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Eastside Culture Crawl’s 3rd Annual Art, Bike & Beer Crawl July 14, 2018

19 Jun

ArtBeerCrawl2018The Eastside Culture Crawl is hosting their 3rd Annual Art, Bike & Beer Crawl on Saturday, July 14, 2018.  This is fundraiser for the Eastside Culture Crawl Society which does a great job showcasing some of the amazing artistic talent we have in East Van.  As the name depicts, you will be taken on a crawl of 4 breweries, names to be announced, but their official beer sponsor is Strange Fellows Brewing which is also where the wrap tour will be held along with light eats.  The beer crawl will feature tasting flights at each brewery along with tours and/or chats on beer as well as art exhibits at certain spot on the tour.  The event happens rain or shine and you are invited to cycle or walk the Art, Bike & Beer Crawl.  Tickets are $55 and available from Eventbrite.  You must be 19 years or older to participate in this event.

Eat.Drink.Play. At The Firehall Arts Centre June 14, 2018

6 Jun

EatDrinkPlay2018The Firehall Arts Centre invites you to Eat.Drink.Play. being held on Thursday, June 14th from 7:00 pm – 10:00 pm at the Firehall Arts Centre, 280 East Cordova Street.  This annual fundraiser brings together some of East Van’s best restaurants, craft brewers, small-batch distillers and performers for an evening of sampling and sharing.  The event takes over the Firehall’s entire premises including theatre, lobby, studio, courtyard as well as the dressing rooms.  Throughout the Firehall, you will find an array of delectable treats, eclectic dance, music and performances as well as a silent auction.  Eat.Drink.Play will feature selections of food from neighbourhood hot spots including The Pint, Tuc Craft Kitchen, Cadeaux Baker, Crab Park Chowdery, Kofta, Elephant & Castle.  Libations will be provided the kind folks at Steamworks Brewery nand Odd Society Spirits as well as Hoochy Boooch kombucha.  You can expect a smorgasbord of delectable treats and enjoyable performances as you roam through the heritage building sampling food, enjoying libations, and bidding on some amazing silent auction items. For music and laughter, Krystle Dos Santos, recently seen in the Chelsea Hotel will be on hand as will Andy Toth seen in the Firehall’s Urinetown The Musical and a few more guests. The Firehall Arts Centre has been producing performing arts for 35 years in this beautiful heritage building at the corner of Cordova and Gore. We invite you to lend your support for our City’s vibrant and innovative arts community. Tickets for Eat.Drink.Play are $49 and $25 for artists and are available online at Firehall Arts Centre.

Contributing Writer Tiva Quinn Checks Out rEvolver Festival On Until June 3rd

1 Jun

RevolverFestivalContributing writer, Tiva Quinn, checked out a few shows being featured as part of the rEvolver Festival. This festival featuring young contemporary artists is on now at The Cultch until June 3rd.  Get out and see for yourself what’s on. Visit The Cultch for tickets.

BUG 

Bug clearly shows that young Ojibwe artist Yolanda Bonnell is a performer and creator to watch. In this one-woman show about addictions, intergenerational trauma and the foster care system, Yolanda portrays a young woman growing up too fast and accepting abusive relationships into her life as a sign that she matters to someone. She also portrays the young woman’s mother, wrestling with her addictions and with questions about whether or not she deserved to have her child taken away by the government. And in a strange and powerful way, she also gives voice to the power of addiction and intergenerational trauma itself, manifesting as Manidoons – the Ojibwe word for bug or worm. The two human characters, mother and daughter, become stunningly real and complex in a short period of time – while the Manidoons are represented as a simple, genuinely creepy being who cares only about gaining more and more control over human lives.

PROBABILITY

Next I went to Probability, a show about two women who may or may not end up in love, and may or may not succeed in making a go of it if they do. Probability managed to be laugh out loud funny in  several places, while also digging into some pretty deep material about the things we want and the things we fear in intimate relationships. The improv game technique of having two actors represent the characters in the story while another two represent their inner monologues is used to excellent effect here – a lot of the ProbabilityPosterfunniest moments and also the most painful, heart-tugging moments come from the difference between what the characters say and what’s going on in their minds. It also means that we get to see the process in motion both when they try to protect themselves and when they try to reveal themselves. All four actresses do a terrific job here, and the set deserves honorable mention as well.

KITT & JANE

Last, I saw Kitt & Jane: An Interactive Survival Guide to the Near-Post-Apocalyptic Future which was also a mix of comedy and serious themes, but with a lot more emphasis on the comedy. Kitt and Jane depicts the antics of two 8th graders who take over their school assembly and decide to present about the coming eco-apocalypse instead of their assigned topic, the life cycle of the salmon. Like actual 8th graders, the actors are incredibly funny at several points along the way, but they also take their  obsessions a bit too far and wear on our nerves at times. The show’s creators cite Adventure Time, Big Mouth, and Gravity Falls as some of their influences and the show definitely is a lot like watching human cartoons. If you enjoy the humor in characters who never quite realize when they’ve gone too far, you might just love this show.

Photo Credit: Patricia Trinh

 

Nicole Alivojvodic Reviews 12 Minute Madness – rEvolver Festival

28 May

12MinuteMadnessChrisRandleThis year’s rEvolver Festival is focusing on women creators as all the mainstage shows have either been created or co-created by women. One of these shows, 12 Minute Madness, features an entirely female cast. Incredibly dark and candid, the show’s 12 performers give the audience a twisted look into the mind of a sexual abuse survivor. Earning a standing ovation on opening night, this tale is as raunchy as it is poignant – a piece that has necessarily been born out of the #MeToo movement.

The story follows a young woman, Marlena, as she recalls repressed memories of the sexual abuse she suffered as a child at the hands of her own grandfather. Instead of representing different players in this story in the outside world, each character in the production embodies a different part of Marlena’s psyche as she grapples with what has happened to her and questions the reliability of her own memories. There’s shame, there’s sadness, there’s anger and there’s reason (to name a few) and all contribute to complete madness inside Marlena’s head.

This production offers a glance into the mind and soul of a victim of sexual abuse and calls for audiences to realize the multi-faceted and contradictory thoughts and feelings that occur in the mind alone, before even reaching the world outside. rEvolver Festival continues at The Cultch until June 3rd.

By Contributing Writer: Nicole Alivojvodic

Photo Credit: Chris Randle

 

Nicole Alivojvodic Reviews The Only Good Indian – rEvolver Festival

24 May

OneGoodIndianPhotoGrahamIsadorPandemic Theatre’s The Only Good Indian, presented by Upintheair Theatre, is on now at the Cultch for the 2018 rEvolver Festival. Performed by several different artists throughout the run of the festival, this piece is part lecture, part meditation and part threat. In it’s West Coast premiere, Toronto’s Jivesh Parasram delivers a funny, yet disturbing and thought provoking account of his experience as an “other” in a world of purported shared human experience.

Each night of The Only Good Indian, a different performer straps themselves into a suicide vest and attempts to rationalize such an “irrational” decision. In doing so, the performer forces the audience to think about, look at, and listen to things that are uncomfortable – visiting dark corners of the human mind which are cast aside in polite conversation.

The aim of the project is to explore the idea of “pluriversality” – the belief that there are many world views and many cosmologies which comprise the whole. This concept is in direct contravention of the idea of a “common truth”, a claim that suggests there is a correct way to think, speak and act, which is so prevalent in the western world and even right here in our community. The Only Good Indian is an experiment which forces people to question their own prejudices and privileges, however “woke” they think they might be.

For tickets to this production, as part of the 2018 rEvolver Festival, visit The Cultch.

By Contributing Writer Nicole Alivojvodic

Photo Credit: Graham Isador

Victim Impact At The Cultch June 8-17, 2018

17 May

VictimImpactTheatre Conspiracy brings a unique documentary to the stage at The Cultch, Victim Impact. The production features the story of former notary public, Rashida Samji who drew her family, friends and community into a vast web of deceit in her Ponzi scheme. For those unfamiliar with a Ponzi scheme, it is a “a fraudulent investing scam promising high rates of return with little risk to investors. The Ponzi scheme generates returns for older investors.”   This documentary features some of the mysterious aspects of this case from 2003 to 2012.  The show looks at the fallout of those that got sucked into the vortex of civil and criminal trials.  Over 200 people lost large sums of money in this fraud involving $110 million.   Tickets are available online at The Cultch. Note there are concession tickets for $10 for seniors, students and the unemployed/underemployed. Victim Impact runs from June 8th to June 17th.

Nicole Alivojvodic Reviews Bears On Now At The Cultch Till May 12th

10 May

BearsFrom Alberta Aboriginal Performing Arts and Punctuate! Theatre comes this dark comedy about the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain Pipeline. Written and directed by Matthew MacKenzie, Bears strives to increase dialogue about the devastating effects economic greed is taking on the lands of our country’s First Nations peoples. Beautifully performed by a group of talented actors and dancers, the audience was brought to their feet in a standing ovation on opening night.

The story follows Floyd, the prime suspect in a workplace accident at an Alberta oil refinery, who, while being pursued by the RCMP, makes an epic westbound trek through the Rocky Mountains along the route of the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain Pipeline. While Floyd embarks on this journey, a chorus of contemporary dancers embody his natural surroundings – impressively bringing to life everything from strawberry bushes, to spawning salmon, to an avalanche.

For tickets to this unapologetically political production, on now until May 12 at Historic Theatre, visit The Cultch.

By Contributing Writer: Nicole Alivojvodic

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