258 Saint-Venant Street* (away from the main walking tour)
Down through the years, the town has been the site of boat races and acrobatic water-skiing shows on Lac des Sables, Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day parades and the winter carnival featuring the drum and bugle corps of the Frères du Sacré-Cœur and their students, shows by Maurice Langlais’ Harmonie musicale, and plays put on in small halls converted into theatres for the occasion.
By the 1960s, with a burgeoning arts and culture scene, performing arts venues were springing up all over Quebec, and Sainte-Agathe was no exception.
In 1964, the town had assumed ownership of a large lot and a number of buildings that had belonged to the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, and it decided to convert an old barn there into a concert hall. In 1967, the Théâtre de la Sablière began hosting a program geared toward singer-songwriters and theatre. Gilles Vigneault was the first performer to tread the boards there. In 1968, it hosted the premiere of Réjean Ducharme’s “Le Cid maghané”.
Three years later, Percival Bloomfield and Yves Blais, the founder of the Patriote theatre in Montreal, took over the venue, renaming it the Patriote de Sainte-Agathe. Over the years, it has become a must stop for the biggest names in “chanson”, comedy and theatre, and a symbol of Québécois arts and culture. Since 2011, it has been run by a non-profit organization made up of members of the Sainte-Agathe community.
In 2017, the Patriot celebrated its 50th anniversary announcing at the same time major renovation and expansion work that began in the fall of 2019. It is scheduled to reopen end of summer of 2021.
All those years, the Patriote has mounted productions adapted to evolving trends and tastes, and continues to present professional productions for growing audiences, while making room for many local talents.
Major renovation and expansion work was undertaken during the fall of 2019. The reopening is expected before the 2020 Winter Holiday season.
*The tour around the lake suggested at Point 4 will take you to the Theatre.
Théâtre de la Sablière, around 1970.