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Press release for immediate distribution

Astral Media and the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal unveil L’Astral, the new live showroom in the Maison du Festival Rio Tinto Alcan

Montreal, Monday, May 4, 2009 - The Festival International de Jazz de Montréal is happy to announce its association with Astral Media, proud sponsor of the brand-new live showroom. L’Astral. Thanks to the support of Astral Media, this intimate cabaret-style venue will present the finest in live concerts all year around. We will unveil L’Astral this June 29 with a concert starring legendary Montreal pianist Oliver Jones, featuring special guest Ranee Lee; the concert will also be offered to the public on June 30 as part of the opening of the 30th edition of the Festival.

With 350 seating capacity in the cabaret format and 600 capacity standing, a configuration offering intimacy and optimum sight lines, a design based on plans by principal architect Éric Gauthier, a painstaking acoustic design courtesy of Guy Desmarteaux of Go Multimédia, and an ideal location (corner of Ste. Catherine Street and the new Place des Festivals), L’Astral is guaranteed to be a major destination spot in the Quartier des spectacles. Along with offering state-of-the-art stage technology to artists from around the world, the venue should quickly become a favourite thanks to its user-friendly live TV webcasting facilities and configuration.

L’Astral could have never seen the light of day without the support of our governments and our precious partnership with Astral Media, one of the largest media firms in Canada. Thanks to its vast network in the specialized and pay television sectors, in radio, outdoor signage and interactive media, Astral Media will also contribute to promoting L’Astral and the artist who perform there.

Alain Simard, president and founder of the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal and conceptualist behind the venue, is overjoyed by this renewed association between the two partners. “There’s a twenty-year history of friendly collaboration between the Festival and Astral Media! I am therefore even happier to salute the participation of a first-rate partner in this project which we’ve held close to our hearts for so long, and which is certain to contribute to the cultural and tourism development of Montreal!”

Alain Bergeron, Astral Media vice-president for brand management and corporate communications, declared that it was an honour to be associated with the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal in such a significant project: “It’s our very great pleasure to participate in this musical adventure, which is sure to delight the hometown and visiting public. We’ve always deeply believed in enhancing Montreal’s profile and we’re convinced that this project will greatly contribute to it. Moreover, L’Astral will have the privilege of welcoming a large number of artists from the music world, which is why we are so proud to be able to offer them a permanent venue to express the full measure of their talents!”

About Astral Media

Astral Media, one of the largest media firms in Canada, pursues its activities in the specialized and pay television sectors, in radio, outdoor signage and interactive media. Its solid and dynamic presence in the country’s major markets is based on its willingness to offer a unique combination of high-quality media adapted to its target audiences. For more information on Astral Media, please visit: www.astralmedia.com

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