Picks of the Week – January 16, 2019

We’re already ticking into the middle of January, the post-Holidays hangover has lifted and city’s entertainment scene is back in full swing. Let’s see what’s happening with these picks of the week…

Lights: It’s your last chance to hop the Millenium SkyTrain to Lafarge-Douglas Station and take in Metro Vancouver’s largest winter light display – Lights at Lafarge ending Sunday.

Canyon Lights
Canyon Lights at Capilano Suspension Bridge

Canyon: Thousands of lights are spread throughout Capilano Bridge Park’s Canyon Lights, lighting up the bridge, Treetops Adventures, as well as 8 of the tallest living Christmas Tree, until January 27th.

Laughs:  Join Vancouver’s queer improv comedy troupe, Queerprov, at The Junction for improv laughter tonight.

Pucks: Vancouver Canucks play a trio of games at Rogers Arena this week; tonight vs Edmonton, Friday vs Buffalo, and Sunday vs Detroit

Noodlemania

Noodles: Tonight, join in the 6th Vancouver Foodster Noodlemania, a tasting tour of noodle dishes from around the world at restaurants all across the city

Queens: Friday night at the Commodore TFD & Live Nation present It’s Just Drag featuring RuPaul’s Drag Race Alumni Vanessa “Vanjie” Mateo & Farrah Moan plus a bevy of Vancouver’s talented drag queens hosted by Joan E.

Arts: The 15th Annual PuSh International Performing Arts Festival gets underway on Thursday bringing world-class performing arts to the city until February 3rd

Improv: The sun has come out so it’s true that the laughter beats the winter blahs as Vancouver Theatresports presents Throwdown – International Theatresports Festival, until January 27th.

Stick: Catch Vancouver Warriors Lacrosse on Saturday at Rogers Arena when they host San Diego Seals

Dine Out – Street Food City photo: Carly Whetter

Dine: Canada’s largest food and restaurant festival, Dine Out Vancouver Festival gets underway this Friday, January 18 until February 3rd

Yoga: Don’t miss your chance to take part in a free yoga class at Gateway Theatre in support of their upcoming Yoga Play.

Dakh Daughters photo: Tetiana Vasylenko

Femme: At The Cultch, check out Dakh Daughters on stage at the York Theatre January 15 – 19, as well as the rest of the line-up in the 2019 Femme Series of shows

JFL NorthWest Promises Vancouver Laughs

Vancouver Just for Laughs Festival, JFL NorthWest brings 10 days of international comedy to Vancouver, February 14 – 23, 2019.

For the fourth year, JFL NorthWest fills the city with the best, boldest and most outrageous stars of stand-up, improv, podcasts, and sketch comedy. The Best of the West draws attention to up-and-coming breakout comedy stars of the future. The concurrent 2nd Annual Just for Laughs Film Festival projects comedy on the big screen, with feature and short film screenings, red carpet events, talk-backs, and panels.

Howie Mandel & Friends: February 14, 2019
Howie Mandel & Friends: February 14, 2019

The laughs kick off on Valentine’s Day with Howie Mandel & Friends at the Orpheum Theatre, and closes on February 23rd with shows like Michelle Wolf at Vogue Theatre, Nicole Byers at Rio Theatre and The Alternative Show with Andy Kindler at Yuk Yuk’s. In between, catch shows from Gabriel Inglesias, Aziz Ansari, Ken Jeong, Fred Armisen, Whitney Cummings, Steve-O, Antoni Porowski and more. Our local comedy scene are well represented by The Ryan & Amy Show, Little Mountain Improv, Nasty Women Comedy, Wes Barker and many more Best of the West.

Michelle Wolf: February 23, 2019
Michelle Wolf: February 23, 2019

The laughter plays out at venues across Vancouver, including the Queen Elizabeth Theatre, Orpheum Theatre, Vogue Theatre, Vancouver Playhouse, Rio Theatre, Biltmore Cabaret, Fox Cabaret, The Comedy Mix, Yuk Yuk’s and many more spots around town.

JFL NorthWest takes place Thursday February 14 – Saturday February 23, 2019. To find the full line-up and book tickets for all shows visit jfrnorthwest.com

Vancouver Foodster launches 1st Vancouver Soup Festival

In the midst of winter,  when nothing comforts like a bowl of soup,  Vancouver Foodster has introduced the 1st Vancouver Soup Festival.

From January 10 to 31, 2019, a different selection of soups will be featured weekly by each of the participating restaurants.

Over the three weeks, the public is invited to visit and try each of the soup entries and choose their favourites. The Vancouver Soup Festival will then have 3 sets of winners, with 1st, 2nd and 3rd place chosen each week over the 3 weeks of the festival. Week one of the festival is on now, until Jan 16, week two runs Jan 17-23, and finally week three is Jan 24-31.

When visiting the and tasting the restaurant’s soup entries, visitors are encouraged to tweet, post on Instagram or Facebook to share their favourite Festival soups, be sure to mention and tag @vanfoodster and #SoupFestYVR so others can follow along.

The weekly entries for the Vancouver Soup Festival include:

Week One:

Location: Moltaqa Restaurant, 51 W Hastings St. Vancouver
Soup: 
Harrira (Chick Pea & Lentil)

Location: Rhinofish Noodle Bar, 550 Main St. Vancouver
Soup: Hun Dun Mian (Wonton)

Location: Las Tortas, 3353 Cambie St, Vancouver
Soup: Pozole Verde (Mexican Corn Stew)

Location: Ban Chok Dee, 20563 Douglas Cr. Langley & 20395 Lougheed Hwy. Maple Ridge
Soup: Gaeng Liang Soup with Cheese Ice Cream (Kabocha Squash)

Location: Liquids + Solids, 901 East Hastings St. & 1550 West Broadway, Vancouver
Soup: The Naughty Thai (Coconut Chicken Curry)

Week Two:

Location: Moltaqa Restaurant, 51 W Hastings St. Vancouver
Soup: Bessara (Green Pea)

Location: Rhinofish Noodle Bar, 550 Main St. Vancouver
Soup: Shu Cai Mian (Vegetable Noodle)

Location: Las Tortas, 3353 Cambie St. Vancouver
Soup: Mexican Lamb Consomme

Location: Ban Chok Dee, 20563 Douglas Cr, Langley & 20395 Lougheed Hwy, Maple Ridge
Soup: Green Pea with Chicken Ravioli Soup

Location: Liquids + Solids, 901 East Hastings St. & 1550 West Broadway, Vancouver
Soup: Grandma’s Chicken Noodle Soup

Week Three:

Location: Moltaqa Restaurant, 51 W Hastings St.
Soup: Loubia (White Bean)

Location: Rhinofish Noodle Bar, 550 Main St.
Soup: Niu Rou Mian (Taiwanese Beef Noodle)

Location: Las Tortas, 3353 Cambie Street
Soup: Mexican Red Lentil Soup

Location: Ban Chok Dee, 20563 Douglas Cr, Langley & 20395 Lougheed Hwy, Maple Ridge
Soup: Tom Yum Hot House Soup (Thai Tom Yum Tomato)

Location: Liquids + Solids, 901 East Hastings St. & 1550 West Broadway, Vancouver
Soup: Garden Variety Chili (Vegan Chili)

For full details on each soup, participating restaurants and to VOTE for your favourites, visit vancouverfoodster.com.

Whitecaps FC reveals 2019 Season

WhitecapsFCThis week, Whitecaps FC and the MLS revealed the 2019 schedule kicking off the preseason February 8, 2019 in Honolulu, HI.  Home fans will get their first look at new coach Marc Dos Santos’ new look team when 34 regular season  gets underway March 2nd hosting Minnesota United FC at home in BC Place.

Vancouver’s regular season includes a home and away game against each Western Conference team, and one match either home or away against Eastern Conference clubs, including a visit to expansion side FC Cincinnati on August 3 ,and a visit from Wayne Rooney’s D.C. United on August 17 at BC Place

In celebration of the historic 1979 NASL Soccer Bowl triumph by the “team from the Village of Vancouver”, Whitecaps FC will host an anniversary match on August 31 against New York City FC, reminiscent of the 2-leg semi-final victory over New York Cosmos at Giants Stadium which sent the Whitecaps to the Soccer Bowl.

Whitecaps Pride Night

Other highlights of the season include Cascadia Cup home fixtures against Seattle Sounders and Portland Timbers in March and May, a visit from Canadian rivals Toronto FC on May 31st.   Community matches include, Jeans Day, in support of BC Children’s Hospital FoundationSaturday, April 27 vs. Philadelphia Union.  Pride Night is Saturday, May 25 vs. FC Dallas and the annual Legends & Stars Charity Match takes place Saturday, September 14 vs. Houston Dynamo.  

The season on Decision Day, as all league matches kick off  at 1 p.m. PT. The ‘Caps host Western Conference rival Real Salt Lake at BC Place in the regular season finale.  The new fixed-bracket, single-elimination format for the Audi 2019 MLS Cup Playoffs begins on October 19 with the 2019 MLS Cup is set for November 10.

The 2019 Canadian Championships schedule is still to be announced.  For more details and information on the Whitecaps FC 2019 season visit whitecapsfc.com

Make a Dash for Dine Out 2019 Tickets

Since 2002 Vancouverites have been filling their winters and bellies with Dine Out Vancouver Festival’s prix fixe menu deals.  What started with just 57 restaurants has grown to become Canada’s largest food and drink festival, with 300+ restaurants, breweries, wineries, events and more to indulge.

Grand Tasting
photo: Carly Whetter

From January 18 to February 3, 2019 restaurants from South Surrey to North Vancouver welcome guests with $15, $25, $35 and $45 fixed price brunch, lunch and dinner menus.  The restaurant menus are revealed and reservations are open to the public today, January 10th,  visit dineoutvancouver.com to start your Dine Out planning.

In addition to a restaurant menus, a series of spectacular tasting events fill the days and evenings.  The events start off with The Grand Tasting, a preview launch event January 17th at Rocky Mountaineer Station. The World Chef Exchange brings chefs from San Diego, London, Sydney, Montreal and Dusseldorf to work with local chefs in their restaurants. Street Food City, the food truck fest is back for its eighth year.

Street Food City
photo: Carly Whetter

Secret Supper Soirees are are back for mysterious dinners. Food & Drink Tours of all kinds fill the festival dates. Many events are already sold out, so if you haven’t check out the Events listings and book soon.

Coming from out of town, or even if you’re local, why not make a night of it and book a night at the Dine Out Special Room Rates or a Dine & Stay package with one of the participating Dine Out Hotel Partners. 

Dine Out Vancouver Festival 2019 runs January 18 – February 3, 2019. For menu information, restaurant and hotel reservations and event tickets visit dineoutvancouver.com

Picks of the Week – January 9, 2019

The holidays have past but still a few remnants of the season live on to keep up feeling a bit festive into January

Lake: This week is the last to visit Harrison Hot Springs Village’s Lights on the Lake sasquatch-themed illuminations.

Lights: Hop the Millenium SkyTrain Line to Lafarge-Douglas Station and enjoy the last weeks of Metro Vancouver’s largest winter light display – Lights at Lafarge until January 20th.

Laughs:  with a new year, comes a new venue for Vancouver’s queer improv comedy troupe, as they move Queerprov Fruit Bowl  to The Junctioni for an evening of laughter tonight, Jan 9th

Bowie: The 4th Annual Bowie Ball – A Celebration of the Life & Music of David Bowie brings an evening of bands benefitting the Canadian Cancer Society to the Rickshaw Theatre on Saturday night

Pucks: The Vancouver Canucks return to home ice, hosting Arizona Coyotes, on Thursday January 10th

Soul: British alternative R&B singer NAO takes the stage at The Vogue Theatre on Saturday with her funky vocals

The Full Light Of Day
photo: Don Lee

Electric: The Electric Company Theatre, in association with the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, presents the world premiere of a provocative new work, The Full Light of Day, at the Vancouver Playhouse from January 7 – 12

Comedy: Just For Laughs Presents Bert Kreischer – Body Shots World Tour for two shows at The Vogue Theatre on Sunday, at 7pm and 9:30pm

Improv: Beat those post-Holiday blahs by beating it with laughter as Vancouver Theatresports presents Throwdown – International Theatresports Festival, until January 27th.

Warriors: Saturday night at Rogers Arena, Vancouver Warriors Lacrosse host the Saskatchewan Rush.

Country: Before it takes off on a USA Tour, get a preview of the story behind country music’s biggest love story as Kitty Night Productions Johnny and June a toe tappin’ musical story of June and Johnny Cash on January 12th at Biltmore Cabaret

 

 

The Sun Will Come Out when Annie takes the stage

Cast of Align Entertainment’s Annie
photo: Emily Cooper

The Sun Will Come Out when Align Entertainment presents the positively perky adventures of everyone’s favourite little orphan. Annie takes the stage at the Michael J. Fox Theatre in Burnaby, February 1–16, 2019.  Following the successful fall production of A Christmas Story: The Musical, Align Entertainment closes the 2018/2019 season with the story of that plucky, optimistic red-haired 11-year-old, Annie.

The Tony and Grammy Award-winning musical is set against the backdrop of the Great Depression, throwing into sharp relief the beauty of the spirited character’s hopefulness in dire times. Featuring a fresh cast of young local talent, the production is a heart-warming antidote to the long grey days of winter.

Annie is a touching and timeless musical with a strong core message that money can’t buy you happiness,” says director and co-producer Chad Matchette. “Oliver Warbucks is the richest man in the country and yet his life is unfulfilled until he meets Annie. This delightful little girl reminds us about the power of love and inspires people to hold onto their dreams against all odds.”

The original Broadway production from 1977 is based on Harold Gray’s widely read comic strip Little Orphan Annie. The 1924 comic was popular for its poignant political commentary, and subsequent adaptations maintained this feature. The story follows the adventures of Annie, who longs to find the parents who left her as a baby on the steps of a New York City orphanage. Tired of matron Miss Hannigan’s cruelty, Annie escapes into the city and befriends the abandoned but loveable mutt Sandy. Upon her return, she is selected to spend Christmas with local billionaire Oliver Warbucks. He is soon won over by her bright outlook and even introduces her to President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Along the way, Annie helps inspire the New Deal, learns the truth about her parents, and finds a loving home to call her own.  

Annie played by Camryn Macdonald
photo: Emily Cooper

With a book by Thomas Meehan (The Producers, Hairspray) and lyrics by Charles Strouse (Bye Bye Birdie), Annie earned seven Tony Awards and seven Drama Desk Awards, and brought the world the iconic songs “Tomorrow” and “It’s the Hard Knock Life” and others. Align Entertainment’s production brings the musical to life with a live 12-piece orchestra under the direction of Kevin Woo and a talented ensemble of a dozen young actors, who were selected from auditions by more than 100 children. 

Several cast members will be making their Align Entertainment debut, including the bright-eyed Camryn Macdonald (Veruca in Delta Youth Theatre’s Willy Wonka Jr.) in the role of Annie and Arne Larsen (Dom Claude Frollo in Secondary Characters’ The Hunchback of Notre Dame) as Oliver Warbucks. Erin Matchette (Mrs. Schwartz in Align’s A Christmas Story) will play Miss Hannigan, and Laura Cowan (Fairy Godmother in Theatre Under the Stars’ Cinderella) will be Grace Farrell, Warbucks’ assistant who first finds Annie. Next week, Align Entertainment begins the Search for Sandy, auditions for the real dog to fill the role of Sandy the dog. If you think your pooch can fill the role, check out alignentertainment.ca for audition information.

Align Entertainment’s Annie runs February 1 – 16, 2019 at Michael J Fox Theatre, 7373 MacPherson Ave. Burnaby