A while back, I promised to add a new category to this blog about historic clubs that have passed on to Disco Heaven. Naturally, I wanted to start with the glamorously galactic Starship Discovery, however, every time I started researching, more and more cool information would be unleashed and I would lose focus and postpone it for another time. But no longer…
Starship Discovery opened in New York City in 1977, had 3 floors and featured a state of the art sound and lighting system where the guests of the club were taken on a dazzling journey. Entrance was through a 100 foot mirrored wall dubbed the “Time Space Entry Portal” which lead to the check-in window where a computer console decided if their boarding pass was valid and if so- they would head in for fabulous fun times! The dance floor was located on the “A'” deck, and had a moving lighted ceiling with custom made smoke machines that billowed from above to simulate a trippy voyage through the clouds. The DJ booth was fashioned after a spaceship control panel and there was a neon mountain that flowed rolling smoke throughout the night and is featured on the cover photo of the Saturday Night Band’s “Come On, Dance Dance” album. The Starship Zodiac Lounge was on the “B” deck where live disco acts would perform and the “C” deck had a projection theater that showed hours upon hours of sci-fi movies. Sounds like my kind of place!
Cut to Nocturna– one of my distractions. This 1979 movie is part of that small, but cherished genre, the “vampire disco” flick and is one of the best things I’ve ever seen. It’s low budget and the acting and story line aren’t great, but it’s a non-stop sparkling treat! What’s not to love about a movie whose leading lady’s wardrobe is made up of our favorite combo, chiffon and sequins? Her love interest, Jimmy, is straight off a porn set and there is a constant soundtrack of classic disco throughout- some of which has never been released on its own. The pinnacle of all this fabulosity are the scenes shot at Starship Discovery, where we can see in full living color both the exterior and interior of the club. For this alone, Nocturna must be seen.
I wasn’t able to find out exactly how long Starship Discovery was open, but it doesn’t seem very long, possibly a year or two. Still, it made quite an impact on the lives of the people who went there and it’s memory lives on in their hearts- and that’s what makes a club legendary.
“My friend and I met a lot of people there; it was all about having fun! We actually loved it so much; we said we wanted to be buried under the Starship when we died. I was so disappointed when it closed, I never wanted to leave it-but I guess nothing lasts forever.” – Mickey (discomusic.com)