The history of Analekta
Founded in 1987 by François Mario Labbé, Analekta is the largest independent classical music production company in Canada. After 30 years, Analekta is today the largest classical music label in Canada, and is among the 15 largest independent classical labels in the world. With its outstanding production quality and constant exploration of new ways to reach a wider audience, Analekta’s catalogue, artists, and very name have become synonymous with vitality and artistic accomplishment. Analekta has a proven track record of tackling ambitious projects within the constraints of the classical music market.
A jewel of Canadian culture, Analekta is a paragon of the recording industry that has been recognized with numerous awards for the quality of its recordings and for the artistry of its performers. Visionary and forward-looking, Analekta has redefined its business model to stay abreast of new technological trends, gaining excellent global visibility over the Internet and on the most popular digital platforms.
François-Mario Labbé, C.M., C.Q., ASC
Dedication to Canadian culture.
“For a growing number of Quebec musicians, life is split in two: before and after meeting François Mario Labbé. Before, classical musicians either sought a career in Europe or moved to the United States. Analekta, founded by Labbé in 1988, changed all that.” — L’Actualité
Born in the Gaspé Peninsula, François Mario Labbé studied communications at the University of Ottawa. He began his career organizing concerts for the Montréal Olympic Games (1976) and the Commonwealth Games. In 1978, he founded his own touring company and became an associate at Specdici. He later co-founded Gestion Artistique Mondiale in 1982, one of Canada’s most prominent business management and agency firms, with offices in Montréal and Toronto. In 1984, he bought the company and, for the next eight years, produced over 200 concerts worldwide annually, and no fewer than 1,000 shows (ballet, music, theatre) across Canada. The Ballets Jazz de Montréal, Angèle Dubeau, Philip Glass, José van Dam, Marcel Marceau, the Kirov Ballet, the Red Army Choir, the Moscow Philharmonic, the Martha Graham Dance Company, the Juilliard Quartet, Mummenschanz, and the Louis Falco Dance Company are just a few of the internationally renowned artists that François Mario Labbé brought to Canadians. In 1988, he produced the first album under the Analekta label. Almost 30 years later, he remains at the helm of the business he founded. Analekta’s catalogue comprises over 5,000 tracks and features more than 200 Canadian musicians. For many artists, their first opportunity to play outside of Canada came through Analekta’s outreach, and all artists recorded by the label meet the company’s high standards of quality.
The array of amazing talents represented by Analekta includes the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal with Kent Nagano, Angèle Dubeau, Anton Kuerti, Alain Lefèvre, the Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra, the National Arts Center in Ottawa, André Laplante, Daniel Taylor, the Vancouver Cantata Singers, Karina Gauvin, Lyne Fortin, Marie-Nicole Lemieux, James Ehnes, and the Gryphon Trio. At the forefront of Canadian culture, François Mario Labbé also recognizes the importance of developing new talent, including harpist Valérie Milot, cellist Stéphane Tétreault, baritone Philippe Sly, pianist Karin Kei Nagano, sopranos Hélène Guilmette and Julie Boulianne, pianist Charles Richard Hamelin, and violinist Blake Pouliot.
Labbé’s goal has always been to highlight the excellence of Canadian artists and, most importantly, introduce their music to as wide an audience as possible. Today, Analekta is the largest classical recording company in Canada and is among the 15 largest classical labels in the world. As a visionary, he has been able to reinvent the company’s business model to ensure its sustainability. Through his efforts, Analekta has earned a strong international profile, notably in the era of digital distribution and streaming services such as Spotify and Apple Music. He is also the producer and manager of violinist Angèle Dubeau and her orchestra La Pietà. Together, they have contributed to the growing popularity of classical music through many tours and TV shows.
François Mario Labbé won the Grand Prix Classique from MIDEM in Cannes in 2002 and 2004. For many years, he sat on the board of directors of Montréal’s museum of modern art, the SODEC’s Commission du disque et du spectacle1, ADISQ2, and the music sector for Canadian Heritage3. In 2017, The Canadian Government named him as a Member of the Order of Canada for his outstanding achievements in the distribution of Canadian music, as well as his involvement in promoting Canadian artists outside the country. He has been a Knight of the Ordre National du Québec since 2010 for his contribution to the development and promotion of Canadian artists. Since 2016, he has been a Corporate Director (Administrateur de sociétés certifié, ASC).
As a true visionary, François Mario Labbé has been and will continue to be an important player in Canadian culture, providing international recognition for Canadian talents. He has earned the respect and inestimable appreciation of many artists and his peers in Europe, Asia, and the United States.
 Society for the developpement of cultural enterprises (1995-2002; 2006-2014)
 Québec Association for the Recording, Concert and Video Industries (2001-2008)
 Canadian Heritage (2002-2005)
François Mario Labbé
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Julie M. Fournier
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