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Archive for January, 2014

Finding Happiness In The Year of The Horse: Gung Hay Fat Choy!
by Staff Writer

by C. Farley

Right about now, and in every time zone in the world, millions of Chinese are celebrating the new Year of the Horse with food, fire works, parade and family gatherings. If you want to join in the fun, take your friends, and family members to see the parade, eat some Chinese food and take in some family entertainment.

The Lunar New Year welcomes 2014 as the year of the wood horse which is part of the 12-year cycle that makes up the Chinese zodiac.

You’ll find dozens of events happening in and around Vancouver. So whether you are looking for cultural shows or seeing the famous lion dance for the first time, there will be plenty to do and see. You might even want to have your fortune told by a Chinese fortune teller!

If you are planning to dine at a Chinese restaurant, book early and ask you waiter for some recommendations.

Take a look:


River Rock Casino in Richmond

Starting Jan 31, the casino offers free giveaways, a fortune teller by donation, lion dances and more. http://www.riverrock.com/chinesenewyear/

River District Chinese New Year Celebration
When: Sunday. February 2. 2014
Where: River District Centre | 8683 Kerr Street | Vancouver
It’s the Year of the Horse! Gallop on over and celebrate Chinese New Year at River District on Sunday, February 2 from 1:00-3:00pm.  There’s a lion dance and kung fu performance, taste and sample teas, participate in festive activities, enter for a chance to win prizes, receive red pockets, and more!

International Village Mall

You can sample some New Year’s food, shop for something different and take in  a ceremonial eye-dotting ritual and lion dance, ending with on the last day with a cultural extravaganza, the Chinese New Year Parade and more. • 88 W. Pender St. • Jan. 30-Feb. 2 • 604-646-1081

Chinese New Year Potluck Lunch
Bring a dish and celebrate with friends old and new. Presented by the Richmond Multicultural Community Services, this event includes draw prices, lucky money and activities for children and adults. • RMCS Richmond Caring Place, 7000 Minoru Blvd. • Jan. 30, noon-3 p.m. • 604-279-7160 to register, rmcs.bc.ca

Chinese New Year
There’s entertainment and more here. • Aberdeen Centre, 4151 Hazelbridge Way, Richmond • Jan. 30, 8 p.m.-12:10 a.m. • aberdeencentre.com

See Chinese ink brush calligraphy demonstrations, fortune-telling and a traditional lion dance. • Vancouver International Airport, near The Spirit of Haida Gwaii: The Jade Canoe sculpture, Richmond • Jan. 31, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. • yvr.com

Lunar New Year’s Celebrations
Learn and take part in customs and traditions as you enjoy celebratory snacks and green tea. • 411 Seniors Centre Society, 704-333 Terminal Ave. • Jan. 31, 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. • $3, free for members, 604-684-8171, 411seniors.bc.ca

Yahoan Centre
Catch the dragon dance, lion dance, fire crackers and more. • 700 No. 3 Rd., Richmond • Jan. 31, 11 a.m. start • yaohan.com

Year of the Horse Lion Dance Celebration
Come watch the lion dance weave throughout the mall. • Richmond Public Market, 8260 Westminster Hwy. • Jan. 31, 3-5 p.m.

 Oakridge Centre

This Year of the Horse, Chinese New Year celebration features stage performances and more. • 650 W. 41st Ave. • Feb. 1, 10 a.m.-12:30 p.m. • Free, 604-261-2511, oakridgecentre.com

Lougheed Town Centre: 
Korean Drum Parade, Korean performances, Chinese Lion Dance, Choy Chang and more. • 9855 Austin Ave., Burnaby • Feb. 1, 10:30 a.m. • Free, lougheedtowncentre.com

Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden, 578 Carrall St. • Feb. 2, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. • By donation, vancouverchinesegarden.com

Vancouver Chinatown Spring Festival
Celebrate the Year of the Horse with the annual Chinese New Year Parade. • Chinatown • Feb. 2, parade starts at 11 a.m. • Free, cbavancouver.ca

2014 CIBC LunarFest
Watch live entertainment, the two-story-tall rocking horse installation and more. • Vancouver Art Gallery Plaza, 801 W. Georgia St. • Feb. 7-9, 11 a.m.-7 p.m. • Free, 604-263-9311, lunarfest.org

University of British Columbia
Take a seat and watch the performances from professional Lion Dancers, UBC students and the UBC Chinese Music Ensemble. • Asian Centre, 1871 West Mall, UBC • Feb. 7, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. • Free, 604-822-0019, asia.ubc.ca

The Vancouver Public Library
Take in a discovery  of Aboriginal and Chinese culture. Enjoy documentary screenings, author readings, traditional Chinese dragon dancing and more. • Vancouver Public Library, Central Branch, 350 W. Georgia St. • Feb. 8, 1:30-4:30 p.m. • Free, 604-331-3603, vpl.ca/events

VSO: Classical music meets the Wooden Horse
The Vancouver Symphony Orchestra features Maestro Long Yu who will conduct this concert that includes Butterfly Lovers Concerto, featuring sought-after Chinese violinist Wen Wei. • Orpheum Theatre • Feb. 8, 7:30 p.m. • $25-$88, 604-876-3434, vancouversymphony.ca

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Below: Colorful guides entertain visitors at The Forbidden Palace, China. Photo below: Richard Farley


















by C Farley

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January 31st

General Interest

Strange, Surreal and Delightful –Gob Squad’s Kitchen Delivers An Amazing Theatrical Experience That is Daring and Philosophical
by Staff Writer

By C. Farley

Although the setting is 1965, the time frame is one where the women and men are daring, love to party and experiment. Gob Squad’s Kitchen is the title of a play that was recently performed as part of Vancouver’s PuSh festival. Daring and original, the bare-bones set takes you to a time of innocence, preVietnam War, and where the quirky films of  of Andy Warhol inspired the live video and performance techniques undertaken by the male and female actors.

Although at times silly and absurd, the more crazier the scenes became, the more the play took a deeper philosophical meaning. In fact, near the end of the play, the actors cleverly enticed a few audience members  to take over their roles.  What did this all mean? Was there any method to this madness? The play arguably offers a way for the audience to revisit the whole theme of art imitating life and  life imitating art.  Inspired by Warhol’s daring films including the “Sleep” and “The Kiss,” the production  also playfully reenacts some of the films by cutting the theatre into three live video projections. At the end of the production, one is left shaking one’s heads in awe of the brilliant production and maybe coming away with the very idea that there is beauty in doing every day things like talking, and even sleeping. Very much Buddist indeed.

If Andy Warhol were alive today, he would probably not be too surprised that the every day, the mundane is now very much considered art. Witness Youtube, Instagram pics for example.

There’s still time to catch some more daring, experimental shows. The PuSh festival is still on until Feb 2. http://pushfestival.ca.  The festival also offers music, dance, discussions and workshops for artists and the general public.

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January 19th


A Horse Experience Like No Other: Experience Cavalia! Now Showing in Vancouver
by Staff Writer

If you happen to be driving by Pacific Blvd, close to downtown Vancouver, and happen to see big top canopies draping a large area, you are not seeing things. It is for the travelling showcase that is called Cavalia. Expect to see lots of beautiful horses, acrobats, visual effects and more.

Since I love horses and rode them in my youth, I am always intrigued by this majestic beast. I have always been aware that horses hold a very special, magical  place on this earth. Horses have been used for centures to help man get from place to place , used in fields to plow crops, help men fight wars, the list goes on.

Odysseo by Cavalia hope to transform viewers into a place where more than 60 horses and an international cast play and show a bond like no other.  The show promises viewers a stage that  features a real carousel and a jaw-dropping 302,000-litre lake in front of large videos the size of three IMAX screens. Odysseo is a two-hour experience that promises to bring man and horse to a level of that is dream-like, magical and epic.  Check it out: http://www.cavalia.net/en/odysseo/tickets-info/vancouver-bc-can/calendar


January 3rd


What’s Cutting Edge About The Annual PuSh Festival? Check It Out: January 14-February 2
by Staff Writer

If the winter blues are getting you down, and you are looking for something that is cutting edge, strange, philosophical  and experimental, then you may want to check out the 10th annual PuSh festival –Vancouver’s  International Performing Arts Festival, held in various venues around the city.

After browsing through the program guide recently, I was amazed at the wide-variety of shows offered at the festival.  The festival features artists who originate locally, nationally and internationally. Organizers hope that the works are inspirational, creative, unconventional, cutting edge, memorable and ultimately will be thoroughly entertaining.  Now in its 10th year, the festival screams excitement, surprises  and fun. I look forward to seeing some shows  myself, particularly L.A Party/An Evening With William Shatner Asterisk. I am certainly not sure what to expect, but based on the program guide, I can expect to see New York Theatre artist, Phil Soltanoff weave his creative skills in two shows that involve  story-telling, live video and special effects. And just how will Captain James T. Kirk of the Original Star Trek be presented in this show? Will he be waxing philosophic about human ways, or fighting alien forces? It’s billed as two one-man shows – with no man. Intriguing.

For something that is edgier, and based on current events, Seeds, (Jan 22-26) may be what you want to see, since after all we are probably eating it. This docu-theatre work is about the large multinational giant, Monsanto, famous for its genetically modified crops, trying to win a legal battle against a Saskatchewan farmer who is no doubt fighting for naturally-produced crops. We’ll watch this war of words in a suspenseful play with actors exhorting quotes from court transcripts and interviews.  This show comes courtesy of Montreal’s Porte Parole, which uses theatre as a way to stimulate political dialogue. How enlightening.

There are also dance shows. Take the interpretative production called, Usually Beauty Fails. (Jan 28-30)  Quebec choreographer, Frédérick Gravel brings dancers, pop music and musicians together in a show that is supposed to be about beauty, love and relationships.  The photo of the half-naked dancers in the program contorting their bodies makes me think that the viewers will be in for a big surprise.

From Dublin, Ireland comes a tragic true story of family loss and acceptance. Have I No Mouth is the name of the show that promises to deliver its theme in way that is unconventional, pioneering and truthful. It plays Jan 30-  Feb 1.

For a full schedule of events, presentation talks, and a description of all the shows and prices, better hurry to the website before the secret is out. After all, some of the venues have limited seating and tickets may be hard to come by later.  http://pushfestival.ca/tickets-venues/book-shows/



January 2nd

General Interest
January 2014
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