23 Things I Learned At A Sober Rave

The early bird catches the rave.

1. There is a monthly sober rave called ‘Morning Glory’. It is held in this space in East London, past a Post Office Depot.

Ailbhe Malone/ BuzzFeed

Ailbhe Malone/ BuzzFeed

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2. The event is 100 per cent sober.

Ailbhe Malone / Via BuzzFeed

Tickets cost £15, and the event runs from 6.30am - 10.30am. The idea is that you drop in for an hour, but could end up staying for the whole thing.

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3. This glittery tramp tended to the door.

Ailbhe Malone/ BuzzFeed

Ailbhe Malone/ BuzzFeed

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4. There are Post-Its with instructions all around the venue.

Ailbhe Malone/ BuzzFeed

Ailbhe Malone/ BuzzFeed

Ailbhe Malone/ BuzzFeed


The one in the middle says ‘stretch and smile and take your time’. The one on the right says ‘beautiful stretching all morning long’.

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5. There is a smoothie bar, and a coffee cart.

Ailbhe Malone / Via BuzzFeed
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6. There are also various supplies to help you enjoy the rave.

Ailbhe Malone/ BuzzFeed

Ailbhe Malone/ BuzzFeed


Like bubbles. And incense. And some posh wet wipes.

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7. It takes a while to get going.

At 6.45 AM, the room is half people Instagramming on their phones, half people having a bop.

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8. Initially, the vibe is more like a school fair than a rave.

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9. Whatta selfie.

Ailbhe Malone / Via BuzzFeed
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10. There are options apart from dancing.

Ailbhe Malone/ BuzzFeed

Ailbhe Malone/ BuzzFeed


Like hula hooping, or this very slow Yoga thing (which might be Tai Chi).

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11. There is a surprisingly varied mix of people.

Ailbhe Malone / Via BuzzFeed

There are students, and also city workers, and families - as well as groups of friends up early to have a dance workout. (Sidebar: Look at this man’s tail on the left.)

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12. Lucy is an energy healer.

She’s also an installation artist who is channeling the energy in the room into a painting. You can catching a glimpse of the work in this Vine. It looks a bit like a painting of the room.

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13. Tegan is doing body work.

Ailbhe Malone / Via BuzzFeed

She’s a yoga teacher normally. “This is my third time here”, she explains. “The first time I just came to the rave and the last two I’ve been doing body work. They found people were very stiff in the afternoon after dancing in the morning, and this helps.”

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14. A Japanese TV crew turned up.

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15. The MC wears his pyjamas.

Ailbhe Malone / Via BuzzFeed

This is DJ Bobby Lost. His real name is Rob. He is the MC and he is fond of rave-themed mottos. Like “‘The early bird catches the rave”.

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16. There are lots of children.

Ailbhe Malone/ BuzzFeed


At around 7.00 AM, there is a large influx of young families - from babies in buggies to this toddler who stuck close to his dad.

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17. There is an awful lot of hugging.

And also incentives to hug, like this one. “Turn around and hug a stranger and say thank you for being here”.

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18. Everyone is incredibly friendly.

Ailbhe Malone / Via BuzzFeed

These two sisters were on flying form. Ava is 8 and on half term. She’s come down from Sheffield especially with her mum. Her sister Alice (in the head-dress) seems to know everybody. They are having a brilliant time.

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19. And enthusiastic.

BuzzFeed/ Ailbhe Malone

BuzzFeed/ Ailbhe Malone


“If it’s your first time here”, the MC shouts, “feel free to get up on stage. It’s really liberating”.

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20. I am so much more awkward than I thought I was.

BuzzFeed/ Ailbhe Malone

BuzzFeed/ Ailbhe Malone


The MC bellows, “the stage is yours to enjoy so please get up and express yourselves”. I realise that I do not want to express myself in that way.

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21. But not too awkward for Groove Armada.

The DJ played “Superstylin” and I shuffle happily, quite sweaty by this stage.

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22. By the time that I leave at 8.00 AM there is a queue out of the door.

Ailbhe Malone/ BuzzFeed

Ailbhe Malone/ BuzzFeed

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23. And there is something quite nice about seeing London with wide-awake eyes first thing in the morning.

Ailbhe Malone/ BuzzFeed

Ailbhe Malone/ BuzzFeed

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Ailbhe Malone is the UK lifestyle editor for BuzzFeed and is based in London.
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