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About Bourgie Hall

Music at the Museum

Claire and Marc Bourgie Pavilion, exterior view.

Recitals, chamber music, vocal art, Baroque music, jazz, world music, family shows, and more: each year, Bourgie Hall produces over a hundred concerts at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts in its exceptional venue.

Inaugurated in September 2011, Bourgie Hall offers top-rate artistic programming and welcomes on its stage Canadian and international artists in equal numbers. Whether they are just starting out or already critically acclaimed, these musicians are chosen to perform in Bourgie Hall on the basis of their immense talent. The public can’t go wrong: audiences know that they can count on the quality of concerts “approved by Bourgie Hall!”

In addition to offering remarkable concerts at affordable prices, Bourgie Hall organizes music workshops for families and amateur musicians. These friendly encounters enable participants to develop their musical gifts in a convivial environment.

Bourgie Hall’s programming also brings out astonishing connections between music and art collections. To be discovered at the concerts or during events in the Museum’s exhibition rooms!

Aerial view of the exterior of Bourgie Hall
Aerial view of the exterior of Bourgie Hall
Profile view of the exterior of Bourgie Hall
View of the exterior of Bourgie Hall

Message from Isolde Lagacé,
General and Artistic Director

Picture of Isolde Lagacé, artistic and general director of Bourgie Hall

Photo : Étienne Bergeron

During this time of confinement, we recognize that art, and in particular music, play an irreplaceable role in the fulfillment of human beings and are a cornerstone of society which cannot be done without.


As we enter our 12th season, I am about to pass the torch to someone else. We've come long way since Bourgie Hall opened its doors in September 2011! I could line up columns of numbers: 1,860 concerts, complete works, discoveries, hundreds and hundreds of musicians from here and elsewhere...

But what persists in my mind are the countless moments of pure joy, those unforgettable instances when the music takes on its full meaning, when the sounds fill this magnificent space and when time stands still; moments of listening and sharing so intense that our hearts and minds are transported.

The 2022-2023 season will be similar to the previous ones, though with a few events to mark my departure. Notably, these include an invitation from Ensemble Caprice for a carte blanche concert on September 18, a farewell concert on January 21 to which the public is invited free of charge, and the final concert of the Complete Cantatas of J.S. Bach on March 26, when musicians from the Orchestre Métropolitain conducted by Yannick Nézet-Séguin will perform the famous Cantata 147, which inaugurated this cycle in September 2014 with Kent Nagano and musicians from the OSM. Between the beginning and the conclusion of this great exploit, we will have heard more than 200 works encompassing an extraordinary diversity of expression and feeling. Together and individually, Bach’s sacred cantatas constitute a tremendous sonic and spiritual universe. I hope that many of you will come to share with us the conclusion of this exceptional achievement, which is a first in Canada.

I believe that music will continue to resonate in Bourgie Hall, a place synonymous with conviviality, beauty, and harmony. And I know that you, dear audience, will be there to keep our cherished venue going for a long time to come.

The Hall

Perfectly suited to the performance of chamber music, recitals, and concerts by other ensembles such as string orchestras, Bourgie Hall offers music lovers experiences that musically echo the great diversity of the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts’ collections.

Bourgie Hall envelops you; one might say it possesses something undefinable, a combination of simplicity, beauty, and transcendence. It is unique! - « Madeleine, spectator of the Bourgie Hall»

Photo of the inside of Bourgie Hall, with a piano on stage
Bourgie Hall by Bernard Fougère

In September 2007, the Montreal businessman Pierre Bourgie created Arte Musica, a foundation in residence at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts. Its mission was to develop Bourgie Hall within the very heart of the museum. Mr. Bourgie entrusted Madame Isolde Lagacé, who is highly regarded for her vast knowledge and experience of cultural environments, with the general and artistic direction of the new foundation.

Black and white picture outside of the Erskine and American Church

The restoration and reconversion into a concert hall of the nave of former Erskine and American Church, designated in 1998 as a “historical site of national interest,” gave way to a vast site for the study and restoration of an exceptional series of stained glass windows adorning the building, and now part of the Museum’s collections.

Black and white picture inside of the Erskine and American Church in 1938
Picture inside of the Erskine and American Church before renovation, profile view

Inside Bourgie Hall - Photo Marc Cramer

Among the 81 windows of the stained-glass type that were restored, there were 20 Tiffany windows commissioned at the turn of the 20th century by the American Presbyterian Church (subsequently reinstalled in the Erskine and American Church between 1937 and 1938). They form the most important collection of their kind in Canada and one of the rare series of religious windows by Tiffany to survive in North America.

During reconversion work, the complex labour of turning the magnificent 462-seat concert hall into an acoustical space of the highest standards in today’s ultra specialized venues began. The cherry wood conch considerably aided the hall’s sound quality, among other features.

The hall was named in honour of the Bourgie family.

Rose window and six stained-glass windows by Peter Haworth, situated on Bourgie Hall’s balcony
Picture inside of the Erskine and American Church before renovation, view of the original pews
Picture of the Erskine and American Church before renovation, view from under the balcony.

Photo © Marc Cramer

Bourgie Hall is a marvel of extraordinary acoustics and closeness with the performing artists. As for the choice of concerts, they are relevant without exception! - « Alexandre, a Bourgie Hall member »

screenshot of MMFA's video of the installation of the Tiffany stained glass in the Bourgie Hall
Salle Bourgie : Installation des vitraux Tiffany

Since Bourgie Hall opened in 2011, hundreds of local and international musicians have graced its stage. The following is a selected list of individual performers and ensembles who marked Bourgie Hall’s initial seasons:

Ian Bostridge


Angèle Dubeau


Philippe Jaroussky


André Laplante


Marie-Nicole Lemieux


Louis Lortie


Kent Nagano


Jean-Guihen Queyras


Charles Richard-Hamelin


Jordi Savall


Andreas Scholl


Philippe Sly


Alexandre Tharaud


Danish String Quartet

Les Violons du Roy

London Haydn Quartet

Trinity Wall Street Choir and Orchestra

The Tallis Scholars

The Instrument Collection

An Historical Érard grand piano (1859)

Built in London in 1859, this instrument is entirely representative of the Romantic piano as it was known by Chopin, Liszt, Schumann, Schubert, and other performers of that period. The instrument was restored between 2009 and 2011 by Claude Thompson.

A pianoforte made in 2020 by Rodney J. Regier

This instrument is based on examples by Viennese makers Conrad Graf and Ignaz Bösendorfer, between the late 1820’s and 1840. The lighter frame, entirely made of wood, strings, and keyboard mechanism produce an articulate sound with a sharp attack.

Two Steinway & Sons (New York) grand pianos

Model D: a 9-foot-long concert grand
Model B: a 7-foot-long grand piano for the rehearsal hall

Steinway & Sons piano from Bourgie Hall’s collection

An Italian harpsichord

Historical copy of a 17th-century Italian-style instrument with a short octave and large range built by Rodney Myrvaagnes in 1975.

Italian Harpsichord from Bourgie Hall’s collection Photo MMFA, Christine Guest

A Flemish harpsichord

Historical copy in the 17th-century Flemish luthier style, build by Keith Hill in 1984.

Flemish Harpsichord from Bourgie Hall’s collection

A clavicytherium

This instrument is the Montreal harpsichord builder Yves Beaupré’s Opus 100. It was designed in 2002 after a model by Albertus Delin dated 1768 and preserved at the Historical Museum of The Hague. Its particularity is the vertical (upright) position of its case and its single set of strings.

Clavicytherium from Bourgie Hall’s collection

A small chamber organ (Opus 1)

This organ was built in 1958 by Hellmuth Wolff, transformed into a positive organ in 1998. It has a single, 51-key keyboard and 5 register stops.

Small chamber organ from Bourgie Hall’s collection

A large chamber organ (Opus 2)

Built in Montreal by Hellmuth Wolff for the organists Bernard and Mireille Lagacé, this instrument was subjected to a full restoration in 2011 by Wolff himself and François Désautels in conformity with the requirements of Bourgie Hall. It has 12 stops spread over 2 keyboards and 1 pedal board.

Large chamber organ from Bourgie Hall’s collection

Awards and Distinctions

Bourgie Hall has been recognized at several Conseil québécois de la musique Opus Award galas:

Opus Award in 2016–2017
Best Specialized Presenter of the Year

Opus Award in 2015–2016
Best Concert of the Year: Classical, Romantic, Postromantic and Impressionist Music
Dang Thai Son—Inauguration of the Érard piano on February 10, 2016

Opus Award in 2011–2012 (Bourgie Hall’s opening season)
Best Specialized Presenter of the Year
Best Concert of the Year: Medieval, Renaissance, Baroque and Classical Music
Inaugural Concert at Bourgie Hall on September 28, 2011

Opus Award

Board of directors

Pierre Bourgie


Carolyne Barnwell


Paula Bourgie


Colin Bourgie


Michelle Courchesne


Philippe Frenière


Paul Lavallée


Yves Théoret


Diane Wilhelmy


The team

Isolde Lagacé

First General and Artistic Director of Arte Musica (2008-2022)

Caroline Louis

General Director

Olivier Godin

Artistic Director

Nicolas Bourry

Administrative and Production Director

Trevor Hoy

Concert Programme Manager

Marjorie Tapp

Box Office and customer service manager

Charline Giroud

Communications Manager

Julie Olson

Marketing Manager

Claudine Jacques

Media Relations Manager

Fred Morellato

Administrative assistant

Jérémie Gates

Production Manager

Roger Jacob

Technical Director

Martin Lapierre

Technical manager

Bourgie Hall

Claire and Marc Bourgie Pavilion

Montreal Museum of Fine Arts
1339 Sherbrooke Street West
Montreal, Quebec H3G 1G2

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