The Espy is about to go some major renovations. Not having spoken to anybody yet I don't know the story.
The Espy is rightly an institution. But all institutions have a use by date. The Espy and the Prince raised generations of musicians. But you cannot stand still. People want a great place to go out to. Sticky carpet is no longer the way to go.
Venues more than ever need to be a destination where you can get a meal, have a drink, see a performance (music, comedy, a TV show). So fixing up the Espy is needed. Will it come back the same. Probably no. The current owners have had the venue a long time and have added food offers over time. Does music still bring the punters in?
So we await with bated breath for the return of the Espy. And if it doesn't come back with the focus on live music, then that tells us that people are not as tuned in to music as we once were. Also the demographic has changed in the area and music is not a focus of life.
Music is one of the things that makes Melbourne great. Lets hope one of the great institutions returns, renewed and with greater purpose.