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Events Vancouver

Hot Dates: Rock Hop

CalvinLoveCalvin Love, photo courtesy of Big Fun Festival.

JAN 27-31, 2016

Popular indie music festival BIG FUN celebrates its 5th anniversary. Performers span favourites from the local scene like Yes We Mystic and the Crooked Brothers to national artists like Calvin Love and Mozart’s Sister. Part of the fun is venue hopping throughout the historic Exchange District and Downtown, where shows are held in diverse locations including a private residential ballroom and on the ice at RAW:almond. For a full list of performers, ticket prices, and venue information, visit

On the Brink: PuSh Festival 2016


See  at the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival. (Photo: John Lauener)

See Century Song at the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival. (Photo: John Lauener)

Ready to bend your boundaries? Then head to the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival (Jan. 19 to Feb. 7). Now in its 12th year, the annual fest celebrates groundbreaking theatre, dance, music and visual arts in over 150 performances by an array of globetrotting artists. See works such as Century Song (pictured), a provocative piece that uses voice and body to move audiences through the 20th century. It’s an evening spent on the edge—of your seat, that is.

Dine Out Vancouver Festival 2016


Farmer's Harvest, at Edible Canada at the Market. (Photo: KK Law)

Farmer’s Harvest, at Edible Canada at the Market. (Photo: KK Law)

Running Jan. 15 to 31, the Dine Out Vancouver Festival 2016—the city’s region-wide, annual dining extravaganza, now the largest in Canada—has grown to include some 240 bistros, hotels, cafes and fine dining rooms, which offer a wide variety of special dinner menus at three price points. Several restaurants also do lunch, and many extend their discount deals well beyond Dine Out. Other highlights include a wealth of special events: cocktail, brewery and distillery tours; neighbourhood brunch packages; film and dinner pairings; VQA wine tastings; debates; and much more.

For more by Tim Pawsey, visit hiredbelly.com

Opera Warriors at Queen Elizabeth Theatre


See Opera Warriors at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre. (Photo: Image China)

See Opera Warriors at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre. (Photo: Image China)

Opera Warriors has everything a theatre-goer could ask for: gravity-defying acrobatics, amazing martial arts and jaw-dropping dance. The spellbinding spectacle follows three young martial arts protégés, who join a theatrical troupe to find their fortunes onstage. If the thrilling story of life, death and beauty doesn’t dazzle, the over 200 extravagant costumes and 40 masterful dancers certainly will. See it at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre, Jan. 5 to 6.

A Good Problem: NYE in Vancouver



Vancouver abounds with options for New Years Eve (Photo: Melinda Nagy/Fotolia)

Vancouver abounds with things to do New Year’s Eve; in fact, you may have trouble making up your mind. Canadian rockers Trooper take the stage at the Hard Rock Casino to perform “We’re Here for a Good Time” and other old favourites. Meanwhile, celebrated impressionist and comedian André-Philippe Gagnon brings his repertoire of 1,000 voices, ranging from The Beatles to Barry White, to the River Rock Casino Resort. Or take the family to Canada Place for New Year’s Eve Vancouver, the city’s first free, public NYE celebration in over a decade, featuring music and, of course, fireworks. No matter what your taste, there are plenty of good times to be had.

Local Shopping: Shiny Fuzzy Muddy



Check out Winterluxe products at Shiny Fuzzy Muddy December 12 and 13

If you’re hoping to find a unique gift for that special someone, Shiny Fuzzy Muddy (Dec. 12 and 13) has you covered. This collaborative market featuring 27 West Coast designers is perfect if you favour local, sustainable goods for presents, as you can find everything from jewellery and clothing to art and housewares. The Vancouver-based line Winterluxe (pictured) epitomizes this by using 100 percent recycled cashmere to create cozy clothing and fun accessories. So if you want to bridge the gap between luxurious and environmentally conscious, or just prefer to buy local, this is the place for you.

Music to Our Ears: Festive Concerts


The Vancouver Cantata singers present Christmas Reprise XIII

The Vancouver Cantata singers present Christmas Reprise XIII December 19th

The streets of Vancouver are alive with the sound of festive music. This may be most evident at the city’s first ever street-carolling competition, the Yule Duel (Dec. 3). More than 20 choirs go head to head in Gastown in an awesome display of festive cheer, all for charity. The Vancouver Bach Choir is more traditional, celebrating its 85th anniversary with Christmas with the Bach Choir (Dec. 6) at the Orpheum Theatre, with 400 singers of all ages—the Piccolos start at five years old. The award-winning Vancouver Cantata Singers (pictured) perform time-honoured and contemporary carols during Christmas Reprise XIII (Dec. 19) at the Holy Rosary Cathedral. Music lovers, rejoice!

Local Art: Eastside Culture Crawl



“Ali’s Bachelorette” by Jessie McNeil, one of many works by participating local artists

Want to get up close and personal with Vancouver’s vibrant art scene? Then get ready to take a peek into the homes and studios of local talent. No, it’s not snooping. It’s the Eastside Culture Crawl (Nov. 19 to 22), back for its 19th year. Download a map from the Crawl’s website and join more than 20,000 art admirers as they rub shoulders with artists in their workspaces on this free, self-guided tour. Explore edgy East Van and peruse original works, including pieces by mixed-media artist Jessie McNeil (“Ali’s Bachelorette,” pictured).

Music to Your Ears: Once at Queen Elizabeth Theatre


See the musical Once at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre

See the musical Once at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre

What do you get when a Dublin street musician and a young Czech woman make beautiful music together? Once, the Tony– and Grammy Award–winning musical. This charming tale of a musician ready to abandon his craft, and the woman who inspires him to continue, strikes a chord with any audience. The talented cast bring their instruments onstage, acting as both the show’s band and its characters. See this play hit all the right notes at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre, Nov. 17 to 22.

Lush Landscapes at the Vancouver Art Gallery


“Quiet Lake, (Northern Painting 12)” by Lawren Harris

“Quiet Lake, (Northern Painting 12)” by Lawren Harris

From dense forests to lush lakes, Canada’s lovely landscapes are as varied as the art that aims to capture them. For evidence, look no further than the Vancouver Art Gallery’s Embracing Canada: Landscapes From Krieghoff to the Group of Seven (Oct. 30 to Jan. 17). Whether you get lost in Emily Carr’s spiritual spaces, Tom Thompson’s iconic imagery or Lawren Harris’s stylized scenes (pictured), this show is a chance to see the forest and the trees—and everything in between.

A Halloween Scare in Vancouver


A Halloween Scare in Vancouver explores well-known destinations in the city

A Halloween Scare in Vancouver explores well-known destinations around the city

Witches and goblins and ogres, oh my! Creepy creatures inhabit the pages of A Halloween Scare in Vancouver by Eric James (Sourcebooks Jabberwocky; $12.99). Instead of visiting eerie locales such as cemeteries, the monsters head to well-known Vancouver destinations, including clothing-optional Wreck Beach and the Grouse Grind, a 2,830-stair hike better known as Mother Nature’s StairMaster. Now that’s some scary stuff. At local Chapters/Indigo.

Under the Big Top: Cirque du Soleil’s Kooza


The Charivari act in Cirque du Soleil's Kooza. (Photo: Matt Beard/©2012 Cirque du Soleil)

The Charivari act in Cirque du Soleil’s Kooza. (Photo: Matt Beard/©2012 Cirque du Soleil)

Lions, tigers, elephants and monkeys? Not at this circus. Instead, prepare to be swept away by the gravity-defying aerial stunts, extravagantly colourful costumes, old-fashioned clowning, live music and stunning special effects. For more than three decades, Quebec-based Cirque du Soleil has been staging memorable, over-the-top spectacles. Don’t miss Kooza, running Oct. 29 to Dec. 27 under the blue-and-yellow big top at Concord Pacific Place.