Enhancing the cultural life of a city: 
If you build it, will they come?


The new Walrus McGill Debate, featuring Simon Brault and Witold Rybczynski, to be moderated by Nathalie Petrowski

The Walrus Foundation, McGill University and the Segal Centre are pleased to announce the launch of a new annual public debate presented by TD. The debate, intended to encourage civic engagement and city-building in Montreal, will be held on Wednesday, March 30, 2011.

This timely exchange will feature Simon Brault (author of No Culture, No Future, vice-chair of the Canada Council for the Arts, and CEO of the National Theatre School, and president of Culture Montréal) and University of Pennsylvania professor Witold Rybczynski (author of Makeshift Metropolis, and Slate’s architecture critic). In what promises to be a lively event, they will debate and dissect city building and the future of culture in Montreal above and beyond the Quartier des Spectacles partnership.

Well-known journalist and La Presse columnist Nathalie Petrowski will moderate the debate.

“As publishers of Canada’s best national magazine, we are committed to public debate,” said Shelley Ambrose, co-publisher of The Walrus and executive director of the charitable, non-profit Walrus Foundation. “This new series helps bring the pages of The Walrus magazine to the stage, and will be a starting point for the conversations that help make cities great.” The Walrus has used the same format in other cities including Calgary, Vancouver, Ottawa and Toronto, where topics have included globalization, Arctic sovereignty, contemporary art and health-care spending. “We’re very excited to produce debates in Montreal that will focus on the glories and challenges of island life in one of the world’s best cities,” Ambrose added.

The Walrus shares our commitment to public education, and we’re thrilled that we can partner to bring these topical debates to our students, faculty, and the people of Montreal,” said Christopher Manfredi, Dean of Arts of McGill University.

“Dedicated to building bridges through the performing arts, the Segal Centre is proud to join The Walrus and McGill as intellectual partners in culture, in providing a meeting place for ideas, intercultural dialogue and for all culture-loving communities,” Manon Gauthier, CEO of the Segal Centre, said.

“Every community needs a thriving arts and culture scene.  At TD, we are committed to supporting arts and culture-related initiatives that expose our youth to music and that bring families together to enjoy the performing arts,” says Paul Lelièvre, Vice President, Metro District West, TD Canada Trust. “We are pleased to support the Walrus debate as part of our ongoing commitment to making a difference and contributing to the well-being of the Montreal community.”

Who:  Debaters: Simon Brault and Witold Rybczynski. Moderator Nathalie Petrowski

What: The Walrus McGill Annual Debate

Where: Segal Centre for the Performing Arts, 5170 ch. de la Côte-Ste-Catherine, Montreal

When: Wednesday, March 30, 2011, 6 p.m./Admission costs $15 general, $10 students.

Online: http://www.walrusmagazine.com/events/#montrealdebate



Contact Information

Tamarah Feder (media)
Media Relations Office, McGill University
tamarah.feder [at] mcgill.ca