The Music Hall Nightclub and Concert Theatre
39 King St E, Oshawa, ON
Today, the Music Hall Nightclub and Concert Theatre (known simply as the Music Hall) is one of Oshawa’s most successful clubs/music venues. The Music Hall may be a relatively recent establishment - it was taken over by current owners Ed and Maggie Maybee in 2016 - but the building has had many owners and designations over its 70-year history.
Originally known as the Biltmore Theatre, over the years the venue has taken on the moniker of the Odeon Theatre, Marquee Nightclub, and the Oshawa Music Hall. After the latter of these was shut down in 2015, the venue was in dire need of restoration of upgrades, and it seemed unlikely that someone would be willing to make the investment (given the lack of success faced by all the spot’s previous owners). But since taking over and dubbing it the Music Hall Night Club and Concert Theatre, the Maybees have invested nearly $100,000 in the venue. With even more funding from Molson, with whom the Music Hall is “partners” (themusichall.club), and with help from operations manager James Sled, the Maybees upgraded the Music Hall’s stage, sound, and lights.
The building’s two levels are now illuminated by a ring of tubular lights, hung from the ceiling, that casts a hypnotic glow of blue, red and purple hues onto the black-on-black-schemed walls, floors, and stage. The effect is not far off from being on Avatar’s “Pandora” at night - except that there are two bars to service all your drinking needs. The Music Hall’s “state-of-the-art” Line Array System delivers “crystal clear” sound to all corners of the club - or at least that’s what the webpage says. But guests seem to agree, as Facebook users report that “the lighting is amazing… the sound is awesome… the venue is stellar” (Sharry Bud, 2017), and that venue has “great sight lines, sound, and fab staff” (Danny Brown, 2019).
For most of the week, The Music Hall is used as a club, and often hosts event nights (such as Emo Night); but Saturdays are dedicated to hosting live music. To bring in the hottest and best acts, the club relies on Juno Award-winner Christian Tanna (from I Mother Earth) as a talent manager. Bringing big names to smaller venues is something with which he has experience, as he recently (and successfully) did the same thing with The Venue in Peterborough. Under Tanna’s guidance, the Music Hall has hosted acts such as Nelly, Matthew Good, Sloan, The Lazys, Wintersleep, Yukon Blonde, Monster Truck, Finger Eleven, Mother Mother, The Tea Party, Classified, Headstones, The Trews, Helix, 54-40, Big Wreck, Glorious Sons - and of course, I Mother Earth.