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Press release for immediate distribution

Construction work begins on the Maison du Festival de Jazz!

Montreal, Tuesday, November 11, 2008 - Today marks the beginning of construction work on the eagerly-awaited Maison du Festival de Jazz! Announced last February, the project will have pride of place in the entirely new Place des festivals, in the heart of the Quartier des spectacles, and give new life to the Blumenthal Building, a property with exceptional heritage value chosen to house this veritable temple of jazz, blues and world music. Organizers of the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal are thrilled to witness the realization of a dream: a live music showroom that will also be one of the cornerstones of a sector entirely re-conceived to emphasize the city and its cultural importance. With this in mind, the entirely renovated building can also serve other events and festivals in the Quartier des spectacles, offering them the use of its logistical facilities on the upper floors. The new cultural complex is sure to quickly become one of the city’s most popular and high-profile cultural and tourist attractions

One storey per month!

Repair work on the seven-storey building, with a total surface area of 75,200 ft², officially began this morning at 305-307 Ste. Catherine St. West, between De Bleury St. and Jeanne-Mance St., in accordance with plans by principal architect Éric Gauthier of the FABG/Daoust Lestage consortium. The former Blumenthal Building, ceded by the Government of Québec to the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, a non-profit organization, through a 30-year emphyteutic lease, will be entirely transformed to open in June 2009-just in time for the 30th anniversary of the Festival!-as the all-new Maison du Festival de Jazz.

Let us recall that, as announced several months ago by Ministers Christine St-Pierre, Monique Jérôme-Forget and Raymond Bachand, the Ministre de la Culture, des Communications et de la Condition féminine will contribute more than $10 million of the $15 million budget. The Festival offers them its warmest thanks.

One mission: to promote jazz, blues and world music

The Maison du Festival de Jazz will at once serve as a permanent showcase for our jazz, blues and world music artists, a resource for the conservation and protection of the Festival’s musical heritage, a headquarters for the promotion of jazz and musicianship at the international level, and a centre for the celebration of the music. Thanks to the Maison du Festival-a project Festival organizers have been working on for ten years-jazz diehards and casual fans can see and hear jazz all year around, and artists and their music will enjoy a higher profile. Montreal will benefit from the positive spinoffs and tourist potential of the site, reinforcing its image as a cultural metropolis and enjoying the drawing power of the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal all year long.

The inauguration of the live showroom with Oliver Jones

Don’t forget that internationally-renowned Montreal jazz legend Oliver Jones will inaugurate the Maison’s new live showroom-a 350-capacity cabaret-style venue-with its first concert, on June 30, during the 30th edition of the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal.

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