Press release for immediate distribution

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.

An investment in the future

“When two leaders in their respective domains work together on a project this exhilarating, we can expect great things. With our company, counting almost 40 years of experience in the entertainment industry; TELUS, a leading company in the domain of new technologies; and Métropolis, the #1 venue in Canada, we have everything it takes to offer Montrealers the perfect gift!” stated Jacques-André Dupont, CEO of L’Équipe Spectra.

François Gratton, Executive Vice-President, TELUS and Partner Solutions and President, Business Solutions East and TELUS Québec, adds: “Montreal is renowned for its vibrant music scene and as an outstanding springboard for emerging artists. Through this partnership, TELUS wishes to mark the city’s 375th anniversary by bestowing it with a lasting cultural legacy, through an investment intended to revitalize this legendary venue and burnish Montreal’s reputation on the international scene. Together, we will ensure the cachet and integrity of the venue is preserved so that spectators, artists and performers alike can rediscover the iconic space they have always loved.”

Get ready for M TELUS

As a tribute to Métropolis and heralding the new partnership with TELUS, the legendary hall that has thrilled Montreal for 30 years will become M TELUS in May, 2017. And it should be emphasized that L’Équipe Spectra and TELUS are especially concerned with preserving the historic character of the venue; no surprise, then, to find traces of a living legacy amidst the modernized venue.

This is not the first collaboration between these two companies. TELUS has proudly supported emerging Quebec artists for the past 15 years, providing a platform and exposure of their work by including them in the company’s advertising campaigns. In fact, in 2012, it was at the Métropolis that TELUS launched its compilation album of songs featured in its campaigns.

Ranking 1st in Canada and 13th on the long list of the 200 greatest concert clubs in the world in industry magazine Pollstar, Métropolis is, first and foremost, The favourite show venue of Montrealers and the many visitors and tourists who flock to it to cheer on the biggest and greatest artists on the planet, a flagship of the Quartier des spectacles and our downtown culture. And so it will remain.

Construction

Under this agreement, TELUS commits to invest more than 5 million dollars over the next 10 years. Architectural and construction work will stretch over three years, notably including a complete modernization of the lighting and sound systems, with additional staging elements as well. Work will feature a bright, user-friendly redevelopment of the Ste. Catherine Street façade, as well as refurbishment of the lobby and loges (boxes). TELUS will bring its technological skill and know-how to bear in order to maximize the spectator experience, offering fans a completely modernized, rejuvenated experience, as well as promotional support for producers and artists.

In addition to preserving the integrity and unique character of the performance hall, the shared goal is to improve the quality and high standards of the shows and concerts presented for the audience, artists, employees and producers, and offer a showroom worthy of the international reputation of the Montreal cultural scene.

There is no closure expected, and the venue will continue to present shows while construction is in progress.

One venue, 132 years of history

Over its 132-year history, 59 Ste. Catherine Street East has enjoyed a number of incarnations:

  • Founded in 1884 as a skating rink.
  • The following year, it became Théâtre Français, a summer theatre.
  • From the 1920s, the venue became The Loew’s Court cinema, before once again becoming Théâtre Français.
  • After two fires, it was rebuilt in early 1930 as a theatre: décor was handled by Emmanuel Briffa, who was also responsible for the Théâtre Outremont.
  • From 1960 to 1981, the venue became Cinema Eros, screening adult films.
  • After a six-year closure, the space became “Métropolis,” a discotheque and showroom.
  • In 1997, L’Équipe Spectra purchased Métropolis and reconfigured it as a venue exclusively dedicated to live performance. Since then, it has welcomed such prestigious artists as David Bowie, Prince, Beck, Les Rita Mitsouko, Kraftwerk, Radiohead, Björk and Stromae, to name but a few. The venue is also an essential creative space for local talents: Jean Leloup, Louis-Jean Cormier, Pierre Lapointe, Daniel Bélanger, Ariane Moffatt and Plume Latraverse have all headlined here.
  • In 2017, Métropolis will become M TELUS, continuing to serve as a launching pad for local musicians, welcome the world’s finest international artists, and offer an outstanding venue for performing arts and popular celebrations in the heart of Montreal.

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 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, bistro, jazz resource centre and cinematheque, a gallery, an exhibition hall and a boutique, all right in the heart of the Quartier des Spectacles; a dynamic artists’ agency representing some of the most talented and highly respected artists on the Québec and French cultural scenes; three renowned concert halls; international-calibre exhibitions that redefine the museum experience, including Indiana Jones and the Adventure of Archaeology, created and developed with X3 Productions to offer a unique visitor experience; 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 $12.5 billion of annual revenue and 12.5 million customer connections, including 8.5 million wireless subscribers, 1.5 million residential network access lines, 1.6 million high-speed Internet subscribers and 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, and is Canada’s largest health-care IT provider.

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 wireline and wireless infrastructure. As part of this commitment, TELUS has extended its fibre-optic network directly to homes, businesses, schools and health care facilities in numerous urban and rural communities to deliver innovation and help drive economic growth in the province.

In keeping with the company’s philosophy to give where we live, TELUS, team members and retirees have contributed more than $54 million and 540,000 volunteer hours to charitable and community organizations throughout Quebec since 2000.Created in 2005 by TELUS President and CEO Darren Entwistle, these 15 local community boards are dedicated to supporting local projects. Since they were founded, the three Quebec-based Community Boards have donated more than $12.45 million to thousands of local charitable projects conducted by organizations such as 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 availability of a skilled workforce in the community, abundant green features (including an abundance of hydroelectricity) and cool 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.

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