This article is to celebrate us turning 2 years old today…
History of New Motion
After months of planning, recruiting, PR etc. we launched in July 2018 from Fire & Lightbox nightclub which has been our home ever since. The launch was covered by Timeout where founder Henry Weston instructed Box ‘n’ Bass (now Box vs Bass for copyright reasons), Fran Katz taught her concept 4Kardio Dance, Zara Salih and Hannah Pocket shared Vinyasa Flowz and Ali Fitz taught HIIT vs House. The launch was a success with 100 people attending but there was a long bumpy road ahead. Just 1 week later Fran Katz left, shortly followed by Ali Fitz and after an initial spike in sales post launch, numbers dwindled to levels that left Henry questioning the business itself. The shining light that came out of the launch was Resident DJ – Shaun Simms.
Resident DJ – Shaun Simms
Day 1 of launch week. Shaun Simms enters the lightbox a few hours before the launch of our first ever class. Henry Weston had not met Shaun but it didn’t take long for him to get a feel of what Shaun was about. Henry asked Shaun on arrival ‘Shaun, we need the lights like this for boxing. Do you think you can do this?’ Shaun bounced like Tiger from Winnie-the-Pooh (probably after a 3rd Red Bull of the afternoon) to the booth, ‘I got this, this is MY HOUSE.’
Post launch, Shaun was soon DJing for Box vs Bass (his favourite class) and many of the other concepts. Since then he has helped curate our signature mixes, signage and has overall been a big part of the company. What makes it more amazing is that Henry simply asked for someone to help with lighting for launch and this meeting was purely by chance. Funny how these things happen.
New Motion scraped through 2018 averaging 30 people per week at times. January 2019 make or break OR as I like to put it break or don’t break (survive)… Classes sold out, especially Katie’s HIIT vs House (that had to be moved to the new bigger room) that sold out (27 people) with a waitlist 8 weeks in a row! An event with MC Blacka and professional harpist Valeria Kurbatova (playing for their 2nd times at New Motion) was the perfect way to cap off a great start to the year.
Building on this success we hired new instructors and DJs and New Motion for the first time felt like a business. I didn’t realise it at the time, but this round of recruiting was pivotal for our success. We have managed to keep most of this team, which has been crucial for improving the consistency and quality of our services.
We closed off our first successful full year with opening classes at GymBox Victoria and hosting 2 successful events with Timeout and Samsung KX, at Samsung’s new flagship store.
New year, new me and new records! We had our best ever 2 months of operations as we grew our loyal base of regulars and added popular classes like 80’s Aerobics and Box vs Bass circuits. To celebrate our 1000th class we had our biggest event to date with Morning Gloryville.
It seemed like we were unstoppable. However, what could stop us was a pandemic. Or could it? 13 days after being forced to close due to COVID-19 we had 20+ weekly sessions on Instagram Live. To facilitate this we even increased our team to 10 instructors and we were able to deliver morning classes for the first time. We included new classes like Twerking, 90’s Aerobics, 00’s Dance Party and Toilet Roll Dance Pump (don’t ask)…
The future holds some big changes, including offering a mixed service of online and live classes, but even bigger still we are rebranding! Stay tuned to be a part of the new rave generation.
A final thanks to all who have made this journey possible especially team members that have been part of the journey for a considerable amount of time – Shaun Simms, Misha Patel, Natalie Rose, Adam Tench, Gabriel Yoong, Jamie Rylett, Vincent Merouze, Yasmeen Mo and Katie Anderson. Additional thanks goes to the following – Fire & Lightbox, Chris Lumsden, Gixo/Selina Tobaccowala and my family.
Founder, Henry Weston