Even before the pandemic, saying goodbye to live music and performance venues in Montreal happened more frequently than many of us would have liked — often due to high taxes and rising rents.
Sadly, this trend has only been exacerbated by COVID-19, as local businesses face the financial woes that accompany lockdowns and government-mandated business closures.
This means some of our favourite spaces for live performances — whether music, theatre or stand-up comedy — have announced they're closing their doors for good in both 2019 and in 2020.
We hope they find a way to make a comeback when this is all over.
Some of them are already finding ways of doing that, whether they're reopening in new locations or under new management.
For now, all we can say is thank you for the good times, and for making our communities' arts scenes amazing!
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What we'll miss the most: The chill ambiance, kind staff, and great sound. We'll even miss that evil set of stairs we had to brave to get in.
House of Jazz
What we'll miss the most: Funky decor, tasty drinks, a roster of Canada's finest jazz musicians, and the storied history of the famous bar in downtown Montreal.*
What we'll miss the most: The fun party vibes with musicians playing our favourite tunes, weekend after weekend.
What we'll miss the most: The goth aesthetic and some of the city's best punk-rock bands.
What we'll miss the most: The indie music community, and the small, intimate set-up.
L'Escalier is expected to re-open in a new location
What we hope stays: Its current building is being torn down, but the owners are looking for a new venue. We hope the next place has the same hip and eclectic atmosphere with live music every night.
Montreal Improv is under new ownership
What we hope stays: Instead of closing its doors, as it was fated not long ago, Montreal Improv will return in January 2021 under new ownership. We hope the new owners keep up the intelligent and hilarious acts that make this one of the best places in town to laugh out loud.
*This article has been updated.