Geary Lane

Geary Lane is a venue and multipurpose space for events, rehearsals and more located at the very end of Geary, next to one location of Rehearsal Factory's many studios. The area is out of the way enough to be conducive to loud noise and artsy events while still only a short bus ride away from Dufferin station.

It's owned by Gilli Zemer along with Rick Lazar, the latter of whom runs Toronto's Samba Squad drum group out of the space. Drum Arts Canada also operates out of here: you might be able to hear them playing as you walk by Bloor Collegiate in the summer. Their program also extends to further reaches of the city like Jane and Finch and Regent Park.

It's also used as a photo and film studio and can accommodate almost any kind of performance or event, and it was used as a recording studio for seven years run by Kick Audio. Big bands and orchestras find it a useful rehearsal space due to its massive size. One night I visited, a dance event was going on, couples whirling around a dance floor that had been put down.

Sometimes other companies use it as an overflow space. Soulpepper runs out of room, too, Gilli reminds me, citing how for the past five years or so they've used the space for rehearsals. Smaller theatre companies also often use it as a rehearsal and performance space.

As for alcohol, if a client rents out the space they have the option of dealing with serving alcohol themselves or letting Geary Lane handle it. They aren't completely licensed because they would have to have an event serving alcohol once a week or more to justify it.

There's no food available here but there are two kitchens, and the staff are happy to recommend options for delivery or takeout. One kitchen is downstairs in a corner of the main concept space, with a mobile bar so that the interior can be completely reconfigured depending on the event.

There are couches lined up against one wall and some tables that can be optionally scattered around the kitchen area, and they have a hundred chairs available that can be set up in any desired formation for a variety of experiences. The opposite blank, high-ceilinged wall is perfect for projections. There's one accessible washroom near the kitchen.

The second kitchen is upstairs along with a second washroom that even has a shower. This spot has multiple functions too: it's been a green room and a second bar area, and even a "hippie tent" area once. Off the second kitchen is a rooftop patio with picnic benches, a little garden, and a great view.


Geary Lane

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