Metropol has been promoting the arts in Victoria for 19 years.
“When COVID hit, this whole display department just shut down completely,” said Steve Webb, founder of Metropol and director of Vicposters.com.
In the absence of live events, the “display” side of Webb’s business had nothing to promote. Now, with the restrictions lifted and live events returning, Webb has decided to give back to the community that has helped grow his business.
“The point is, it’s been a year and a half since we needed it, so we thought we could see if we could do that and offer it as a free service,” Webb said.
By offering free poster printing, every organization should save hundreds of dollars per event promoted.
“It’s really amazing that he’s giving back to artists and doing this campaign for free,” said Ashley Wey, musician and artistic director of Hermann’s Jazz Club in downtown Victoria.
Wey will be hosting a launch party for his new album titled Hummingbird this Saturday night at Hermann’s Jazz Club. She accepted Webb on his offer.
“I think it absolutely helped sell my show on Saturday,” Wey said.
Chris Fretwell is the Managing Director of the Victoria Events Center (VEC) in downtown Victoria.
“It has been a difficult journey,” he told CTV News Thursday.
But the lights are back at VEC after a difficult pandemic year. Now the challenge is to let everyone know that the shows are back.
“Some people are very aware of it and take a very active interest in it,” Fretwell said. “I find that a lot of people have no idea that shows are going on at all.”
They too have accepted the offer of free posters and say it makes a difference to fill the seats.
“We had a very successful festival, probably sold out,” said Francyne Morrison, co-op marketing communications student at Theater Skam.
The SKAM theater sold out last weekend at the SKAMpede festival, showing that there is a renewed appetite for live performances in the city.
“This thing is going to come back, it’s going to come back strong,” Webb said. “It’s going to be bigger, it will be better, there will be more things to do.”
“I think if we can stay together as a community and support our local music and our local businesses, then we’ll all be better off,” he said.
Event organizers who wish to have posters printed can find more information on the Vic’s poster site here.