Victoria Levesque has invited strangers to her home, which is known as The.Victoria.House, 24 times for intimate concerts.
“I’m just a citizen of Victoria who enjoys live music and was looking for a way to help support artists by providing a small space,” Levesque said. “I created my own house show venue. It’s been a really fun experience, but it does take work.”
Around 20 people have gathered for indoor shows at The.Victoria.House, and as many as 40 tickets will be sold for some outdoor concerts in Levesque’s yard and garden.
“That’s my current comfort zone, and I want people to feel comfortable.”
Levesque wishes there were more live music spaces in Victoria and believes house concerts are one way to help bridge that gap.
“Hosting a show gives you a direct connection with an artist. It makes our communities stronger and more vibrant. You can help impact the careers of artists. I’ll keep doing shows, but I can only do a certain amount. Some venues cost a lot of money to rent.”
The next concert Levesque has scheduled is on April 16 at 2 p.m. in her garden featuring Toronto-based singer-songwriter Shawna Caspi.
“She’s a folk artist,” Levesque said. “I’m really looking forward to it. I think she’s a great fit.”
Laura Simpson and Dan Mangan started the company in 2017, and over 700 artists and bands have used the platform to book shows.
“We use technology to make things more efficient, transparent and accessible,” Simson said.
Side Door was featured on Thursday’s Dragons’ Den episode, and Simpson and Mangan made a deal with Arlene Dickinson. Dickinson offered them $500,000 in a convertible note.
“We were really gunning for Arlene,” Simpson added. “The funding will support our push to support artists. We are really happy.”