The Old Fire Hall
Built in 1886 and considered one of the city’s major historic jewels, the Old Fire Hall is the home of Complections College of Makeup Art and Design. It also housed the legendary Second City comedy troupe from 1974-1997 and Gilda’s Club from 2001-2011. Under the direction of Maureen O’Shaugnessy of CA&P Architects Inc. and executed by Venture Construction, many of the Old Fire Hall’s historic elements have been sensitively renewed including the dramatic three story central staircase, brick walls and restored wooden doors. The imposing red brick exterior is dramatically highlighted by a turret and three large second-story bay windows. To provide an intimate and focused learning environment for its students, the interior, painted in heritage hues of dove gray, now features eight state of the art classrooms, a photography studio, and exhibition space for displays of student and faculty work. The ground floor houses Kryolan International’s first Canadian makeup store, catering to the fashion, theatre and special effects needs of industry professionals and the general public.
The Old Fire Hall is the name given to the original home of The Second City company in Toronto. The company performed there from 1974 until 1997 when it moved to 56 Blue Jays Way (in 2005, the company moved to 51 Mercer Street).
From 2001 until 2011, the Old Fire Hall was the home of Gilda’s ClubToronto. Named after Gilda Radner, who had performed with Second City at the Old Fire Hall prior to joining Saturday Night Live, Gilda’s Club is a support group and meeting place for people living with cancer.