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Toronto is getting a D.I.Y. live music venue on Queen West focused on Black, Indigenous, and racialized artists

Toronto is getting a new D.I.Y. live music venue and rehearsal space on Queen West, which will be focused on Black, Indigenous, and racialized artists.

On March 15th, City of Toronto staff recommended transforming a two-story Queen Street West building into a space for rehearsals, performance, and talent development. The new venue will be run by non-profit organization It’s OK*.

“This new D.I.Y. live music hub is one more way the City government is working to support young emerging artists and live music in our city,” Mayor John Tory says, according to Councillor Joe Cressy. “Thank you to everyone involved in bringing this proposal forward.”

 

More about the Queen West live music space:

The space will be at 468 Queen St. W, a formal retail store that the City of Toronto acquired for future public parkland. That park will only be delivered in a number of years. It will be created as part of a larger project to encourage new affordable housing and cultural space. They’ll be redeveloping the surface parking lot north of 468 Queen St. W.

“Queen West is at the heart of Toronto’s live music scene, which is essential to our city’s vibrancy, culture, and economy,” Cressy adds. “I am thrilled by the opportunity for a City-owned building on Queen West to host It’s OK* and create a welcoming space for diverse and marginalized artists and musicians.”

 

“After two long years, COVID-19 has hit our city’s live music scene especially hard,” Councillor and Chair of the Toronto Music Advisory Council, Brad Bradford, adds. “We must continue to do everything we can to support live music — not just during this pandemic, but long after as well. This proposal does exactly that.”

The proposal will be brought up on March 22nd by the General Government and Licensing Committee. If approved on April 6 by City Council, it’ll begin operating in June of this year.

 

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