The Danforth Music Hall Rejuvination! – Interview with GM Michael Sherman

Danforth Music Hall
CONTEST ALERT: The Danforth Music Hall has given us 4 tickets for the Genesis tribute act The Musical Box (2 tickets for November 30th and 2 tickets for December 1st) –  email us here and put “Danforth” in the subject line – there will be 2 winners (each winning a pair of tickets to one of the two performances). Winners will be notified November 19th and your email will be added to the Danforth Music Hall email list.  Check out all our other open contests here

September 18 2012 – Question, what do Led Zeppelin tribute band Michael White & The White have in common with hard rock band Creed? Well not much except that they both played The Danforth Music Hall in the last year. We were at both gigs and the venue really stood out for us. In the Creed review we wrote:

“The Music Hall just so happens to be my favourite venue to see a concert in Toronto (along with the Sony Centre). It is an old converted movie theater with comfortable seats, good acoustics, great beers and an unbeatable intimate vibe. I strongly recommend seeing a concert at that venue.” T-Mak World
The Danforth Music Hall has had a turbulent few years with a few ownership changes and being vacant for some extended time period. On December 1 2011, it opened with new ownership under the Impresario Inc. The new stability has ensured that the Danforth Music Hall will continue to provide top notch entertainment in a very vibrant neighborhood. The venue has a very long history and even had bands like The Police and The Clash play there and we are impressed at the rate that new shows are being announced for the venue. We were fortunate enough to speak to Michael Sherman the General Manager of this awesome music hall. 
T-Mak World: Michael thank you so much for taking the time to talk to us. You are the General Manager of The Danforth Music Hall – fancy title aside what do you actually do in your job?
Michael:  My pleasure.  I am responsible for all the day-to-day business (i.e. holding/booking the Venue concert calendar, marketing and communications, sales, rentals etc.) and all event operations. 
T-Mak World: When was the venue originally built, and how much of the original remains?
Michael:  The venue opened in 1919 as a movie theatre.  Concerts, while still showing movies, started to take place here in the mid 70’s.  There is a lot of the original structure, moldings, and architecture still intact.  You can still see the “Allen Theatre Chain” logo in the brickwork of the façade.
T-Mak World: The big news we heard is that the venue can now support a seated setup, or the seats can be taken out to support a standing bar type setup. Can you tell us a bit more about that?
Michael: We really wanted to offer the venue to as many concertgoers as possible.  We looked into purchasing brand new removable theatre-style seats and after 4 months of research and travel, we ended up with a great option.  The brand new seats are padded, have cup holders, arm rests and can be removed in 4 hours and stored on site.  Without question,  this still remains one of the best under 1500 capacity seated concert venues in Toronto (1129 capacity seated).  Now without the seats, we are able to offer a “ballroom” style setup similar to great venues in the US.  Without the seats, we have an increased capacity to over 1400. 
Danforth Music Hall – General Admission Configuration With Seats Removed

T-Mak World: I personally love the venue and have declared it the best venue in Toronto of its size to see a live concert. The combination of location (right on the subway line, and close to many restaurant and bars), very good acoustics, and the charm of the building really make the Danforth Music Hall a great choice for live entertainment. If you could have any one group play here in any year who would it be? (If I was in your shoes and had that wish I would bring in Led Zeppelin circa 1969 ;-))
Michael: Thanks for the compliments.  We are very proud of the venue and are all about the experience; artists, patrons, promoters etc.  We want everyone to love it! I agree with you (unbiased of course) that the charm and acoustics of the venue are unbelievable.  We installed the Cadillac of sound systems, an L’Accoustic  DV-DOSC, so that the experience seeing a show here was second to none.  If I had a choice of a touring act, I would love to see an acoustic set with Dave Matthews and Tim Reynolds.  That would be sick!
T-Mak World: What do you think are the hottest 3 tickets playing the venue in the next 6 months?
Michael:  We are so fortunate to have some incredible shows coming up.  Probably Richie Sambora, Kimbra and Flying Lotus.  There’s more shows confirming all the time.
T-Mak World: Unlike other venues like Lee’s Palace or The Horseshoe Tavern that pride themselves in being dark, seedy bars with smelly washrooms, I think the Danforth Music Hall is going for a very clean modern look. It’s great that Toronto has a clean “bar’ style venue when the seats are out. Where did the inspiration for the boutique look come from?  
Michael: We all had a vision for the hall and we teamed up with Mahmood Popal from Craft Studio.  He’s done some great work downtown.  We wanted to keep the history but bring it into the modern times.
Danforth Music Hall – Main Lobby and Bar
T-Mak World: What percentage of shows the next 6 months will be seated vs GA non-seat configuration?
Michael:  Right now it’s looking about 60% GA, 40% seated
T-Mak World: So there you have it folks, The Danforth Music Hall is a great place to see a concert – try it I promise you will love it. You can get information on the venue through their Twitter, Facebook, Website, and Mailing List. Michael thank you so much for your time, I wish the venue as well as yourself a long and prosperous future. Any closing words to our readers?
Michael:  Thanks for the opportunity to reach some people who might not have come here before.  We look forward to a very busy 2012/2013 season and thank everyone for helping us get here.

We cant wait to go back to the venue and see a concert, there seems to be something for everybody take a look at the amazing list of performers coming in just in the next 3 months!

Danforth Music Hall Upcoming Events

  Posted by Terry Makedon
This entry was posted in Concerts, Interview and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to The Danforth Music Hall Rejuvination! – Interview with GM Michael Sherman

  1. Pingback: The Musical Box at The Danforth Music Hall | T-Mak WorldT-Mak World

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