Last night, millions in Canada and around the world gathered around screens and radios and at hundreds of public viewing events worldwide to celebrate Canada’s unofficial poet laureates, The Tragically Hip, as they brought down the house in an emotional and historic performance. According to Numeris*, the live, commercial-free broadcast of The Tragically Hip: A National Celebration reached 11.7 million (2+) Canadians across all CBC television, radio and digital platforms as Gord Downie, Paul Langlois, Rob Baker, Gord Sinclair and Johnny Fay played the final date of their Man Machine Poem tour at Kingston’s K-Rock Centre. The concert special was also streamed 900,000 times in Canada and around the world. The nearly three-hour Saturday evening broadcast attracted an average minute audience of 4.04 million.
The Tragically Hip: A National Celebration was broadcast nationally and streamed globally live and commercial free from 8:35 pm to 11:17 pm ET on Saturday, August 20 on CBC, CBC Radio One, CBC Radio One on SiriusXM Channel 169, CBC Radio 2, CBCMusic.ca/thehip, ICIMusique.ca, CBC Music’s YouTube channel and Facebook page, and the CBC Music app on iPhone, iPad and Android devices and the new Apple TV.
“It was an honour and a privilege for CBC to bring this unprecedented event to audiences across the country and around the world. This is public broadcasting at its very best,” said Heather Conway, executive vice-president, English Services, CBC. “For nearly three hours on a summer Saturday night, an entire nation paused to celebrate and pay tribute together. Thank you to Gord, Paul, Rob, Gord and Johnny for an intimate and unforgettable shared experience.”
The broadcast event was the result of a partnership between CBC, The Tragically Hip and Insight Productions to celebrate the band’s hometown stop on their 15-date sold-out cross-Canada Man Machine Poem tour, making it available to all Canadians and audiences around the world in a live, commercial-free, all-platform broadcast.
Formed in Kingston in the mid-80s, The Tragically Hip have sold millions of records worldwide, managing to enjoy both mass popularity and critical acclaim. The group released their first album in 1987, and have since released 14 studio albums, earning two diamond certifications and 20 #1 hits. The Hip has won 14 Juno Awards and was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame in 2005. They have also received the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award, as well as honorary degrees from the Royal Conservatory of Music and most recently Queen’s University.