With the Halifax Pop Explosion drawing near, event coordinators announced this morning the first ever recipients of the newly developed Scene Builder Award: Condon MacLeod, an all ages advocate, and Greg Clark, the legendary Halifax promoter. The award, which will be presented annually to individuals who have dedicated themselves to developing the Halifax music scene, arose from the idea of honoring “unsung heroes” in the Halifax industry.
Clark, a founder of the Halifax Pop Explosion, as well as the owner of and booking agent to numerous bars and venues over the years, has a history of being involved with Halifax hot spots essential to the music scene (The Marquee Club, Moe’s Tavern, Birdland Cabaret, Pub Flamingo, Backstreet Amusements and Stage Nine).
The Scene Builder Award recognizes not only Clark’s ongoing efforts to promote Halifax and its music over the last 20 years, but also his willingness to give young local musicians a chance on a larger stage.
Founding Café Ole in the early ’90s, MacLeod can be held responsible for opening the initial jam space for many of Halifax’s most famous bands. Located on Barrington Street, Café Ole was the place where kids could go with merely pocket change and still check out local talents.
Becoming the longest running all ages venue in North America, the café was forced to shut its doors due to noise complaints. However, hope was not lost. Shortly after MacLeod opened a new all ages venue, The Pavilion, which to this day gives Halifax’s young and upcoming talent a place to make noise.
The Scene Builder Award could go to no two individuals more deserving. Both Clark and MacLeod have recognized the importance of the local music scene being available and attainable to all, despite age or income, and have made it their job to see it through.
“We all have someone to thank for helping us along the way,” says Jonny Stevens, Halifax Pop Explosion’s executive director. “From the person who gave you your first gig to the scene stalwart who helped you with advice when you needed it, this award is a great way to show thanks.”
Clark and MacLeod will be presented with The Scene Builder Award at the Halifax Pop Explosion opening party at the Seahorse Tavern on Tuesday, October 16, 6 p.m.
- Jess Spoto