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What to See Vancouver

Beauty and the Beast

By SHERI RADFORD

A Tale as Old as Time - Beauty and the Beast

A Tale as Old as Time – Beauty and the Beast

Though it’s been around since the 1700s, the fairy tale Beauty and the Beast is, for most people, synonymous with the 1991 Disney movie and its memorable songs and soaring musical score. Hear all of your favourite tunes brought to life on stage, everything from the Academy Award–winning title song to the irresistibly catchy “Gaston” to the guaranteed crowd-pleaser “Be Our Guest,” when the hit Broadway musical based on the film returns to the Queen Elizabeth Theatre, Feb. 3 to 8.

Eagle Float in Brackendale

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Spot iconic bald eagles during a float down Cheakamus River with Sunwolf. (Photo: Logan/Sunwolf)

Spot iconic bald eagles during a float down Cheakamus River with Sunwolf. (Photo: Logan/Sunwolf)

Every winter, a very different sort of visitor flocks to beautiful Brackendale: bald eagles. The tiny town outside Squamish hosts one of the largest populations of the iconic bird worldwide, all thanks to a fantastic feast of spawning salmon. To catch a glimpse of the feathered arrivals, take an idyllic float down the Cheakamus River with Sunwolf. Expect to see dozens of eagles perched along the glacier-fed river, often occupying the same tree—unusual behaviour for the über-territorial bird.

(Photo: Bob/Sunwolf)

(Photo: Bob/Sunwolf)

Equally breathtaking are the views of the Tantalus Mountain Range and surrounding scenery, certain to inspire nature enthusiasts and shutterbugs alike. Afterwards, cozy up in the riverside lodge by the wood stove and warm up with hearty homemade chilli. Avian enthusiasts should note that this rare opportunity is over in the blink of an eye—the season only lasts from mid-Nov. through Feb.

Tee Off at One Under Urban Golf Club

By SHERI RADFORD

Don't worry about the weather at One Under

Don’t worry about the weather at One Under

Winter golf comes with three big drawbacks in Vancouver: rain, showers and intermittent drizzles. The solution? Take it inside. One Under Urban Golf Club boasts six simulation bays, so you can experience what it’s like to tee off at some of the world’s finest courses—no umbrella required. And the menu of pizzas, salads and snacks, complemented by a comprehensive drinks selection, means the festivities can continue long after the last round of golf is played.

Men in Tights

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Men in tights, tutus and toe shoes

Men in tights, tutus and toe shoes

Like any other dance company, Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo tours with toe shoes and tutus. The difference? The marvellous all-male troupe. Outfitted in drag, the dancers poke fun at classic ballets such as Swan Lake and Paquita, all while en pointe. However, along with the over-the-top costumes and campy comedy is impressive dance technique that’s certainly no joke. Catch this bevy of ballerinas at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre on Jan. 24.

Into the Blue at Dundarave Print Workshop + Gallery

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Jenny Hards' "The By-Way"

Jenny Hards’ “The By-Way”

Dundarave Print Workshop + Gallery has the blues—from cyan to cerulean, and everything in-between. Explore the sapphire shade in Mood Indigo, which highlights the cool, calming and expansive qualities of the hue through etchings, monotypes and relief prints. Get lost in Jenny Hards’ serene horizon (“The By-Way,” pictured), and other works by gallery artists, Jan. 5 to Feb. 1.

Abstracts by Eli Bornowsky

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

"Sleep 1'

“Sleep 1″ by Eli Bornowsky

Vancouver-based Eli Bornowsky is known for his ever-evolving abstracts. The latest addition to his oeuvre includes a series of nearly identical forms that invite a second glance (“Sleep 1,” pictured). So what inspires the prolific artist’s growing portfolio? Expressionism, cubism, Renaissance painting and even his own studio—and that’s just to start. See his prints, drawings and paintings in All Is Unmentionable, Up in the Air at Burnaby Art Gallery (to Jan. 18).

Waiting for Beckett

By SHERI RADFORD

A radio play on stage: All That Fall (Photo: Tim Matheson)

A radio play on stage: All That Fall. (Photo: Tim Matheson)

For half a century, no one was allowed to watch All That Fall. Samuel Beckett refused all requests to turn his radio play into a stage play. Finally, in 2012, the playwright’s estate relented, and audiences in London and New York have been lucky enough to see the show, which is staged as a behind-the-scenes glimpse of a radio play being performed. Now Beckett’s creation comes to Canadian soil for the first time, with a production Dec. 29 to Jan. 24 at the Historic Theatre at the Cultch. What are you waiting for?

Forbidden City: Inside the Court of China’s Emperors

By LAURA DENNIS

"Portrait of Emporer Qianlong's Concubine"

“Portrait of Emporer Qianlong’s Concubine” from the Beijing Palace Museum

Go to a time of mystery that has captivated the world since the 1400s. At the Vancouver Art Gallery’s The Forbidden City: Inside the Court of China’s Emperors (to Jan. 11), peek behind gates that were closed for 500 years. Many of the artefacts from Beijing’s Palace Museum—including paintings (pictured) and armour—have never left the city. Don’t miss this rare glimpse into Imperial China.

CONTACT Winter Music Festival

By LAURA DENNIS

Catch Zedd at CONTACT Winter Music Festival

Catch Zedd at this popular music fest

Sports fans in foam fingers are replaced with partygoers in furry boots and glow sticks when BC Place Stadium hosts the largest indoor music fest in Western Canada. CONTACT Winter Music Festival (Dec. 26 and 27) features some of the world’s most-coveted DJs, including headliners Armin van Buuren and Zedd (pictured), spinning at the state-of-the-art stadium. Lose yourself in a light show using all the latest technology or step out for some fresh air and catch more artists playing on the tented outdoor stage.

A Christmas Tradition

By SHERI RADFORD

Young Clara and the Nutcracker (Photo: Vince Pahkala)

Young Clara and the Nutcracker (Photo: Vince Pahkala)

When the Nutcracker ballet returns to Vancouver this month, expect your old favourites—Clara, the Sugar Plum Fairy, the Nutcracker Prince, the exquisite music of Tchaikovsky—along with a few uniquely Canadian additions: a hockey game on a snowy pond, a battle on Parliament Hill. Catch all the fun Dec. 12 to 14 at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre.

Bobbie Burgers’s Pretty Petals

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

"The Lure of Magical Thinking" by Bobbie Burgers

“The Lure of Magical Thinking” by Bobbie Burgers

At this time of year, the most gorgeous gardens are indoors, not out. Especially at Bau-Xi Gallery, where a room of bold-hued blooms by Bobbie Burgers can be found in The Lure of Magical Thinking (Dec. 11 to 24). The Vancouver-based artist is known for her fresh florals, and her most recent works explore mature and dying flowers with thick, layered colours and lush sculptural elements (“The Lure of Magical Thinking #1,” pictured). It’s the same beautiful blossoms, just in a different light.

In the Spirit

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Gary McMillan's "Economical Use of Three Bears"

Gary McMillan’s “Economical Use of Three Bears”

For artworks that are merry and bright, head to Elissa Cristall Gallery for Holiday Exhibition (Dec. 11 to Jan. 10). This lively collection includes Gary McMillan’s whimsical landscapes (“Economical Use of Three Bears,” pictured), which feature natural settings that are carefully rearranged and reimagined. Also gracing the gallery walls: minimalist abstracts by Camrose Ducote and Christopher Friesen, super-saturated landscapes by Lesley Finlayson and airy collages by Jessie McNeil.