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Ontario a Leader in Live Music

Archived Backgrounder

Ontario a Leader in Live Music

Economic Impact

The live music sector generates an estimated $455 million in revenues and contributes $252 million to the Canadian economy. Overall, the Canadian live music market has demonstrated growth at an annual average rate of 6.4 per cent since 2010.1

Ontario's wealth of talent, wide range of venues and vibrant festivals make it Canada's largest and one of the world's most diversified music industries, generating 80 per cent of total national revenues, up from 65 per cent in 2005.2

Playing an important grassroots role, Ontario's live music sector showcases Ontario's musicians and facilitates the long-term success of the music industry.

As a leader in North America, Ontario is firmly placing itself on the map as a key destination for music tourists and artists. Spending in Ontario by arts and culture tourists totalled $4.1 billion in 2010 -- representing 36 per cent of spending by all overnight tourists in the province that year.3

Ontario's Live Music Strategy

Ontario is committed to the growth of its music industry through the development of a Live Music Strategy. This strategy will promote live music in Ontario to boost concert attendance, visitor spending and economic impact.

Core objectives of the strategy include:

  • developing a coordinated live music marketing and promotions plan
  • leveraging of existing resources and creating opportunities to promote music through measures such as new online resources
  • positioning Ontario as a premier global destination for live music and music tourism through the province's international marketing initiatives.

A key initiative is the creation of a live music promotions portal, the first of its kind in Ontario that will provide information on all the exciting live music events occurring throughout the province.

Elements of the strategy will continue to be rolled out in spring/summer 2013.

Industry Working Group

To develop the strategy and strengthen Ontario's position as a global capital for live music, the province is proactively partnering with the industry through the creation of a working group comprised of music associations, concert promoters, venues, managers, festival organizers, chambers of commerce and three agencies of the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport: the Ontario Media Development Corporation, the Ontario Arts Council and the Ontario Tourism Marketing Partnership.

Members are:

David Adames

President and CEO

Hamilton Chamber of Commerce

Jeff Cohen


Collective Concerts

Neill Dixon


Canadian Music Week

Graham Henderson


Music Canada

Amy Terrill

Vice President, Public Affairs

Music Canada

Scott Honsberger



Stuart Johnston



Jesse Kumagai

Director, Programming

Massey Hall/Roy Thomson Hall

Andy Maize



Gil Moore


Metalworks Studio

Riley O'Connor


Live Nation Canada

Brian Ohl

General Manager/Regional Vice President

Budweiser Gardens/Global Spectrum

Del Rollo

National Director, Hospitality

Great Estate Wines of Niagara

Jack Ross

Vice President

The Agency Group

Candace Shaw

Artistic Director

Peterborough Folk Festival

Mike Tanner

Operations Manager

North By Northeast

Tim Trombley

Director, Entertainment

Windsor Casino

Larry Wanagas


Bumstead Productions Ltd.

Karen Thorne-Stone

Presidents and CEO

Ontario Media Development Corporation

Michael Adam Murray

Music Officer

Ontario Arts Council

Ronald Holgerson

President and CEO

Ontario Tourism Marketing Partnership Corporation

1 Economic Impact Analysis of the Sound Recording Industry in Canada, prepared by PricewaterhouseCoopers for Music Canada, 2011.

2 Statistics Canada, Survey of Sound Recording and Music Publishing, 2010.

3 Ontario Arts and Culture Tourism Profile, prepared by Research Resolutions & Consulting Ltd for the Ontario Arts Council, January, 2013.

Media Contacts



Arts and Culture Business and Economy Government