Media Advisory - Interview/Photo Opportunity - Hamilton's Civic Leaders Come Together to Celebrate the City's World-Class Achievement in Arts & Culture

    An evening of performances and exhibits presented by The Art Gallery of
    Hamilton, the Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra, Opera Hamilton and sponsor
    BMO Financial Group

    HAMILTON, ON, April 11 /CNW/ -

    What:   Hamilton's most prominent citizens will gather to celebrate the
            city's world-class success and standing in the arts.

            The evening will feature:
            -  Musical performances by artists from The Hamilton Philharmonic
               Orchestra (HPO) Quartet and Opera Hamilton;
            -  Opportunity for guests to explore the Art Gallery of
               Hamilton's (AGH) banner exhibition entitled, Framed: The Art
               of the Portrait and to wander the gallery to take in the best
               that Hamilton has to offer.

            As a sponsor of the AGH, the HPO and Opera Hamilton for the 2007
            season, BMO Financial Group will be hosting a cocktail event to
            celebrate the contributions of these three organizations to the
            arts in Hamilton and surrounding areas.

            Media are invited to attend this unprecedented collaborative
            evening. Photo and interview opportunities are available with
            Louise Dompierre (AGH), David Speers (Opera Hamilton),
            James Sommerville and Alex Baran (HPO) and Gerald Hedgcock (BMO);
            please RSVP if you would like to attend.

    When:   Wednesday, April 11, 2007
            5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.

    Where:  Art Gallery of Hamilton
            123 King Street West, Hamilton, ON
            The Sculpture Atrium and the Main Pavilion

    Who:    Louise Dompierre, President and CEO, Art Gallery of Hamilton
            David Speers, General Director, Opera Hamilton
            James Sommerville, Artistic Director Designate, Hamilton
             Philharmonic Orchestra
            Alex Baran, Executive Director, Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra
            Gerald Hedgcock, Vice President, BMO Nesbitt Burns

    The Arts in Hamilton: A Remarkable Success Story

    Opera Hamilton has grown to be one of the largest opera companies in
Canada, and a well-respected player in the North American opera industry.
Since inception, it has cultivated 800 donors, nearly 3,000 loyal subscribers,
and provided over 12,000 opera fans annually for the company.

    Founded in 1914 with 29 paintings in its permanent collection, the Art
Gallery of Hamilton is now Ontario's third largest public art gallery and owns
one of the finest collections in the country. Recently renovated, the AGH
houses a collection that has grown to over 8,500 works, reflecting its three
areas of specialty: Canadian historical, Canadian contemporary and European
historical - particularly 19th-century - art, and organizes, hosts and/or
circulates approximately 25-30 engaging exhibitions each year.

    Hamilton's fully professional symphony Orchestra, the Hamilton
Philharmonic, started 122 years ago in a city that was predominately a working
class industrial city. As the City has grown and flourished, so too have the
arts. The HPO plays a vital role in music education in Hamilton, Burlington
and the surrounding areas. World-class musicians provide concerts, group
teaching, coaching mentoring and individual lessons to children at all levels
of skill and income.

    BMO and the Arts
    At BMO Financial Group we believe a strong and vital cultural life is
part of a truly healthy community. We find ways to help at many different
levels, from fostering young and emerging artistic voices to supporting our
most cherished cultural institutions.

For further information:

For further information: Media Contacts: Shivani Ahluwalia,, (416) 867-3996; Ralph Marranca,, (416) 867-3996

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