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 Post subject: Hugh's Room Bankruptcy
PostPosted: Tue Jan 10, 2017 12:27 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 17, 2008 7:55 am
Posts: 130
Location: Stouffville, ON, CA
Sad to read that Hugh's Room in Toronto is in trouble.
Their web site state's that the doors are closed, but hopefully better days ahead.

My wife and I have enjoyed many dinners and concerts there over the years.
Nice to sit down for a meal and drinks, and stay right at your table and enjoy the tunes later. (wife hated the washrooms)
Felt like I was in a 40's nightclub.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 10, 2017 12:32 pm 
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Location: iii, ON, CA
I think the cost of the dinners was an issue as years went by. With the tightening economy, it became an expensive night.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 10, 2017 12:48 pm 
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Location: Sherbrooke, QC, CA
Close to the Edge wrote:
I think the cost of the dinners was an issue as years went by. With the tightening economy, it became an expensive night.


Tightening economy where? :?

Have you looked at the prices of audio equipment? Someone must be bringing home plenty of bacon.

I would think that there is enough people in Toronto to keep businesses alive and prospering.

I do feel sad though whenever a venue for live music closes. :(


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 10, 2017 1:25 pm 
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Location: Somewhere North of Caledonia, ON, CA
Great venue !! Sad to see it go. D.R.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 10, 2017 1:26 pm 
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Location: Toronto, ON, CA
With a walk-in at Gate 403 just down the street (if you can get in the door), maybe the ticket /reservation model wasn't working so well.

It is sad to see them in trouble.

_________________
To a hammer, everything looks like a nail


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 10, 2017 1:34 pm 
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Location: iii, ON, CA
PBB wrote:
Close to the Edge wrote:
I think the cost of the dinners was an issue as years went by. With the tightening economy, it became an expensive night.


Tightening economy where? :?

Have you looked at the prices of audio equipment? Someone must be bringing home plenty of bacon.

I would think that there is enough people in Toronto to keep businesses alive and prospering.

I do feel sad though whenever a venue for live music closes. :(



Believe me, with the soaring real estate costs, the leftover funds for an expensive night are not available like 10 years ago , in Hugh's Room's better days.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 10, 2017 1:54 pm 
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Location: Hamilton, ON, CA
Wow! Such bad news! :( What a shame....not only for the owners, but also for the many highly talented artists who had a venue they could play where the audience was going to pay attention & appreciate their art. The entire city & the arts community loses out, as there may be a lot of touring musicians (including many established or up-and-coming Canadians) who may not make stops in Toronto as frequently as they used to do.

As for the economics....yes, it's true that there are plenty of people who are working or retired that have a solid income & can afford higher-end audio, but IMHO there are other factors that are much more problematic. For starters, the folk/country crowd has a lot of working-class salt-of-the-earth people, and the gap in income between them & the upper middle/upper class has been growing steadily over the last decade, so a night out has become more expensive for them. Furthermore, people having to work multiple jobs to make ends meet & the intrusion of work into the middle/upper class' 'leisure time' means that many in the GTA may not have the time to go see good live music. On top of that, the cultural spectrum in Toronto has widened/diversified substantially, and the percentage of the population that connects with traditional folk music is shrinking. Last, but not least, there is a large amount of choice in Toronto when it comes to entertainment, so Hugh's Room was competing against much higher profile options for everyone's entertainment dollar.

I certainly hope that the owners or other people can find a new business model that will be able to survive & serve the needs & wants of the folk/country fans in the GTA.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 10, 2017 2:28 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2006 2:58 pm
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Location: Ottawa, ON, CA
This is very sad to hear.... I always check to see who would be playing there when I knew I'd be in town. I also kinda get their 'troubles' - a few months ago we were getting together with a friend for whom I've known for over thirty years, and his 'new' girlfriend. She objected to going to Hugh's Room as she stated that the food wasn't very good. So we ended up at the Jazz Bistro - much more $$$, food was a bit better, but for me and my wife it's about the entertainment - we would've liked to have seen the artist playing at Hugh's Room that night - Lori Cullen.

~A


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 10, 2017 2:51 pm 
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Location: Oakville, ON, CA
Sounds like he needs a deep-pocketed silent partner who cares about what he is doing first and about the investment second to help smooth out the financial bumps. I've never been but I have been making live music a priority in the last year and was very much hoping to attend a number of shows in 2017.

I suspect that after 17 years having a fresh set of eyes look at the business model could be useful. There may be ways to make this work for everybody and hopefully rejuvenate it into a sustainable business. That said, 17 years is a good run.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 10, 2017 3:02 pm 
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Location: North Brampton, ON, CA
Lots of reasons. Shows are VERY expensive. Drinks are VERY expensive. Dinners not too bad, on average with other places. The reservation thing favors groups. Less people puts you at the bottom of the list. Great place to see a show and great dinners but just lacking attendance for the last couple of years that I have gone there. Also the gauge of talent has changed a lot in the last few years. Back 5yrs ago I was beside Kim Mitchell and the cliental was more older and affluent mixed with middle aged and a touch of youth. Now it's all over the place as if there is no rhyme or reason to who is coming in. Talent is not the level it once was either.

They will restructure and reopen for sure.... they only cancelled the events for the next few days.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 10, 2017 4:28 pm 
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Location: Toronto, ON, CA
http://www.blogto.com/music/2017/01/lon ... ly-closed/


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 10, 2017 4:55 pm 
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Location: Waterdown, ON, CA
Holy Tamoli! Say it ain't so.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 10, 2017 7:00 pm 
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Location: Toronto, ON, CA
An amazing array of talent has graced the Hugh's Room stage since it opened in 2001.
Went to Hugh's for the first time, several months after it opened to see Harry Manx.
Toronto loses a valuable community resource if Hugh's is unable to find a workable operating solution......has hosted countless benefit concerts and fundraisers over the years.
The financial struggle for Hugh's Room has been ongoing for the owner for several years.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 11, 2017 12:22 pm 
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Location: Toronto, ON, CA
I don't know the split on the ticket price with the artists, but with only 200 seats, the gate probably covered the artists and some processing fee for the club. What I saw the many times I have been there is that hardly anyone orders food or drinks after the show starts. that is likely where the club made its money or not.

Where else could you get to see artists in such an intimate setting. I will miss it.

David


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 11, 2017 4:19 pm 
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Location: Ajax, ON, CA
Nothing less than a tragedy.

I just loved the place. Meals were good and to be so close to everything was just awesome. Got to speak to Stephen Fearing during his intermission for almost 20 min. Last show I saw there was Heather Nova.

One can only hope things can be brought back.

Sigh!


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