After years of abandonment, the old Saint-Sulpice library in Montreal should be reborn. The government has given its agreement for the Maison de la chanson et de musique project to go ahead.
Prime Minister François Legault made the announcement Thursday at the Grande Bibliothèque in Montreal.
“We want this new place to introduce local music to Quebecers, young and old, newcomers and tourists. That it gives a taste for discovering music from here and, through it, our great artists and our culture,” he declared.
The musicians Catherine Major, France D’Amour and Iam were present for the occasion, each offering a musical performance. Claude Dubois, Gilles Vigneault and Louise Forestier also made an appearance in the audience.
The eventual Maison de la chanson et de la musique will aim to highlight Québec’s musical culture and disseminate its history, in particular through the presentation of heritage documents.
The idea of making the old library a house of song and music was proposed by Monique Giroux and Luc Plamondon last year.
The old library has been abandoned since 2005, when it lost its purpose in favor of the Grande Bibliothèque, which had just been built.
Built between 1912 and 1914, the Saint-Sulpice library is classified as a heritage building by the Répertoire du patrimoine culturel du Québec, because of its historical and artistic value. In 2016, the government announced that it would become an innovation laboratory for young people, before the project finally fell through.