Have you ever pulled at the club through the power of outrageous dance moves? Or had a smooch in the loos after six too many tequila shots? Love often seems to find you when you least expect it. An impulsive dancefloor hook-up at four in the morning to the sound of Fatboy Slim never normally amounts to much more; but for some, it leads to marriage and two kids just a bit further down the line. These stories are heart-warming, so we went on the hunt to find the ravers who’ve made it to relationship status from a dancefloor fling.
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We tracked down seven couples who first locked eyes under the strobe lights and sweaty ceilings of the dancefloor, with their first kiss soundtracked by their now-favourite DJ - finding out that love doesn’t just come from the sticky floors and dark lighting of the nightclub, but also sometimes the curb where punters drink their last tinnies outside too. Romance in the noughties heyday of Ibiza, or even under the torrential rain of Outlook Festival’s 3,000-year-old colosseum makes for perfect love stories fuelled by the bond of music.
LOZ, 47 & SARA, 38 - NORWICH:
Loz: “I was an old skool raver in 2007, I loved house and everything in between. I ended up heading to Ibiza for my first summer season. Towards the end of the season, I was at Circoloco on a Monday, chatting to a bunch of English couples. One girl asked me why I wasn’t with anyone and to be honest, I was quite happy on my own. After that, I ended up in the Caribbean for the winter, but I had this gut feeling that I had to go back to Ibiza. I turned up the first night and found Sara, we went to DC10 where Luciano was playing and had our first kiss on the dancefloor. By the end of the summer, we went back to Italy where Sara is from, travelled around a bit, and came back to the UK and had a child. Ibiza is still on the list, we haven’t been back since we met.”
DAVE, 30 & CLAIRE, 29 - LONDON:
Dave: “Sasha was playing an all-night session at fabric in 2018, and I was on the Room One dancefloor. She came over to me because apparently I smiled at her, and we got chatting. We had a little smooch and spent the whole rest of the night following each other around the club.”
Claire: “I was there with friends who weren’t really keen on the music and weren’t enjoying it, and it was killing my vibe a little bit. As I was chatting to them, I looked around and my eyes met Dave’s. He sort of beckoned me over…”
Dave: “Did I?!”
Claire: “You did! We realised we’d been to quite a few of the same nights but had never met before. When we got talking, we knew we were into the same music. All the veterans were there that night.”
Dave: “We went on a rave date after that, and still plan our weekends around what nights we’re going to go to together now.”
Claire: “We even have a dog together!”
GRAHAM, 41 & AMANDA, 43 - GLASGOW:
Graham: “My wife and I met on the dancefloor of the Glasgow institution, The Tunnel, in 2002. Not only did we share a love of the clubbing scene in Glasgow, but also in Ibiza, realising that we’d both been there at similar times across 1999, 2000 and 2001 before we met. We booked our first Ibiza trip together in 2003, and got engaged on the beach at Playa d’en Bossa after an all-day Sunday session in Space!"
Amanda: “We bought a t-shirt from that night with what was meant to be our taxi fare home. I think I still have it somewhere…”
Graham: “We opted for a two-week honeymoon in Ibiza, albeit in a bit more luxury than we were previously used to, and managed to get to all of our favourite parties again. We continued to go to Ibiza regularly and are hopefully due another trip soon. Although, now that we have an eight-year-old daughter, we need to plan a bit more in advance! We’ve not quite retired from clubbing either, although we have scaled it back significantly from those early days!”
TARA, 26 & HENRY, 26 - LONDON:
Tara: “We knew of each other before heading to Outlook Festival in 2017, but had never met. The weekend before I went out, I broke up with my boyfriend and was having a bit of a shit time with everything. The first night at Outlook I went to the opening ceremony and Henry was there - we went in separate groups but met in the amphitheatre on the first night. There was torrential rain and everyone got evacuated, we were completely soaked and had to get on little buses home, it was quite romantic! We were absolutely inseparable the whole week, much to the annoyance of all of our friends. Henry told me a few months after that our first kiss was to Alicia by Mala.
“We still go partying a lot now, Henry’s interests and taste in music is one of the reasons I was so into him. We both really connect over it, so we definitely have that in common. Even talking back to when we were 13 or 14, there were so many bands and artists I didn’t think anyone else in the world would know, but Henry seemed to. It’s going to be our four year anniversary next week!”
JACK, 23 & ANTONIA, 22 - EDINBURGH:
Jack: “Antonia is from Belfast and started studying in Edinburgh a few years ago. She’d only been in the country for a few weeks when we met in a club called Cabaret Voltaire. It was a Thursday at like 5 in the morning, and she was with her pal who was a bit of a ladies man. When she was alone without him, we started chatting even though there was a bit of a language barrier, and the rest is history! We went out every weekend for about six months after that, partying like fuck. We’re both well into our house and techno, and if it wasn’t for music and club culture, Antonia and I would never have met. We live together now and have a wee dog.”
CHLOE, 29 & ANDREW, 28 - BELFAST:
Andrew: “It was about five years ago at AVA Festival, I wasn’t very schooled in the Belfast scene and didn’t know much about electronic music. I was drinking outside the club just around the corner, and Chloe came over and we ended up chatting.”
Chloe: “We still don’t know the day we officially got into a relationship, so we just go by the day we met at AVA Festival. Belfast has a pretty small scene in general so when you see someone, you can’t really get rid of them.”
Andrew: “I pretty much moved in straight away! When we met, I was just being introduced to dance music and was listening to a lot of melodic techno. Chloe was into garage and grime, and if it wasn’t for her, I probably wouldn’t be running my own night now. It’s all UK garage and grime and jungle, which I would never have gotten into so heavily if it wasn’t for her.”
Chloe: “I do the door sometimes too!”
Andrew: “We’re really into the same music and the same nights now, so we’re constantly going out. I’m just looking forward to whenever clubs reopen because they’re still shut here currently."”
JAMES, 22, RACH, 22 - MANCHESTER:
James: “My girlfriend and I met at Dekmantel Festival in Amsterdam. It just so happened to be the last hour, of the last set, on the last day, and I remember walking into the crowd for this final set. It was like a scene out of a movie, I glanced to my left and something caught my eye, I had a direct view of this girl. She distracted me from the entire set to the point where I was like, fuck it, I’m going to have to try and find her.
“I had no idea if she was British or even lived near England, and I thought she might have come with a lad. It turned out she was from Manchester, so we got chatting, and have been together for two years since. This weekend, we’re heading to our first festival since we met in 2019. Two whole years without dancing together, can you believe it!”
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Gemma Ross is Mixmag's Digital Intern, follow her on Twitter