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2 THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT JANUARY 11 â€“ 18 / 2018
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Robson Square. Tara Lowry photo.
Just as we thought the industry was starting to feel like a bit of a sausage fest, we meet the team of powerhouse female scientists leading Northern Vine Labs, a cannabis-testing facility in Langley.
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t has been said that Canada’s burgeoning cannabis industry is largely dominated by men, so when the Straight learned about a Lower Mainland cannabis-testing lab run by a team of women, we were thrilled to check it out. At Northern Vine Labs in Langley, resident scientists Katherine Maloney, Claire Maloney (the two are cousins), and Jaclyn Thomson work in sync to offer quality-control testing of cannabis and cannabis products to licensed producers and registered medical patients. Siobhan McCarthy keeps the girl power going on the sales-and-marketing side. Two men do work for the company, with David Galvez serving as adviser and consultant and Clayton Chessa managing operations. During an interview with the four women at the lab, McCarthy says that although there wasn’t a directive to hire women exclusively, Northern Vine simply acquired the best people for the job. The company, a subsidiary of Abattis Bioceuticals, has been around for four years and has been licensed to test cannabis since October 2016. With its controlled-substance licence from Health Canada—a document so challenging to obtain that Katherine (Northern Vine’s “qualified person in charge”) likens the process to a circus—the lab offers its clients seven different types of testing. The first test that clients often look for is potency, or the strength of cannabinoids like THC and CBD. Northern Vine’s potency test considers 12 prominent cannabinoids. A separate test lists the terpenes (the organic compounds that give cannabis its distinctive aroma) found in a given sample, while others search for pesticides, heavy metals, aflatoxins (toxic compounds produced by certain moulds), microbiology, and residual solvents like propane or butane. “We test everything from flower and oil from licensed producers to edibles we get from some of our registered medical patients,” says Thomson, who came to Northern Vine with a doctorate in chemistry and experience working in the natural-health-product industry. “So we also get chocolate bars, cookies, and other things that they’re making or using at home, too.” Currently, Northern Vine is one
Call 604.985.8713 or email firstname.lastname@example.org This is one in a series of workshops by the Allies in Aging Volunteer Impact Team. Our goal is to reduce social isolation among seniors in Metro Vancouver. FUNDED IN PART BY THE GOVERNMENT OF CANADA’S NEW HORIZONS FOR SENIORS PROGRAM.
Vancouver 24/7 #GeorgiaStraight 6 THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT JANUARY 11 – 18 / 2018
labs that have been doing cannabis testing for that long.” Still, the opportunity to be on the brink of something so fresh outweighs the challenges. For Katherine, who has been with the company for three years and holds degrees in chemistry and pharmacy, the newness of the space is what makes the work exciting. “I love solving problems; it’s so gratifying to work so hard and to figure something out,” she says. “To be in a new industry that doesn’t have a 100-year history, it’s really exciting to be figuring these things out independently.” The lab’s federal licence also allows them to undertake research and product development, something that all three scientists say makes their jobs much more dynamic. With so much to learn and discover, Thomson calls it “a research chemist’s dream”. By translating the science from the lab into digestible information for people on social media, McCarthy hopes to reach patients who might not be aware that if they are registered, they can have their products tested—whether they are from a licensed producer, a designated grower, a dispensary, or their own greenhouse. She calls it the “know your medicine” campaign. “I think [that] for quite some time people were just so excited that they had access to cannabis that they didn’t think they had to question it,” she says. “I want to break it down visually. We have to take science’s word for it, but if we can give people a peek through the process and the microscope, then we can empower the patient to be educated and have a voice in the matter.” -
1635 West Broadway, Vancouver, B.C. V6J 1W9 www.straight.com Phone: 604-730-7000 / Fax: 604-730-7010 / e-mail: email@example.com Display Advertising: 604-730-7020 / Fax: 604-730-7012 / e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Classifieds: 604-730-7060 / e-mail: email@example.com Subscriptions: 604-730-7000 Distribution: 604-730-7087 EDITOR + PUBLISHER Dan McLeod ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER Yolanda Stepien GENERAL MANAGER Matt McLeod EDITOR Charlie Smith SECTION EDITORS
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of two operational cannabis-testing labs in the Lower Mainland (the other being Anandia Labs, near UBC) and one of 33 laboratories licensed to handle cannabis in Canada, though several of those labs are not yet operational. Thomson says purchasing instruments and developing testing methods are very costly and timeconsuming steps in setting up a lab. With 84 licensed producers to date and approximately 250,000 registered medical patients from across the country eligible to have their product tested, the women of the lab say they have been feeling the pressure—especially since May 2017, when Health Canada announced that it would require all licensed producers to conduct pesticide testing on all products. (This was in addition to tests for microbial and chemical contaminants, which were already required. Prior to this, Health Canada had left the decision to test for pesticides in the hands of licensed producers, some of which opted not to test in order to save money.) Despite the ever-growing pile of work on their desks, scientists at Northern Vine say they have been able to maintain quick turnaround times for clients eager to learn the exact contents of their cannabis. They claim it’s been one factor, other than their all-female lab team, that has separated them from other testing facilities in B.C. “There aren’t a lot of templates around,” says Claire, who has a background in pharmaceutical analysis and analytical chemistry. “It’s not like we can say ‘We’ll look at this lab that has been in the business for many years,’ because there are no
The Georgia Straight | Vancouver’s News and Entertainment Weekly | Volume 52 Number 2609
Gail Johnson, John Lucas, Alexander Varty
Register for this and other “Allies in Aging” workshops on Eventbrite.ca
Jaclyn Thomson, Katherine Maloney, Claire Maloney, and Siobhan McCarthy of the Langley-based testing facility Northern Vine Labs. Amanda Siebert photo.
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Karuna cannabis brands offer many options (This article is sponsored by Karuna Health Foundation.)
SUNSET SPECIAL RESERVE Also known as FI—for F---ing Incredible—this hybrid has 26 percent THC and three percent CBD. According to McQueen, this can benefit those suffering from really bad insomnia. “It can also help people who have a loss of appetite because it increases your metabolism.”
aruna Health Foundation cannabis-dispensary staff say their primary objective is not to make money. At its two locations—3636 West 4th Avenue and 4510 Victoria Drive— they put a premium on offering the best variety of sativas, hybrids, and indicas for all their members’ needs. “Over here, we try to be very compassionate,” says Karuna’s Victoria Drive manager, Kaitlyn McQueen. “Our number one rule is to always have compassion for all of our members. We’re here to help people. As long as you’ve helped people, you’ve done your job.” It’s why Karuna stocks at least 15 blends in each category at all times. Many are produced under its inhouse flagship brands: Sunset and Highly Concentrated Labs. Sunset is a broad category of flowers that includes sativas, indicas, and hybrid cannabis blends. The Highly Concentrated Labs brand, also known as HCL, includes distillates, Phoenix Tears, shatters, live resins, and rosins. Situated conveniently along the Number 4, 7, 44, and 84 bus routes— at the stop on West 4th Avenue near Alma Street—Karuna Health Foundation + Metta Lounge is fully wheelchair-accessible. There’s plenty of free parking in its Jericho neighbourhood. The dispensary on Victoria Drive is situated on the Number 19 and 20 bus routes and has free parking. Below, McQueen explains how some of the Sunset-branded and HCL-branded products differ from one another.
SUNSET JACK HERER McQueen
describes this as “almost a full sativa”, which means it’s an uplifting strain for those engaged in physical
SUNSET WI-FI Similar to Special
Karuna Health Foundation’s two dispensaries offer everything from Phoenix Tears to CBD tinctures to a wide selection of sativas, indicas, and hybrid strains.
or creative activities. “It does make you more happy, more uplifted, more energetic,” she says. It includes 21 percent tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is the psychoactive agent in cannabis, and one percent cannabinol (CBN), offering a measure of pain relief, anti-insomnia benefits, appetite stimulation, and anticonvulsive properties. There’s very little cannabidiol (CBD), which is associated with relief from inflammation, pain, anxiety, psychosis, seizures, spasms, and other conditions. McQueen says it’s not recommended for people with epilepsy.
people feeling a little more clearheaded than if they smoke the Jack Herer. It also includes about one percent CBD, which is helpful for those suffering from muscle pain. “It’s perfect for someone who would have depression,” McQueen advises.
BLUE DREAM This is a hybrid strain with 60 percent sativa and 40 percent indica, which is more sedating and therefore more suitable during evenings. “The CBD on that is about two percent, whereas the THC is about 17 to 24 percent,” McQueen explains. “There are slight traces of SUNSET RED CONGOLESE An- CBN there—about one percent. It’s other sativa, this strain contains 18 really good for ADHD, bipolar disto 20 percent THC, which will leave order, and chronic pain.” SUNSET
Billed by cannabis advocate Rick Simpson as “nature’s answer for cancer”, Phoenix Tears are very high in CBD and THC, according to McQueen. “I’ve got a lot of members who do 60-day cycles of the Phoenix Tears to try to get their cancer into remission,” she says. “That really helps them with sleep, too. It puts people in bed right away.” However, McQueen cautions users to be aware that they only need “a grain of rice at the most” to help because the THC content is so high.
HCL PHOENIX TEARS
Reserve in THC content, the WiFi hybrid, also known as Wild Fire, has a far lower CBD percentage. “Some people don’t like the CBD,” McQueen explains. “They just want HCL CBD TINCTURE Sometimes referred to as the green or golden straight THC.” dragon, tinctures are alcohol-based SUNSET HALLEY’S COMET This extracts from the cannabis plant and is a low THC hybrid—only seven were linked to medicinal benefits long percent—and comes with 13 per- before the war on drugs began in the cent CBD. It also includes 1.9 per- 20th century. Because it’s an indica, cent cannabigerol (CBG), which is McQueen says, it helps people sleep. a nonpsychoactive parent of both THC and CBD, and eight percent HCL LIVE RESIN AND SHATTER cannabichromene (CBC), which has Both are concentrates and McQueen been linked to pain relief and nausea points out that the only difference besuppression. “Our three CBD strains tween a live resin and a shatter is that that we usually have in stock are Hal- the flower is frozen for the resin and it’s ley’s Comet, Afghani Bullrider, and not for the shatter. She recommends them for people who have a high pain Charlotte’s Web.” tolerance—perhaps if they suffer from SUNSET PINK KUSH All of scoliosis or a slipped disc in their back— Karuna’s pink kushes are indicas because these products are between 40 high in CBN, which helps people to 70 percent THC. People should also sleep. “It controls pain, it slows seek advice on how to consume these inf lammation, and it suppresses concentrates. “There’s an open-loop muscle aches and convulsions,” system and a closed-loop system,” McQueen says. “So someone who McQueen says. “There’s more butane has seizures or is epileptic would exposed in the open loop whereas the prefer to take something that is closed-loop system is a machine that higher in CBN.” helps you do the process.” HCL DISTILLATES Karuna recently began making cannabis distillate concentrates, which can be dabbed or consumed in vape pens. They are about 95 percent THC and come with terpenes added for f lavour. “They’re very popular,” McQueen says.
Karuna Health Foundation has two locations: 4510 Victoria Drive and 3636 West 4th Avenue, which includes the Metta Lounge. The East Vancouver location can be reached by the Number 19 and 20 buses; the West Side dispensary is accessible via the Number 4, 7, 44, and 84 buses.
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B.C. Supreme Court judge recently sorted out a battle between two quarrelling families from China over the ownership of three multimillion-dollar homes on the West Side of Vancouver. On January 4, Justice Susan Griffin sided with the three defendants, collectively referred to as the Xia family, in a decision revealing byzantine movements of money between China and Canada. Griffin noted in her ruling that the Fu and Xia families invested in the same real-estate projects in China, starting in 2007. Each family looked into immigrating to Canada around the same time and three properties were bought between 2010 and 2013. “The beneficial ownership and contributions to these properties are the central issues in this case,” Griffin wrote. “Each accuses the other of lying about these matters.” The first home, at 3561 Mayfair Avenue, was bought for $2.38 million. The second purchase was a house at 3307 West 19th Avenue for $2.85 million. The third was a home at 4769 Elm Street for $3.08 million. “The two families thought it best to not document the basis for their dealings with each other,” Griffin wrote. “The two families also thought it best to structure the transactions in ways that disguised true ownership, just as they often did when buying properties in China.” They had a falling-out in 2014. Two of the three plaintiffs—Guoqing Fu and Chunqin Zhou (part of the Fu family)—claimed that the
Mayfair and Elm properties were theirs alone. They alleged that the Xia family sold the West 19th property to buy houses at 7218 Cartier Street and 3545 West 34th Avenue. “Both the Fu Family and Xia Family appear to be very wealthy by Canadian standards, moving hundreds of thousands and ultimately millions of Renminbi (RMB) or dollars around back and forth between each other’s family members’ accounts without worrying about documenting the purpose and without feeling the need to explain the source of their funds to this Court,” Griffin wrote. The judge then added: “It is virtually impossible to ‘follow the money’ as a way of figuring out the true facts of what happened. Some information is known but it does not paint a complete picture.” Further complicating matters were 174 money transfers from Fu family bank accounts to Xia family bank accounts in China from 2007 to 2014, according to the plaintiffs. Both plaintiffs and defendants admitted that “some transactions were structured using the name of a person who was not the true beneficiary…in order to gain some perceived advantage, whether it be to evade Chinese currency controls, minimize taxes, obtain a favourable mortgage, evade Chinese restrictions on the number of properties a person could own, or otherwise.” After analyzing the plaintiffs’ inconsistent pleadings, their general credibility, the defendants’ reasons for putting the Mayfair Street home in the plaintiffs’ names, and various other issues, the judge dismissed the plaintiffs’ claim. -
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The Merchants Bank behind Pigeon Park was hidden in scaffolding before Christmas but now it’s ready to accept new tenants. Travis Lupick photo.
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Proposed Pigeon Park patio raises hackles
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Vancouver developer is mentioned in the ad is envisioned for pitching a stylish new vi- Pigeon Park. sion for Pigeon Park in the City of Vancouver spokesperson Downtown Eastside. Jag Sandhu said that because Pigeon “The Merchants Bank building will Park is public land, any private busibe restored to its former elegance and ness hoping to operate a patio there will include reclaimed limestone fa- would have to apply for a permit and çade, heritage architectural elements receive approval from the city’s enmixed with state of art modern fea- gineering department. tures,” begins an advertisement for The Merchants Bank opened at 1 West Hastings, which is located on 1 West Hastings Street in 1913. In the northwest corner of Hastings and 2014, chunks of its concrete façade Carrall streets. broke apart and fell into the park “The building features high ceil- four storeys below. No one was hurt, ings and has the opportunity for but the building spent the next three a patio, separated mezzanine and years wrapped in scaffolding. Now lower level floor,” that renovation is it continues. complete. The property “The Meris managed by chants Bank proTravis Lupick Millennium Devides the perfect velopment. It’s advertising 16,325 opportunity for a keen restaurateur square feet of commercial space at as well as high-tech office users to 1 West Hastings for a monthly rent join this progressive and innovative of $68,020. area,” reads the Millennium DeKaren Ward is an activist associat- velopment listing. ed with Gallery Gachet and is a forIn November 2016, Pigeon Park mer board member of the Vancouver took on additional importance for the Area Network of Drug Users (VAN- community when Indigenous people DU). Interviewed down the street raised a totem pole there. Audrey from Pigeon Park (also known as Pi- Siegl is a member of the Musqueam oneer Place), she recounted noticing First Nation and board member of the ad just before Christmas. Ward the Sacred Circle Society, the organdescribed it as “ridiculously displa- ization behind the Survivors’ Totem cing and aggressively gentrifying”. Pole. “Pigeon Park is one of the last “It assumes that the area is at the end places that the community has to of its existence as a low-income neigh- gather,” Siegl told the Straight. bourhood,” Ward told the Straight. “The pole stands there because we She explained that Pigeon Park followed the amazing lead and inspirhas long served as a living room for ation that Bernie [Williams] had to low-income earners and people who create a memorial, a marker, a recoglive in the Downtown Eastside with- nition and acknowledgment for past out a roof over their head. and present and, sadly, future surviv“It’s one of those central places for ors of the Downtown Eastside,” Siegl the Downtown Eastside to gather,” continued. “For it to just be in the way Ward said. “This is not displace- of the developer shows the huge chasm ment; it’s an attempt to erase that between the two communities.” history in a very comprehensive, in Siegl said she recently discussed a very complete way.” the matter with Williams, the Millennium Development did pole’s lead carver, and relayed a not grant an interview. It, how- message from her: “The pole’s not ever, confirmed that the “patio” going anywhere,” Williams said. -
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10 THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT JANUARY 11 â€“ 18 / 2018
ercury has just entered Capricorn, making for a total of five planets tenanting the reality-check sign. Getting it under better control is the imperative. Donâ€™t take it lightly; it is serious-business time. The spotlight is aimed at matters pertaining to authority, government, and its rule; the system and how it works or does not work; the past and its reward or consequence. Is it authentic? Is it legit? Who is accountable? Also featured are all matters to do with responsibility, duty, boundaries, limits, and limitations. As of Friday, Mercury and Saturn, Capricornâ€™s ruler, meet for the third time, completing a staging cycle that has been in the works/on the clock since the end of November. As a â€œwritten in stone or written on the wallâ€? archetype, Mercury/Saturn marks both a significant finish-up threshold and the start of the next chapter or phase. Timing is everything. We have been on an extended time-is-ripe moment for the past week or so. If you havenâ€™t got yourself moving yet, then know you have not lost your opportunity. Beyond a good weekend to call your own, both Venus and the sun are gaining momentum with Uranus. You can feel it as a spark, an inspiration, or something more. Monday, Jupiter/Pluto makes for a productive refuel. Get yourself organized. Aim to make good use of your time and resources. Tuesdayâ€™s new moon in Capricorn supports the build-it-better agenda. Wednesday adds something new into the mix and/or sparks a fresh opportunity, trend, or impetus. Wednesday evening, sign up for a class, mix business and social, or catch up with friends.
March 20â€“April 19
Thursday/Friday are well timed for a talk, paperwork, important decision-making, a contract-signing, a professional or official undertaking, or a wrap-up. Reestablish the boundary; set a goal. Mercury/Saturn assists you to work through the tough stuff. Saturday/Sunday revitalizes your energy and interest level. Saturday through new-moon Tuesday transitions you onto a next step or project. Itâ€™s a natural progression.
April 20â€“May 20
Thursday/Friday can deliver long-awaited news or results, bring you to an important time line, help you get a better lock on it, or make the reality too obvious to ignore. Set the record straight; finish it off or take it on. Youâ€™ll find an intuitive knack for tackling the practical side of things. Saturday/Sunday shifts your attention or perspective. May 21â€“June 21
Thursday/Friday can bring you to a finish line. Belt-tightening, downsizing, and streamlining are appropriate. To enhance success prospects, write your budget target and goals down on paper. On the other hand, donâ€™t hesitate to borrow or make a substantial investment for your long-term benefit. A relationship or commitment is well timed (perhaps itâ€™s overdue). Saturday/Sunday, a change of pace is refreshing.
June 21â€“July 22
You could face tough opposition, resistance, or competition Thursday/Friday. Mercury/Saturn could bring an ending or produce a tough decision or difficult news. On the plus side, professional advice or recognition is well timed. Itâ€™s a productive transit to attend a business meeting or event or to deal with a contract matter. Professional advice and recognition are bankable commodities. Saturday onward plugs you into something fresh.
July 22â€“August 22
Five planets in Capricorn give you no choice but to get to work. Effort is required but the results will prove worth the sweat equity. Stay focused; prioritize. One thing leads to another. Thursday through next Wednesday can end the hunt or wait, put you to work, deliver test results or news, and/or set you onto a fresh track.
August 22â€“September 22
Where there is a will, there is a way. Thursday/Friday, ambition serves you well. Stay focused on the results you want to see and/or on what you feel you deserve. Five planets in Capricorn keep you on top of your game and timing it right. Take control; push harder if you have to. The weekend adds something fresh to the mix. Wednesday does too. September 22â€“October 23
Wanting to downsize, reduce your overhead, or clear your clutter? Looking to get home and family matters under better control? One way or another, five planets in Capricorn will put you to work. Start now; finish off projects. Remortgage, renovate, hire a real-estate agent, or list your property. The stars are not wasting any time and neither should you. October 23â€“November 21
Use Thursday/Friday to get it said, signed, bought, sold, or done while the stars set your timing, smarts, and talent to optimal. On the job, tending to personal projects, or taking a break in favour of pleasure and play, Saturday/Sunday expectations are well met. Monday begins another full-steam-ahead action week. Each day adds something new to the list. November 21â€“December 21
In the works since the end of November, a key circumstance, inner dilemma, or relationship matter has now run its course. Bringing you to a well-timed finish line as of Friday, Mercury/Saturn cements it for you in some significant way. Despite residual emotions, once you make up your mind, or it has been said and done, youâ€™ll hit an immediate upswing. December 21â€“January 19
Your new reality begins! New phase sun/Venus/Pluto, new phase Mercury/Saturn, and Tuesdayâ€™s new moon in Capricorn are all in undeniable accord; youâ€™ll feel it in your bones. While there is still an overlap between where youâ€™ve been and where you are heading, that 50/50 threshold will soon be in the rear-view mirror. Destiny/your future is on the gain. January 20â€“February 18
What is meant to be will be. Potentials are now taking on more concrete shape and form. Mercury/Saturn takes the guesswork out of it for you and gives you something more substantial to go on. Itâ€™s a good weekend to socialize or call your own. Too, Saturday/Sunday can provide fresh insight or stimulus. Monday begins an upswing week. February 18â€“March 20
Thursday/Friday can see you reach a goal post, a milestone, or a finish line. Mercury/Saturn could deliver important news or a result, a contract end or renewal, or see you say goodbye to someone. One way or another, Saturday/Sunday keeps you well on the go. Monday/Tuesday, take charge, get organized, prioritize. Do the work; get it done. What do the stars have in store for you in 2018? Book a reading or sign up for Roseâ€™s free monthly newsletter at rosemarcus.com/.
Shops serve splash of insight
ure, you’re a little broke now that we’re just past the holiday season—and, potentially, getting a bit bored, too? For wine enthusiasts, there is almost always entertainment on the local calendar. We can expand our knowledge while sipping and swirling around town, and sometimes we don’t even have to reach into our pockets to do so! This week, here are a half-dozen opportunities that won’t cost you a dime. Broadway International Wine Shop, operating in Kitsilano since 1986, is an intimate hub for West Side wine lovers and visitors from all around Vancouver. In 2018, it is continuing its series of complimentary tastings each SunHillside Gewürztraminer will reflect day afternoon between 2 and 5 o’clock. sunny Naramata at a local tasting. “It’s a great community feel in here,” co-owner Christopher Reid told me by Naramata Bench on Okanagan Lake. phone. “It’s a casual drop-in scenario On Sunday (January 14) between 2 where we see plenty of regulars and a and 6 p.m., it’s Foxtrot Vineyards on good amount of first-timers, too.” deck. The winery—owned and operReid explained how each week ated by the Allander family (Torsten they’ll open five or and Kicki, along six different wines with their winewithin a certain maker son, Gustheme, labels that tav)—has been Kurtis Kolt staff are enthusirenowned for lavish astic about and eager to share with Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs since customers. its inaugural vintage in 2004. I still Upcoming highlights include an vividly recall trying the wines for the exploration of how to examine a first time more than a decade ago and wine through the blind-tasting pro- noting how they were perfectly ripe cess, on January 14; a visit with the while being comfortably cradled in “natural wine” category, on January French oak, offering both a purity of 21; and a “Tour de France” on Febru- fruit and a warm, toasty undercurrent ary 4 covering the Loire and Rhône of baking spices. All these years later, valleys, along with other wines from they have maintained this opulent the country’s south. style and their bottlings have become Oh, and on February 11 there will be quite coveted by collectors both at a rosé tasting in honour of Valentine’s home and abroad. (Foxtrot wines are Day, natch. For more information on also sold in the U.S., Switzerland, and upcoming tastings and the store, visit Japan.) These are luxury wines made www.broadwaywineshop.ca/. in small batches and can be quite Over in Olympic Village, Legacy memorable after the very first sip. Liquor Store has tastings with repreMoving toward the end of the sentatives from not one but two British month—on January 26, from 4 to Columbian wineries from the famed 8 p.m.—wares from winemaker
Kathy Malone’s Hillside Winery are being poured, a welcome postwork tipple. Established in 1989, it is one of the pioneering wineries on the Bench, and although grapes have been sourced from up and down the Okanagan Valley over the years, the Hillside crew now only work with 100-percent-Naramata fruit. Step up to the tasting bar and you’ll be introduced to Hillside Gewürztraminer 2016 ($21.29, instore). It’s a true snapshot of sunny Naramata, as it’s sourced from a half-dozen vineyards dotted up and down the Bench, some of them up to 40 years old. Bright mangoes and pears are graced with a rose petal or two, and there’s a fun, spicy kick of fresh ginger on the finish. Hillside Merlot 2014 ($21.21, instore) is next up in the flight. After harvest and destemming, there was a nine-day cold soak, then a ferment and maceration with the skins for 27 days. From that point, the finished wine enjoyed seven months in French oak, which added cocoa and cardamom notes to the bright red berry and plum character coming from the fruit. Following that will be Hillside’s Syrah 2014, which is my personal favourite (but wasn’t in stock at the store by deadline, which is why I don’t have a price; it’s $26 if you order from the winery). Syrah is one of my very favourite grapes being grown in the Okanagan, and this expressive vintage is a great example why. It chimes in at 13.3 percent alcohol (so this is far from any big and jammy Shiraz), and the aromatics offer a host of spices, including cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and pepper. Then the palate is full of blackberries, black currants, and a splash of mocha flavours toward the end. For more info on the store, including other tastings they’re offering, visit www.legacyliquorstore.com/. -
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> Go on-line to read hundreds of I Saw You posts or to respond to a message <
I SAW A: I AM A: WHEN: JANUARY 7, 2018 WHERE: Nelson the Seagull You asked if the seat across from me was free and I said, "yes, in fact I'm just leaving". As soon as I said it, I thought, "no you doofus, stay! He's cute!" We smiled a few times on my way out and now I'm kicking myself. I'm going to go back another Sunday and try my luck.
SATURDAY NIGHT FEVER
I SAW A: I AM A: WHEN: SEPTEMBER 1, 2017 WHERE: Vancouver I met you on the dance floor back in September. You are interesting and quirky just like me! There is always some sort of miscommunication between us that makes things awkward. Anyway I think you are pretty cool!
BEAUTIFUL YOU AT THE HARRISON POOL
I SAW A: I AM A: WHEN: JANUARY 3, 2018 WHERE: Harrison Hot Springs Was at the pool with a friend and you were sitting at the edge. We made eye contact several times, and later on, asked you about your float board. You’re a beautiful human being and it would be wonderful to see you again!
$5G IN DOGECOIN PLEASE!
I SAW A: I AM A: WHEN: JANUARY 2, 2018 WHERE: RBC on Georgia & Burrard Your smile gave me butterflies, you have a cute (Russian?) accent, AND you're funny... but I noticed your ring. Then as we were laughing you said “my husband at the time”. I was dying to ask you out but didn’t for some reason because I thought you must’ve just remarried. Still kicking myself today about it... ugh. I hope you see this. Tell me you’re single!
YOU WERE READING AT THE FIVE POINT, HOPE YOU READ THIS.
I SAW A: I AM A: WHEN: JANUARY 3, 2018 WHERE: The Five Point, Main Street. You came into the Five Point restaurant about a month ago, and were reading outside. I served you and we chatted a bit. You came back in last night and sat in my section with your friend, again, you had a book with you. I lost my nerve both times and didn’t tell you I think you’re gorgeous. You are tall with tattoos and a beard. Me, short, long brown hair, tattoos. I hope your love for reading brings you to read this, come back and see me at the bar, or reply to this :)
FLIGHT FROM GATWICK TO VANCOUVER
I SAW A: I AM A: WHEN: DECEMBER 30, 2017 WHERE: Flight TS295 to Vancouver You were the beautiful blond flight attendant that was working my section: you asked me if I was visiting Vancouver or living there. I didn’t know if it was you opening the door for more, but now I regret not having asked for your number or gave you mine as I think we had connection! Your accent was to die for and you were so nice to everyone! I was sitting at the emergency row, tall, brown hair and blue eyes. I’m originally from England but live in Van now. Coffee?
AT THE ASTORIA NYE
I SAW A: I AM A: WHEN: JANUARY 1, 2018 WHERE: The Astoria You stunning in a sultry red and black dress with a far East edge. Gloves long enough and then longer still. I was delighted by the enthusiasm you had for the balloons--an enthusiasm I share. I was wearing a Gang of Four shirt and have unruly hair. At one point we started to talk but then a turmoil of friends and events and suddenly, unexpectedly, I had to leave. You seem like someone that would be fun to hang out with. I’ll provide the balloons.
COOL GUY AT ABSTRACT VAN ART EXHIBIT
I SAW A: I AM A: WHEN: DECEMBER 29, 2017 WHERE: Vancouver Art Gallery You came up to me and we talked briefly about the navy blue piece that you said you liked. Later on, I ran into you again on the way out. You had light hair and the leather jacket :)
LOUISE BROOKS REBORN YOU: BEAUTIFUL ASIAN GIRL, TOOK MY ORDER AT CHEZ CHRISTOPHE PATISSERIE
I SAW A: I AM A: WHEN: DECEMBER 31, 2017 WHERE: Chez Christophe, Hastings St, Burnaby You may well be the most beautiful Girl I have ever seen. You work at Chez Christophe in Burnaby and you took my order this morning on New Year’s Eve. You are Asian, I’m guessing in your twenties, have a few ear piercing, the most pretty face and beautiful hair a little longer than shoulder length. Had I met you somewhere else I would have asked you out but I wouldn’t do that at your work place as I don’t want to put you on the spot in front of customers and colleagues. I know chances that you will read this are very small, but I had to try. I would love to get to know you. I’m caucasian, in my thirties, light brown and slightly greyish hair, ordered a latte and a hazelnut croissant. Take care and Happy New Year!
TINDER UN-MATCHED US
I SAW A: I AM A: WHEN: DECEMBER 16, 2017 WHERE: Tinder We talked for a few days and made tentative plans to hang out once you came back from Penticton over Christmas. I think it was around the 23rd that the app updated and pretty much deleted everyone I’d talked to on the app for the last three months, which unfortunately, included you. Not sure you’ll see this but hit me up if you do!
Visit straight.com to post your FREE I Saw You _ 12 THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT JANUARY 11 – 18 / 2018
ou may have flipped through plenty of traditional cookbooks, but have you ever read one that includes convenient how-to videos for every single recipe? Greta Podleski is changing the (kitchen) game by embedding QR codes (machine-readable codes storing information that can be scanned with smartphones) that reveal minute-long how-to videos in her new cookbook, Yum & Yummer: Ridiculously Tasty Recipes That’ll Blow Your Mind, but Not Your Diet!. “I wanted Yum & Yummer to be the most user-friendly cookbook ever published, and I also wanted it to stand out in the crowded sea of cookbooks,” Podleski told the Georgia Straight in a phone interview. “I want the videos to inspire people to get in the kitchen and cook and not be intimidated by healthy cooking.” She is already a household name in Canada: the cooking enthusiast and Greta Podleski’s cookbooks focus on tasty, healthy recipes that readers can her sister Janet have coauthored mulprepare at home, including this chicken curry from her new Yum & Yummer. tiple successful cookbooks (Looneyspoons; Crazy Plates; and Eat, Shrink to over time. This also means that to make sides, desserts, breakfast & Be Merry!) that have sold more than her recipes have changed since the dishes, and many more delicious 2.3 million copies during the past two publication of her first cookbook. creations. decades. “My focus for the last 20-plus “I honestly love every recipe in my The Waterloo, Ontario, native’s years, beginning with Looneyspoons books or they wouldn’t be included,” newest publication is her first solo back in 1996, has been to create ri- Podleski said. “But I don’t just create cookbook, and it’s proven to be diculously tasty, healthy recipes and include recipes that I love; I inboth a difficult and a rewarding using common ingredients found at clude recipes that I believe will have journey. your local grocery store,” Podleski the widest appeal.” “Writing and said. “I’m keepWhen she was asked for her publishing cooking up with those 2018 food-trend predictions, her books is a long, trends and really answers included faux-meat prodlabour-intensive listening to what ucts and more vegetarian, vegan, Tammy Kwan process. I’m also my readers are ask- and plant-based meals. She underthe publisher, not just the author, so ing for, which is more gluten-free, stands that this is nothing new to this doubles my workload,” Podleski more vegetarian, less dairy.” Vancouver, a city that is home to a explained. “On the other hand, But that doesn’t mean the author large population of people who emthere’s a great feeling of satisfaction and publisher is preaching healthy brace healthy diets. in venturing out on your own, over- eating. Her focus is to help North “[Vancouver] is the perfect audicoming obstacles by yourself, taking Americans cook at home more and ence for my book, because while 100 percent of the risk, dealing with provide them with delicious recipes not everyone is vegetarian or vegan, fear, nerves, and doubt, and having it that can easily be replicated. a lot of people have an interest in all work out.” According to Podleski, her latest that,” Podleski said. “That’s the dirYum & Yummer has made it to cookbook features recipes that are ection that I’ve gone in. I still have the top of national bestseller lists, 80 percent gluten-free, 60 percent the chicken and fish recipes, but so it’s fair to say that her hard work vegetarian, with many vegan op- I’m really emphasizing more planthas paid off. She spent five years con- tions as well. based and vegetarian [recipes].” cocting the recipes in her head and a Readers will learn how to make It takes plenty of time and energy year and a half creating them in her plant-based dishes such as a sum- to take on a project like this one, but kitchen, not to mention the time- mery chickpea salad; cauliflower, she couldn’t seem happier with the consuming task of styling and pho- chickpea, and sweet-potato curry; results of her work. tographing each of her dishes as an Mediterranean grilled-vegetable piz“It’s more than a full-time job. amateur photographer. zas; and maple-balsamic roasted I find the time because I love it,” “I really kept the photos about Brussels sprouts. The cookbook also Podleski added. “I’m really enerthe food and not the props,” the has recipes that cater to meat lovers, getic and inspired by cooking and author added. “I really wanted including apricot, sriracha, and writing. I’m getting such great feedthe book to make people’s mouths ginger glazed meatballs; spicy chili- back, and it motivates me to spring water and make them want to cook. lime grilled shrimp; Indian-spiced out of bed every morning.” I wanted them to look at the food.” chicken drumsticks; cranberry-balWith so much cookbook-writing samic–roasted pork tenderloin; and Yum & Yummer ($34.95) is available across Canada at most retail outexperience under her belt, Podleski Asian grilled pork kebabs. can see the changing trends and diet Besides starters, salads, and lets that carry books and online at focuses that Canadians have adapted mains, readers can also learn how www.yumyummer.com/.
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JANUARY 11 – 18 / 2018 THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT 13
14 THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT JANUARY 11 â€“ 18 / 2018
A place far removed from medieval EngBY JANET SM IT H
land inspired Niall McNeil’s vision of the thick clouds of fog that give the epic King Arthur’s Night its ominous feel. “That was my idea because I go every March to Harrison Hot Springs and people sit around and the steam always comes up,” McNeil tells the Straight over a conference line with his collaborator, Neworld Theatre artistic director and actorplaywright Marcus Youssef. It’s a perfect illustration of the way McNeil free-associates, finding theatrical magic in the everyday—and one of many touches that sprang directly from his vivid imagination in the show. “I remember when Niall came back from Harrison and he was really clear that that was Camelot,” recalls Youssef. The two men—each a local theatre luminary in his own right—have joined the call from across continents. On the line in Vancouver, McNeil, who grew up acting at the Interior’s famed Caravan Farm Theatre, worked with Youssef to create 2011’s award-winning Peter Panties, a wild reinterpretation of the Peter Pan story that debuted at the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival. Last year, he helped script King Arthur’s Night as a commission for the prestigious Luminato Festival in Toronto. As for Youssef, he’s speaking over the phone from England, where he’s developing a work with local director Chelsea Haberlin at the Farnham Maltings creative-arts centre. He’s preparing to deliver the keynote address at this year’s PuSh Assembly on January 31. And he is still processing the fact he’s just won the nation’s highest playwriting honour: the $100,000 Siminovitch Prize.
King Arthur’s Night is an epically imagined work of theatre, a revolutionary act of inclusion, and a moving story of friendship “Playwrights are a little more used to being anonymous, so I’ve had to get used to it,” Youssef says with a laugh. “I’ve been really grateful that I’ve been really busy because I haven’t had a chance to panic.” McNeil quickly adds: “Everybody, including the cast, seeing him win—we were so excited.” That McNeil lives with Down syndrome is beside the fact—and yet it’s not. Diversity is a big focus in Canada’s theatre world right now, but the large-scale King Arthur’s Night, which is finally going to open in its hometown, somehow strives further: it aims to make differences invisible. The PuSh fest is rightly billing it as “radically inclusive”. With McNeil playing the title role, the production mixes together a cast of professional actors and nonpros from the “Act Up” classes at Burnaby’s Down Syndrome Research Foundation. Both McNeil and Youssef have taught classes there. The project, created with composer-musician Veda Hille and directed by James Long, doesn’t patronize and it defies preconceptions. “What I like about this show is how it ref lects the friendship and collaborations of Niall and I over the last 10 years,” Youssef explains. “What we learned from teaching those classes is that no matter what their neurological makeup, everyone is good at some things and not so much at others.” As examples, he points
THINGS TO DO
Niall McNeil’s King Arthur stands amid fog inspired by a springtime trip (Tristan Casey photo); below left, his collaborator Marcus Youssef found new ways to work.
to McNeil’s ability to embody power onstage, and the clear dancing talents of Tiffany King, who plays Guinevere in the production. “So that’s been the operating approach from the beginning, and been the best approach across the room: how to work so that everyone can do what they’re good at.” Youssef stresses how much he has learned from McNeil through the unique creation process they have developed together over the years. “Working with Niall on Peter Panties was the most profound experience I’ve ever had,” Youssef says. “I learned so much about being in the moment, making associations about things that may not feel connected but are, in a deeper and more intuitive way. And I learned in this process in particular the value of slowing down and showing up: whatever comes up is worth paying attention to. It’s been profound.” It’s clear from talking to the pair that many of McNeil’s ideas made their way into the new production—starting with the subject. “Niall suggested the show be about King Arthur—he was watching Merlin a lot on TV,” says Youssef, with McNeil adding he started researching the figure extensively online. “It’s true—he’d send all of that to me,” says Youssef. “On Peter Panties, we’d figured out a way for us to work together. Niall and I hang out and we jam and we improvise and bring in other people to improvise with us,” he explains. McNeil and Youssef record it all, rather than writing as they
go. McNeil also recorded some improvised songs for Hille to work into her score. McNeil says the role of the king appeals to him for several reasons. “I like him because he has a sense of humour and he’s powerful—more powerful than you can imagine,” says the performer, whom Grandview residents may know from his job at Super-Valu on Commercial Drive. “And he’s a father, too. I think King Arthur is a really nice guy, but sometimes not a nice guy.” “King Arthur definitely has more power than Merlin,” concurs Youssef. McNeil’s vision also had a strong influence on the ever-expanding scope of the work. “Niall’s vision is always big!” says Youssef. “He grew up at Caravan Theatre, where the shows are always big.” Expect a small army of performers, a live band, and a 16-person choir to fi ll the stage. The production, which debuted last year back east, is mythical, highly musical, and lavishly designed. It is also a rallying cry for change in theatre. But more than anything, it’s an extraordinary story of friendship. Pressed by Youssef to describe what he likes most about the show, McNeil unhesitatingly, and touchingly, says to him: “You!” Then the actor adds: “And being the king. And never being afraid, because my friends are there.” Neworld Theatre presents King Arthur’s Night at the Frederic Wood Theatre from January 31 to February 4 as part of the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival.
PuSh FESTIVAL High five
Editor’s choice DANCE RENEGADE Our love affair with Montreal’s most rock ’n’ roll choreographer, Frédérick Gravel, traces back to the PuSh fest of 2014, when his Usually Beauty Fails—an electric-guitar-amped mix of concert and dance performance—blew our minds, playing out like a concept album of raw human desire. In following years, the Jimi Hendrix–backed Thus Spoke… and the beer-fuelled mess of masculinity All Hell Is Breaking Loose were equally audacious. Now he’s back at PuSh with the dance-beat-driven Some Hope for the Bastards. (The guy has a way with titles.) We can’t wait to see his performers take on the rhythms of a soundscape that mixes everything from club to classical. The PuSh International Performing Arts Festival presents Some Hope for the Bastards at the Vancouver Playhouse on Tuesday (January 16).
Five more PuSh shows to catch
MDLSX (January 18 to 21 at the Roundhouse Community Arts and Recreation Centre) Genderfluid Italian Silvia Calderoni hosts a different kind of dance party.
RADIO REWRITE (January 19 and 20 at the Norman Rothstein Theatre) The Turning Point Ensemble pays tribute to Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood and his idol Olivier Messiaen.
IT’S DARK OUTSIDE (January 24 to 28 at the Waterfront Theatre) A family show with strange, low-tech shadow play and puppetry.
BLIND CINEMA (January 24 to February 1 at the Vancity Theatre) Fun stuff: children blindfold adults and describe a wordless movie to them.
BIRDMAN: LIVE (February 1 at the Vogue Theatre) Percussion master Antonio Sánchez accompanies the Oscar-winning film live.
New this year
CLUB PUSH REACHES EASTWARD Audiences with a taste for the experimental, not to mention beer, already know to hit Club PuSh at the licensed and lounge-y Fox Cabaret. But this year, the festival will also be featuring a few avant-garde satellite performances in New Westminster at its snazzy new Anvil Centre. Amid the inspired and edgy offerings playing both venues: English drag artist and lip-synch innovator Dickie Beau (at the Fox January 19, the Anvil January 20; shown here); triple-octavescaling American vocal master Joseph Keckler, with a repertoire spanning opera to pop (January 26 at the Anvil and January 27 at the Fox); and Vancouver cello trailblazer Cris Derksen with her trio (February 2 at the Anvil and February 3 at the Fox). JANUARY 11 – 18 / 2018 THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT 15
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A F IRE H A LL A R T S C E N T RE PRE S E N TAT ION
C O - P RODU C E D BY S AVA GE S OC I E T Y A N D I T S A ZOO P RODU C T I ON S I N A S S OC I AT I ON W I T H N E WORL D T HE AT RE
THE PIPELINE PROJECT SEBASTIEN ARCHIBALD KEVIN LORING QUELEMIA SPARROW
How are we all complicit? DIRECTED BY
Legend Lin Dance Theatre’s Eternal Tides is a strange and beautiful riff on Taiwan’s age-old ceremonies. Chin Cheng-Tsai photo.
Traditions flow in Eternal Tides Taiwanese dance maven Lin Lee-Chen draws artful inspiration from her homeland > B Y JA NET S M ITH
280 East Cordova Street
JAN 10-20 Tue 7pm Wed-Fri 8pm Sat 3pm & 8pm Sun 3pm Wed 1pm
(PWYC Jan 10 & 17)
RIVERS OF LIGHT Choral Explorations I with Timothy Shantz
8pm FRIDAY, JANUARY 26, 2018 Dunbar Ryerson United Church (2205 W 45th Ave at Yew St) Vancouver Chamber Choir | Stephen Smith, piano Timothy Shantz, conductor Our guest conductor for this concert is Timothy Shantz from Calgary, where he is the music director of Spiritus Chamber Choir and Luminous Voices, as well as chorus master for the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra. He will lead the Vancouver Chamber Choir and pianist Stephen Smith in a programme from favourite composers old and new in our familiar performance home at Dunbar Ryerson United Church in Kerrisdale. Music of Ešenvalds, Sisask, Debussy, O’Regan, Brahms, Ryan, Monteverdi and Jonathan Dove.
1.855.985.ARTS (2787) vancouverchamberchoir.com 18 THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT JANUARY 11 – 18 / 2018
ven over FaceTime, 16 time zones away in Taipei, where the Straight reaches her on a sunny morning, the grand maven of Taiwan’s contemporarydance scene makes it clear she immerses herself in art in everything she does. It starts with her attire. Wearing her signature retro-round granny glasses, Lin Lee-Chen has draped a scarlet silk scarf around the neck of her black brocade qipao. Sitting in her minimalistic apartment, she shows the Straight a book of her black-andwhite calligraphic artworks—including images that dance across napkins she used as paper when she was on an airplane. (She is drawing all the time, and has since she was a little girl, she says through her translator.) And when the Straight asks her what kind of bird is making the loud, rhythmic chirping sound behind her, the best prize of all awaits. Her young interpreter, Sebastian Cheng, excitedly disappears off the screen and returns with a small, ornate gold birdcage. But as he holds it closer to the computer camera, it becomes apparent that it is not a feathered creature at all. Rather, it is a gigantic, shiny blue-green cricket creating the cacophony. Lin owns two as pets that provide the soundtrack to her life. The crickets illustrate how much
the artistic director of Legend Lin Dance Theatre finds art in nature, and like so many in this island nation, feels connected to it—often on a spiritual level. As she puts it through her translator, “All the environment in Taiwan—the people, the land, all the animals—inspires me.” And so it is that her strange and epically striking dance work Eternal Tides, which shows at the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival, is both a wildly expressionistic piece of visual art, and a tribute to the cycles of the ocean and the fragility of the environment. Eerie, slow figures with long, curling fingernails and white-powdered bodies dance against yards of flowing silk. They wield towering feathers, long grass, and stones. Eternal Tides unfurls like a hallucinatory ancient ritual—and Lin draws deeply from Taiwan’s rich traditions, working in local, tribal religious and ceremonial rites. “There are many ceremonies in Taiwan’s culture, all through the lifetime of a person—from birth to your wedding to death,” Lin says philosophically. “All the ceremonies connect the people, and at the same time all the people can connect to our ancestors, connect to the spirits.… We gain strength and new power through the rituals.” The piece, a follow-up to her “Heaven, Earth, and Man” trilogy, makes her painterly eye clear: displaying
the same blacks and whites as her drawings, it is like a starkly beautiful moving artwork in itself. To perform the hypnotic piece, the dancers have to enter a trancelike state. “All the dancers have to be in a meditative state,” she says. “We are in half-dream, half-awake. The universe is like that.” Lin believes that by looking back on Taiwan’s distinct cultural traditions, its artists can move forward with something new. Here, she’s not just inspired by the movement and natural props of ancient ceremonies, she’s setting it all to the haunting sounds of gongs and traditional percussion and singing. But as much as Lin draws specifically from her beloved homeland for her work, her goal is to get at much more universal feelings she hopes will translate immediately with viewers here. “Although we start from our local culture, from the land, all the people in the world are all connected to each other,” she stresses. “Every single man has a similar process in their lives. Birth, death, and pain through desire: all these things happen in all parts of the world. Whatever our ages, our place, we face the same things.” The PuSh International Performing Arts Festival presents Legend Lin Dance Theatre at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre on February 3.
JANUARY 11 â€“ 18 / 2018 THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT 19
The Events’ 12 choirs converge on true tragedy > B Y A ND REA WARN ER
V A N C O U V E R
20 THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT JANUARY 11 – 18 / 2018
ou’re a ball of energy!” It’s 5 p.m. on a Friday, and Pi Theatre’s artistic director Richard Wolfe can’t help but notice that actor Douglas Ennenberg hasn’t just entered the rehearsal space, but has begun practically bouncing around it. It’s a marked contrast to the more sober tone of the play they’re working on, but both he and his costar, Luisa Jojic, have to take their escapist joy where they can find it right now. They’ll soon be performing in Pi Theatre and the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival’s presentation of David Greig’s The Events, which was inspired by the 2011 mass killing of 69 people at a youth summer camp in Norway by a 32-yearold right-wing terrorist. Its source material is horrifying, but both Jojic and Ennenberg describe the play itself as “beautiful”. Yes, it has its roots in an evil act, but it spends its time in the aftermath. In it, Scottish playwright Greig (whose Midsummer [A Play With Songs] was a Cultch hit in 2009) explores the complex negotiations through grief following an unfathomable act of violence. Jojic’s character, Claire, is a priest and choirmaster whose faith is shattered as she grapples with the personal consequences of the massacre, while Ennenberg is playing 11 characters, all of whom factor into Claire’s journey through trauma. “I think there are a lot of people who, like me, don’t really feel the reality of these things when they happen,” Ennenberg says. “I’m a millennial, I’ve been raised with global violence on TV and in the media. Even just realizing that it’s about real people sometimes is a stretch, so to really explore the insides of it, to study it, is difficult.” Jojic and Ennenberg met just a few weeks before rehearsals began, but the depth of the material has fasttracked their bonding. They’ve also taken steps to create boundaries in order to manage the emotional toll of the work. “We established very quickly on in the rehearsal process that we needed parameters because we’re dealing with this material,” Jojic says. “We chime in at the beginning and we chime out so that we enclose everything in the space.” Wolfe, who is directing The Events, has them choose a song to play at the end of every rehearsal. “A song of beauty or joy or fun at the end of the day so that we are sent out into the world with that reminder. We’re accessing ourselves as performers and artists, but also containing it.” They’re quick to clarify that The Events is not wholly depressing or dark. As a playwright, Greig is interested in compassion and the healing power of community, not carnage. This is not a play that dwells in the exploitative or the macabre, but it doesn’t shy away from hard truths either. The
Douglas Ennenberg and Luisa Jojic star in The Events. Emily Cooper photo.
emotional terrain is extreme, but there’s also a tremendous amount of hope in the text and on-stage. “Luisa has a line to the audience— ‘We’ve lost our souls, haven’t we?’— and there’s something that rings true about that and desensitization, because what does it mean about us if we can skip over these headlines?” Ennenberg says. “So part of what this is, actually, is that ritual of getting back our souls, to use the language of the play.” Music also plays a significant role in The Events. By the end of this production’s run, more than 220 singers from 12 different local choirs will have performed on-stage alongside Jojic and Ennenberg. One of the reasons that so many choirs are involved is that almost every choir will come in cold, never having seen the show before. The actors will not have a run-through with a choir until the dress rehearsal. Each performance will therefore create a new community, night after night, effectively modelling possible ways for our culture to process trauma together. “Coming together in this act of song—that is such a beautiful thing,” Jojic says. Ennenberg echoes this sentiment. A former member of the Vancouver Peace Choir, he attends the Unitarian Church of Vancouver, which also has a choir. “The way this play interacts with it [music]—it’s not a musical, it doesn’t use it romantically, it’s not sappy. Music is very much an act of strength and unity,” Ennenberg says. “You can’t have a choir if you’re not together in service of something bigger than you.” Pi Theatre and the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival present The Events at the Russian Hall from Wednesday to next Sunday (January 17 to 28).
Irish shows don’t fear the dark > B Y TONY M ONTAG U E
ublin is known as one of Europe’s party capitals, a city brimming with pubs and clubs generating endless craic—Irish for a grand time in good company. However, there’s a flip side to the euphoria, a shadowy face you won’t see or read about in tourist guides but you can see anytime on the streets of Temple Bar, the city’s party-hub neighbourhood. That darkness is at the core of Dublin Oldschool and I’m Not Here, two productions from Ireland at this year’s PuSh International Performing Arts Festival that are very different in terms of structure and texture but spring from similar ground. The subcultural backdrop to both works is the dance-music scene that’s developed in the Irish capital since the roaring Celtic Tiger economy of the mid-’90s. The financial crisis of 2008 hit Ireland very hard, and resulted in alarming rates of homelessness, addiction, and mental-health issues. Both Dublin Oldschool and I’m Not Here deal with the inability of young men caught up in this social maelstrom to express and confide their pain to others, and both were developed at Temple Bar’s Project Arts Centre. The germ for two-hander Dublin Oldschool was a startling coincidence in the life of its writer and codirector Emmet Kirwan. On the streets of London, he ran into his brother, whom he hadn’t seen or heard of for three years. He was homeless, and an addict. Later, Kirwan fictionalized and elaborated this as a series of meetings in the course of a weekend between Jason, a would-be DJ who’s just lost his job and is on a chemically enhanced romp around Dublin, and his brother Daniel, a destitute heroin fixer. Dublin Oldschool’s form is varied and immediately arresting. “It starts off in rap, then moves into poetic spoken-word monologue, and all of
Dublin Oldschool deals with male anguish in postrecession Ireland.
the scenes between the two brothers are in traditional theatre dialogue,” says Kirwan, who plays Jason, reached at the Project Arts Centre, where he and Ian Lloyd Anderson, who plays Daniel, are rehearsing. “I wanted to write something uniquely Dublin, and done in the Dublin patois, the Dublin style of speaking in rhythms—something that rhymed with the prosody of Dublin slang, that straight out the gate was a verbal, vocal assault on the audience. As the play is about Dublin nightlife and what it feels like, it has the aesthetic of a standup club or a hiphop club or an underground nightclub. “The story delves into the subculture of dance music, and the dreamlike state so many of those people live in. Jason and Daniel are kind of mirror images—one is trying and failing to get his life together and the other is coming off the rails. And you have two types of addiction, the first seen as socially acceptable—like party drugs and cocaine—and the second a cultural taboo that leads to homelessness. ” I’m Not Here is a solo performance by the play’s writer, actor, designer, and director Doireann Coady, also
a Dubliner. But in a sense it’s also a deeply moving and unique twohander with her late brother Donal, who took his own life nine years ago, based on a series of tapes Coady was given in 2013 by their father. “Our house was filled with secondhand tape recorders that Dad collects as a hobby, and he was testing one, so he placed it in the hall and let it record for an afternoon—unbeknownst to Donal as he went around the house, singing and mixing music on the computer,” Coady tells the Straight. “My dad found these tapes, and I felt it was a sign from my brother that he wanted to be heard in some way. The first thing he sings is Radiohead’s ‘How to Disappear Completely’ with the refrain ‘I’m not here,’ so it was a very eerie experience first listening to the tapes. Donal was an aspiring DJ and a massive music fan. The score of the show is completely composed of his music and his voice. It’s very much a duet between us. And although it’s hard material, we do want to look after the audience, to bring people together about the invisible subject of suicide.” The form of I’m Not Here is ritualistic, a means for Coady to deal onstage with the devastating effects on her of Donal’s death. “In modern life one has to invent new rituals to deal with such a challenging, misunderstood, and unfathomable topic,” says Coady. “A ritual seems like the most natural base, to draw back on an ancient kind of processing. And religion and theatre and ritual are so intrinsically linked. It’s been an amazing privilege to work with Donal as a collaborator in a way. Really fascinating—and healing. That’s not one of the reasons I was doing it, but it’s great.” The PuSh International Performing Arts Festival presents I’m Not Here from January 24 to 28 and Dublin Oldschool from January 30 to February 3, both at the Cultch’s Historic Theatre.
COMIC STRIPPERS THE
A Male Stripper Parody & Improv Comedy Show
‘BEST LIVE ’ PRODUCTION ian at The Canad rds a Comedy Aw
A show for all genders | 19+ Only WARNING: No extreme nudity, just extreme hilarity
JAN 26 NORTH VANCOUVER: Centennial Theatre JAN 27 MAPLE RIDGE: ACT Arts Centre FEB 2 CHILLIWACK: Chilliwack Cultural Centre
FEB 3 VANCOUVER: The Cultch - York Theatre FEB 9 SURREY: Bell Performing Arts Centre FEB 10 BURNABY: Shadbolt Centre
TICKET INFO: www.thecomicstrippers.com/tourdates
C U T T I N G - E D G E P E R F O R M A N C E — A L I V E W I T H T H E E X P E R I M E N TA L S P I R I T
DICKIE BEAU (ENGLAND)
JOSEPH KECKLER (USA)
CLYDE PETERSEN (USA)
Drag artist extraordinaire Dickie Beau has refined the art Trans filmmaker and musician Clyde Petersen’s idiosynof lip-sync with flawless miming and found sound. Here he cratic stop-motion animated adventure, with live band on drops the mask, laying bare his artistic journey. stage, portrays his misgendered pre-teen years in SoCal.
Harnessing his three-octave range, the artistically ambidextrous Joseph Keckler moves from opera to pop without missing a beat in this charming showcase of the lowbrow and highbrow.
JA N 1 9 9 P M T H E FOX CA B A R E T
JA N 2 6 8 P M THE ANVIL CENTRE
JA N 2 0 8 P M THE ANVIL CENTRE
JA N 2 0 9 P M T H E FOX CA B A R E T
JA N 2 7 9 P M T H E FOX CA B A R E T
CRIS DERKSEN TRIO
QUIPTAKE & PANDEMIC THEATRE (CANADA)
CRIS DERKSEN (CANADA)
Inspired by drag, ballroom and vogue, Vancouver’s Ralph Escamillan, is decked out in “sequin skin” to offer a beguiling study on the gaze, the body and the self.
In this harrowing yet hilarious exploration of toxic masculinity, Toronto comedian Adam Lazarus comes to grips with what it means to become the father of a daughter.
Armed with cello, drum machine, and loop pedal, JUNO-nominee Cris Derksen performs her signature mix of propulsive and hypnotic powwow, hip-hop and techno.
JA N 2 6 9 P M T H E FOX CA B A R E T
FEB 1 10:30PM T H E FOX CA B A R E T
FEB 2 8PM THE ANVIL CENTRE
FEB 3 9PM T H E FOX CA B A R E T
2321 MAIN STREET VANCOUVER
ANNIE DORSEN (USA)
RPM RECORDS: LIVE IN VANCOUVER
777 EAST COLUMBIA NEW WESTMINSTER
A night of karaoke like no other. Participants won’t find VARIOUS ARTISTS (CANADA) Queen or Taylor Swift here; instead, classic speeches, from Dynamite Indigenous acts light up the stage with hip hop Socrates to Sarah Palin, await to be recited. and electronic beats: Mob Bounce, DJ Kookum, Ziibiwan. FEB 2 9PM T H E FOX CA B A R E T
FEB 3 10:30PM T H E FOX CA B A R E T
F R O M T H E H I P & T H E Q U E E R TO T H E R A D I C A L & R I OTO U S JANUARY 11 – 18 / 2018 THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT 21
Humans and machines meet > B Y JA NET S M ITH
GLOBAL DANCE CONNECTIONS SERIES
PIECE FOR PERSON AND GHETTO BLASTER
Photos: top – Piece for Person and Ghetto Blaster/Sarah Walker; bottom – Pour/dancer Paige Culley/photo Daina Ashbee & Alejandro Jimenez
January 17-19 | 8pm
DAINA ASHBEE POUR
February 1-3 | 8pm
Scotiabank Dance Centre
ticketstonight.ca | 604.684.2787 thedancecentre.ca
ielding everything from old-school record players to percussion bots, two very different Australian shows are bringing human and machine together in radical new ways at the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival. Speaking of her intimate meditation on mortality, Endings, Melbourne performance artist Tamara Saulwick says the vintage record players and reel-to-reel tape players she orchestrates live on-stage are as much a part of the work as the human performers—Saulwick herself, with soulful folksinger Paddy Mann, and sound artist Peter Knight. “We’ve come to love these crazy machines I’ve collected for this show,” she tells the Straight over the phone from the Aussie arts capital before heading here for PuSh. “Each one has its own idiosyncrasies. And they immediately create a sound world that’s quite nostalgic.” In the piece she describes as falling “somewhere between a concert and theatre work”, Saulwick refracts interviews with people about loss, death, and dying through the static of the analogue technology. Saulwick says the piece had its genesis in a simple image: that of a stylus at the end of a vinyl record, in its repeating, slightly hissing cycle. It made her think of endings in general, and the end of life—in large part because her father (who becomes a throughline in the piece) was dying during the creation process. “Though the work is about death, it’s really about relationships and connection and the desire to maintain a connection with someone beyond that threshold,” Saulwick says. As she started experimenting with her recordings on retro devices, they began revealing their
Alisdair Macindoe and Antony Hamilton in Meeting. Gregory Lorenzutti photo.
huge metaphorical relevance to the subject matter. “They’re redundant, almost like they’re being exhumed for this piece. There’s also a fragility and precariousness that working with these machines brings—and that gives the show a very palpable feel of liveness.” The fact is, if her reel-to-reel tape player stops working while she’s on the road, there’s only one backup. “There’s something about that that resonates,” she says and then adds with a laugh: “It’s terrifying, but it resonates.” Whereas Saulwick’s Endings looks back to bygone technology, choreographer Antony Hamilton and instrument designer and dancer Alisdair Macindoe’s MEETING uses state-ofthe-art digital tricks—not that you’d know by looking at the Stonehengelike circle of 64 robotic percussion instruments, from tappers to chimes, that dictate the meticulously detailed movement. “There’s a clear aesthetic decision to make them not appear technical,” Hamilton explains over the phone from Down Under. “Something about the primitive appearance of
the machines…makes them look like they could have been made in the last 30,000 years.” The bots become the perfect mechanical match for Hamilton’s mathematically precise movement language of increasingly complicated sequences—a technique he’s developed after years of training in ballet, hip-hop, and contemporary forms. Performing the work and responding to the complex patterns of sound send him and Macindoe into a trancelike state, he admits: “All you’re thinking of are these numbers and where they transmit to a point in your body.” Not that it ever becomes easy or secondhand for the performers of this 2017 Bessie Award–winning “meeting” between biology and technology. “The biggest challenge we faced was to match our ability to the machines’,” Hamilton recalls. “They’re able to spit out these rhythms that, for humans to play them… It just wouldn’t be possible.” He adds the creation process was especially gruelling because Macindoe was coding throughout. The result is a kind of race to keep up—the instruments dictating ever more difficult mechanical patterns for the men to follow. In the process, the metaphors about how our wired world has started dictating everything we do become striking and inescapable. But Hamilton insists that’s not how the creation started out, with him and Macindoe playing with their bodies and machines in the studio. “We lay all these threads and meaning on very much after the fact,” the articulate artist says. “And I love that we do that.” The PuSh International Performing Arts Festival presents MEETING at Performance Works from January 24 to 27, and Endings at the Roundhouse Community Arts and Recreation Centre from January 26 to 28.
CHAN CENTRE PRESENTS SERIES The Jazz Epistles: Abdullah Ibrahim and Terence Blanchard I FEB 18 Lila Downs I MAR 10 Daymé Arocena and Roberto Fonseca I APR 15 Circa: Opus I APR 28
BEYOND WORDS SERIES Tanya Tagaq and Laakkuluk Williamson Bathory I MAR 16+17 Laurie Anderson I APR 23 SOLD OUT
chancentre.com 22 THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT JANUARY 11 – 18 / 2018
Women in theatre take steps toward change > BY JA NET SM IT H
ith sexual-harrassment allegations spreading from Hollywood to the Toronto stage scene, women in theatre here are working toward a larger culture shift in their industry. “There’s sexual harassment, which is pretty blatant and in-your-face, but I really firmly believe this is about power imbalance,” explains the Cultch’s Heather Redfern. “It has been pointed out over and over again that men hold the majority of powerful positions in Canadian theatre. “It’s more subtle and difficult to talk about the fact that women are paid less for some work, have fewer positions of power, their jobs are more menial tasks in the theatre. So I think all these things are wrapped up together. And I think sexual harassment is one of the consequences.” Redfern points to the Cultch’s second annual Femme January program—which opened this week with Hot Brown Honey—as one example of what companies can do. “This is our way to say ‘Come on, guys: you’ve got to pay attention to this, you have to do it deliberately. You
have to commit to doing 50 percent of work [in your season] where the main thrust is from a female creation.’ ” Canadian Actors’ Equity Association executive director Arden R. Ryshpan agrees that solving the kind of sexualharassment issues that have been hitting headlines ties into broader issues. “Improving the attitudes and engagement and portrayal of women has an impact on how women are treated in the workplace,” she tells the Straight over the phone from her Toronto headquarters. At the same time, she stresses her field is not an isolated case: “The spotlight is on the entertainment industry now.…It’s not because things are worse in our sector than in any office building; it’s because when somebody does something in our industry it makes the front page of the newspaper.” Equity started trying to improve women’s place in theatre, film, and TV long before four female actors filed a sexual-harassment lawsuit against artistic director Albert Schultz of Toronto’s Soulpepper Theatre Company. It launched the far-reaching Equity in Theatre program in 2014. Run out of the Playwrights Guild of Canada, it has aimed at addressing the underrepresentation of women in theatre. The multipronged national approach
Hot Brown Honey is part of the Cultch’s Femme January. Dylan Evans photo.
has spanned research studies, a symposium, live events, and a website. “The thing about trying to improve the lot of women in theatre or film and TV is that everybody in the sector has to work together,” Ryshpan explains. “So it’s fine, for example, if we say ‘More women should be hired,’ but if playwrights aren’t writing more plays, then it doesn’t matter what we say about hiring more women.” Canadian Actors’ Equity also kicked off the Not in Our Space! program last year. Spearheaded with the Professional Association of Canadian Theatres, it’s a zero-tolerance anti-harassment and -bullying policy that includes set protocols and support materials. Practices include identifying workplace advisers and a “first day talk” at the
beginning of a show so that everyone will know who to speak to if incidents occur. Having gone industrywide, the initiative will next be adopted at theatre schools, Ryshpan says. Last week, Studio 58 at Vancouver’s Langara College became the first theatre school in the country to do just that. Explains its artistic director Kathryn Shaw: “I thought, ‘Yes, this is something we should be doing to help our students to be more conscious about the power they have.’ If they have something they need to speak up against, they need to speak up. It’s just to have more agency and control in their own lives.” But while giving her students more tools to take with them into the profession, she agrees there are wider changes needed. “It’s part of a bigger issue: I keep hoping that women will write more roles for women. And there are not enough women that are being heard as playwrights or filmmakers,” she says. “And there are so few roles for women that competition is fierce.” Perhaps, she suggests, that has made them less likely to speak out against harassment, in the fear they might lose such a rare opportunity. Ryshpan says there’s much more work to be done to get women into
E T N O IGH Y! N NL O
higher positions at organizations as well. Here in Vancouver, people like Redfern and Shaw have been trailblazers, with Bard on the Beach’s executive director Claire Sakaki and Ashlie Corcoran preparing to take the helm at the biggest theatre in Western Canada, the Arts Club. “There are a number of exceptionally talented women out there, thankfully, moving into some of those key power positions. But we need to see some change in leadership on boards, too: that’s the key to supporting the vision of the female artistic director,” says Ryshpan. “Boards of directors need to get involved, not just in their makeup but in terms of their awareness,” concurs Redfern in her separate interview. The women the Straight talked to hope that out of all the negative headlines about sexual harassment they can gain some positive momentum to bring about change. “In a weird way we have Harvey Weinstein to thank for all this,” observes Ryshpan. “If he wasn’t such a dreadful human being we wouldn’t be having these conversations. It’s going to be harder to ignore women now when they talk about having more positions of power.” -
LLEGEND E G E N D LLIN IN D A N C E THEATER T H E AT E R DANCE ((TAIWAN) T A I WA N )
FEB 3 2018
SHE KILLS MONSTERS
by Qui Nguyen Directed by Keltie Forsyth
January 18—February 3, 2018 The Chan Centre for Performing Arts Tickets: theatrefilm.ubc.ca
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JANUARY 11 – 18 / 2018 THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT 23
VSO NEW MUSIC FESTIVAL TICKETS MAKE A GREAT HOLIDAY GIFT! 5-CONCERT FESTIVAL JANUARY 18–22, 2018
RACHEL BARTON PINE
The VSO's 5th annual New Music Festival shines a spotlight on new creations, featuring great Canadian and international composers, renowned guest artists, and collaborations with Early Music Vancouver and Standing Wave. Curated by Maestro Bramwell Tovey and VSO Composer-in-Residence Jocelyn Morlock, the New Music Festival also features internationally renowned violinist Rachel Barton Pine.
COMEDY 2ONGOING THE COMEDY MIX 1015 Burrard, Century Plaza Hotel & Spa, 604-684-5050, www. thecomedymix.com/. Comedy club with pro-am night Tue at 8:30 pm, showcase Wed at 8:30 pm, and featured headliners Thu at 8:30 pm and Fri-Sat at 8 and 10:30 pm. Cover $8 Tue, $10 Wed, $15 Thu, $18 Fri, $20 Sat. 2BIG JAY OAKERSON Jan 11-13 2MATT BRAUNGER Jan 18-20
ar ts/ timeout THEATRE DANCE MUSIC COMEDY LITERARY EVENTS ET CETERA GALLERIES MUSEUMS
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THEATRE 2OPENINGS THE PIPELINE PROJECT ITSAZOO Productions and Savage Society Theatre present a provocative and personal account of the ongoing cultural battles over pipelines in B.C. Jan 10-20, Firehall Arts Centre (280 E. Cordova). Tix from $20, info www.firehallartscentre.ca/.
YUK YUK’S COMEDY CLUB 2837 Cambie, 604-696-9857, www.yukyuks. com/vancouver/. Comedy club with Top Talent Tue at 8 pm, amateur night Wed at 8 pm, and professional headliners Thu-Fri at 8 pm and Sat at 7 and 9:30 pm. Cover Tue $10, Wed $7, Thu $10, and Fri-Sat $20. 2TYLER MORRISON Jan 11-13 VANCOUVER THEATRESPORTS LEAGUE Some of the world’s most daring and innovative improv. #NoFilter (Thu, 9:15 pm); Ok Tinder (Fri, Sat, 11:15 pm); Rookie Night (Sun, 7:30 pm); Throwdown: International TheatreSports Festival (Tues, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat, 7:30 pm; Wed, 9:15 pm; Fri, Sat, 9:30 pm). Jan 10-17, The Improv Centre (1502 Duranleau, Granville Island). Info www.vtsl.com/.
LITERARY EVENTS 2THIS WEEK
TRAVIS LUPICK: FIGHTING FOR SPACE IN A DRUG CRISIS Journalist and author Travis Lupick (Fighting For Space) and Downtown Eastside activist ABOVE THE HOSPITAL The Midtwenties Ann Livingston discuss how the city has Theatre Society and the Red Gate Arts previously responded to the drug crisis Society present the world premiere of writerand what lessons should be applied now. director Beau Han Bridge’s play about two Jan 11, 7-8:30 pm, Vancouver Public Library Vancouver millennials who live above a Central Branch (350 W. Georgia). Free hospital. Jan 12-21, The Red Gate Revue admission, info www.vpl.ca/events. Stage (1601 Johnston Street, Granville Island ). Tix $20, info www.mtstheatre.com/. BLACK BOYS In association with Zee Zee Theatre, the Cultch presents a production that explores queer male blackness. Jan 16-20, 8-10 pm, The Cultch (1895 Venables). Tix $22-49, info www.thecultch. com/events/black-boys/.
2ONGOING BRAMWELL TOVEY
NICHOLAS WRIGHT MEDIA SPONSOR
DISNEY’S BEAUTY AND THE BEAST The Arts Club Theatre Company presents a stage adaptation of the Academy Award–winning animated film. Includes music by Alan Menken, lyrics by Howard Ashman and Tim Rice, and book by Linda Woolverton. To Jan 13, Stanley Industrial Alliance Stage (2750 Granville). Info www.artsclub.com/. HOT BROWN HONEY Six women turn tradition on its head in a production that’s equal parts theatre and social activism. To Jan 27, York Theatre (639 Commercial). Tix from $22, info www.thecultch.com/ events/hot-brown-honey/.
DANCE 2THIS WEEK KASANDRA FLAMENCO ENSEMBLE: SOLO FLAMENCO Evening of flamenco dance and music featuring Kasandra “La China”, Davide Sampaolo, Jake Lee “Chinito”, and Stephanie Pedraza. Jan 14, 2 pm, Scotiabank Dance Centre (677 Davie). Admission by donation ($10 suggested), info www.thedancecentre.ca/. DANCE ALLSORTS: LORITA LEUNG DANCE COMPANY The Canadian dance troupe presents a showcase of Chinese dance, including classical, folk, ethnic, and contemporary styles. Jan 14, 2-3 pm, Roundhouse Community Arts & Recreation Centre (181 Roundhouse Mews). Tix $5-15, info www.newworks.ca/. NICOLA GUNN As part of the Global Dance Connections series, the Dance Centre presents Nicola Gunn in a performance of Piece for Person and Ghetto Blaster. Jan 17-19, 8 pm, Scotiabank Dance Centre (677 Davie). Tix $36/28/26, info www.thedancecentre.ca/nicola_gunn/.
MUSIC 2THIS WEEK CINEMA IN CONCERT The China Broadcasting Film Symphony Orchestra presents a performance of themes from Oscar-winning films, scenes from which play on a big screen. Jan 12, 8-11 pm, Orpheum Theatre. Tix $29, info www.ticketstonight.ca/. OTTO TAUSK CONDUCTS BRAHMS AND DVORˇ ÁK Otto Tausk conducts cellist Tanja Tetzlaff and the VSO in a performance of Berlioz’s Roman Carnival Overture, Dvorˇák’s Cello Concerto in B Minor, and Brahms’s Symphony No. 1 in C Minor. Jan 13, 8 pm; Jan 14, 2 pm; Jan 15, 8 pm, Orpheum Theatre (601 Smithe). Info www.vancouversymphony.ca/. PARKER AND PARKER Canadian pianists Ian Parker and Jon Kimura Parker coheadline. Jan 14, 3 pm, Kay Meek Centre (1700 Mathers Ave., West Van). Tix $29-45, info www.kaymeek.com/. ANAGNOSON AND KINTON Music in the Morning presents the piano duo in a concert of works by Brahms, Gallant, Poulenc, and Gershwin. Jan 17-18, 10:3011:30 am, Vancouver Academy of Music (1270 Chestnut). Tix $38/35/17, info www.musicinthemorning.org/.
24 THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT JANUARY 11 – 18 / 2018
A MEZZO MARVEL Fast-rising mezzo-soprano Tara Erraught has been blessed with a radiant, silky voice that captures the nuances of everyone from Richard Strauss to Gioachino Rossini, both of whose works she’ll sing here in her second appearance with the Vancouver Recital Society. But we think the Dundalk-born singer’s Irish charm might also have something to do with her appeal. Catch her here in a varied program of opera and lieder with sparkling piano playing by South Africa–born James Baillieu—a continent-spanning match made in classical-music heaven. They’re at the Vancouver Playhouse on Sunday (January 14).
ET CETERA 2THIS WEEK PUSH INTERNATIONAL PERFORMING ARTS FESTIVAL Interdisciplinary festival showcases visionary, genre-bending, startling, and original work by international, Canadian, and local artists. Includes a tribute to water by Taiwanese dance artists, a gender-busting dance party, an Oscarwinning film featuring a live drum score, a reunion recounted in a spoken-word performance, and a radical upheaval of King Arthur’s legend. Jan 16–Feb 4, various Vancouver venues. Tix from $12, info www.pushfestival.ca/.
GALLERIES VANCOUVER ART GALLERY 750 Hornby, 604-662-4719, www.vanartgallery.bc.ca/. 2TRUE NORDIC: HOW SCANDINAVIA INFLUENCED DESIGN IN CANADA (exhibit highlights the enduring legacy of Scandinavian design principles in Canada) to Jan 28
MUSEUMS THE MUSEUM OF ANTHROPOLOGY AT UBC 6393 NW Marine Drive, 604-822-5087, www.moa.ubc.ca/. 2AMAZONIA: THE RIGHTS OF NATURE (exhibition features Amazonian basketry, textiles, carvings, feather works, and ceramics) to Jan 28
TIME OUT ARTS LISTINGS are a public service provided free of charge, based on available space and editorial discretion. Submit listings online using the event-submission form at straight.com/AddEvent. Events that don’t make it into the paper due to space constraints will appear on the website.
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Spanish action-film auteur Jaume Collet-Serra makes such a shiny, speeding locomotive out of The Commuter that you almost forget how light its cargo is. Collet-Serra, the Spanish Alfred Hitchcock nut, has managed, once again, to craft breathless high art out of B-movie trash. Heâ€™s elevated the action here so much that you donâ€™t have five seconds to contemplate how preposterous the plot actually isâ€”let alone wonder what in the hell has Liam Neeson still tapping his actionhero heyday in his 60s. The Commuter races past all Collet-Serraâ€™s other rides in films like Unknown and Non-Stop, be they plane, ship, or automobile. You know youâ€™re in the hands of a master during the opening montage, in which the director quick-edits together insurance salesman Michael MacCauleyâ€™s (Neeson) morning routine and commute, blending the years and the seasons to emphasize the predictability of the daily trip. But today, the journey wonâ€™t be so mundane, starting with debt-strapped ex-cop MacCauley receiving his pink slip and culminating with a smiling Vera Farmiga offering him a sinister $100,000 proposition on a rush-hour train home to the New York burbs. He needs to â€œfind the passenger who doesnâ€™t belongâ€? and plant a tracker on him or herâ€”or risk the lives of both his fellow commuters and his family at home. Farmiga gives her small role a flirtatious ferocity, and Neeson lends his usual gravitas to the outrageous scenario. (Itâ€™s projected early on that the elaborate conspiracy might involve high-level corruption.) Theyâ€™re matched by a trainload of colourful characters and plausible red herrings, from Breaking Bad toughie Jonathan Banks to Lady Macbethâ€™s Florence Pugh. But the biggest thrills come from the camera work, Collet-Serra and cinematographer Paul Cameronâ€™s lens zooming through railcars while the landscape speeds by, and zeroing in on exaggerated details, from ticket stubs to the eyes that seem to follow MacCauley wherever he goes.
Americans appear to have forgotten their own mission statement, at least in terms long put forward by an independent pressâ€”before it sank into conglomeration and cowardice. The title refers to the Washington Post, in the early 1970s considered a provincial rag when compared with the old Gray Lady, the New York Times. The Post had its own grande dame, however, in Kay Graham, the first woman to publish a major newspaper and, eventually, to enter the Fortune 500 list of top CEOs. In Steven Spielbergâ€™s latest, Meryl Streep portrays her as the veteran socialite she was, new to the brute realities of Nixon-era politics but summonsed to greatness by the journalistic creed shared by her late husband, Phil Graham, and her executive editor, Ben Bradlee. The latter is Tom Hanks, although long-time fans of All the Presidentâ€™s Men can be forgiven for thinking heâ€™s playing Jason Robards as Ben Bradlee. The somewhat utilitarian script from Liz Hannah and Josh Singer implies that Graham has just taken the paperâ€™s reins in 1971, although this actually happened when her husband committed suicide eight years earlier. Anyway, her mettle is tested when the Times publishes excerpts offered by former national-security analyst Daniel Ellsberg (Matthew Rhys) of what came to be known as the Pentagon Papers. Basically, the study showed that the U.S. government, under four presidents, had systematically lied about its involvement in Vietnam, and was currently covering up illegal incursions into Cambodia and Laos. In an unpresidented move, Nixon slapped an injunction against the Times for exposing â€œstate secretsâ€?. When Bradlee got the chance to run with the same ball, Graham had to weigh the risks. With the benefit of hindsight, her decision was a constitutional nobrainerâ€”especially knowing it was soon followed by Watergate. This welldocumented gambit should have offered Spielberg a chance to have some storytelling fun. But heâ€™s a meat-andpotatoes guy to the very end. True, Bob Odenkirk and David Cross offer some comic relief as anxious reporters who were on the case, but other supporting playersâ€”like Sarah Paulson as Bradleeâ€™s wife and Alison Brie as Grahamâ€™s feminist daughterâ€”seem to have been handed scenes simply to justify their less-than-urgent presence in the story. And thereâ€™s nothing here
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2 Post comes at a moment when
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Starring Meryl Streep. Rated PG
Torqued up with that paranoia and boasting a killer fight scene over the speeding tracks, it feels a little like Strangers on a Train and Shadow of a Doubt mashed up with Unstoppable and The Fast and the Furious. So even if youâ€™re convinced you donâ€™t need to see Neeson grimace his way through yet another race > KEN EISNER against the clock, this commute is a lot more exciting than what youâ€™re THE COMMUTER likely to experience on the SkyTrain anytime soon. Starring Liam Neeson. Rated PG
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to add to what we already know about Hanks and Streep. Where the movie does come to life is in the background texture of life when thousands of people were involved in the business of gathering, synthesizing, printing, and disseminating crucial news several times a day. In that sense The Post delivers.
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Meryl Streepâ€™s Post reality
ADVANCE TICKETS AT WWW.RIOTHEATRETICKETS.CA
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Washington Post owner Kay Graham (Meryl Streep) takes on the government in Steven Spielbergâ€™s latest attempt at history.
2QH7ULORJ\0DUDWKRQWR5XOH7KHP$OOTHE LORD OF THE RINGS SP$OOWKUHH$OO GD\%DFNWREDFN7KHH[WHQGHGHGLWLRQVRIPeter Jacksonâ€™s FLQHPDWLFWULXPSKJHWWKHELJVFUHHQ PDUDWKRQYLHZLQJWKH\GHVHUYH 0LQRUV2.LQWKHEDOFRQ\&RVWXPHVZHOFRPHDQGHQFRXUDJHG
> JANET SMITH
BLUE A documentary by Karina Holden. Rating unavailable
â€œThe ocean has always seemed
2 a place of limitless depths,â€?
declares one of multiple narrators in this darkly riveting new documentary. â€œBut half of all marine species have disappeared in my own lifetime.â€? That narrator is 32 years old. Overfishing, industrial pollution, and the unimpeded spread of consumer plastics of all kinds are just some of the core subjects touched upon by Blue, a brief but potent look at the wet parts of the planet from Australian filmmaker Karina Holden. The veteran producer and director previously made TV studies of the Great Barrier Reef and other nature-minded subjects before taking crews to Hawaii, Indonesia, and embattled parts of her home country for guided tours of places that still look beautifulâ€”especially in the panoramic cinematography here, which makes even wastelands look ravishingâ€”but are on the very near cusp of disaster. From a visit with freediver Lucas Handley, the opening speaker, Holden follows the even younger Madison Stewart, a shark specialist seen swimming with the surprisingly docile creatures, on her journey to the coastal Philippines, where local activist Mark Dia takes over, talking to impoverished villagers who openly flout international laws against harvesting the majestic animals, as well as rare breeds of big tuna, which he predicts will be gone within the next few years. In another vignette, Dr. Jennifer Lavers induces vomiting in multiple seabirds, all of whom have bits of plastic clogging their tiny stomachs. Experts figure that by 2050, our oceans will contain more plastic than fish. Itâ€™s a dire warning, and likely to be ignored by moneyed interests, especially now that major nations have abandoned their moral compasses. Still, itâ€™s useful for us,
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JANUARY 11 â€“ 18 / 2018 THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT 25
The Forgotten Children. Vázquez directed here with Pedro Rivero, with whom he has made several shorts—which is, in fact, how Birdboy began. Indie animation giant GKids picked up the distribution of this Basque-based effort, and an Englishlanguage version in the works. But it’s hard to picture North American screens aiming this grotesquely dystopian tale at children, even if it is about the wee ones of the title. As in Art Spiegelman’s Maus, the people in an unnamed place and unspecified future are all animals; there are no specific meanings attached to the different species, although they do
from previous page
as individuals who still go to movie theatres, to weigh out our own priorities before harvesting that next round of sushi on the way home.
> KEN EISNER
BIRDBOY: THE FORGOTTEN CHILDREN Featuring the voice of Andrea Alzuri. In Spanish, with English subtitles. Rating unavailable
This Spanish production is on Alberto Vázquez’s graphic novel, called Psiconautus:
seem to signal identity politics of some sort. Pretty rambling stuff, even for 75 minutes, the story is beautifully rendered on f lat panes with deceptive simple lines and a bold, blackand-red-dominated colour palette. It takes place on an island haunted by a massive industrial accident— seemingly nuclear—that has left survivors rooting through garbage and imposing weird hierarchies on the resulting chaos. Lead character Dinky (voiced by newcomer Andrea Alzuri) is a young mouse living with a replacement father who values her robot alarm clock more than he does her, while Dinky’s
meek mother squeezes a babyJesus doll that cries real blood to show what a disappointment her daughter is. Our little mouse wants to escape the island, and school, with her friends, a demon-haunted rabbit (Eva Ojanguren) and a timid fox (Josu Cubero). They steal some money from the hapless Pig Boy (Jon Goiri) and his invalid, drugaddicted mother, but probably should have just grabbed his boat, since they use his coins to purchase a getaway craft when they foolishly venture into a black-market forbidden zone plagued by gluesniffing rats.
ONE OF THE BEST PICTURES OF THE YEAR! INDIEWIRE
Las drogas figure heavily throughout, as Pig Boy occasionally purloins white powder for the semimythical Birdboy, a mute human-avian hybrid whom Dinky loves. He’s the son of a lighthouse keeper killed by canine police who represent the Franco-style attitudes still animating Spanish authoritarianism. Birdboy (whose name is usually uttered in English) is likewise being pursued for spreading golden acorns that, presumably, carry spores of rebirth that nature is crying out for. Or something like that. You might actually need your children to explain it to you. > KEN EISNER
NATIONAL BOARD OF REVIEW AMERICAN FILM INSTITUTE ROLLING STONE VULTURE VOGUE VANITY FAIR THRILLIST WALL STREET JOURNAL SLATE THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER SIGHT & SOUND US WEEKLY SLANT MAGAZINE TIME ATLANTA FILM CRITICS CIRCLE NEW YORK FILM CRITICS ONLINE THE PLAYLIST ROGEREBERT.COM
SCREEN ACTOR GUILD AWARD NOMINEE BEST ACTOR Ti m o t h é e C h a l a m e t
++++ (HIGHEST RATING)
“ONE OF THE YEAR’S VERY BEST FILMS. LUCA GUADAGNINO’S STUNNING ACHIEVEMENT.”
“ANOTHER RAVISHMENT OF THE SENSES
...THE CHARISMATIC CHALAMET, HAMMER AND STUHLBARG— TRANSFORM BEAUTY INTO FEELING.” -Manohla Dargis, THE NEW YORK TIMES
A FILM BY
SAT, JAN 13 6:30PM - Reception & Refreshments 7:30PM - Introduction & Screening
SAT, JAN 13 - 6:30PM
“A MASTERPIECE OF BREATHTAKING BEAUTY.” -Rex Reed, NEW YORK OBSERVER
-Peter Travers, ROLLING STONE
NEVER STEADY, NEVER STILL
SAT, JAN 13 - 8:20PM
“FAR AND AWAY THE BEST MOVIE OF THE YEAR.”
-Christy Lemire, ROGEREBERT.COM
CANADA’S TOP TEN SHORTS
SUN, JAN 14 - 4PM
PROGRAM I: SUN, JAN 14 - 6PM PROGRAM II: SUN, JAN 14 - 7:30PM
#SeeTheNorth ™Toronto International Film Festival Inc., used under license.
MICHAEL STUHLBARG AMIRA CASAR ESTHER GARREL BASED ON THE NOVEL BY ANDRÉ ACIMAN SCREENPLAY BY JAMES IVORY DIRECTED BY LUCA GUADAGNINO SEXUALLY SUGGESTIVE SCENES, SEXUAL CONTENT
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26 THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT JANUARY 11 – 18 / 2018
FIFTH AVENUE 2110 Burrard St. • 604-734-7469 ENDS THURSDAY
Check theatre directories for showtimes
RED CROSS www.redcross.ca
PuSh International Performing Arts Festival
Terrified Swan builds a creative community Laura Reznek and Carolyn Deady created the Vancouver indie label to help deconstruct stereotypes about female performers > B Y KATE WIL SON
eginning with international marches that advocated for women’s reproductive rights and closing the gender pay gap, 2017 was a historic year for female empowerment. Supported by evidence from a female photographer, Taylor Swift won a symbolic victory against her sexual abuser. The Gal Gadot–led, Patty Jenkins–directed Wonder Woman demolished box office records to become the highest-grossing superhero origin film of all time. The #MeToo movement offered a platform for women to expose those who had sexually harassed or assaulted them, and to support the victims. In the entertainment industry and beyond, a drive has begun toward celebrating female collaboration. But while Hollywood stars or Rolling Stone cover artists may dominate the press, grassroots movements focused on women helping women have been growing all over North America. Take, for instance, new Vancouver imprint Terrified Swan. “The idea for the label came when Carolyn [Deady] and I, who’s also a local musician, wanted to create a cooperative group,” says Laura Reznek, singer-songwriter and cofounder of the label, on the line from London, England. “We never sought out management on our own because we wanted to keep the integrity of our own music, but there’s a loneliness in that. We thought that if we made a label where all the people involved had a part in everyone else’s project in some way, we would be able to build a creative community for women and nonbinary artists.” In Reznek’s view, female and female-identifying musicians are often overlooked in the industry.
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Terrifed Swan’s first release was Now Who Owns the Night, an EP by label cofounder Laura Reznek. Matt Reznek photo.
Regularly dismissed as just a “girl with a guitar” when revealing her profession, Reznek set up the label to help deconstruct stereotypes about women performers. To do that, she and Deady formed Terrified Swan with two aims in mind: to release new music, and to form an events company. “Both elements are necessary for establishing a person as an artist,” she says. “It also plays into the importance of collaboration. The shows we put on don’t just involve musicians—they have individuals who are also actors, dancers, filmmakers,
or visual artists. They all have other talents, so we have the chance to cross-pollinate. We’re having an event soon, for example, where we’ll show a silent film, and ask instrumentalists to score it by collaborating together in the moment. I think it’s much more interesting to watch something unexpected like that.” Launched in the fall of 2017, Terrified Swan is in a stage of what Reznek dubs “slow burn”. After the release of its debut EP last November, Reznek’s Now Who Owns the Night, the label is gearing up to drop Deady’s new project in the coming months, and the
got her through her lowest times, and she still credits songwriting as the way she best communicates with people. Now Who Owns the Night exemplifies her mastery of conveying complex emotions. Much more minimal than the arrangements on her debut album, Who Came Before Us, Reznek’s warm piano, violin swells, and powerful, velvety vocals conjure contrasts of light and darkness. While much of the album was composed and played solely by the artist—a technique seemingly at odds with Terrified Swan’s model— Reznek fulfilled the label’s mandate of collaboration with a 19-date tour around Western Europe, funded by Music BC. “I went on the road with two other artists from Vancouver, Alexandria Maillot and Sam Lynch,” she recalls, “to promote the album and to connect with women from the cities that we were visiting. We wanted to partner with performers who were doing really cool things. For one of the shows in Berlin, for example, we did it with a group of mimes, so in between our sets there was this amazing performance art. In Copenhagen, we connected with a company called Lo-Fi Concerts—similar to Sofar Sounds—which puts on shows in very intimate venues, and is run by two women. “The goal of the label is to be as inclusive as possible,” Reznek continues. “We want everyone involved to help each other out—so when we go to another place, everyone else is going with them in some way. It’s more than a platform to release music. We’re making a creative community.” -
pair are organizing a compilation album for International Women’s Day with songs from Canadian, Swedish, English, and Australian artists—the proceeds of which will be donated to a charity that provides sanitary products for homeless women. Forming Terrified Swan was a logical next step for Reznek, who never questioned her goal of making it as a musician. Taking up the violin when she was three years old, before mastering the piano and developing a mature, jazz-inspired singing voice, the artist had a tough family Laura Reznek’s Now Who Owns the life. Music was, she says, the outlet that Night is out now.
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Wolf Parade glad to be back > B Y M IK E U S ING E R
ometimes it takes a bit of reflecting before one truly understands where things started to unravel. Canadian indie-rock stalwart Dan Boeckner is now at a point in his life where he realizes paying attention to warning signs is important. When he’s tracked down by phone in Vancouver, where he’s visiting friends before an upcoming Wolf Parade tour, the guitarist is relaxed and philosophical. Boeckner is, famously, one of the busiest musicians in the country, juggling numerous projects (Divine Fits, Operators, Wolf Parade) at any given time. He acknowledges that it’s not uncommon for him to come off the road with one group, and then head right back out with another. “I love being at home, especially right now,” he admits. “My domestic life in Montreal is great because I have a studio three blocks from my house. I can work if I want to, I can hang out with my dog if I want to. Where I’m most comfortable, though, is if I’m working on tour.” On that front, he’s stoked about touring this year with Wolf Parade, which, after lurching to a much-publicized halt in 2011, returned to action last year with the stellar full-length Cry Cry Cry. And just as importantly, the Vancouver Island–raised musician is grateful that the group that he formed after moving to Montreal in the early 2000s is in a healthier place than it was eight years ago. Flashing back, Boeckner realizes that nobody was having fun by the end of Wolf Parade’s final pre-hiatus North American tour—that exacerbated by the fact that the band was obligated to complete a swing through Europe. “The shows were fun, but everything surrounding the shows seemed kind of tense,” Boeckner recalls. “Everyone seemed really burned-out.
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music/ timeout CONCERTS
New beard for a new year
Now that it’s a new year I think it’s time for a new look. I got fed up of looking like a child so I’m growing a beard. I tried to grow one a couple of years ago but shaved it off because I got impatient. This time I want to commit and let it grow. There are certain times when I prefer not to be recognized so maybe growing it out can help me keep my low profile.
MASON JENNINGS American folk-pop singer-songwriter tours in support of latest release Wild Dark Metal. Feb 14, doors 7 pm, show 8 pm, Biltmore Cabaret (2755 Prince Edward). Tix $20 (plus service charges and fees) at Red Cat, Zulu Records, and www.ticketfly.com/.
I think people like being on their own.
NOBLE OAK Local electronica musician and multi-instrumentalist tours in support of latest release Collapsing Together. Feb 16, doors 7 pm, show 8 pm, Fox Cabaret (2321 Main). Tix $12 (plus service charges and fees) at Red Cat, Zulu Records, and www.ticketweb.ca/.
And it’s one of the reasons it’s hard to form relationships as the expectation to be available freaks people out...just a thought.
PJs OK here’s a shameful and embarrassing confession. When I get home from work on a Friday night about 7 PM, I immediately get in the shower and then get into my pajamas. I don’t leave my apartment or get out of my pajamas again until Monday morning. I deal with a lot of hostile and manipulative people all week long that I just can’t bring myself to interact with anyone for two whole days. I know that if I keep this up I’ll become increasingly antisocial. :-(
I may be evil I start fights with my man to see if one: he still loves me and does not kick me to the e curb. Two : for the make-up sex...
I have a prediction for 2018. They still won’t find anything on Oak Island!
to post a Confession
28 THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT JANUARY 11 – 18 / 2018
ATMOSPHERE American hip-hop duo from Minneapolis, Minnesota, performs on its Welcome to Canada Tour, with guests Evidence. Mar 5, doors 8 pm, show 9 pm, Commodore Ballroom (868 Granville). Tix on sale Jan 12, 10 am,
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I think I went for a long time not noticing the collective burnout. I’d spent half a decade kind of bouncing between bands. Every time I’d get off a Wolf Parade tour I’d start a Handsome Furs tour. And I didn’t have the emotional bandwidth to sort of recognize that people were maybe not feeling so great. I felt really obsessive about constantly working and being on the road, but everybody has a very different level of tolerance for that.” Boeckner has little trouble articulating why he prefers to be endlessly busy when it comes to music. “I worked for a pharmaceutical company for a long time,” he says, “and all I could think of was ‘I wish I had time off to work on music.’ ” The return of Wolf Parade started with Boeckner connecting casually with band cofounders Spencer Krug (vocals and keyboards) and Arlen Thompson (drums). Reconvening with guitarist Dante DeCaro, the band’s members eventually ended up in Seattle working on Cry Cry Cry at a weird time in American politics—namely, the rise of Donald Trump. But going against the climate of the world it was created in, Wolf Parade’s triumphant comeback release would prove to be deliriously uplifting and positive, whether the group is dabbling in synth-shimmered shoegaze for “Valley Boy” or giving ’60s garage a sun-splashed makeover with “Who Are Ya”. By the band’s own admission, the art-glam shadow of the late, great David Bowie hangs over the proceedings. (Check out the folk-tinted space oddity “Lazarus Online”.) But even when Wolf Parade is at its most stripped-down and plaintive, as on the piano-centred “Weaponized”, the band sounds happy to be back. “It’s hard to make art about really uncompromisingly bleak times,” Boeckner says with a laugh. That statement is a reflection of the
fact that the guitarist started playing with punk-rock bands. Having come up in the same Vancouver Island scene as Black Mountain’s Stephen McBean, the 39-year-old has been around long enough to know that enraged sloganeering does little to effect change once you’ve left the all-ages community hall. “I feel like music doesn’t necessarily have a transformative effect on politics,” Boeckner opines. “It would be really nice if it did, but if you look back at the history of counterculture and pop music, it doesn’t really serve as a catalyst for change in the way that it’s been mythologized by my parents’ generation—the baby boomers. But it also doesn’t have to be a sort of self-loathing, fuck-everything monologue like a lot of stuff that came out in the ’90s. I think there’s a way to sing about things and give people a little bit of hope.” And with that, he encapsulates why it’s good to have not only Wolf Parade back, but Boeckner and company sounding like they’re sorry they ever went away. From its initial rise with 2004’s Apologies to the Queen Mary to follow-ups At Mount Zoomer and Expo 86, the group created some of the most idiosyncratic, deliciously art-warped, and often challenging indie rock this country has ever seen. Cry Cry Cry suggests that the band’s creative battery is anything but drained. For that, Boeckner credits the power of music. “The best thing about being in a band for me and doing this job is when you play a show and you are able to get everyone in a room on the same emotional wavelength,” he says. “If there’s some sort of catharsis there—if it makes people feel better for the 90 minutes or two hours they are at the show—then you’re winning.” -
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Artillery, and Year of the Wolf. Jan 12, 8 pm, Rickshaw Theatre (254 E. Hastings). Tix at www.rickshawtheatre.com/.
A TRIBE CALLED RED Canadian electronica ensemble blends elements of hip-hop and reggae music with aspects of First Nations music. Mar 10, doors 8 pm, show 9:30 pm, Commodore Ballroom (868 Granville). Tix on sale Jan 12, 10 am, $25 (plus service charges and fees) at www.livenation.com/. THE NAKED AND FAMOUS Indieelectronica band from Auckland, New Zealand, tours in support of latest release A Still Heart. Mar 14, doors 8 pm, show 9 pm, Rio Theatre (1660 E. Broadway). Tix on sale Jan 12, 10 am, $35 (plus service charges and fees) at Red Cat Records and www.ticketweb.ca/. ANTIBALAS Brooklyn-based Afrobeat collective tours in support of latest release Where the Gods Are in Peace. Mar 18, doors 7 pm, show 8 pm, Biltmore Cabaret (2755 Prince Edward). Tix $25 (plus service charges and fees) at Red Cat, Highlife Records, and www.ticketfly.com/. PALE WAVES English indie-pop band tours in support of upcoming EP New Year’s Day, with guests Inheaven. Mar 30, doors 7 pm, show 8 pm, Biltmore Cabaret (2755 Prince Edward). Tix on sale Jan 12, 10 am, $15 (plus service charges and fees) at www.livenation.com/. THE BREEDERS American rock band tours in support of upcoming release. Apr 11, doors 8 pm, show 9 pm, Commodore Ballroom (868 Granville). Tix on sale Jan 12, 10 am, $35 (plus service charges and fees) at www.ticketmaster.ca/. FIVE ALARM FUNK Vancouver-based funk band, with guest DJ Shub. Apr 20, doors 8 pm, show 9 pm, Commodore Ballroom (868 Granville). Tix on sale Jan 12, 10 am, $25 (plus service charges and fees) at www.livenation.com/. KHRUANGBIN Texas-based funk-surf trio tours in support of latest release Con Todo El Mundo, with guests the Mattson 2. Apr 27, doors 7 pm, show 8 pm, Fox Cabaret (2321 Main). Tix on sale Jan 12, 10 am, $22.50 (plus service charges and fees) at Red Cat, Zulu Records, and www. ticketweb.ca/.
2THIS WEEK STEVE GUNN AND JULIE BYRNE American singer-songwriters coheadline in support of their latest releases. Jan 12, doors 7 pm, show 8 pm, St. James Hall (3214 W. 10th). Tix $22.50 (plus service charges and fees) at www.ticketweb.ca/. JP MAURICE Vancouver-based musician, with guests Leisure Club, Small Town
Wolf Parade plays the Commodore Ballroom on Friday (January 12).
WOLF PARADE Montreal indie-rock band, with guest Charly Bliss. Jan 12, 8 pm, Commodore Ballroom (868 Granville). Tix $32, info bplive.ca/events/wolf-parade. SHAUN RAWLINS Local indie-folk singersongwriter, with guests Tobacco Brown, Tyler Bartfai, and Austin Parise. Jan 12, 9 pm, Railway Stage and Beer Café (579 Dunsmuir). Info www.showpass.com/ shaunrawlins-railway/.
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For up-to-the-minute, searchable Music Time Out listings, visit
CONNIE KALDOR The Rogue Folk Club presents the folk singer-songwriter and Juno-winning musician. Jan 13, 8 pm, St. James Hall (3214 W. 10th). Tix $15-30, info www.roguefolk.bc.ca/concerts/ ev18011320. CAIRO KNIFE FIGHT New Zealand hard-rock duo, with guests Spidercracker. Jan 13, 10 pm, Rickshaw Theatre (254 E. Hastings). Tix $10 (plus service charges and fees) at www.rickshawtheatre.com/. CHRIS JONES AND THE NIGHT DRIVERS The Pacific Bluegrass and Heritage Society presents the Nashville bluegrass band. Jan 15, 7 pm, ANZA Club (3 W. 8th Ave). Tix $25/20, info www.pacificbluegrass.ca/. RED FANG Portland stoner-metal band, with guests We Hunt Buffalo. Jan 16, 8 pm, Rickshaw Theatre (254 E. Hastings). Tix $25 (plus service charges and fees) at www. rickshawtheatre.com/.
2UPCOMING HIGHLIGHTS B3 FOR BUNNY: CHICAGO’S GEORGE FLUDAS QUARTET Preeminent drummer George Fludas has been a fixture on the Chicago scene for 30 years. With Chicago organist Pete Benson and Vancouver’s Cory Weeds (tenor sax) and Dave Sikula (guitar). Presented by Coastal Jazz. Jan 19-20, 8 pm, Frankie’s Jazz Club (765 Beatty). Tix $20, info www.coastaljazz.ca/.
TIME OUT MUSIC LISTINGS are a public service provided free of charge. Submit listings online using the event-submission form at straight.com/AddEvent. Events that don’t make it into the paper due to space constraints will appear on the website.
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savage love I’m a 67-year-old gay man. After a breakup 15 years ago, I believed the possibility of emotional and sexual intimacy with a partner was over for me. Then a couple of months ago, my desire for sexual contact increased dramatically. For the first time, I began using apps, and I felt like the proverbial kid in a candy store; it seemed strangely similar to when I first came out in San Francisco’s Castro neighborhood in the early 1970s. Also, I was surprised— not unpleasantly—by the whole Daddy phenomenon, never imagining that this old face and body would interest younger men. You can probably guess what happened next: I was contacted by a 22-year-old man who revealed himself to be mature, intelligent, sweet, and, fatally, the physical type that arouses me most. I fell hard, and he seems to like me too. Am I a creep? A fool? Is my judgment impaired? > DUMB AND DADDY
The sexy “Daddy” thing seems to be undergoing a resurgence. Perhaps our omnipresent abusive orange father figure is giving us all daddy issues that are manifesting as a burning desire to service kinder, sexier, more benevolent daddies. Or perhaps the Internet is to blame—not for creating more people interested in intergenerational sex and/or romance but for making it easier for people to anonymously seek out the kind of sex and sex partners they truly want. Nothing melts away shame quite like knowing you’re not alone— and more people are coming out about their non-normative sexual desires, partner preferences, relationship
models, et cetera, than ever before. That said, DAD, if the affections of a consenting adult 40-plus years your junior is your particular perk of aging, go ahead and enjoy it. Keep your expectations realistic (a successful STR is likelier than a successful LTR), don’t do anything stupid, and reacquaint yourself with my Campsite Rule: when there’s a significant age and/or experience gap, the older and/or more experienced person has a responsibility to leave the younger and/or less experienced person in better shape than they found them. No unplanned or planned pregnancies, no sexually transmitted infections, no leading the younger partner to believe “forever” is likely. Do what you can to boost their knowledge, skills, and self-confidence while you’re together. The chances that you’ll be together forever are slim, but you can forever be a friend, mentor, and resource. While the age difference will creep some out, DAD, that doesn’t mean you’re a creep. Don’t want to be a fool? Don’t do anything foolish. Ask a few trusted friends to smack you upside the head if you start paying his rent or lending him your credit cards. And just as you don’t want to take advantage of this young man, DAD, you don’t want to be taken advantage of either. Youth and beauty confer their own kinds of power, and that power can be abused— it can also lead seemingly sensible men to sign their life savings over to 24-year-old Romanian “models”. For example: “A 79-year-old retired priest has been left heartbroken and homeless after his 24-year-old
> BY DAN SAVAGE husband left him just after their home was put into his name,” LGBTQ Nation reported. “Philip Clements sold his home in Kent, England, for £214,750, before moving to Romania and purchasing an apartment for the couple to live in in Bucharest. He signed over the property to Florin Marin, so that Marin would have security after he passed away… Marin broke things off just weeks after the apartment was put in his name, and Clements found himself homeless.” Keep Father Clements’s sad story in mind, DAD, but don’t be paralyzed by it. So enjoy this while it lasts, and if things start to get creepy—if he starts shopping for an apartment in Bucharest—then you’ll have to pull the plug. But if this turns into a loving, lasting, healthy, and unconventional LTR, DAD, then one day he’ll get to pull your plug. (When that day comes, which, hopefully, won’t be for a long, long time.)
Someone at work—not my boss—asked me to fuck his wife. He’s a nice guy; his wife is hot; and I’m single. This is a first for me. Besides STI status, what questions should I ask? > HELP INTERESTED STRAIGHT BOY UNDERSTAND LUST’S LIMITATIONS
1. “Are you a cuckold or is this a hotwife thing?” (Considering your signoff, HISBULL, either you’ve assumed he’s a cuckold or he’s told you he is one. If he is a cuck, he may want dirty texts and pictures—or he’ll want to be in the room where it happens. Is that okay with you?)
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2. “Have you done this before?” (The reality of another person sleeping with your up-to-now-monogamous spouse can dredge up intense emotions, e.g., jealousy, sadness, anger, rage. If they’ve done this before and enjoyed it, you can jump right in. If they haven’t, maybe start with a make-out session at a time or in a place where you can’t progress to sex.) 3. “Can I speak directly with your wife?” (You’ll want to make sure she isn’t doing this under duress and that she’s into you, and you’ll want to independently verify the things he’s told you about their arrangement, health, experiences, et cetera.)
I recently started seeing a gorgeous 24-year-old woman who’s smart and sweet and also happens to have a few out-there fetishes. There’s not much I’ll say no to, Dan, but one of the things she’s into is formicophilia (a sexual interest in being crawled on or nibbled by insects). I offered to get some ants and worms to crawl on her body while I fuck her, but she wants me to put earthworms in her vagina. Is there a safe way to do this? Female condom? I want to help, but putting worms in your vagina seems like it will end with an embarrassing trip to the ER. > WORRIES OVER REALLY MESSY SCENARIO
“I thought I had heard everything,” said Dr. Jen Gunter, an OB/GYN in San Francisco. “Apparently not.” Gunter, “Twitter’s resident gynecologist”, first went viral when she urged women not to put jade eggs in
their vaginas, just one of the many idiocies pushed by the idiots at Goop, Gwyneth Paltrow’s idiotic “lifestyle” website. Last week, Gunter had to urge women and men not to shoot coffee up their butts, also recommended by Goop. So I thought she might have something to say about stuffing earthworms in your girlfriend’s vagina. “This is, obviously, unstudied,” Gunter said, “but anything that lives in soil could easily inoculate the vagina with pathogenic bacteria. Also, I am not sure what earthworm innards could do to the vagina, but I am guessing the worms would get squished and meet an untimely demise during sex. How would you get the pieces of dead earthworm out of her vagina? I can think of a lot of ways this could go very wrong. I would advise against it.” I’m with Gunter (and, no doubt, PETA): don’t stuff earthworms in your girlfriend’s vagina. That said, WORMS, tucking a few earthworms into a female condom and carefully inserting it into your girlfriend’s vagina without shoving your cock in there too… is a thoroughly disgusting thing to contemplate, and blech. But while it would most likely kill the earthworms (maybe switch ’em out for gummy worms at the last second?), it probably wouldn’t damage your girlfriend or land you both in the ER. Even so, WORMS, don’t do it. Because blech. Read Gunter’s blog (drjengunter. wordpress.com), follow her on Twitter (@DrJenGunter), and check out her new column in the New York Times (The Cycle). -
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Published on Jan 11, 2018