Université de Montréal presents Alain Simard and André Ménard with an honorary doctorate

Montréal, Wednesday, November 1, 2017The entire team at L’Équipe Spectra offers the sincerest congratulations to its founders, Alain Simard and André Ménard as they receive honorary doctorates from the Université de Montréal Faculty of Music. The convocation ceremony was held in the Ernest-Cormier amphitheatre (Room K-500) in the pavilion Roger-Gaudry, located at 2900 Édouard-Montpetit Boulevard. Alain Simard and André Ménard, were honoured for their influence and the dominant role they have played in the cultural life of our country for four decades. The honorary doctorate is awarded to nationally or internationally renowned figures in recognition of their exceptional contribution to a particular genre in the fields of science, the arts, culture or politics.

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Credit: Speq photo

About Alain Simard

Recognized above all as the founder of the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, Les FrancoFolies and MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE, Alain has spent almost 50 years working as a tireless builder of our music industry. Since the first underground festivals at La Clef, then with promoters Kosmos, presenting Pink Floyd and Genesis at Université de Montréal in 1971, he has made an unceasing contribution to the cultural development and rise of Québec, its creators and musicians. A passionate and driven man, his work as an artists’ agent and manager, producing shows, albums and television programs, creating festivals, launching venues and special events, has significantly helped professionalize our cultural industries and generated extraordinary spinoffs and benefits in the artistic, social, tourism and economic sectors of Montreal.

About André Ménard

André Ménard numbers among the most influential figures in the Quebec artistic community, having greatly contributed to the cultural life of Montreal. Working in the domain of live show and concert production since 1975, he founded L’Équipe Spectra with Alain Simard almost 40 years ago, and remains vice-president of the company. He is also the cofounder of the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal. He has also been a member of the board of the Quartier des spectacles Partnership since its inception in 2003. Ménard was also responsible for the original idea behind the “Quartier des théâtres”, an idea first taken up and illustrated during a speech by Alain Simard at the Board of Trade in the late ’90s. Driven by his insatiable cultural curiosity, André Ménard travels to more than 300 artistic events every year throughout the world.

About L’Équipe Spectra

Since its founding in 1977 by Alain Simard, André Ménard and Denyse McCann, L’Équipe Spectra has contributed to developing and raising the profile of the Montreal cultural scene at both the national and international level, with an array of major productions and events including: major popular events such as the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, the FrancoFolies de Montréal and MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE, that celebrate music, the arts and gastronomy; a rich variety of high-quality stage productions, conceived and developed for touring purposes; Spectra Musique, a dynamic artists’ agency and a bold record label featuring both emerging stars and big names on the local and international scenes; the Maison du Festival, a one-of-a-kind cultural complex housing a live showroom, restaurant, and a jazz resource centre, all right in the heart of the Quartier des spectacles; three renowned concert halls; a complete service for organizing corporate events and cultural sponsorship.

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The MTELUS opens its doors

A new chapter begins in the great history of a legendary concert venue

Montreal, Tuesday, September 12, 2017 — After a year of eager anticipation, L’Équipe Spectra and TELUS are pleased to announce that the MTELUS is opening today. Montreal’s legendary concert hall will continue its mission of hosting world-class shows. Audiences, artists, technicians and employees alike can now enjoy an amped-up experience in a space that was redesigned and modernized without a single show being cancelled while work was underway. To celebrate the official opening, a free concert is being held tonight featuring Radio Radio, A Tribe Called Red, Marieme and Di Astronauts with Sabrina Sabotage and K.O.K.A DJ Set (Karim Ouellet and King Abid).

The ten-year partnership between L’Équipe Spectra and TELUS is the result of a shared passion for culture and technology. The two companies are bringing their respective expertise to this ambitious project. “We are absolutely thrilled with this partnership with TELUS and the results of this major undertaking. Together, we built a relationship of close cooperation and now that it’s a reality, we are extremely proud of this incredible space, which will delight many future audiences and promises to deliver great moments of musical enjoyment,” remarks Jacques-André Dupont, President and CEO of L’Équipe Spectra. “It is a source of great pride for us to able to provide the public with a venue of this calibre. Thanks to a major investment from TELUS, we managed to preserve the spirit of this iconic venue in the Quartier des spectacles, which will improve the audience’s experience and enjoyment.”

The opening of the MTELUS is the culmination of a partnership that will leave Montreal a cultural legacy on the occasion of its 375th anniversary. “This landmark investment is tangible evidence of TELUS’ commitment to Montreal,” affirms François Gratton, Executive Vice-President, TELUS and Partner Solutions, and President, Business Solutions East and TELUS Québec. “By partnering with L’Équipe Spectra, TELUS, and the 3,200 members of its team in Montreal, are confirming their continued support for arts and culture. It was a natural fit for TELUS to harness its technology skills and expertise to benefit the venue, which will give audience members a brand-new experience. It is a privilege to play a part in shaping the history of this cultural hub in Montreal.”

Honouring a rich history

L’Équipe Spectra and TELUS made it a top priority to honour this space and shine a spotlight on its historic character; traces of a living legacy can be found amidst the modernized venue. The arches in the lobby have been preserved, as have all of the theatre’s mouldings, columns and architectural features. On the façade, LED architectural lighting will now highlight the arches on the historic building. The stage’s proscenium arch will also be illuminated. The enormous frieze decorating the stage has been restored and will be lit to bring out the beauty of the space.

The key aspects of this revitalization effort focus primarily on the audience’s experience and enjoyment. With fully modernized sound and lighting systems, the venue now offers better quality acoustics and visuals. Access via the main entrance has been redesigned to separate the public entrance from the box office, improving crowd flow, and a new bar has been added. The old signboards, both behind the bars and on the famous Ste. Catherine Street marquee, have been replaced by dynamic digital screens. Connected show goers will also be delighted to learn that they can enjoy access to Wi-Fi on Canada’s largest and fastest network.

This extensive renovation and restoration project will boost the international reputation of the performance hall, which remains an exceptional venue in the heart of Montreal. The favourite show venue of Montrealers and the many visitors who flock to it to cheer on the biggest and greatest artists on the planet, the MTELUS will continue its role as a springboard for talent from near and far.

A number of Montreal-based companies helped make this project a reality. The bar and new lobby were designed by Patty Xenos Design, the lighting was revamped by Lumenpulse and the project was managed by QMD.

About L’Équipe Spectra

Since its founding in 1977 by Alain Simard, André Ménard and Denyse McCann, L’Équipe Spectra has contributed to developing and raising the profile of the Montreal cultural scene at both the national and international level, with an array of major productions and events including: major popular events such as the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, the FrancoFolies de Montréal and MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE, that celebrate music, the arts and gastronomy; a rich variety of high-quality stage productions, conceived and developed for touring purposes; Spectra Musique, a dynamic artists’ agency and a bold record label featuring both emerging stars and big names on the local and international scenes; the Maison du Festival, a one-of-a-kind cultural complex housing a live showroom, restaurant, jazz resource centre, and a boutique, all right in the heart of the Quartier des spectacles; three renowned concert halls; a complete service for organizing corporate events and cultural sponsorship.

About TELUS

TELUS (TSX: T, NYSE: TU) is Canada’s fastest-growing national telecommunications company, with $13 billion of annual revenue and 12.8 million subscriber connections, including 8.7 million wireless subscribers, 1.7 million high-speed Internet subscribers, 1.3 million residential network access lines and 1.1 million TELUS TV customers. TELUS provides a wide range of communications products and services, including wireless, data, Internet protocol (IP), voice, television, entertainment and video. TELUS is also Canada’s largest healthcare IT provider, and TELUS International delivers business process solutions around the globe.

In support of our philosophy to give where we live, TELUS, our team members and retirees have contributed over $482 million to charitable and not-for-profit organizations and volunteered more than 7.7 million hours of service to local communities since 2000. Created in 2005 by President and CEO Darren Entwistle, TELUS’ 12 Canadian community boards and 5 International boards have led the Company’s support of grassroots charities and have contributed more than $60 million in support of 5,595 local charitable projects, enriching the lives of more than 2 million children and youth, annually. TELUS was honoured to be named the most outstanding philanthropic corporation globally for 2010 by the Association of Fundraising Professionals, becoming the first Canadian company to receive this prestigious international recognition.

For more information about TELUS, please visit telus.com.

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One venue, 133 years of history

In its 133 years in business, the concert hall at 59 Ste. Catherine Street East in Montreal has been put to all kinds of different uses. Today, a new page is being added to the illustrious history of this legendary venue.

  • The building was originally used as a skating rink in 1884, then—starting the next year—as a summer theatre.
  • In 1893, it became the Théâtre Français, whose stage was graced by the legendary Sarah Bernhardt in 1905.
  • In 1923, the site was converted into a movie theatre called the “Loew’s Court.”
  • After two fires, it was rebuilt in early 1930 and returned to service as a theatre. This time, the interior was designed by Emmanuel Briffa, who also decorated the Outremont Theatre.
  • The venue became a movie theatre again from 1960 to 1981, and screened adult films under the name of Cinema Eros.
  • After closing for six years, the site reopened as a discotheque and showbar known as the “Métropolis.”
  • In 1997, L’Équipe Spectra bought the Métropolis and redesigned it to focus exclusively on concerts. Since then, it has welcomed such prestigious artists as David Bowie, Pierre Lapointe, Prince, Kaytranada, Arcade Fire, Beck, Les Cowboys Fringants, Les Rita Mitsouko, Charlotte Cardin, Éric Lapointe, Kraftwerk, Louis-Jean Cormier, Radiohead, Daniel Bélanger, Björk, Dead Obies, Ariane Moffatt, Stromae, Plume Latraverse, along with Jean Leloup, who holds the record for most performances. In addition, major events such as Just For Laughs, Mutek, M pour Montreal and Pop Montreal are regularly featured.
  • Every year, the concert hall welcomes about 130,000 visitors and 150 concerts.
  • Starting on September 12, 2017, the adventure continues under a new name: MTELUS.

A free concert to kick things off

Tuesday, September 12, starting at 8 p.m.:

  • Radio Radio
  • A Tribe Called Red
  • DJ sets by K.O.K.A. (Karim Ouellet and King Abid)
  • Marieme, accompanied by Di Astronauts with DJ Sabrina Sabotage

There are still a few pairs of tickets to be won. Visit the MTELUS Facebook page for more details!

We’ve got a great fall season ahead of us! Overview of upcoming shows:

  • Dead Obies (September 14)
  • Simple Plan (September 18)
  • Rodriguez (September 19)
  • Boyce Avenue (September 20)
  • Oh Wonder (September 21)
  • Nick Murphy (September 22 and 23)
  • Pixies (September 27)
  • Tash Sultana (September 29)
  • Glass Animals (October 3)
  • Mastodon (October 9)
  • A Day to Remember (October 10)
  • Phoenix (October 13)
  • Daniel Bélanger (October 21)
  • John Carpenter (November 13)
  • The Barr Brothers (November 24)
  • The National (December 7 and 8)

Benefits for all audience members and performers

  • A fully connected concert experience thanks to free Wi-Fi
  • A new, freshly renovated hall
  • An all-new bar set up in the lobby
  • An improved visual and acoustic experience

Tons of benefits for TELUS customers

Benefits available at all times (except on the opening night):

  • Fast priority access (with three friends) at the door
  • Fast access to coat check and bar
  • Free coat check

Occasional or surprise benefits:

  • Advance ticket sales
  • Discount prices on concert tickets
  • Meet with performers
  • Backstage access
  • Upgrade to the MTELUS lounge
  • Discount prices on drinks
  • Free drinks
  • Free swag

For access to advance ticket sales and discounts on concert tickets, TELUS customers can visit mtelus.com to set up an account and become MTELUS+ members. The other surprises will be made available through contests on the venue’s Facebook page. So be sure to keep an eye out!

About TELUS in Quebec

Over the next four years, TELUS plans to invest more than $2 billion in the construction of new infrastructure and installations across Quebec. Between 2000 and the end of 2020, TELUS will have invested more than $27 billion in the province to expand its leading landline and wireless telecommunications infrastructure. TELUS has extended its fibre optic network directly to homes, businesses, schools and health care facilities in numerous urban and rural communities as part of its commitment to deliver innovation and help drive economic growth in the province.

Staying true to the company’s goal to give where we live, TELUS and its team members and retirees have contributed more than $54 million and 540,000 volunteer hours to charitable, non-profit and community organizations throughout Quebec since 2000. Created in 2005 by TELUS President and CEO Darren Entwistle, these 15 local community boards direct the company’s support actions to local charities. Since their founding, the three Quebec-based Community Boards have donated more than $12.45 million to thousands of local charitable projects conducted by organizations like L’Ancre des jeunes, Motivaction Jeunesse and the CRBM foundation, among others.

In September 2012, TELUS opened a state-of-the-art Intelligent Internet Data Centre in Rimouski, Quebec. TELUS chose to build the centre in Rimouski due to the availability of a skilled workforce in the community, abundant green features (including an abundance of hydroelectricity), and the cool local climate. In 2015, the TELUS Intelligent Internet Data Centre in Rimouski, recognized as one of the world’s most technologically innovative and energy-efficient facilities, received the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold Award for sustainable development.

Charles Dutoit awarded the Royal Philharmonic Society’s gold medal

Montreal, Thursday, August 17, 2017 — One of classical music’s highest honours, the Royal Philharmonic Society Gold Medal, has been awarded to the Swiss conductor Charles Dutoit. He becomes the 103rd recipient since the medal was founded in 1870 in celebration of the centenary of the birth of Beethoven (London’s Philharmonic Society commissioned Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony and enjoyed a close association with the composer).

 

The medal will be presented to Charles Dutoit at the BBC Proms, tonight as part of a concert at the Royal Albert Hall (and live on BBC Radio 3) by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. Charles Dutoit is Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, and conducts a programme that includes Saint-Saën’s 3rd Symphony, commissioned by the Philharmonic Society in 1886.

Current RPS Gold Medallists include Martha Argerich, Janet Baker, Daniel Barenboim, Alfred Brendel, Placido Domingo, Bernard Haitink, György Kurtag, Antonio Pappano, Thomas Quasthoff, Simon Rattle, András Schiff, John Tomlinson and Mitsuko Uchida.

Distinguished conductors previously awarded the RPS Gold Medal include: Thomas Beecham; Bruno Walter; Arturo Toscanini; Felix Weingartner; Adrian Boult; John Barbirolli; Herbert von Karajan; Leonard Bernstein; Georg Solti; Colin Davis; Pierre Boulez; Claudio Abbado; Charles Mackerras and Nikolaus Harnoncourt.

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The Celebrating Our Diversity! event unveils its artists

A massive celebration, thanks to Canada 150!

Montréal, Thursday, June 15, 2017 — The Celebrating Our Diversity! Event—presented June 27 by Les FrancoFolies de Montréal and Canada 150 in collaboration with Radio-Canada—now unveils its performing artists. Alongside the multicultural picnic scheduled on the Parterre symphonique, 5 concerts and 4 dance performances will be presented from 3 p.m., offering an entire day of rhythm and groove! These concerts involve the participation of festival friends (Vision Diversité, the Festival International Nuits d’Afrique de Montréal and Mundial Montréal), while the dance performances will be presented in collaboration with Mondial des Cultures de Drummondville. This special event is scheduled outside the date program of the 29th edition of Les FrancoFolies de Montréal, presented June 8 to 18 by Bell in collaboration with Ford of Canada.

3 p.m.: Ayrad presented by Les FrancoFolies de Montréal

4:30 p.m.: Mamselle Ruiz presented by Vision Diversité

6 p.m.: Patricia Cano presented by Mundial Montréal

7:30 p.m.: Benkadi and Kalabanté presented by the Festival International Nuits d’Afrique

9 p.m.: Rafael & Energía Dominicana presented by the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal

Concert intermissions will feature dance performances by Ensemble folklorique Mackinaw, presented by Mondial des Cultures de Drummondville.

A gigantic BBQ, featuring the flavours of the world

With a dozen BBQs and picnic tables available for Festival fans, the Parterre symphonique is ready to welcome the biggest outdoor food fest in its history! And the variety… because these globally sourced concerts invite fans from here and the four corners of the world to bring their food to the party to grill it up! Experience the flavours of the world in a single day! This unique event, presented by the Francos, is a wonderful opportunity to travel around the world without leaving your own city!

Celebrating Our Diversity! bears yet more symbolic weight given it features in a year of festivities for Canada 150 on Canadian Multiculturalism Day: yet another reason to celebrate the joys and virtues of living in a country built on respect for differences, where the social mix is yet another of our major assets.

Parterre symphonique (corner of Clark and De Montigny Streets), 15 h

Get all the info on the Francos

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An updated experience for artists, artisans and audiences

To mark Montreal’s 375th anniversary, TELUS and L’Équipe Spectra join forces
to ensure the success of the Métropolis

Montreal, Thursday, December 1, 2016L’Équipe Spectra, which has been seeking a partner to invest in modernizing Métropolis, its legendary showroom on Ste. Catherine Street East, is delighted to announce that a partnership agreement has been finalized to that end with TELUS, a major player in our economy and a leader in the country’s telecommunications sector. Beginning in late 2016, the two companies, sharing a passion for the performing arts and new technologies, will pool their expertise to modernize the venue in order to offer Montrealers an updated world class performing arts experience. Continue reading

Alain Simard and André Ménard will be inducted today into the Canadian Music Industry Hall of Fame

Montreal, Thursday, May 5, 2016 — Today at 7 p.m., Alain Simard and André Ménard, co-founders of L’Équipe Spectra, will be inducted into the Canadian Music Industry Hall of Fame during the next Canadian Music & Broadcast Industry Awards Gala in the Toronto Sheraton Centre. All the members of L’Équipe Spectra wish to express their sincere congratulations to those who have managed, since its creation in 1977, one of the most successful cultural organizations in the country. 

Co-founders of L’Équipe Spectra—and, of course, the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal—Alain Simard and André Ménard have strongly influenced the cultural life of the country over almost four decades and have contributed to developing and raising the profile of the Montreal cultural scene on both the national and international level. With more than 2 million visitors annually, the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal has hosted since its 1rst edition in 1980 over 15,000 concerts with artists from all over the world.

“The impact that André and Alain have had on the musical landscape of our country has been immense. We are delighted to induct them into the Canadian Music Industry Hall of Fame this spring,” declared Neill Dixon, president of Canadian Music Week.

Dedicated to the promotion and vitality of the music, media and entertainment industries in Canada, Canadian Music Week and its Canadian Music & Broadcast Industry Awards gala annually honour leading artists and figures in the cultural life of the country.

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Jacques-André Dupont becomes CEO of L’Équipe Spectra and its festivals

Montreal, Tuesday, December 8, 2015 — This past Tuesday, December 1, Jacques-André Dupont officially became the CEO of L’Équipe Spectra and the festivals it manages. He takes over from Alain Simard, founder of L’Équipe Spectra, the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, Les FrancoFolies de Montréal and MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE. 

“After almost 40 years at the head of our business, navigating it through thick and thin to take it ever further, the time has come to turn over the helm to a new generation,” Simard declared to Dupont and the company’s employees. “I am very proud that, together with all of you and my original associates, we have been able to build it into the ‘flagship’ of Québécois popular culture. And I am confident that Jacques-André will guide it successfully forward!”

Of course, L’Équipe Spectra can always count on the support and good counsel of its founder going forward, since Alain Simard now holds the titles of board chairman of the enterprise, of Les FrancoFolies and the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, as well as president-founder emeritus of MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE.

Mr. Dupont has been integral to the success of L’Équipe Spectra since 1987, as vice-president of marketing and business development. He is responsible for the successful financing of the festivals by private sponsorship, and has worked in the production of numerous musicals, shows, artists’ tours and TV projects. He has contributed to the creation of an extraordinarily dynamic cultural enterprise that generates remarkable spinoffs and benefits at the economic, cultural, tourism and social levels. Since 2013, he has held the position of vice-president/managing director of L’Équipe Spectra and its festivals and, since 2012, has worked on the success of X3 Productions (property of gsmprjct, L’Équipe Spectra and Bleublancrouge), which produces such major successful exhibitions as STAR WARSMC Identities and Indiana JonesMC and the Archaeological Adventure.

For the past 39 years, L’Équipe Spectra has been an engine for the development and international exposure and outreach of the Montreal cultural scene, thanks in particular to its creation and management of a number of major public festivals, stage and audiovisual productions, museum exhibitions, showrooms, venues and cultural complexes, a record label and talent agency. Since its inception in 1977, L’Équipe Spectra has generated over 1.5 billion dollars in new money for our economy solely in spending by tourists coming to Montreal to attend the non-profit festivals which it organizes.

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Alain Simard and André Ménard inducted into the Canadian Music Industry Hall of Fame

Montreal, Thursday, November 5, 2015L’Équipe Spectra is immensely proud to learn that its two co-founders, Alain Simard and André Ménard, will be inducted into the Canadian Music Industry Hall of Fame during the next Canadian Music & Broadcast Industry Awards Gala, to be held Thursday, May 5, 2016 in the Sheraton Centre in Toronto.

Co-founders of L’Équipe Spectra—and, of course, the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal—Alain Simard and André Ménard will be honoured for their influence and defining role in the cultural life of the country over almost four decades.

“The impact that André and Alain have had on the musical landscape of our country has been immense. We are delighted to induct them into the Canadian Music Industry Hall of Fame this spring,” declared Neill Dixon, president of Canadian Music Week.

Dedicated to the promotion and vitality of the music, media and entertainment industries in Canada, Canadian Music Week and its Canadian Music & Broadcast Industry Awards gala annually honour leading artists and figures in the cultural life of the country.

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