Written by: Valerie Cronenbold
Eclectic in neon blue, the insides of Central City’s newest dance venue “The Rabbit Hole” boasts a mural painted by artist Grace O’Malley, commissioned by owners Nate and Jill Graff intended to create an “organic environment that shows beauty in imperfection.”
Since its January launch, New Orleans’s newest rave destination has combined its cultural flair with metropolitan energy with late night offers hosting live music acts of diverse genres. Club owners felt that the local nightlife scene lacked a nocturnal hangout spot styled to fit the sophisticated feel of a big city club scene, with just enough scribbles on the bathroom walls to distinguish itself from a hotel bar.
“In Europe and cities like New York, they have electronic clubs I call European rave clubs. But
we don’t really have one here that’s really going for it,” Graff said.
On brand to New Orleans fashion “a dance club that revels in the culture of the city,” was conceived. “That’s the concept, trying to add New Orleans in it. I’m a brass band enthusiast. That’s the New Orleans dance music, so we try to integrate them to distinguish ourselves from the New York dance scene,” Graff said. Previous lineups have included acts like The Soul Rebels and the Stooges Brass Band.
Venue manager and DJ Nile Ashton said that future nights at The Rabbit Hole will consist of a thematic focus on live band performances, followed by house music DJ sets through the late night.
“The buzz is definitely hot, but I recognize some of the stuff we have done so far is just a test,” Ashton said. He said future nights are planned to feature early-evening artist installations and food pop-ups of “immersive multi-level experiences.”
“There’s a lot of things that come with growing quickly that are good problems to have. Things have been very successful so far, I think they’ll continue to be,” he said.
Powered by a Void acoustics sound system, the owner and manager said they have focused on
the maintenance of a quality sound system. Ashton described the luxury setup as the Lamborghini of sound.
“We don’t need another dive place, or another hotel bar. We need something more real,” Graff