The host city Juno award at Museum London, April 30, 2018. (Photo by Miranda Chant, Blackburn News)

Host City Juno Arrives In London

In what is being called the official kick off to the 2019 JUNO countdown, the Host City JUNO award has arrived in London.

The crystal statue was presented to Mayor Matt Brown at Museum London on Monday by Allen Reid, head of the Junos and president of the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences.

“This is going to be not just the Junos, not just Juno week, but Juno year in London,” said Brown. “We are looking forward to introducing ourselves to Canada as a music city.”

The host city award is a crystal tower with a sub-surface laser engraving of a spiral-wrapped human figure. It was created in 2015 and has travelled to Hamilton, Calgary, Ottawa, and Vancouver.

“The Junos have been travelling to different cities all across Canada since 2002 and the cities do an incredible job of not just hosting the Junos but also making a commitment to arts and culture, and music education… So we figured we needed to create something that could travel almost like the Stanley Cup from city to city. It represents that city’s commitment to a year’s worth of programming and supporting music in their community,” said Reid.

London Mayor Matt Brown and Juno Awards President Allan Reid with the host city Juno award at Museum London, April 30, 2018. (Photo by Miranda Chant, Blackburn News)

Mayor Matt Brown and Juno Awards President Allan ReidĀ 

With the 48th annual Juno Awards still 320 days away, the host city award will be on display at Museum London for the public to see.

“Home base for the immediate future will be Museum London, but we are working on a program that will tour it around the region. Plans for that will unfold over the next few weeks,” said Chris Campbell, 2019 Juno host committee chair.

For many, it will be the first time they have seen a Juno statue up close as this is the first time the Canadian music awards have come to southwestern Ontario.

The best in Canadian music will be in London March 11-17 of next year. Among the week-long festivities will be a celebrity hockey game, Juno Fan Fare where artists gather to sign autographs and pose for pictures, and a gala dinner.

The host committee has spent the past few months firming up plans surrounding security, infrastructure, and crowd control.

“It is very high-level and logistical when you are dealing with a national event,” said Campbell. “We are working on everything from TV production people, to industry gala convention centre type things, to welcome receptions. There is many events that we are working on.”