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Three decades of music experience and a history of concert promotion – enough to fill a stadium – will team up this September to unveil The Ardmore Music Hall. Formerly Brownies 23 East, project partners Bryan Dilworth of Bonfire Booking, Richard Kardon of Point Entertainment and Joe Rufo of Brownies 23 East will transform the historic suburban space into a cutting edge concert venue. In a competitive market like Philadelphia you may see different promoters partnering on shows from time to time. But it’s truly unique to see them combining forces to work together in the same venue.
A major part of the rebranding includes a new feel for the venue. “The ideas everyone brought to the table will bring a whole new life to the room,” says Rufo. “Improved stage and customer seating for better sight lines, sound upgrades, a whole new ambiance, and a diverse selection of craft beers…it’s amazing to see what this is becoming.”
The 23 East Lancaster Avenue location is a building with significant history. The 23 East Cabaret not only presented acts such as Phish, Buddy Guy, Derek Trucks, Dave Mathews Band, Blues Traveler, Hootie & The Blowfish, The Red Hot Chili Peppers, Joan Osborne and John Hiatt, it also played a pivotal role in the early careers of The Hooters and Tommy Conwell & The Young Rumblers, who went on to national prominence. In the nineties, it was Brownie’s 23 East, known as one of the top cover band rooms in the area, it also hosted shows with bands like Cheap Trick, Los Lobos, The Cherry Poppin Daddys and Merle Saunders.
With a flexible capacity that maxes out at 600, the Ardmore Music Hall will be configured to feel intimate at 250, which enables the partners to present a wide range of artists reflecting the breadth of knowledge of the booking team.