Toronto Life x The Maverick Social present Universal Music Canada Spotlight 2018
On May 23, The Great Hall on West Queen West played host to an invite-only concert curated by Universal Music Canada in partnership with Toronto Life and Empire Communities. The event marked the latest incarnation of The Maverick Social Club, the ever-evolving party series that’s building the buzz around Empire’s newest condo project on King West, The Maverick. With the venue’s hardwood floor emblazoned with a massive UMC Spotlight logo, an eclectic crowd that included everyone from CARAS CEO Allan Reid to Twitter Canada Head of Entertainment Michael Palombo to q host Tom Power gathered for a special early-evening showcase of the label’s latest signings and brightest hopes.
Meet your hosts for the evening: Paul Golini (EVP Industry Relations and Co-founder of Empire Communities), Ken Hunt (Publisher of Toronto Life), Sue MacKay (Marketing VP at Empire Communities), Jeffrey Remedios (Universal Music Canada President & CEO) and Dan Flomen (Executive Vice President, Sales, at Empire Communities).
Bars were set up on the venue’s two floors to serve beer by Great Lakes Brewery and wines from the Robert Mondavi Private Selection, with Whiskey Sours being the signature cocktail of the night. (Perhaps not surprising at an event full of musicians, they also doled out shots of Jameson.)
Oliver & Bonacini had four food stations set up across the venue, serving New York City-style pretzels (with a selection of all the fixins), chicken skewers, burgers and hot dogs.
There was a digital wall set up on the main floor where Toronto graffiti artist Poser ABM produced images using an electronic spray paint can—and invited guests to draw their own creations over his work. (Naturally, the display yielded many Instagramable moments.)
Following introductions from Remedios, Hunt and MacKay, the crowd was treated to a line-up stacked with Canada’s next big things. Here’s Jazz Cartier:
Blaise Moore with Locals Only Sound:
Johnny Orlando—the 15-year-old wunderkind touted to be the next Bieber—was definitely the hit of the night, with many in the room marvelling at how he seemed so comfortable and confident performing in front of such an intimidating crowd of industry scenesters.
And as a bonus, Johnny reunited with friend, collaborator and Dance Moms alumna Mackenzie Ziegler to sing their new catchy single, “What If.”
Here are some more scenes from the evening: