Tag Archives: Dance

Encounter Comes To The York Theatre October 17 – 22, 2017

10 Oct

EncounterChristopherJosephThe best in physical theatre comes to the Cultch in conjunction with Diwali. Encounter is a story about an Indigenous woman, Dopdi, and her communities’ struggle to uphold the Indigenous life and her defiance against injustice. Created for the stage by Aparna Sindhoor, S M Raju, and Anil Natyaveda, Encounter is a tribute to the Indigenous people’s history. It is a passionate story of female power that delves into the struggles and challenges of the indigenous communities of India. Aparna Sindhoor, co-writer of Encounter says “The word ‘Encounter’ has a specific meaning in the Indian (South Asian) context. It is a euphemism for the state orchestrated ‘chance meetings,’ to get rid of (kill, or torture and kill) the so-called enemies of the state.” The performance features acrobatics and original music which pays tribute to Indigenous peoples’ history from around the world. The show runs October 17 – 22, 2017 at the York Theatre. Tickets are available at The Cultch.

Contributing Writer Tiva Quinn reviews Encounter:

Encounter is a dance-play that is political, sensual, humorous and informative. There’s a bit of every possible emotion along the way, but, ultimately, it’s also a story about an enormous tragedy.

The dancers portray members of an indigenous group in India who find that their land is being taken for mining, while their water is being diverted for factories. In order to survive at all, they have no choice but to “steal” water from the wells of a wealthy landowner nearby, and so the military is called to put a stop to this crime.

The dancers also portray members of the military who have been sent to break up the “rebellion.” At one point, they tell us stories about why they joined the armed forces, and most of the stories are relatable – one needs to feed his family, one is saving to send her daughter to college, and of course one is in love with his gun, but there’s no distinction among them when their leader asks them to do “the needful” and try to get information from a prisoner.

In the South Asian context, “encounter” refers to times when the army captures suspected rebels and tortures or kills them. The story opens and closes on a scene of one such torture, and yes, it’s told through dance. The troupe are all very talented and they create some visually arresting tableaus out of these scenes. And in a world where a show like 24 asks us to identify with the torturer, why shouldn’t we have art that asks us to identify with both the torturer and those who are tortured?

If you’re looking for a note of hope, a sense of closure, or a call to action that makes you feel like you can make a difference, there isn’t one. It wouldn’t be especially true to the reality of the situation if there was.

Do I recommend seeing it, though? Yes.

Photo Credit: Christopher Joseph

Advertisements

Walk For Reconciliation To Strathcona Park September 24, 2017

20 Sep

WeAreAllOneThe first-ever Reconciliation Expo will be held Sunday, September 24th.  The event begins at 10:00 am with a 2 km walk that starts at 650 Cambie Street and travels to Strathcona Park.  After the walk, there are a host of activities lined up for the day at the Expo that continues till 3:00 pm. The event will include community booths with information about reconciliation, cultural activities as well as presentations by community groups.  Along side the events, there will be an area dedicated to local artisans. This is a great opportunity to experience local Indigenous art and culture.  There will also be an area for children to play educational games and a space for Indigenous craft making. If you get hungry while there, a variety of Vancouver based food-trucks serving ethnically-diverse foods will be on hand.

The day also features musicians, dance groups and a host of activities and exhibits some of which we’ve set out below. To see a full rundown of events, we invite you to visit reconciliationcanada.ca: 

Exhibit: Site Unseen (Gitga’at and West Vancouver Youth – Mural of Merging Voices) 

A unique and innovative project supports links between different groups of coastal youth. To deepen the understanding of their unique cultures and lands, students from the District of West Vancouver and the Gitga’at Nation in Hartley Bay worked together to create a large art installation that explores reconciliation among youth.

Exhibit: National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation 

An exhibit from the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation that explores working together for a strong future and better understanding of reconciliation.

Exhibit: Carey Newman’s Witness Blanket (Full-Size Replica)

Inspired by a woven blanket, the Witness Blanket is a large-scale art installation, made out of hundreds of items reclaimed from Residential Schools, churches, government buildings and traditional and cultural structures including Friendship Centres, band offices, treatment centres and universities, from across Canada. The Witness Blanket stands as a national monument to recognise the atrocities of the Indian Residential School era, honour the children, and symbolise ongoing reconciliation.

Weavers Corner

Facilitated by the Earthand Gleaners Society and a diverse group of Indigenous and non-Indigenous weavers, this will be a tactile, interactive space to learn more about the craft of weaving from multiple cultural perspectives. The space will be hands-on, inviting participants to engage with plants native to this territory and learn more about the social history of weaving.

Kairos Blanket Exercise

The KAIROS Blanket Exercise is an interactive learning experience that teaches the Indigenous rights history we’re rarely taught. Developed in response to the 1996 Report of the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples, which recommended education on Canadian-Indigenous history as one of the key steps to reconciliation, the Blanket Exercise covers over 500 years of history.

On-site Mural Painting

The Vancouver Mural Festival will host an interactive mural site where with spray paint where participants can add their message of hope or reconciliation. There will also be several commissioned artists creating pieces during the Expo that aim to capture the energy and experience of the Walk for Reconciliation.

Commitment Gallery

Using the pre-existing infrastructure of the tennis court in Strathcona Park, Reconciliation Canada will facilitate the creation of a temporary Commitment Gallery. This will serve as an opportunity for participants to make a personal pledge towards reconciliation following their participation in the Walk. Commitment Cards will be exhibited on the fence to visually display and celebrate actions.

Tango Lessons At The Italian Cultural Centre Friday Nights September-October

30 Aug

TangoDanceIf you are looking for a fun date night, we invite you to check out Tango lessons being offered every Friday night at the Italian Cultural Centre starting this Friday, September 1st. If you are not familiar with tango, it is a partnered dance that originated in the 1880s in Argentina and became so popular it spread to the rest of the world. No surprise why, this is one sexy dance. Starting September 1st, Italian tango instructor Adrian Reda, will introduce you to the world of tango and teach you and your partner the fundamental movements. The class is open to beginners and those with a few steps under their belt. The classes run every Friday for the next 2 months for 1 1/2 hours at a cost of $20 per class or $60 for the month. Classes are also offered in 3 languages, English Italian and Spanish. To register, call the Italian Cultural Centre at 604.430.3337.

East Van Extravaganza Saturday May 20, 2017 At The Rio Theatre

17 May

AffordableConcertSeriesIf you are looking for a fun night out, maybe listen to some live music and dance, you may wish to check out this East Van Extravaganza happening Saturday at the Rio Theatre. They are hosting the Affordable Concert Series which consists of a line up of 4 bands, being Disco Funeral with an energetic and electric vibe, then there’s Hard Rock Miners with Hillbilly Party Punk, next up is Rio Samaya with their South American Latin fusion and The Walkins which we hear will get you grinding and grooving.  As this is East Van, this event is come as you are whether it’s your Daytons, Blundstones, Berkinstocks or anything in between, you are invited to come down and get into the groove.  Tickets are a very reasonable $20 in advance or $25 at the door.  If you are organized and plan to go with a group of friends, you can purchase a group pack of 10 tickets for $150.  Note, this event has bar service thus not suitable for minors. Must be 19+. Come get your groove on. To get your tickets in advance, visit Rio Theatre.

How To Be At The Cultch April 12-15, 2017

31 Mar

HowToBe-300x240Do you ever wonder how to be in any given situation?  Maybe you ‘should’ have said this, or ‘should’ have done that. What do you think of someone that didn’t say the ‘right’ thing? Whether it’s family, friends or co-workers, we are often second guessing ourselves to what avail? Creator and choreographer Tara Cheyene Friedenberg will endeavor to shed light on our ‘shoulds’, ‘woulds’ and ‘coulds’ by bringing you a blend of dance, theatre and comedy all on one stage in How To Be. This performance has some local talent behind it include Marcus Youssef and Josh Martin. How To Be kicks off April 12 at The Cultch for a short run to April 15th. Tickets are available from $20 online or by phone.

All Hell Is Breaking Loose At The Cultch November 8-12

7 Nov

allhell_landscape-davest-pierreNow that we have your attention, we think more than the title of this show will get your attention. All Hell is Breaking Loose features four male dancers who plan to deconstruct the typical North American stereotypes of men. That being, the t-shirt wearing, beer swilling baseball crazed with the occasional violent outburst. Then add to that the confusion of some men and oh, the mood swings not just reserved for women. The show choreographed by Frederick Gravel explores masculinity through dance and music.  The show kicks off Tuesday, November 8th at the Historic Theatre in The Cultch and runs to November 12th.  Tickets start at $20 and are available online via The Cultch. Please note, this show does contain male nudity.

What people are saying about All Hell Breaking Loose:

“An explosive exploration of masculinity that is half dance, one quarter performance art, and one quarter rock show”
The Ottawa Citizen

“A show that exacerbates the beauty of the complaint as the cry, howl desperate and beautiful from the injured animal.”
Paris Art (Paris, France)

Photo Credit: Dave St. Pierre

Vine Arts Festival Happens August 17-20

17 Aug

WebOver 40 artists will be participating in the 2nd Annual Vine Arts Festival starting August 17th. This is a community-driven event which features visual and performing artists along with eco-conscious community leaders, herbalists, musicians, urban farmers and woodcarvers.  The festival is a celebration of the Coast Salish landscape with a focus on re-wilding the city. There are a number of performances and eco-events taking place in 4 East Vancouver parks specifically Maclean Park, Norquay Park, Trout Lake Park and Pandora Park.  At one of the events, Lori Wiedenhammer, author of Victory Garden For Bees will be on hand running workshops as will Lori Snyder, who is a First Nations herbalist and urban foraging expert. An interesting new addition to this year’s festival includes the  Grass-Roots Project. The director, Heather Lamoureux has commissioned three activists to create works focusing on art as a tool for social change. Also, there will be a ‘teaser showcase’ of an upcoming youth project from The Only Animal Theatre Company which will be premiering at the Vancouver Fringe Festival called ‘Generation Hot’.  For a full rundown of what events are happening in which park, we invite you to check out their website which has all the details.  Note, all the events are free and the main event takes place this Saturday, August 20th at Trout Lake/John Hendry Park from Noon to 7:00 pm.  

Vines Art Festival Photo (4)

%d bloggers like this: