This historical theatre located on Victoria Street, not far from the well-known Eaton Centre, was once part of a family of theatres across North American called the Pantages, but it is now officially known as the Canon Theatre. The name change took place in 2001 following a generous pledge from Canon Canada Inc.
The Pantages Theatre was unveiled to the world in 1920. At that time it was the talk of the city with its intricate interior and outstanding array of vaudeville and motion picture presentations.
It went through name changes and line-up changes over the years and eventually became known as a venue of choice among top theatre actors not only in Canada, but in the United States and Europe.
The theatre had its first big production in 1989; the musical Phantom of the Opera. This show helped put Toronto on the map as a destination for Broadway caliber theatre.
Since that time, shows such as The Lion King, Billy Elliot and A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum have dazzled audiences at the Canon. It is easy to get drawn into the magic and music that accompanies the high quality performances.
The Canon Theatre is owned by the Mirvish family. Edwin “Honest Ed” Mirvish died in 2007, but was a household name in Toronto. He owned and operated a thriving downtown department store and helped revitalize the theatre scene in Toronto. His son, David is now at the helm of the theatre management and production company, Mirvish Productions.
The company is known for vigorously searching out top shows to bring them to stage in Toronto. You just never know what will come next at the Canon, but you can rest assured that it will be highly entertaining.
You can buy tickets to shows at the Canon Theatre at the on-site box office or online at Torontotheatre.com. This site also outlines the shows that are playing; as well it provides information on other entertainment venues across the city of Toronto.
Another option is www.totix.ca or a visit to the T.O.tix booth at Yonge Street and Dundas Square, in the downtown area. If you go to purchase tickets on the day of the performance you can get discounts and in some cases half-price.
If you are from out of town and are staying in the Toronto area, before you book a hotel, ask the desk clerk if the hotel offers any theatre packages. The Canon and a number of other entertainment facilities offer special deals through the hotels in the city. Some of the local restaurants also have theatre deals.
Groups of people travel to Toronto to take in a show at the Canon Theatre. When you plan to attend a performance you can often take advantage of special discounted group ticket rates. If you need help planning a complete Toronto Theatre experience with dinner and just the right accommodations, Mirvish productions will lend you some help.
Their group sales team will arm you with some easy tools and advice to make planning your night out easy. For more information on group bookings follow this link: www.mirvish.com/groups.
This lavish, historic theatre has over 2000 seats with a great view of the stage and easy access to the exits. You have a choice between mezzanine, orchestra and box seating.
The Canon also has an elevator to accommodate those who require assistance. When theatre goers take their seats, lean back and peer at the ceiling, they are mesmerized by the painting design on the ceiling.
The Canon Theatre has often been described as having old world charm, plush seating and plenty of leg room.
The memories from watching Canon productions will last forever; however, many visitors like to walk away with a memento from their experience. The Theatre has a small area designated for souvenir hunters who decide to take part of the show home with them.
From fast food to fine dining, if you are taking in a show at the Canon Theatre there is plenty to choose from in terms of restaurants.
In fact, there are several places within walking distance of the theatre. The elegant Pantages Hotel is mere steps from the Canon and has a Martini Bar with over 40 different drinks to choose from.
In addition to the Canon Martini Bar, there is a delicious bistro. Italian, Chinese, Japanese and Tai restaurants run along Yonge Street, offering up tasty menus to suit any budget. Ubanspoon.com has a list of restaurants in this area of downtown Toronto.
If you are simply interested in seeing a show or wanting to experience a complete night out, the Canon Theatre is a great choice.