Calgary’s Year of Music officially begins!

Images: Calgary Blues Music Association/Calgary Farmers Market

Images: Calgary Blues Music Association/Calgary Farmers Market

2016 has been declared the “Year of Music” in Calgary, and with a number of major musical events coming up this year, it’s not hard to see why.

Calgary is well-known as being a major centre for music in southern Alberta, and this year, it looks like Calgary will be at the heart of a ton of great events coming up in 2016!

Two nights ago, Calgary’s Mayor Naheed Nenshi officially proclaimed the start of the Year of Music at the kick-off of the 30th Annual High Performance Rodeo. Put on by One Yellow Rabbit Performance Theatre, the High Performance Rodeo is an international festival of the arts, reportedly the largest of its kind in Western Canada. Over the next four weeks, local, national and international performers descend on Calgary to dance, sing, act and more. To celebrate 30 years in Calgary, the Calgary Cassette Preservation Society is putting on the Calgary Songs Project: 30 Songs Celebrating 30 Years. The project collects 30 songs that celebrate Calgary’s musical heritage, and they will be blasted throughout downtown all through the festival.

In another major musical maneuver, tonight sees the launch of the Music Mile Society, made up of a group of businesses and live music venues that run along Calgary’s 9th Avenue S.E, stretching from Inglewood to MacLeod Trail. So far at least nine venues are on board, and others are sure to follow. As the Calgary Herald reports, both musical and non-musical location along the Mile are excited at the potential this initiative brings to the area. Tonight the Mile is offering an evening of musical events on many of Music Mile’s stages they are calling One Night Stand.

IMage: CARASiPhoto.

Image: CARASiPhoto.

Looking to musical events in the coming months, one of the biggest events to look forward to is the 45th annual JUNO Awards on April 3, returning to Calgary after eight years. Celebrating the best in Canadian music, the JUNOs are shaping up to be a week-long musical party all around Calgary. We’re sure this is one party not to be missed!

Perhaps just as big, this summer is the official opening of the brand new Studio Bell, home of the National Music Centre, in Calgary’s East Village. The new 160,000 square foot facility is set to open this summer, and boasts a number of performance spaces, broadcast facilities, retail spaces, and recording studios.

Image: Mir.

Image: Mir.

2016 also happens to be an important milestone date for many of Calgary’s musical organizations. This year, the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra celebrates its 60th anniversary, the Alberta Ballet celebrates 50 years and Sled Island, Calgary’s five-day music and arts festival celebrates 10 years in Calgary.

And as Tourism Calgary points out, Calgary is also home to Canada Boy Vinyl, Canada’s only vinyl pressing plans, as well as the Beatnik Bus, Alberta’s only mobile vinyl shop. How fun is that?

So not only do you have a major musical awards ceremony coming to Calgary in 2016, not only do you have a number of major musical venues opening up, not only do you have a new musical street kicking off, Calgary also has more than 150 other festivals and events taking place throughout the year! With all these great events taking place in 2016, Calgary’s Year in Music is going to be…symphonic!

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