The Historic Theatre at The Cultch
The Historic Theatre at The Cultch.

The Vancouver East Cultural Centre, the multidisciplinary arts presenter known locally as The Cultch, announced today it is to receive nearly $240,000 in funding through the Canada Cultural Spaces Fund.

The funds will be used to purchase and install new audio, video and lighting equipment and related hardware for The Cultch’s venues. It will also support the purchase of new ticketing, venue and event management software. This specialized equipment will allow The Cultch to increase the variety of its performances, while enhancing its technical capacity.

“Supporting cultural infrastructure is paramount for the growth and vitality of our communities and artists,” says Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage. “Our government is proud to invest in the Vancouver East Cultural Centre as it continues to support our artists and contribute to the development of Canadian music, dance and theatre.”

The funds were announced during a press conference by Vancouver Centre MP, Hedy Fry.

“The Vancouver East Cultural Centre has been a cultural and artistic hub in the Lower Mainland for more than 40 years. I am delighted that this investment will allow The Cultch to continue to entertain audiences with exciting and innovative programming for years to come,” says Fry in a subsequent release.

On receiving the funds, The Cultch’s executive director Heather Redfern acknowledged how the cash infusion would provide necessary upgrades to The Cultch’s facilities and technology. Redfern took the opportunity to also encourage other levels of government to follow with similar investments in the arts.

“Audiences, artists and other users will all benefit from the upgraded ticketing system, and the theatrical equipment will go a long way in ensuring The Cultch can continue to support and present the best of local, national and international performance and community-based programs,” says Redfern in the release.

The Cultch opened in 1973 at the Historic Theatre on Venables Street in East Vancouver. It has grown significantly in recent years and now also operates the VanCity Culture Lab, Jim Green House and the recently renovated York Theatre. Programming at its venues includes theatre, dance, music and the visual arts, featuring artists from across Canada and around the world.

The Canada Cultural Spaces Fund program seeks to improve physical conditions for artistic creativity and arts presentation or exhibition. It is also designed to increase access for Canadians to performing, visual, and media arts, and to museum collections and heritage displays.