DanceHouse opens with Borderline

Borderline: Kompanie Wang Ramirez
photo: Frank Szafinski

DanceHouse is launching their 2018/19 season with the Canadian premiere of France’s Company Wang Ramirez work, Borderline, playing October 26 and 27, 2018 at 8pm at the Vancouver Playhouse. 

Performed to layered rhythms and spoken word by percussionist, composer LACRYMOBOY (Jean-Philippe Barrios), along with choreographic duo Sébastien Ramirez and Honji Wang combining hip hop and contemporary dance with the movement of martial arts in exploration of democracy, immigration, manipulation, and the place of individuals in society.

“Coinciding with escalating nationalist rhetoric and contentious debates on immigration worldwide, Borderline’s open-ended examination of diasporic identity is more relevant than ever,” says Jim Smith, Artistic and Executive Director of DanceHouse. “As Canada is largely a country of immigrants, local audiences will resonate with the work’s illumination of the beauty and the challenges inherent in embodying more than one culture — honouring multiple traditions and languages, while forging a new blended identity of one’s own. Company Wang Ramirez has created a theatrical experience that will linger long after the curtain falls, and stimulate essential discourse about the future of democracy.”

Dancehouse Borderline
photo: Agethe Poupeney

Choreographed in 2013, Borderline consists of several thoughts, ideas, and moments that question the meaning of democracy. Wang and Ramirez are joined on stage by fellow dancers Louis Becker, Johanna Faye, and Saïdo Lehlouh, along with aerial rigger Alister Mazzotti. The five dancers, attached to cables perform a series of 11 intimate vignettes, with the rigger acting in concert with and against the dancers.

DanceHouse presents Company Wang Ramirez: Borderline, October 26 & 27, 2018 at 8pm, at the Vancouver Playhouse, 600 Hamilton Street. A pre-show talk with Borderline artists takes place at 7:15 each evening.

For tickets and further information about Borderline, visit dancehouse.ca

 

Scotiabank Dance Centre Open House 2018

At the corner of Davie & Granville Street, behind the facade of the unassuming former bank building lies a thriving hub of Vancouver’s dance scene, the Scotiabank Dance Centre.

Kababayang Pilipino
photo: Leah Villalobos

Since 1986 The Dance Centre has been as a resource centre for professional dance companies and the public, providing a range of activities to the dance community. Presenting programs and events for artists and general public to build the profile of the dance scene in Metro Vancouver, British Columbia and beyond.

The annual Scotiabank Dance Centre Open House, taking place September 15, 2018 is an opportunity to sample a host of exciting dance styles, from ballet and contemporary to flamenco and swing, in a day of open classes, studio showings and events.

Vanessa Goodman
photo: David Cooper

“Our annual Open House is an opportunity to celebrate a wonderful building, which has become a home for dance of all kinds, and also to experience the excitement and diversity of Vancouver’s dance scene,” said Mirna Zagar, Executive Director of The Dance Centre, the organization which spearheaded the development of the building.

Participating companies and artists include Raven Spirit Dance, Kababayang Pilipino, Karen Flamenco, Shot of Scotch, Polymer Dance, Vanessa Goodman/Action at a Distance, Anderson Performance Clinic, Project Soul and many more.

Linda Arkelian Balley
photo: Erik Zennstrom

The Scotiabank Dance Centre Open House from 11am – 5pm, for a full schedule of events taking place throughout the day visit   thedancecentre.ca/open_house .
Pre-registration is not required.
Classes are suitable for all levels, including beginner, except where specified

Hot Brown Honey heats up The Cultch

Until January 27th, Hot Brown Honey is taking over The Cultch York Theatre.  You know you’re in for something special when the ushers are handing out earplug upon entering the Theatre, and indeed Hot Brown Honey, part of The Cultch’s Femme January, is something special.

The buzz is palpable as the audience took their seats in The Hive and welcomed the six Honeys; Kim ‘Busty Beatz – The Queen Bee’ Bowers, Lisa Fa’alafi ‘The Game Changer’ , Ofa Fotu ‘The Myth Slayer’, Hope Haami ‘Hope One The Beatboxer’, Elena Wangurra ‘The Truth Sayer’, Crystal Stacey ‘The Peace Maker’, to the York Theatre stage.  Hot Brown Honey, a hit at Edinburgh Fringe,  grew out of an original Australian burlesque show, Hot Brown Honey Burlesque, created by Kim Bowers, Candice Bowers and Lisa Fa’Alafi.  This show is a red hot, sassy, bold journey to shine a light on stereotypes and the patriarchy.  The six Honeys #makenoise about tough topics that are very much torn from today’s headlines, with a unique style of comedy, music and dance.  Rather than beating the audience over the head with their message they bring the beats to the floor with their brilliant hip hop style.  Rap, beatboxing, powerful vocals and prose, nothing is out of reach for the talented sextet as they entertain and empower with their mission to fight the power.

Hot Brown Honey is really a show that needs to be seen, heard and listened to to really appreciate the talented Honeys and their timely message.

Fighting the power never tasted so sweet.

Hot Brown Honey runs at The Cultch York Theatre, 639 Commercial Drive, until January 27, 2018.  For more show information and tickets visit thecultch.com or call The Cultch Box Office at 604.251.1363.

Picks of the Week – June 21, 2017

Finally, Summer is upon us, with the long days that gives us more time for more picks of the week

Comedy: It’s Thursday Night Live when SNL comedian Michael Che takes the stage at The Vogue Theatre

Seeds: Australian act Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds bring down under to the Queen Elizabeth Theatre on Thursday night

Tents:  Bard on the Beach is underway at Vanier Park, Much Ado About Nothing is playing now and The Winter’s Tale comes to the tents starting Thursday night.

Rhythm: West Coast Hip Hoppers Jurassic 5 bring their unique brand of hip hop to the Commodore Ballroom on Friday and Saturday nights.

Words: The Museum of Anthropology’s exhibition Traces of Words: Art and Caligraphy of Asia examines forms of the written word around Asia, on until October.

Roar: The BC Lions 2017 regular season home schedule kicks off with Edmonton Eskimos at BC Place on Saturday night.

Stage: The Arts Club Theatre Company has a pair of shows on now; Million Dollar Quartet at The Stanley Stage, extended until July 16th, Hand To God at The Goldcorp Stage, until June 25th and Bittergirl The Musical running until July 29th at Granville Island Stage

Ring: The WWE Live Summerslam Heatwave Tour comes to Rogers Arena on Saturday night

Artifacts: The Museum of Vancouver has a quirky, exhibition running throughout the summer, Unbelievable demonstrating the stories behind some unique artifacts

DOXA Free Screening : Hip Hop-eration

Tomorrow evening, DOXA Film Festival presents it’s first free outdoor screening.  With the cooperation of the Downtown Vancouver BIA, Robson Square will become an outdoor theatre for a screening of Bryn Evan’s Hip Hop-operation at 9pm.

The film follows the story of a group of New Zealand seniors who set out to compete in the Las Vegas World Hip Hop Championships. Watch the antics of the charming group of aspiring dancers, ranging in age from 64-95.

Before the screening, a Vancouver Street Dance Festival, which gets under way next week, will put on a dance battle at 8pm for a whole evening of hip hop-ertainment.

DOXA’s Screening of Hip Hop-eration takes place July 21, 2015 at the North End of Robson Square in downtown Vancouver.

The Main Event Tour

This summer, arenas all around North America will be filled with nostalgic revellers as NKOTB are joined by TLC and Nelly on The Main Event tour.  On their recent stop in Vancouver, near the start of the tour, fans were treated to nearly 4 hours of entertainment, in the round, at Rogers Arena.

With the tour billed as Hit – After Hit – After Hit, the three acts on the bill certainly lived up to it with nearly 200 million combined albums sold worldwide.

Starting the night, Nelly and his MC and dancers got the, mainly female, audience on their feet with a 50 minute set of his turn of the millennium hits like; “E.I.”, “Country Grammar”, “Dilemma”,  “Just A Dream”, “Ride Wit Me” and “Hot In Herre” – which resulted in huge applause and much singing along. Even more cheers erupted when Nelly tore off his shirt off to close out the show.

The second act was perhaps one of the most eagerly awaited, when T-Boz & Chilli of TLC appeared onstage to “What About Your Friends”, bringing the whole arena to its feet. As the reunited pair played through an hour’s set of their greatest hits; “Baby, Baby, Baby”, “Ain’t To Proud To Beg”, “Creep”, “Unpretty”, “No Scrubs”. A tribute to their lost sister, Lisa “Left-Eye” Lopes brought a touching moment to the close of the show. With the audience lighting up the arena with mobile phones a collection of video clips from the top-selling girl groups history played while they performed their latest single “Meant To Be” and their colossal hit “Waterfalls” with nearly everyone singing along and echoing their memorable dance moves.

Finally, The Main Event tour headliners NKOTB were announced onstage by Michael Buffer, with his classic “Let’s Get Ready To Rumble!” and the crowd audience erupted with excitement.  The row of ladies seated on barstools alongside the stage were most excited of all as the band sang and danced within arms reach. As the quintet made their way through the 2 hours worth of their 27 years of hits, there was barely a moment when the crowd wasn’t singing and screaming along.  From early tracks “Didn’t I Blow Your Mind”, “You Got It (The Right Stuff)” and “Hanging Tough” to “Step by Step” and “Tonight” up to more recent singles “Summertime” and “Remix(I like the)” the setlist was filled with hit after hit. As always NKOTB knows exactly how to please their, mostly female, audience with their very self-aware cheesy shirtless, pelvic thrusting and gyrating dance moves to coming out to the audience and dancing with the fans. Part of the fun of going to a New Kids show is watching the fans reverting to their teenage selves as they reminisced to their favourite songs.

The Main Event tour continues around the continent until the beginning of July, check it out if you get the opportunity, all three acts are sure to please.

 

Music Creates Opportunity at The Cultch

Swagger: Pronunciation: \?swa-g?r\ Function: verb:
. marked by elegance or showiness
. how one presents him or her self to the world.

MusicCreatesOpportunityThere was plenty of swagger in last night’s opening performance of Music Creates Opportunity at The Cultch.  The Bboyizm Dance Company show is a tour de force of dance, mainly hip hop, with elements of contemporary, jazz, african and more.  Crazy Smooth (Yvon Soglo) leads his crew of 6 other dancers on a near wordless journey demonstrating the unifying joy and expression achieved through the universal language of music and rhythm.

The 60 minute performance flies by as the series of songs and dances effortlessly flow together, but from the sweat flying off the dancers it’s far from effortless on their part.   Wary The Warrior (El Houari Si Abdelkader) told me in the after-show reception that each night of the show is slightly different as only about 80% is choreographed, allowing for the remaining segments to be freestyled to show the individual dancers’ personalities.

Music Creates Opportunity plays until October 26th at The Cultch, Historic Theatre at 1895 Venebles Street (at Victoria).

Follow @TheCultch and @BBoyizmCompany on Twitter to follow the show and watch the teaser video to whet your appetite for Music Creates Opportunity