Massey Corridor Reopens After Three-12 months, $146M Renovation – Billboard

After 40 months and $146 million (CAD $186M) in renovations, Toronto’s legendary Massey Corridor reopened to the general public on Nov. 25 with the primary of three sold-out present by Gordon Lightfoot, a daily on the 127-year-old venue with at the very least 170 appearances below his belt. The Canadian icon performed the final present earlier than renovations started on Canada Day (July 1) in 2018.

Throughout a media tour and signal lighting the day earlier than, building employees and workers have been nonetheless drilling, hammering and sawing away, busily readying the heritage property — the “Carnegie Corridor of Canada” — for the grand opening, one thing president and CEO Jesse Kumagai acknowledged when he took the stage previous to Lightfoot’s present.

“It has been a protracted and difficult journey bringing us to tonight,” he stated. “After we closed our doorways in the summertime of 2018, no one would have predicted what it had in retailer for us. In 2019, we misplaced our president and CEO Deane Cameron, a frontrunner and our buddy. Deane’s ardour and dedication, alongside that of all of the members of our workforce, each previous and current, is what’s made tonight doable…”

Cameron, the pinnacle of EMI Music Canada for near 25 years, championed Massey Corridor’s Revitalization Mission when he joined The Company of Massey Corridor and Roy Thomson Corridor in 2015. He died in 2019 of a coronary heart assault. A recording studio on the seventh ground of the south tower can be named after him. Kumagai was appointed president and CEO in January 2020.

“After which in March of 2020, the world modified,” continued Kumagai. “The pandemic had a big affect on our undertaking, stopping building for an prolonged time period, then making it a lot more difficult after we resumed. It elevated the price, interrupted our fundraising and delayed our completion, all whereas our sister venue, Roy Thomson Corridor, sat darkish…

“So the truth that you’re right here tonight is one thing of a minor miracle. While you go searching you could discover a number of components that aren’t fairly completed. Below the circumstances, we might have postponed our reopening, however the pandemic additionally made us all recognize simply how necessary cultural occasions like this actually are.”

Over its lengthy historical past, Massey Corridor has hosted a staggering array of expertise, together with Rush, Igor Stravinsky, Neil Younger, George Gershwin, Eddie Vedder, U2, Bob Dylan, Luciano Pavarotti, Bob Marley, Creem, Justin Bieber, Van Halen, Bryan Adams, Keith Richards, and The Quintet (Dizzy Gillespie, Charles Mingus, Charlie Parker, and Max Roach), captured on the 1953 album, Jazz At Massey Corridor. Rush additionally recorded its first stay album there, 1976’s All The World’s A Stage.

Upon strolling by way of the well-known pink doorways, it’s evident the integrity and look of “The Grand Outdated Woman of Shuter Road” stays. The renovation was handled with the utmost respect. The lead architect is Marianne McKenna, principal at KPMB Architects; building is by Ellis Don; the acoustician is Bob Essert from Sound House Imaginative and prescient; and sound designer Martin Van Dijk from Engineering Harmonics.

On the media tour, Grant Troop, vp of operations, and the chief lead on the undertaking for over six years, identified the architectural, acoustic, and beauty modifications.

Massey Corridor with out concertgoers.
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Ten years within the making, the primary part of the Revitalization Mission formally started seven years in the past, initially made doable due to the 2012 switch of 4,804 sq. toes of land to the south of Massey Corridor by Toronto’s MOD Developments and Tricon Capital Group Inc. The basement of the brand new constructing was dug out, adopted a 12 months later by the acquisition of improved sound and lighting system (beforehand it was rented).

Among the many most seen modifications: model new roomier pink seats; a reconfigured fundamental ground; washrooms on each stage (they was solely within the basement); passerelles/ramps on both facet of the constructing to enhance patron security and accessibility; and the gorgeous restoration of the unique stained glass dated to 1894 that had been boarded up; and the portray and restoration of the ceiling arches that had been sure by hen wire to stop cracked plaster from falling. The unique brass railings and 1933 terrazzo ground additionally stay.

“The largest modifications in seating right here relate to the creation of this wrap-around seating construction known as the parterre,” stated Troops, of changing the outer seats on the principle ground with a curved elevated space “mimicking the seating fashion on the balcony and gallery.” The brand new seats within the middle space will also be saved below the stage in an effort to create a standing normal admission pit.

Massey Corridor’s capability is now 2550 absolutely seated to over 2800 normal admission.

Fundraising remains to be ongoing and completion is predicted subsequent summer season on most of the additions. Your complete complicated is called the Allied Music Centre and can supply 4 venues (Massey Corridor, and the yet-to-be-named Basement Bar, The Membership, The Theatre) for artists, educators, and group teams, and expanded programming to incorporate artist growth and scholar actions.

Allied Music Centre’s largest donors are each private and non-private: Allied Properties, the Authorities of Canada; the Province of Ontario; the Metropolis of Toronto; The Slaight Household Basis; Cornerstone Supporters MOD Developments, Tricon Residential Inc., and Weston Household Basis. In Massey Corridor, indicators now learn The Weston Household Lobby, and the Allan Slaight Auditorium & Stage due to their sizeable assist.

Massey Corridor can be absolutely configured for sound and video seize from the south tower.

“The concept isn’t solely will we be capable to have nice occasions on this room, we’ll be capable to seize them; we’ll be capable to broadcast them; we’ll be capable to do recordings for artists, each up and coming and artists which are effectively into their careers,” stated Troop. “The concept is to show this entire constructing, The Allied Music Centre, into extra of a music hub.”

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