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OK.....Top 10 Toronto Venues


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Yo! I think I agree with all the ones on CyberHippie's list, except that I'd probably replace Rancho with Free Times or maybe even Oasis. Rancho is actually probably my least favorite on that strip, it's often too hot or too cold, and the bowling-alley shape makes it hard to see the stage except from the front.

I'd also throw in The Phoenix, and for the record I'd like to say I still miss the old Ontario Place Forum, althought the Amp is okay as outdoor venues go.


Mr. M.

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I found the management at the Church @ Berkeley difficult to deal with - pleasant folks, but not terribly reasonable when it came to renting their space. Firstly, the place costs at least $2000+ to rent for the night, then you have to bring in all your own PA and lighting, and sometimes even get your own liquor licence and staffing. In addition, they've painted the ceiling silver, so that tweeking the room for sound becomes a nightmare. I love the room too, but by the time you pay all the extras, it's difficult to even break even on the show.

And, top ten -

Palais Royale

Massey Hall

Church @ Berkeley

Danforth Music Hall


Opera House

Trinity St. Paul

Bathurst Street Theatre


Lee's Palace

Actually, I prefer being able to have a beverage while taking in a show, but it's awfully nice to have great sightlines and acoustics to boot! (and kind security of course) [Wink]

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I had a friend play a few times at the Free Times (which is kinda nice for a songwriter type venue) and one night we were there early and wandered down the street looking for something to do

ended up in a place called the "Cloak and Dagger"... little hole in the wall joint, smoky, dark, full of barfly's... I liked it alot, try to get back there when I can

(clean cut buddy was playing some 90s pop songs on the guitar and kinda jokin I yelled out "hows bouts some Grateful Dead?"... buddy responded, "wow, there's still a deadhead in the world?" and proceeded to play 2 straight hours of obscure Dead and Jerry songs... nice)

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The Opera House is hit-and-miss as a good concert venue. The sound is often muddy. I saw Galactic there twice and the sound really sucked. The shows weren't strong as a result. Beware of bands with dynamc set-ups booked for the Opera House - the sound will always be suspect.

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Yeah, I really do like the Opera House as a room, but the sound almost always sucks there! It's a pretty cool place, with all the balcony's and whatnot, it must just be a really hard room to work properly. It's always good for tND, and it was good one time for Mule. Other than that it's usuall worse than lousy.

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I don't know if anyone's mentioned the Tequila Lounge yet, but I thought that was a pretty nice place when I was there for Nero back in the Spring. The one with the wavy lookin' bar in the middle of the room.. Good sound if I recall! However it did seem a little sterile/clubby to me.. I don't know how you can combine those 2 adjectives but I'm doing it damnit!

Trev, The Orbit Room eh? I found it to be a nice little room but the stage is so tiny, and you're liable to get decked in the face by Kevin Breit's guitar if you go to the bathroom at the wrong time! hehe.

What about the backroom of the Cameron House?? I dig that room! Its intimate, good sightlines (like a small theatre set up), and good sound too. Any thoughts?

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