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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016


The entrance to the Proekt O.G.I. club, reopened Dec. 24 at a new location, should be marked with a big yellow "Under Construction" triangle. As of now, it's not marked with anything but illegible hieroglyphics fingered in the thick dust coating the black metal door.

But the new venue's makeover should soon be complete and, remont notwithstanding, some parts of this creative combination of club, cafe, gallery, bookstore and literary salon are already up and running. Despite the move from a high-ceilinged, aging apartment to a cozy and far more spacious catacomb in the basement of a 19th century mansion, O.G.I. has retained its laid-back feel, its penchant for (non-pop) culture and its moderate prices.

The new and improved O.G.I. will include the same basic components as its progenitor: The club section opened last month and will operate on the same members-only basis as before; the small exhibition space, with vaulted ceiling and proper lighting, opened Jan. 13 and is awaiting its first art display; a small cafe should be operational by late January with hearty home-cooked main courses (the selection is small, but the portions generous) averaging about $2, and Russian, Czech and Irish brews on tap ($1 for the domestic brands, around $2 for the imports); and, finally, the second-floor bookstore - stocked with many titles, not just those released by O.G.I.'s publishing arm - is set to open Feb. 1 (as soon as the stairs are finished).

Now that the space for performing - and dancing - is much bigger, the club will often feature live bands, the selection of which will tend toward out-of-the-ordinary fare like ethnic and classical music or the occasional big-name highlight like Leonid Fyodorov (of Auktsion, see Calendar) or the Tiger Lilies (tentatively slated for April). But the main draw won't be the tunes; it'll be the mood: a relaxed, "where everybody knows your name" kind of atmosphere, with just the right blend of the democratic and the exclusive.

Club O.G.I. is located at 8/12 Potapovsky Pereulok, Stroeniye 2 (enter through the courtyard). Metro Chistye Prudy. Tel. 927-5609, 927-5776. E-mail: 8 a.m. to 6 a.m. the next morning. Credit cards: none.

- Natalia Yefimova