Overseeing the careful restoration and renovation of Massey Hall is Toronto’s KPMB Architects, the award-winning, internationally-recognized firm behind such projects as Koerner Hall at The Royal Conservatory TELUS Centre for Performance and Learning. KPMB Partner Marianne McKenna brings to Massey Hall a special focus on the architecture of concert halls and how design is used to engage community. She is supported in her efforts by Goldsmith Borgal & Company Ltd. Architects, a Toronto-based firm specializing in the restoration, rehabilitation and adaptive reuse of heritage buildings, and renowned acoustician Bob Essert, the founding director of Sound Space Design with more than 30 years’ experience and 100 projects to his credit, including the Canadian Opera Company’s Four Seasons Centre.
Hidden behind plywood for decades, Massey Hall’s stained-glass windows were carefully removed and labelled before being gently cleaned and repaired by the experts at Vitreous Glassworks company. The unique and beautifully restored works of art will be a showpiece of the new Hall when it reopens in 2021.
Key architectural restorations
• Replace the 70-year-old seats on the main floor orchestra and throughout the balcony and add a parterre, a stage-facing seating area around the perimeter of the Hall to accommodate wheelchair seating.
• Install a deployable seating system that can transform the orchestra level into a standing room audience.
• Refurbish the original wood and wrought iron gallery seats with new wood and padded cushions.
• Restore the Hall’s more than 100 original stained-glass windows, covered since the first half-century.
• Return the Art Deco-style lobby to its original glory.
• Complete surface treatments to reinforce the original plaster ceiling, scallops and rafters.
• Clean and restore the exterior brick, stone and metalwork and the Hall’s trademark marquee sign.
The planned acoustic innovations will bring the amplified sound to new levels of excellence, while retaining what the Hall is most known for: its warmth.
Read More: Original Stained Glass Windows Restored