Gordon Lightfoot given key to the city by Toronto mayor as Massey Hall reopens


Toronto Mayor John Tory has awarded Canadian music legend Gordon Lightfoot a key to the city, as Massey Hall reopens after being closed for renovations.

Tory gave Lightfoot the key Thursday evening at Massey Hall, where he performed at the venue’s reopening following years of renovations that had a price tag of $184 million.

A City of Toronto news release noted Lightfoot was also the last to perform on the stage at Massey Hall before it closed for a massive revamp in 2018.

“Gordon Lightfoot is a legend in Toronto and around the country,” Tory said in the statement.

“He has been a long-time resident who has contributed greatly to our city’s lively music and culture scene … I want to thank Gordon for being such an upstanding citizen — the key to the city is our way of recognizing him and all of his incredible accomplishments.”

The key is the highest honour that the City can give to a person or group.

Tory also proclaimed Nov. 25 Gordon Lightfoot Day in Toronto.

Global News spoke to the VP of operations at Massey Hall, Grant Troop, about the scope of the renovations.

“For those of you who remember Massey Hall before, we had long rows of arching seats that went across the room,” Troop said.

“We took off those marginal parts of those rows because they were not great seats, kind of a bad view of the stage, and instead what we’ve done is we’ve re-oriented all of the seating to give a wraparound experience,” he continued.

Troop also said all of the stained-glass windows are original and were taken out to be completely restored and put back in their spots.

Massey Hall was originally constructed in 1894.

–with files from globalnews.ca