The Haçienda Twenty-Four Hour House Party NYE – A Very Special Tribute To Frankie Knuckles

The Haçienda Twenty-Four Hour House Party NYE – A Very Special Tribute To Frankie Knuckles

December 29, 2020 Off By Editor


In Association with Frankie Knuckles Foundation, A Unique Tribute To Frankie Knuckles Transmitted From The ‘Virtual Haçienda.’ As “The Godfather Of House Music’s” Manchester NYE 2013/14 Set Comes From The Digital Recreation Of FAC51.

Developed Over The Past Five Years, The Virtual Haçienda Project Brings Together Original Architect Ben Kelly,

Creative Directors Brendan Mannion and Justin Metz, Peter Hook & FAC51 To Produce An Authentic Facsimile Of The Original Club


Advance Preview Clip: Facebook –

Twitter –

Youtube –



  • The Haçienda’s Biggest Ever Live Stream On New Year’s Eve / New Year’s Day In Partnership With United We Stream GM, Also Features

An All New Haçienda Classical With Manchester Camerata, Live Sets from Inner City, Phuture & An Outstanding Selection Of UK & US DJ’s.


  • The 24-Hour Party Takes Us Through New Year’s Eve All Around The World, Raising Funds For the Mayor of Greater Manchester’s oneGM campaign

& Charities Chosen By The Haçienda-Save The Children, Frankie Knuckles Foundation & PeaceMeal Manchester.


As part of FAC 51 The Haçienda 24 Hour House Party NYE, a special tribute to the legendary “Godfather Of House” Frankie Knuckles in collaboration with The Frankie Knuckles Foundation, will be broadcast at United We Stream GM ( which sees Frankie play his Hacienda New Year’s Eve 2013/2014 set from within the newly recreated Virtual Haçienda, a faithfully and painstakingly accurate digital version of the original Whitworth Street West FAC51.


A preview clip of Frankie at The Virtual Haçienda can be viewed here: Facebook –

Twitter –

Youtube –


Rumoured for quite some time now, The Virtual Haçienda project has been put together by the club’s architect Ben Kelly, Creative Directors Brendan Mannion and Justin Metz as well as Peter Hook and The Hacienda to create a precise digital replica of The Hacienda which conforms entirely to Ben’s original designs and architectural plans.


With virtual technology having advanced alongside the project’s development, The Haçienda VR project has continually been updated to accommodate these and has now been readied with its first major showcase coming with an exclusive Frankie Knuckles tribute, premiering on New Year’s Eve.

The actual Frankie Knuckles set was recorded live at The Haçienda’s 2013 / 2014 Albert Hall Manchester New Year’s Eve event, sadly Frankie’s last ever appearance in Manchester.  It was a classic Frankie set: taking in modern tracks, the finest disco as well as his own productions and will be played in full at The Haçienda 24 Hour House Party New Year’s Eve on United We Stream GM.

Ben Kelly tells of how “The Virtual Haçienda” came about here;


Justin and Brendan first approached me some five years ago saying that they wanted to digitally rebuild a virtual Haçienda that could become a fly through or an online accessible digital version of the club, that was their idea. And of course, I have all the original material needed for that and gave them access to the original drawings and all of the specifications. Brendan and Justin are very smart at what they do, not only impressive technically but also very, very diligent and determined to be as accurate as is humanly possible with a digital recreation.”

They were so determined to produce something that met with my approval so the development was very much a shared process over a long period of time. They had the model and its basic shape and then started to investigate all the technology which would be needed to create what we were looking to do.


They developed the model and refined it and refined it and did more research into every nook and cranny of The Haçienda. Running in parallel was the development of the technology. In some respects, it has taken a number of years and that’s not been a bad thing because the technology required has really developed. It’s almost like the two things ran alongside each other. The technology is now getting there. The whole concept of having avatars, how you can access the place and move around it, the whole shooting match has changed.”

Brendan Mannion picks up the story;

“I’d been fortunate enough to be working with cutting edge gaming technology for several years, using it not to create games, but to create CGI content for other industries, including automotive and architecture. At the time, VR was beginning to make headlines and it was an area that I was exploring for different projects. I stumbled across an old mix from the Haçienda and when I listened, I was kind of transported back in time. I spent a lot of time in the Haçienda and I thought how amazing it would be to experience it again. It was a lightbulb moment – I could see the possibilities of using VR to create a virtual Haçienda.


“I hooked up with Justin Metz who had previously built a simplified digital version of The Haçienda. We used his model for the initial prototype and then together we worked alongside Ben Kelly, with input from Peter Hook and The Haçienda. We then rebuilt the whole club from the ground up, using Ben Kelly’s original drawings. Justin focused on the digital creative reconstruction and I focused on the technical creative integration. It’s basically using computer game technology to simulate an immersive recreation of the iconic nightclub. It’s been a long process…”


Justin Metz recalls….

“The thing is I had built a simple 3D model of The Haçienda for a project which didn’t happen some years ago. It featured a quick fly-through which I posted to YouTube where it lay dormant although it picked up a bit of attention. Then, one day I got a message from Brendan who had an idea to take the club into the virtual world. From then on we have worked together, using up all of our spare time and our families’ patience to bring it up to where it is today.”


On seeing The Haçienda digitally recreated some forty years after he would have begun work on the project, Ben observed.

For me to see The Haçienda digitally rebuilt in the manner that they have achieved is a strange experience. It sort of takes it into another dimension but it is the accuracy that keeps it grounded. I know that Rob and Tony would be very happy to know there was a digital version of The Haçienda and if it would make Rob and Tony happy then it makes me happy.”

Reflecting on the influence of his design for the original club Ben concluded;

What my design did was to create a three-dimensional version of the Factory ethos. It took Factory into a physical environment and I was the lucky person who got the job to do that because of my relationship with Peter Saville, that was an important bridge into the project. It was handed to me and I had free rein with it. One of the amazing things is that when I was asked to do that job in the first place, Factory had never commissioned the design of a nightclub before and I had never designed a nightclub before. I think that was one of the strengths behind the project because nobody carried any baggage. We came fresh to the project and that naivety is very much part of the strength of what came out of it. There was no remit for this, that and the other. I knew that New Order had been to New York and wanted a club but that was it really. It was a unique situation.”


When the club was open, years later, one of the greatest compliments I had from that group of clients, Factory and New Order, was that they regarded the design as timeless. I think that was Tony’s thing, it didn’t pander to fashion or whatever trend was current. I saw it almost like a sculptural installation. Like a big art piece which I was painting. It democratised what those environments were about. It was flexible and all embracing. There was nothing prescribed about it. It stood the test of time as well because there was never any need to change it. The changes were all about improving the sound and lighting which came with the development of+ technology. The club was open for fifteen years, from 1982 to 1997 and they never had to change the design of the place.”

About FAC51, Brendan Mannion commented:


I think The Haçienda means lots of things to lots of different people. There’s its iconic timeless design, its connection with Factory and all the incredible bands and electronic music, all the gigs and special nights. It’s a place with an incredibly rich and diverse history and it still feels as if it was cutting edge, even today. Being on the dance floor was like no other place in the world. It’s amazing to recreate it and to share it, with all those people who were there and now with those who weren’t.”


Meanwhile Justin Metz finished up with this:


“The Haçienda has clearly it has always been more than a nightclub. It was born of the philosophies which guided Factory and when viewed in that wider context it’s not hard to understand how its legacy is still so strong today. Factory wasn’t a record label, it was a movement and The Haçienda, as Tony Wilson put it, was its cathedral. Its design had to be unlike anything seen before, and so it was. I consider it great art and great art transcends everything.”


Reflecting on The Virtual Haçienda, Peter Hook said: “The digital reconstruction is a work of art in its own right. We have sweated blood to get every single detail right in it and to see the club recreated this way will bring back great memories for those that went to the original club and also provide a glimpse of The Haçienda to those who weren’t ever able to come.”


From Frankie Knuckles Foundation, Frederick Dunson rounded up:


FKF is so very thrilled to be a part of this exciting event.  It’s a great way to end this unprecedented and tumultuous year and a fabulous way to bring in the new year…hopefully one with hope, healing and promise!  Seeing him again made me reminisce of the numerous New Years’ celebrations we spent together and brought in across the world…it felt like we were in the booth together again (smile).


“We’d like to thank The Haçienda for the idea as well as thinking of us to participate.  Also, a huge thank you to everyone who is making this possible and of course all of incredible DJ’s who are donating their time and talent this couldn’t happen without them.  Love to all!”


About The Haçienda 24 Hour House Party NYE


FAC 51 The Haçienda is throwing another Haçienda House Party with award winning digital platform United We Stream Greater Manchester, this time for twenty-four hours straight – as it chases New Year’s Eve around the world.  Beginning at the start of the day on the Pacific Date Line in Fiji at 10AM GMT, the event carries on throughout with a stunning line up of live guests and DJ’s to see in 2021 in style.


With the two previous FAC51 The Haçienda and United We Stream GM online parties amassing a global audience of millions and providing some enjoyment in what has proved a such a difficult year, this twenty four hour New Year’s party offers some of the finest international DJ’s, a gallery of Haçienda regulars and some very special one off live performances, all broadcast via United We Stream GM to raise funding for specific good causes.


Returning for a bespoke one-off live performance is Haçienda Classical with Manchester Camerata and AMC Choir as the wildly popular live event performs another virtual show, produced exclusively for New Year’s Eve by DJ Graeme Park and musical director Tim Crooks alongside the Camerata orchestra, musicians, our vocalists including Yvonne Shelton, Melanie Williams, Rae Hall and some surprise special guests.


Also performing live at The House Party will be Inner City, whose catalogue of classics including “Big Fun” and ”Good Life” have soundtracked The Haçienda for over thirty years now and acid house pioneers Phuture come in live from Detroit with their seminal waxings of “Acid Trax”.


A very special tribute to Frankie Knuckles is planned as in conjunction with The Frankie Knuckles Foundation as we replay Frankie’s 2013/2014 NYE Albert Hall Manchester set, performed within the virtual Haçienda.


The DJ roster for New Year’s Eve is one of The Haçienda’s strongest ever and owes much to our many friends from across the Atlantic. We are honoured by their support from the United States.  From the New York scene, Danny Tenaglia, David Morales, Todd Terry and Tony Humphries. From Detroit, Carl Craig and live from Los Angeles, Moby, with all playing one off, exclusive sets for The Haçienda.


Meanwhile, over in UK, dance music royalty Norman Jay MBE lends his “Good Times” to the event, Soul Central take to the decks and a whole host of Haçienda regulars spanning the entire history of the club return to FAC51 including Graeme Park, Greg Wilson, Jon Dasilva, DJ Paulette, Justin Robertson, Sub Sub, Tom Wainwright, K-Klass, DJ Woody, Peter Hook and the club’s first ever resident Hewan Clarke.


All of the performers involved are giving their time and talents gratis to the event to encourage donations to the charities involved which can be made via


The Haçienda Twenty-Four Hour House Party NYE is being broadcast by United We Stream Greater Manchester from 10AM onwards to raise vital funds for the recently launched Greater Manchester fund, oneGM and charities chosen by The Haçienda.


United We Stream GM is free to watch but viewers can donate via the website, with all income from the stream going directly to a relief fund with 50% of funds raised donated to oneGM and 50% to charities chosen by The Haçienda which are Save The Children, The Frankie Knuckles Foundation and Peacemeal Manchester.


The oneGM campaign was launched by the Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham to raise funds to get local support to the people hardest hit by the economic impact of COVID-19 in Greater Manchester.

From food poverty, to supporting those experiencing or at risk of homelessness, to providing mental health support; oneGM will deliver funding to organisations working hard to minimise the impact of this global crisis right within all local neighbourhoods.


During the first UK lockdown from the Coronavirus crisis, United We Stream GM reached 14.5 million people and the acclaimed project ran for 12 weeks, amassing donations of nearly half a million pounds for 12 different good causes and local charities, with some 40 fundraising events broadcast live on the platform.

#HaciendaNYE UnitedWeStreamGM #oneGM #ThinkAboutTheFuture

People around the world will be able to watch #HaçiendaNYE exclusively via the website’s event page,, and their official Facebook, Twitter, Twitch and You Tube accounts.


The Haçienda Twenty-Four Hour House Party NYE – LINE UP



Haçienda Classical W/ Manchester Camerata

Inner City / Phuture



Carl Craig, Danny Tenaglia, David Morales, DJ Paulette,

DJ Woody, Graeme Park, Greg Wilson, Hewan Clarke,

Jon Dasilva, Justin Robertson, K-Klass, Moby, Norman Jay MBE,

Peter Hook, Soul Central, Sub Sub, Todd Terry, Tom Wainwright & Tony Humphries


A Tribute to Frankie Knuckles – NYE 2013 Albert Hall Manchester Set

A special set performed within the Virtual Haçienda

In association with The Frankie Knuckles Foundation.


Broadcast 10AM GMT 31st Dec 2020 to 10AM GMT 1st Jan 2020

Via United We Stream GM –


#oneGM donation page:

FAC51 The Haçienda media contact :

United We Stream GM media contact: