Heritage theatre brings back acclaimed Leonard Cohen tribute

Steve Charles and Lauren Bowler in Chelsea Hotel. David Cooper photo.

One of East Vancouver’s most treasured heritage theatres is celebrating its 35th anniversary season this year by bringing back one of its most popular productions.

From March 17-April 21, the Firehall Arts Centre (280 E. Cordova St.) presents the return of Chelsea Hotel: The Songs of Leonard Cohen. In the award-winning tribute, a group of actors/musicians presents a dramatic scenario that offers live performances of many of the late singer’s best-known, most-loved songs: “Everybody Knows,” “I’m Your Man,” “Hallelujah” and many more.

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Heritage theatre brings back acclaimed Leonard Cohen tribute

Circle Game: A New Joni Mitchell Musical in Vancouver

Andrew Cohen, Anna Kuman, David Z. Cohen, and Sara Vickruck (clockwise from top left); Photo Credit: Tyler Branston

“We’re captive on the carousel of time
We can’t return, we can only look behind
From where we came
And go round and round and round
In the circle game” ~ Joni Mitchell “The Circle Game”

I grew up listening to Joni Mitchell, through both good and bad periods of my life. Especially at moments of heartbreak, questioning, and vulnerability, I would turn to her songs as moving solace. The iconic Canadian songstress has inspired generations of fans due to the continued relevance of her music and lyrics to the shifting times. This month, Firehall Arts Centre is launching a new Joni Mitchell musical that is sure to thrill those, like me, who have long loved the singer, as well as those new to her material.

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Circle Game: A New Joni Mitchell Musical in Vancouver

The Nether presents a ‘genuinely disturbing’ vision of the near future

A play dealing with the consequences of virtual reality, The Nether was a hit at last year’s Vancouver Fringe Festival. This month, local company Redcurrant Collective is bringing back the daring, thought-provoking piece for a run at the Firehall Arts Centre (280 E. Cordova St.) Jan. 18-28.

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The Nether presents a ‘genuinely disturbing’ vision of the near future

Unforgettable dance performances coming with Dancing On the Edge fest!

Frédérick Gravel and Étienne Lepage THUS SPOKE_Stéphane Najman_avec Anne Thériault

Frédérick Gravel and Étienne Lepage’s THUS SPOKE is among the works presented at this year’s Dancing On the Edge festival.

Frederick Gravel created a buzz in Vancouver in 2014, with his show Usually Beauty Fails at the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival. In July, the Montreal choreographer brings a new piece to town as part of the 28th Annual Dancing on the Edge festival (July 7-16 at various venues).

Gravel’s Thus Spoke…, which premiered in 2013, blends monologues with movement, concert-style lighting and the acid-rock stylings of Jim Hendrix (watch a preview here). Described by the choreographer as “philosophical, with a rock ‘n’ roll vibe,” Thus Spoke… is among the highlights of the festival, which presents both full-scale productions and works-in-progress that push the boundary between performance and contemporary dance. Here are a few more.

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Unforgettable dance performances coming with Dancing On the Edge fest!

What to see at this year’s Dancing on the Edge Festival

Karissa Barry performs in Three-Tone, part of Dusk Dances with the 2015 Dancing on the Edge Festival (July 2-11). Robin Toma photography.

Karissa Barry performs in Three-Tone, part of Dusk Dances with the 2015 Dancing on the Edge Festival (July 2-11). Robin Toma photography.

This year, Canada’s longest running dance festival features over 30 dance shows around the city. Free outdoor performances are also part of the 2015 Dancing on the Edge Festival (July 2-11).

Outdoor performances include Dusk Dances at Portside Park, Wreck Beach Butoh, and Fortier Danse from Montreal’s solo performance in secret locations around Granville Island.

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What to see at this year’s Dancing on the Edge Festival

Enter to win A YEAR OF CULTURE

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Enter to win a package of tickets to your favourite productions and events this winter, featuring 2 tickets each to various arts, dance, theatre and music events in Vancouver. The package also includes a $100 Tickets Tonight gift certificate.

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Enter to win A YEAR OF CULTURE