The Case for Expansion
Massey Hall has long played an important role in the development of Canadian artists. For many musicians, performing on Massey’s stage symbolizes the moment they graduate from club star to big-stage luminary. This is the place where dreams come true.
What happens, though, when the lights go out on many of the smaller venues where emerging artists hone their craft? In the first half of 2017 alone, nine Toronto live music venues closed their doors, leaving the local music industry and big concert halls like Massey with fewer places in which to groom tomorrow’s Canadian icons. It’s up to cultural leaders like Massey Hall to fill the gap.
Massey’s Hall’s redevelopment will include a dramatic expansion: the addition of a seven-story tower to the south of the existing building. The Hall’s main stage will become the crown jewel in a three-part network that will include a new stage in Centuries bar and a live-music room capable of accommodating up to 500, along with a cutting-edge performance capture studio for recording live content — all key to making Massey Hall accessible to a wider range of artists, and more frequent and diverse programming.
Additional expansion features
- A glassed-in walkway will be built around the upper levels to connect the original space the new. In addition to helping to preserve the structure of the heritage building, it will increase patron accessibility across the Hall and connect the balcony and gallery levels via the new addition’s elevator bank.
- New artist dressing rooms with screens, upgraded furniture and room for catering services.
- New washrooms, bars and lobbies servicing every floor.
- Upgraded production spaces, including a backstage loading dock to accommodate large stage performances.