Vancouver International Flamenco Festival Kicks Up Its Heels.

From September 13 to 29, The Vancouver International Flamenco Festival will bring Vancouver stages to life with a thrilling line-up of local and international flamenco artists.

Venues including Vancouver Playhouse, Scotiabank Dance Centre, Roundhouse Community Arts & Recreation Centre, Waterfront Theatre, St James Community Square, Vancouver Public Library will feature free workshops and ticketed performances throughout the festival. 

“Baile De Autor” by Manuel Liñán Company (Spain)

The 2019 Festival proudly presents the Canadian premier of Spain’s Manuel Liñán Company in Baile De Autor. Manuel Liñán is influencing the renewal of both Spanish and flamenco dance.  An accomplished performer and choreographer for other companies, BAILE DE AUTOR unites both of Manuel Liñán skill disiplines.  

The Vancouver International Flamenco Festival also features many of the finest Canadian and International Flamenco artists, program highlights include:  

  • La Musica del Flamenco” with Victor Kolstee and featuring Manuel Liñán Company Artists (Vancouver/Spain)
    Venue The Hall at St James Community Square, Friday September 13, 8pm
  • World Premiere “MAGNETIKAE – a personal journey” by La Otra Orilla (Montreal),
    Venue: Waterfront Theatre Thursday September 26, 8PM
  • Vancouver Premiere “NRITYA” by La Caramelita Flamenco Company (France),
    Venue: Waterfront Theatre, Friday September 27, 8PM
  • World Premiere “Nuevo II” by Flamenco Rosario & Guests (Vancouver/Spain),
    Venue: Waterfront Theatre Saturday September 28, 8PM
“NRITYA” by La Caramelita Flamenco Company (France)

As one of few festivals devoted to Flamenco Art in North America, the Vancouver International Flamenco Festival has helped to develop an understanding of Vancouver’s multicultural audiences by nurturing the form’s hybridized roots in Sephardic, Persian, Gypsy and Indian cultures.  Since its 1990 debut, local producers Flamenco Rosario have grown the Festival into a two week long annual event filling the city’s stages with the vibrant art form. 

Vancouver International Flamenco Festival runs September 13th to 29th, line-up, information and tickets visit vancouverflamencofestival.org

Be Inspired by Iceland at Flyover Canada

The Great White North meets the Land of Fire and Ice as Flyover Canada welcomes Flyover Iceland. 

For a limited run, August 29 to October 20, be inspired by Iceland, the dramatic beauty of sweeping glaciers, stunning seascapes, volcanoes, geysers and hot springs. The ancient Nordic land will impress your senses without having to leave downtown Vancouver. Suspended with your feet dangling in front of a 20 meter curved screen Flyover Iceland with swoop you over the lush landscapes. Feel the wind in your hair, mist against your skin, and your adrenaline spike as your senses are immersed in the experience.  

Flyover Iceland joins Flyover Canada starting August 29, 2019, showing twice per hour on the :15 and :45 of the hour. Guests can experience a double bill of Flyover Iceland with Flyover Canada on a dual tickets, saving 15% off of single tickets.

Flyover Canada is located at the North Point of Canada Place, 999 Canada Place Way on the downtown Vancouver waterfront. Shows commence approximately every 15 to 20 minutes during operating hours;  9:30am to 10pm. The total single show experience will take approximately 25 minutes.  Note: parts of the admission line-up are exposed to the elements so dress appropriately. Tickets are available from the street-side ticket office or online at flyovercanada.com

Help a Rainbow Refugee Resettle in Canada

As we head into Pride Weekend in Vancouver, we reflect on the privileges and freedoms afforded to Canadian citizens. While not perfect, they’re far better than many places around the globe, especially for those identifying as LGBTQ+. Rights have been extended in more and more countries but unfortunately, there are still at least 14 countries where homosexuality is legally punishable by death.

Rainbow Refugee is a Vancouver based community organization supporting people seeking refugee protection in Canada because of persecution based on their sexual orientation, gender identity or expression. Since 2011, Rainbow Refugee Society has worked in partnership with the Federal government to direct a blended sponsorship program called the Rainbow Refugee Assistance Project (RRAP). This is a national project and Rainbow Refugee has the responsibility of working with its own Circles of Hope as well as other community organizations across Canada to sponsor LGBTQ+ asylum seekers.

The Rainbow Connection is one of the Circles of Hope hoping to supporting Rainbow Refugee. We are a group of friends, lead by Mr. Gay Canada 2019, working together to assist a LGBTQ+ person hoping to resettle in Canada. We are grateful to live in Canada and have the ability to live and love in a safe and supportive community. Supporting a person, presently living in an African refugee camp, whose life is in danger because of who they are is our way of sharing the benefits that we have through our citizenship and friendships.

We have set up a Canada Helps donation page to help raise funds online as well as raising offline funds to support our goal. Along with our knowledge and support, the money we raise will assist this Rainbow Refugee to set up a new life in Canada. It will go towards food, housing, transportation, personal health… anything and everything needed every day to live a full life.
We hope you will support us in this endeavour, any little bit you can contribute is greatly appreciated and if you cannot provide monetary support we ask that you share the donation page with your network.

Thank you!

Jack and the Magic Bean comes to Presentation House Theatre

North Vancouver’s Presentation House Theatre and Mexico’s Marionetas de la Esquina present Jack and the Magic Bean, at Presentation House Theatre from April 11th to 28th.

Jack & the Magic Bean pic: Emiliano Leyva

In this whimsical and enlightening adaptation of the classic fairy tale, when Jacky tries to sell her beloved toys to buy food for her family and then trades them for a magic bean, she discovers something much more valuable than money — how to sustainably grow your own food and care for the land.

“This is a delightful and interactive presentation with an incredibly powerful underlying message,” saysKim Selody, Artistic Director of Presentation House Theatre and Director of Jack and the Magic Bean. “Young audiences ages three to eight are urged to accompany Jacky on her journey, helping her grow the beanstalk and climb it, and then become the bugs in the dirt to help make her garden grow. At the same time, the play tackles themes of poverty, irresponsible farming practices, and sustainability, offering a vital and urgent message — we must all learn to respect and care for the Earth for the sake of future generations.”

Jack & the Magic Bean pic: Emiliano Leyva

 Jack and the Magic Bean is a newly imagined version of the original Jessie Award-winning adaptation, written by Vancouver playwright Linda A. Carson, and co-produced by Presentation House Theatre and Mexico’s Marionetas de la Esquina, the company behind last season’s Sleeping Beauty Dreams.  Inspired by its recent international debuts in Kansas City, MO and in Mexico City — in which the play was translated into bilingual and Spanish versions — the beloved tale has been reworked in a joyful collaboration between the award-winning theatre companies.

A 55-minute interactive experience for families with children ages three to eight, Jack and the Magic Bean offers rich imagery and playful immersion, encouraging kids to not just watch Jacky’s story unfold, but to be an active part of its unfolding. Children will be captivated by the narrative’s ‘story gardener’ who needs their fertile imaginations to make the story grow; delightfully scared by the health-conscious ogre who likes to eat humans but refrains due to his indigestion; and gleefully enthusiastic to become the tiny bugs wriggling through the soil — both to escape the grasp of the mighty giant and to help teach Jacky about the process that will ultimately save her garden and help feed her family: composting.

Jack and the Magic Bean, runs from April 11th to 28th, 2019 at Presentation House Theatre, 333 Chesterfield Ave, North Vancouver. Visit phtheatre.org for show details and tickets 

Join the Slow Fish Canada Dinner

Lovers of local seafood are in for a treat as the 5th Chefs’ Table Society of BC’s Slow Fish Canada Dinner returns to the Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts (PICA) on Sunday, September 23rd.

photo: Meighan Makarchuk

This annual event allows seafood lovers to interact with local chefs and indulge in local sustainable seafood. Starting with Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts (PICA) culinary student-prepared canapés, and Frizzante Rosé from Salmon-Safe winery St. Hubertus & Oak Bay Estate Winery, attendees then flow through PICA’s eight professional teaching kitchens to meet the visiting chefs, who will each be preparing a tasting-sized portion of local sustainable seafood delicacies.  Chefs’ Table Society event committee lead by chef Darren Clay, executive culinary chef instructor at PICA, and Poyan Danesh, culinary director at Ocean Mama Seafood welcome guests to a sensational seafood supper.

photo: Meighan Makarchuk

This year’s participating chefs include:

Julian Bond, Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts
Andrea Carlson, Burdock and Co.
Welbert Choi, Forage
Warren Chow, Juniper
Jason Harris, Colette Grand Café at Holt Renfrew
Edgar Kano, Four Seasons Hotel
Greg McCallum, Le Crocodile
Mark Singson, Food Art and Music (Top Chef Canada Finalist Season 6)

Dishes will include the chefs’ creative interpretations of how to serve sustainable local sturgeon, arctic char, Humpback Shrimp, Honey Mussels, Spiny Scallop Geoduck, Albacore tuna and Octopus.
Wines pairings from Peacock & Martin, and several Salmon-Safe BC wineries, will compliment the chef’s creations.

photo: Meighan Makarchuk

The Slow Fish Canada Dinner takes place at Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts, on Granville Island, September 23, 2018, 6pm-9pm.

Tickets are available online now. Only 100 tickets are available for the Slow Fish Canada Dinner. Early Bird $99 (+ taxes and fees) tickets are on sale until September 9th, before rising to $109 from September 10th until sold out.

The evening’s proceeds, as with all Chefs’ Table Society events, help fund scholarship; including one that will be awarded at the Dinner. In addition to fundraising, the event also aims to raise awareness for Slow Fish Canada (a Slow Food initiative) and its role in protecting our oceans.

Canada vs Uruguay Rugby World Cup Qualifier

canada-uruguay-rugbyThis Saturday, Canada hosts Uruguay for 2019 Rugby World Cup qualification.
While the FIFA World Cup will be getting a lot of our attention this year. While us Canadian soccer fan bemoan our lack of attendance at the big tournament,  the general public might not realize Canada’s Men’s Rugby team have taken to the pitch at Rugby World Cup every tournament since its inception in 1987.

If Canada wins this home and home series against Uruguay they move on to their 9th appearance at the Rugby World Cup as the second qualifier from the Americas. Argentina, the number one ranked team in the Americans gained an automatic berth and Team USA has already qualified with a win over Canada for the Americas first qualifying berth.  In the unforeseen circumstances that Canada does not triumph over Uruguay, they can still qualify via the Americas repechage tournament.

Canada hosts Uruguay, in this first of two matches, at BC Place on January 27th, kick off 5pm.  Then Uruguay hosts Canada on February 3rd.  Following the nearly 30,000 audience for the exhibition match versus Maori All-Blacks, Rugby Canada is anticipating another large and excited crowd for this World Cup qualifier.
Gates open January 27, 2018 at 4pm, kick-off 5pm
Tickets from just $14 are available online at rugbycanada.ca

Rugby Canada v Maori All Blacks draw record crowd

On Friday night, BC Place hosted the largest audience for fifteens rugby ever in Canada as our national team played host to Maori All Blacks from New Zealand.

A post shared by Jay Minter (@jminter) on

The energy of the 29,480 fans in BC Place was electric as the two teams made to the pitch for the anthems.  Then the Maori All Blacks performed the much anticipated Haka.  It was a thrill for all in attendance to witness the iconic Maori challenge in person.

While it was a long stretch for a Rugby Canada team to triumph over any All Blacks team, especially with new head coach Kingsley Jones only having just come onboard and getting used to the team.  With just 4 practices in the books with the young team, Jones had to be pleased with their performance. Although it wasn’t a win, the Canadians held the Kiwis to 9-51, not nearly the rout expected.  The Canadians had chances throughout the match showing flashes of skilled play but some costly errors and turnovers allowed the visitors’ skill to shine through.

There was plenty of All Blacks fans amongst the Red and White army but everyone was a fan of an exciting rugby match, which these teams delivered, in spades.
Next up for Rugby Canada is a series of European matches then a World Cup qualifier at BC Place on January 27th as Canada strives to secure a berth in the 2019 Rugby World Cup