Head Back To School with VTS

Those three words that every student dreads…Back To School…usually mean summer fun is coming to an end. However, this season Vancouver TheatreSports (VTS) is kick starting the fun with some back to school style laughter.

Back to School Theatresports comes to The Improv Centre on Granville Island, Tuesdays to Saturdays from September 3 to October 12.

VTS Back to School

VTS helps get you over the end of summer blues with this special improv show dedicated to school days. Back to School TheatreSports takes classic TheatreSports short form improv ‘games’ and adapts them to parody classroom clichés and cliques. Instead of a traditional TheatreSports referee, the improv comedy will be overseen by a dreaded, and very strict principal. Rule infractions can spell player ‘detentions’ and the teams of mixed student stereotypes (geeks, jocks, cool kids, etc) will be awarded letter grades by a critical panel of examiners (audience members). By the end of class (the match), only one team will reach a passing grade. 

As in all VTS shows, the characters and action are interactive as the players co-developed with the audience – taking their (sometimes wildly outlandish) suggestions to create on-the-spot, unscripted, theatrically-infused comedy. In this case, the players will be improvising using the audience’s school-themed ideas to create the scenarios like; awkward first dates, trying out for the team or cramming for exams. Regardless of whether you are/were a jock, a nerd or one of the cool kids at school, everyone will be able to relate and find something to laugh about at Back to School TheatreSports.

Back to School Theatresports plays Tuesdays to Saturdays from September 3 to October 12. 2019 at The Improv Centre on Granville Island. For showtimes, other shows, more information on Vancouver TheatreSports, and to purchase advance tickets, starting at a student-budget friendly $10.75, please visit vtsl.com.

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.

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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

Fall for Rugby Canada v Maori All-Blacks

Over the last two seasons, Vancouver has fallen in love with Rugby Canada Sevens as it’s taken over BC Place each March.  This year, rugby fans don’t have to wait until Spring for great International Rugby action, in November Rugby Canada men’s fifteens team hosts New Zealand’s Maori All Blacks for the first time in Vancouver.  As noted by their name, the Maori All Blacks, are an all Maori team with a long tradition of Rugby in New Zealand and internationally.  The initiators of the famed haka, that is also now performed by all the Kiwi teams, Maori All Blacks have beaten Canada in all five of their prior meetings.

With the popularity of Canada Sevens, USA Sevens in Las Vegas and the upcoming 2018 Sevens World Cup in San Francisco, the West Coast is becoming a Sevens mecca but this is a chance to see world-class Fifteens rugby and support the #rednation.  Fifteens rugby or Rugby Union is a more tactical, aggressive longer form of rugby than the fast paced, quick matches that Vancouverites see on the pitch during Canada Sevens.  As Rugby Canada still hopes to qualify for the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan, and with a change in coaching, any chance to play against quality opponents helps gain Team Canada’s experience before they take on Uruguay in January world cup qualifying.

Tickets are on sale now, and selling record-fast, with more than 65% of tickets being sold in the first three days.

Rugby Canada vs Maori All Blacks takes place at 7pm on Friday, November 3rd at BC Place.
Let’s all #RISEasOne and cheer on our Rugby Canada players.

HSBC Canada Sevens burns up the BC Place

Canada Sevens burned up the pitch this weekend bringing in nearly 80,000 fans to BC Place. In its second year the HCBS Canada Sevens tournament, Vancouverites have really taken to the the exciting sevens rugby game. Excitement on and off the pitch creates a buzz like no other sporting event in town.

Packing 45 high-scoring, fast-paced matches into the 2-day tournament keep the field in play morning to night. In the on-field action, a battered Team Canada’s gutsy performance saw them improving 2 places from last year to finish 7th overall. The excitement of North Vancouver’s Adam Zaruba scoring a hat trick on day one to push the team into the Quarterfinal round was dampened by injury and losses on day two, leaving the players disappointed but the fans stood firming behind the hosts.
No matter what happens on the field, nothing seems to interrupt the cheering, for every team, and the festival-like atmosphere of the Sevens tournament in the stands, concourse and streets brought electricity to downtown Vancouver throughout the weekend.  Coordinated costumes bring flashes of colour to the stands; lively Fijian fans drumming and singing around the stadium, the bagpiping Scottish fans, mixed with Bananas, Lumberjacks, Minions, Mounties and the other brightly coloured suited and booted. The breaks between rounds throughout the 10 hour days allowed for much socializing and this year the in and out privileges from BC Place were extended spreading the colour and excitement into downtown throughout the day.

In the final match, England triumphed over top-ranked South Africa to and exciting Cup win. Plans are already underway for Canada Sevens 2018 and with the increased interest this year, year three is bound to be even bigger.

If you don’t want to wait until 2018 for more Sevens Rugby, get your tickets for HSBC Canada Women’s Sevens coming to Langford, BC in May

Canada Sevens – After Hours

In just over a week, the 2nd annual Canada Sevens men’s tournament kicks off at BC Place. The line up of evening entertainment for the March 11 & 12 Rugby tournament is sure to make the weekend is filled with excitement from morning to late night.

Saturday March 11th : The Prop House After Party 
If you’re looking to continue the fun after Saturday’s matches, head to The Prop House After Party at the Commodore Ballroom. Presented by The Social Concierge the official after party is a throwback to the best of 90’s Video Dance Parties.  Bring your Fancy Dress gang or find your best Electric Circus style to dance the night away.
Prop House After Party opens at 7pm March 11th at Commodore Ballroom. Tickets are $25 online

Sunday March 12th : HSBC Canada Sevens Player’s Party
Close out the Canada Sevens Weekend at Central City Brew Pub across from BC Place with the first Player’s Party. Canadian Men’s 7s Team players will join the party to sign autographs and enjoy the fun with fans in what will hopefully be a celebration of their success at the Tournament.  Proceeds from the Players Party and live auction support the sevens legacy fun.
HSBC Canada Sevens Player’s Party starts at 7:30pm March 12th at Central City Brew Pub  Tickets are online for $125


Americas Masters Games 2016

AMGames2016Are you suffering from withdrawals from the Rio 2016 Olympic coverage? Why not get a taste of world class athletics right here in your own backyard with the inaugural Americas Masters Games – Vancouver 2016.

Thousands of athletes plus their families will be descending upon Vancouver from August 26 to September 4, 2016 for 9 days of sport competition.  Keep your eye open and you may even see a former Olympian or Commonwealth Games athletes on the field of play or on the streets around the city.
Themed ‘Sport Without Limits’, these are the inaugural Masters Games for the Pan-American region, designed to complement the World Masters Games by creating a regular opportunity for Masters athletes (30 years +) to compete in the North, South or Central America region.  Unlike other multi-sport competition, in the Americas Masters Games athletes compete as individuals, not for a county.  Team sports may include competitors from different regions and they may have just come together for these games, just for the love of their sport.

With competition venues clustered around the city; UBC, Hillcrest and Convention Centre and a nightly free public entertainment at Jack Poole Plaza there’s plenty of opportunity for the public to take advantage of the sporting spectacle.  Opening Ceremonies take place this Saturday evening, August 27, 2016 at 7pm at Jack Poole Plaza, your first chance to welcome the athletes to Vancouver’s inaugural Americas Masters Games.  Closing Ceremonies take place September 4th.

Follow @AMGames2016 on Twitter and facebook.com/AMGames2016 to keep up to date with the activities and events.

Gorilla Theatre at Vancouver TheatreSports

VTSL_GorillaThe law of the jungle has taken control at Vancouver TheatreSports League at The Improv Centre on Granville Island. TheatreSports’ latest show sees the League returning to its roots with, one of founder, Keith Johnstone’s original improve games, Gorilla Theatre.
Gorilla Sports has a free-flowing format in which each of the players act as director of their own sketches, using any or all of the other actors they guide each other on what they want to see in their segments. After each of the short sketched, the host, Michael Teigen, asks the audience to vocally votes to endorse the scene or not. Winners receive a banana, courtesy of “Lucy the Gorilla”, losers had to choose and perform a forfeit.  The performance I was invited to saw players; Denise Jones, Margaret Nyfors, Graeme Duffy, Nathan Clark and Taz VanRassel competing with each other to win all the bananas.  Unfortunately, some of them did have to perform a forfeit including; dancing solo onstage for 1 minute, apologizing to the audience for a poor sketch, buying an audience member a drink plus more.  At the end of the show, the director with the most bananas wins a week with Lucy the Gorilla.

Gorilla Theatre runs Thursday, Friday & Saturday evenings at 7:30pm at the Improv Centre on Granville Island. With regularly revolving casts, it’s like a new show every time so see it multiple times.
Reserve Tickets online or call 604.738.7013 extension 31
Follow Vancouver TheatreSports League on Twitter @VanTheatreSport or Facebook.com/VanTheatreSport