The Basement Door has a long history of young people perfoming and watching live music within its walls. We wouldn't be able to continue producing high quality events without the word of mouth in our community. Please have a read of our Volunteer, Artist and Parent Review sections.
I came to The Basement Door when I was in a bad place, I had no place that I felt at home and no one I would consider a friend. I found that place here, I learnt new skills and I found a side of me that I hadn’t seen in a while, I was confident and friendly. I could communicate with new people without anxiety. But even when I had my bad days and I wasn’t feeling confident, I knew I had people to talk to. The Basement Door is a second home to me, it’s where I became myself and I made friends and I learnt new skills.
I feel like The Basement Door is a great environment for teens/adults, it’s a fun place for friends and people to come down and relax, with people being able to come and go as they desire it makes it really chilled. I feel personally it has opened up a lot of opportunities and I have learnt so much from it, as well as socialising and meeting new people!
I've made so many new friends and my confidence has hugely increased since becoming a volunteer at The Basement Door. I also earned a barista qualification which alongside the experience in customer service has enabled me to do other work such as being a waitress and working in a cafe.
I am so grateful to the staff at The Basement Door for the support and encouragement they have shown my daughter. Since going there she has really grown in confidence, having learnt new skills, made new friends and had fun. She is a different personality from the introvert she used to be.
We were totally delighted when a friend told our 13 year old daughter about The Basement Door in Richmond and suggested that she got in touch with Kevin. Since a very early age (and probably without even realising it) she had been developing her skills as a singer-pianist, and had begun to crave an audience and the contact of like-minded young people. Seven months and several Basement Door appearances later she is now performing with confidence and maturity, writing songs and also embarking on a collaboration with one of the other performers there. Not many 13 year olds get to do this and we are so grateful to have found a platform which nurtures her very particular skills.
There is an extraordinary amount of talent at TBD: as classical musicians ourselves, we were immediately struck by the virtuosity of some of the instrumentalists. Originality and individuality flourish here - everyone has their own style and everyone is listened to by a respectful and genuinely supportive audience. There are talented song-writers and lyricists and some of the best singers you could hope to hear. TBD is a venue for those who are beyond “the school hall” (or the garage), but are still young enough to benefit from a safe, constructively critical environment in which to air their material.
There is a large enough proportion of teenagers at TBD to make the place look cool. But adults and young children are also welcome, which breaks up the “herd effect” and gives the venue a kind of family ambience which is hard to describe. Our daughter is only 13, so I am sure that we will be regulars at TBD for a little while yet. Inevitably we have also started to enjoy and support not only our own daughter, but also some of the other very talented young people who play there. We find ourselves looking forward to hearing them again and watching their progress. We hope that TBD will be a role model for other similar venues; and that such enterprises will inspire some of today’s free spirits to be tomorrow’s professional musicians and song writers.
We discovered The Basement Door quite by chance after attending a party there and meeting Kevin, who helped with the band arrangements on that night. He heard our son play and suggested he might like to bring his band in for a gig there, when they were ready. Tommy and his band have played several gigs there now, and Tommy has played on just as many Acoustic nights, forging several new musical friendships and gaining valuable performance experience.
Which serves to illustrate what The Basement Door is all about – giving young people the chance to perform in a safe environment in front of their peers and friends, the perfect starting point for singers, songwriters and bands. It’s run really well by Kevin, assisted by Music Tech students on the technical side, and other young volunteers who are all eligible to add to their qualifications.
After a solo performance at the Richmond May Fair, it was suggested I should play at The Basement Door which is a live music cafe for young people. Always one to take up an opportunity, I played my first gig at the Staines venue at the end of May. Loved the people and Kev who runs the event is a really inspirational guy. It was a privilege to play alongside some incredible talent and I can't wait for my next Basement Door gig in Richmond.
The best music venue for young people in the Kingston/Richmond area! They have been massively helpful and resourceful in giving us the time, space and platform to practise performing live, develop our sound and build an audience!
BY THE SHORE
The Basement Door is an incredible establishment that caters to young musicians both in and around the area. It offers the younger generation a chance to play in front of an unknown audience. Something which is very rarely offered for young people below the age of 18. The Basement Door is home to all sorts of different genres, whether it's acoustic folk pop, hybrids of thrash metal or punk. This allows people to not only listen but get wonderful insight into a vast array of genres and styles.
With the youthful energy of even the oldest people that turn up to The Basement Door’s gigs, we’ve always enjoyed playing there as a band. Playing there has helped us capture a large devoted audience, one that is very interactive. Kevin has always been great to us, with a very kind and loving attitude towards everything that involves his work at The Basement Door. It’s always great to see him, whether we’re coming to play a show, or just to bump into him in public. He has really encouraged a lot of young people and created a small community with the help of bands who might otherwise have been up to no good.
The Basement Door is a great platform for all up and coming artists. Their sound system and staff are top class, allowing you to perform your music to its full potential. The venue always has a great atmosphere and it's helped me progress in so many ways. I always have a great time whenever I'm there and I'd recommend any band or artist to get themselves a gig there for a guaranteed great night.
Performing and watching performances at The Basement Door has led to some of the most spectacular and cathartic experiences of my life and I'm thankful for that, considering it's no longer viable for young people to attend pub gigs due to stricter licensing laws. This is a place where truly independent local bands can play, develop their music and find new fans.
THE RAFE GREGORY BAND
I first performed at The Basement Door nights when I was 13 years old. As a young musician with little to no self confidence I could never have expected such a warm and nurturing environment. It gave me my first real taste of being successful at music, from the great audiences to the amazing quality sound and backstage crew, and the general quality of all the bands that play inside those walls. Seven years later (Woah! I can't believe it's been that long!) this place continues to play a pivotal role in the development of so many young bands, including my own which has played there multiple times this year. The Basement Door is a safe haven for all who love music, long may it continue.
The Basement Door has been a very good venue for my music students. It has given them somewhere for their own bands to perform and also a place to come and play at jazz jam sessions. It has helped give them experience in performing to audiences and in organising events.