngster culture over the years.
Punk & Revolt
Revolt movements embracing the “no future” motto took over Paradiso in the eighties. Seen as the very representation of Amsterdam rebellion moves, political and social criticism, those years could have caused the end of Paradiso financially.
Blondie celebrating her 40th year anniversary as an artist in Paradiso
Is it a surprise that the rise of the Punk era financially helped the club. Most famous artists went through those doors – e.g. Blondie or Patti Smith. Even though the floor got damaged because of all the pogoing, Paradiso soon became the Amsterdam embodiment of this punk , “no future” culture.
Paradiso now and in the future
In 50 years, the club lost its religious and political involvement so to speak but remains the Amsterdam music temple. It is partly financed by the Dutch state as a cultural center. Although the symbol is not political anymore, it is seen as a first great achievement for artists who have the opportunity to perform on its stage – where there once were Pink Floyd, Nirvana, or The Rolling Stones in their very early years.The Rolling Stones in Paradiso
In any case, even though the years have gone by, Paradiso remains a great venue and now the Amsterdam museum gave an awesome tribute to the club. Visit 50 year Paradiso Exhibition until August 19th at the Amsterdam Museum - Kalverstraat 92, 1012 PH Amsterdam