Friday, June 30, 2017

Drawing The Curtain On The NAC

I did a guest post for Molly Jo about Canada's 150th anniversary of Confederation, which was posted yesterday, so go on over and check it out.

I have for the last few months been documenting the work at the National Arts Centre, where a glass structure has been added onto the building, softening the Brutalist architecture. You can find the previous post here. This is the last of the series, because tomorrow, that area is due to open to the public for Canada Day. I visited the NAC this past Sunday for some photos in this series. This view from the Mackenzie King Bridge takes in the NAC as it overlooks the Rideau Canal.

I went inside. A performance was going on in one of the halls here, but the lobby was open. The building has continued to hold performances throughout the project, and what work is still going on here seems to be clean up, as the bulk of the equipment outside was gone. There are two spots inside the building that are to be done by winter, such as the expansion of the Fourth Stage performance space, but almost all of that work is now confined to the interior.

I stepped into Southam Hall, the largest of the performance halls in the building. From the look of things, it seemed stage hands were getting ready for a performance later in the day.

I returned to the lobby, where I photographed this new addition to the space, a large hanging shimmering of light that looks like a cloud. Someone was posing beneath it. If this is a permanent addition in here, it's going to be popular for photo ops.

Back outside, here's a look around the glass structure, which has transformed the building's sense of itself. I look forward to being in here tomorrow, as it is tradition to have a Canada Day concert here in the evening.

Much of what was going on here was that last minute work before the last of the construction fencing could come down. I plan on showing you material from in here during my Canada Day series- I had better make sure I've charged up the batteries and have a spare charger or two with me!

This poster is outside, near where the Oscar Peterson sculpture stands. There's a concert in July celebrating the great Canadian jazz legend here at the NAC. Canada Scene (or Scene Canada en Francais) is a month long series of concerts presently underway.


  1. Happy Canada Day! It's coming together at last! I like the new look and that "light cloud" looks like a made-for-photo-op. (I hope we can see a picture of you bathed in its glow.)

  2. Happy Canada Day William! Another wonderful and interesting post.

  3. Interesting to see all this, William. That 'cloud of light' looks amazing! - what is it?? Happy Canada Day - you all deserve it! I think if someone suggested a 'United Kingdom Day', there'd be a riot. Several, probably. Ah well, as Churchill said, "KBO".

  4. Happy Canada Day! I like the 1st photo. Impressive building. Love the "cloud lights". Have a great day!

  5. People will have a lot of fun with the cloud of light!
    The Canada Day event should be spectacular.


  6. Hello, Happy Canada Day. That cloud is cool. I also love the view of the canal. Great shots. Happy Friday, enjoy your weekend!

  7. i love love love the cloud light. so so cool!! neat-O!! ( ;

  8. It looks like they made it just under the wire to complete this project. What an awesome theatre!

  9. @Kay: it has been quite a process.

    @Denise: thank you!

    @Mike: I imagine it may be glasswork.

    @Nancy: the sculpture was a surprise.

    @Francisco: thank you!

    @Janis: it'll be quite a day tomorrow.

    @Marianne: so do I.

    @Tom: definitely.

    @Eileen: I never get tired of that view.

    @Beth: it is!

    @Red: it certainly is.

  10. That cloud light is pretty unique. I love it!

  11. Gotta get my own illuminated cloud! LOVE Oscar Peterson! Congrats CANADA! A great nation!

  12. Have fun at the parties tomorrow. I'm going to lay low!

  13. I really love that faux cloud!

    I'll check out your guest post.

  14. Happy Canada Day! Love this structure and the cloud is magnificent. But knowing me, I could get lost in it!

  15. @Sharon: it's a welcome addition.

    @Cloudia: thank you!

    @RedPat: I'm going to be busy tomorrow!

    @Norma: it was quite the surprise to see it.

    @Lowell: it's going to be an exceedingly long day!

  16. Enjoy How does one celebrate Canada Day? With fireworks? Like us down here in the lower 48? :-)

  17. Awesome series, William! Happy Canada Day to you, my friend, and be safe and enjoy!

  18. Great series, William and Happy Canada Day! That cloud of light will be a hit I bet. Have fun!

  19. Happy Canada Day. You are right. People will want that cloud in a photograph.

  20. All the work has been asuccess, I think. I love the light inside and the glass facade is wonderful as well.

  21. @Revrunner: lots of fireworks! It was quite a blast on Saturday night.

    @Linda: it was a great weekend.

    @Bill: it was on Canada Day!

    @Mari: it is quite a thing to see.

    @Jan: having had been inside, I felt the work was well done.