Stock up on glow sticks. Echostage is coming.
Panorama Productions — a Washington-based music promotion company whose weekly Club Glow parties have helped popularize electronic dance music in the District — has leased the hulking nightclub on Queens Chapel Road NE known as D.C. Star. With a new sound system and a new name, Echostage will open Sept. 22 with performances from Sander Van Doorn and Sunnery James & Ryan Marciano.
“The idea is to create the biggest concert venue in the tri-state area,” Panorama co-owner Antonis Karagounis said. “Something that will be used for amazing electronic music shows, but will be able to accommodate hip-hop, R&B and rock, as well.”
When the doors first open, look for cosmetic tweaks, better sound, a new stage and a large LED screen casting its lumens on an expanded dance floor. But the big facelift comes in January, when the owners plan to close Echostage for a few months to build a mezzanine area, an outdoor patio and other amenities. In the end, they hope Echostage will be able to host 5,000 fans.
The opening of Echostage also feels like brick-and-mortar evidence of the recent fascination with electronic dance music, or EDM. Over the past two years, the music has boomed in popularity — so much so that earlier this summer, concert promotion colossus Live Nation Entertainment acquired Hard Events, a California-based company that promotes EDM performances and festivals across the country.
“Dance music is so freaking huge right now, just holding a weekly party isn’t sustainable,” said Panorama’s marketing and media director, Ravi Bayanker. “We want to have a mega-lineup every week.”
“We saw this room, and we fell in love with it,” Panorama co-owner Pete Kalamoutsos said. “And you can’t do anything of this size in Northwest.”