Among the BC Alliance for Arts + Culture's 445 members are artists, performance groups and cultural workers at museums, theatres, concert venues, community organizations, professional associations and more. Here's what some of them are up to this week.
Vancouver International Flamenco Festival
Experience “duende”—the Spanish term for passion and soul expressed through flamenco—as some of the world’s most innovative and revered flamenco artists perform in Vancouver. Along with free pop-up performances and classes, the festival features Spanish flamenco sensation La Moneta (Sept. 23, Vancouver Playhouse) and festival producer Flamenco Rosario, in Nuevo, New Nouveau (Sept. 21, Waterfront Theatre)—a deconstruction of the powerful and sensual dance form, featuring a full flight of dancers.
(Vancouver: until Sept. 23)
Intangible: Memory and Innovation in Coast Salish Art
Leave preconceived notions of Coast Salish art at the door when you enter this exhibition by six trailblazing artists at the Bill Reid Gallery of Northwest Coast Art. Guest curated by Coast Salish culture expert Sharon Fortney, the large-scale glass sculptures, textiles and multimedia works by Aaron Nelson-Moody, lessLIE, Marvin Oliver, Ostwelve, Roxanne Charles and Tracy Williams don’t ignore traditional techniques, but push them in exciting new directions. BC Alliance executive director Brenda Leadlay checked out the well-attended opening reception last night: "The notion of the relationship with everything in nature was a focus of the diverse works. It's not just about human rights, but the rights of the land and everything on it."
(Vancouver: Sept. 13)
Pacific Theatre’s intimate space transforms into a church complete with choir for this immersive play that sees a pastor experience a crisis of faith right in front of his congregation. Lucas Hnath’s drama "is edgy and modern and pushes boundaries,” says director Sarah Rodgers. Chicago Reader agrees: “Unlike any play I’ve ever seen about religion… all sides of the issue are expressed intelligently and honestly.”
(Vancouver: Sept. 15 - Oct. 7)
ReSounding Dunbar Ryerson
Four Vancouver choirs — Vancouver Chamber Choir, Vancouver Orpheus Male Choir, Vancouver Youth Choir and the newish Postmodern Camerata — perform a benefit concert for one of Vancouver’s finest venues for choral performances. “While Vancouver is renowned for its vibrant choral scene, there is a definite lack of venues of the right size with choral-friendly acoustics,” publicist and singer Bruce Hoffman recently told The Vancouver Sun. “Dunbar-Ryerson is one of the few. ReSounding Dunbar-Ryerson began several years ago as a way for ensembles that call the venue home to say thank you. It’s a fun and relaxed evening of music, sort of a sampler of the fall’s choral delights.”
(Vancouver: Sept. 19)
The Best Brothers
Celebrated Canadian playwright Daniel MacIvor’s black comedy concerns two very different brothers dealing with the sudden death of their mother. Talk of funeral arrangements leads to the eulogy and to the question of who was her favourite — besides the dog. Western Canada Theatre co-produces the play with Prince George-based Theatre North West. “There’s something about death that I find rich,” MacIvor tells The National Post. “It’s such a strange thing: it’s about everything, it motivates us, every choice, and yet we don’t have a way to talk about it, a way to have a sense of humour about it. Death doesn’t come up at dinner parties as much as I might like.”
(Kamloops: Sept. 14 - 23)
The Scotiabank Dance Centre Open House
Ever wonder whether your hidden talent might be voguing? Here’s a chance to explore a world of dance, from capoeira, hip-hop and swing, to that stylized, gestural dance that emerged in the Harlem ballroom scene of the '60s and then into the mainstream with Madonna's 1990 music video — all in a single afternoon of free open classes and mini-performances.
(Vancouver: Sept. 16)
Vancouver Fringe Festival
Fringe mania is upon us. What should you see? Of 12 shows witnessed so far, theatre critic Colin Thomas recommends four. Mack Gordon’s solo show, Six Fine Lines, “is as openhearted as it is intelligent, innovative, and unpretentious.” Spoken-word artist Cat Kidd “is the real deal, skilled and compelling,” in her show Hyena Subpoena. Birdhouse serves up “innocence with a fresh side of deadpan.” And Beaver Dreams, about beavers and humans trying to share a lake, is “so stylistically thorough—and fundamentally gentle—that it’s a pleasure to embrace.”
(Vancouver: until Sept. 17)