HALIFAX, June 25, 2015 /CNW/ - The Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 celebrated its official reopening on June 25, 2015 with the unveiling of Canadian Immigration Hall, a new exhibition showcasing the vast contributions of newcomers to Canada's culture, economy and way of life, from past to present day.
The opening of Canadian Immigration Hall, and the recent reopening of Rudolph P. Bratty Hall, marks the completion of the Museum's $30 million expansion.
The reimagined Rudolph P. Bratty Hall explores Pier 21's rich history as an immigration facility from 1928 to 1971, while Canadian Immigration Hall expands beyond the Pier 21 years to explore the broader story of immigration to Canada. Both new spaces engage visitors using state-of-the-art digital technology, experiential immersives and participatory activities.
The official reopening ceremony followed the central themes, Journey, Arrival, Belonging and Impact, as represented in the Museum. Author Lawrence Hill shared personal stories of Canadian immigration reflecting each theme. The ceremony also included remarks from Marie Chapman, CEO, Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21, the Honourable Julian Fantino, Associate Minister of National Defence, Troy Myers, Vice-Chairperson, Board of Trustees, Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 and the Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada.
The program featured musical performances by some of Canada's most celebrated artists including gospel singer, Linda Carvery, performers from DRUM!, Doris Mason, Hubert Francis and Trevor Gould, as well as classical vocalist, Michael Ciufo accompanied by Joshua Tamayo. As well, Dinuk Wijeratne, accompanied by Daniel MacNeil, premiered an original piece of music composed in recognition of the Museum's reopening. The program closed with a performance by the Halifax Boys Honour Choir.
This afternoon, June 25, the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 will be open free of charge to the public from 1 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. New exhibits will be animated by hourly guided tours and showings of in Canada, an original film featuring the personal stories of diverse immigrants to Canada from all over the world.
Celebrations will continue on Canada Day, July 1, as the Museum hosts its signature Multicultural Fair, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. for families and offers free admission from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Throughout its reopening year, there will be a host of activities and events happening at the Museum and on-the-road. People are encouraged to visit www.pier21.ca for updates.
- Pier 21, National Historic Site, was the gateway to Canada for almost one million immigrants between 1928 and 1971. It also served as the departure point for about 368,000 Canadian military personnel during the Second World War.
- The Government of Canada officially opened the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21, Canada's sixth national museum and only the second located outside of the National Capital Region, in February 2011.
- The Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21's capital and thematic expansion represents a $30 million investment. The Museum has doubled its size and now includes two permanent exhibitions as well as new rental space.
- The work of the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 is made possible in part through financial support of the Government of Canada.
- Architects, David Agro, Luc Bouliane and Michael Grunsky, BIRD Construction Group, Kubik Inc., Lord Cultural Resources, MHPM Project Leaders, Origin Studios and Richard Lewis Media Group worked as key contractors in support of the Museum's reopening.
"The Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 represents, not only for those who passed through this historic gateway, but for newcomers arriving in Canada every day, and for all Canadians, a place of new beginnings. Today, we celebrate our own new beginning. Our reopening is a defining moment in our journey as Canada's newest national museum. We are honoured that Canadians near and far have the opportunity to explore our shared history as a country shaped by immigration."
- Marie Chapman, CEO, Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21
"Pier 21's new permanent exhibition will show the tremendous contributions immigrants have made to Canada's culture, economy and way of life over the past 400 years. As we get closer to the 150th anniversary of Confederation in 2017, we have a wonderful opportunity to celebrate everything that has made Canada a strong, proud and free country that attracts immigrants from all over the world."
- The Honourable Shelly Glover, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages
"For Nova Scotians and many Canadians, Pier 21 plays a pivotal role in our history and in fact who we are, and has become an important landmark for everyone to enjoy. Our Government is proud to celebrate today's official reopening—six years to the day after we announced a Statement of Intentions to designate a National Museum of Immigration at Pier 21. This national treasure in Atlantic Canada means a great deal to citizens across the country—from recent immigrants to the great‑great‑grandchildren of immigrants—and will be appreciated by the Canadians of tomorrow and visitors alike, well into the future."
- The Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada
SOURCE Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21
Image with caption: "The New Canadian Immigration Hall, Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21, Halifax, NS. (CNW Group/Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20150625_C6734_PHOTO_EN_18286.jpg
Image with caption: "The New Canadian Immigration Hall, Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21, Halifax, NS. (CNW Group/Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20150625_C6734_PHOTO_EN_18287.jpg
Image with caption: "The New Canadian Immigration Hall, Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21, Halifax, NS. (CNW Group/Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20150625_C6734_PHOTO_EN_18292.jpg
For further information: Media Contacts: Cailin MacDonald, Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21, (902) 425-7770 ext. 228, [email protected]; Stéphanie Comeau, Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21, (902) 425-7770 ext. 264, [email protected]