April 28, 2017 12:47 pm
Updated: April 28, 2017 3:26 pm

Burton Cummings performs at namesake Winnipeg theatre

WATCH: Burton Cummings performed at his namesake theatre Thursday afternoon as part of a True North announcement.

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WINNIPEG — Legendary rocker, Burton Cummings, performed at one of Winnipeg’s most iconic buildings Friday afternoon.

The performance comes a months after True North Sports & Entertainment announced it would purchase the Burton Cummings Theatre.

READ MORE: True North to buy historic Burton Cummings Theatre

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True North is keeping the name ‘Burton Cummings Theatre’, and will be giving more details about venue upgrades at 1 p.m., which will be live streamed on this page.

History of The Burt

The Burton Cummings Theatre has a troubled past. The 109-year-old venue has changed hands a number of times since it opened.

Originally known as the Walker Theatre, The Burton Cummings Theatre for Performing Arts, also known as The Burt, was constructed in 1906-07. The theatre has housed ballets, operas and Broadway-style shows.

It was seized by the city in 1944 for $35,000. Just one year later, in 1945 the theatre was converted into the Odeon Cinema and served as the city’s most popular single-screen movie theatre.

After it closed in 1990 Walker Theatre Performance Arts Group Inc., a non-profit organization, took it over and converted it back into a live entertainment venue which opened the following year.

It was that year that it was designated a National Historic Site of Canada as well as a Provincial Heritage Site.

In 2002, the theatre was renamed after Burton Cummings, Winnipeg-born performer, and former lead singer of the Guess Who.

RELATED: Winnipeg legend Burton Cummings honoured at 2016 Juno Awards

In April 2014, True North Sports & Entertainment Limited assumed management and operating control of Winnipeg’s historic Burton Cummings Theatre. Under a lease arrangement, True North agreed to provide its programming and entertainment services and expertise to the 109-year-old, 1,604 seat former vaudeville theatre.

With files from Brittany Greenslade

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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