Best of the Performing Arts & Film in Vancouver

Performing Arts:

Arts Club Theatre: Now in its 48th season, the Arts Club operates three theatres: the Stanley Theatre, the Granville Island Stage, and the New Revue Stage. This year’s lineup includes work by Margaret Atwood and Michael Ignatieff. Stanley Industrial Alliance Stage, 2750 Granville St., South Granville; Granville Island Stage, 1585 Johnston St., and New Revue Stage, 1601 Johnston St., Granville Island, 604-687-1644.

Ballet British Columbia: Ballet B.C. continues to flourish under the stewardship of artistic director Emily Molnar. Watch for the Elton John-inspired Love Lies Bleeding (October 13-15). Performances at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre. Hamilton and Georgia St., Downtown, 604-732-5003.

Bard on the Beach: The city’s Shakespeare festival has a tendency to sell out; good thing it runs (under candy-cane tents) all summer. On the mainstage: As You Like It and Merchant of Venice (to September 24, 2011). Vanier Park, Kitsilano, 604-739-0559.

Chan Centre for the Performing Arts: Designed by Bing Thom as a kind of gigantic cello and outfitted with a 37-tonne chandelier-like acoustic canopy system, the Chan is the top venue in the city for classical music. 6265 Crescent Rd., UBC, 604-822-9197.

Firehall Arts Centre: Built in 1906, the Firehall is known for its boundary-pushing productions. The centre shows between four and six plays and three to five dance works each season. 280 E. Cordova St., South Main. 604-689-0926.

Vancouver Playhouse Theatre: The Playhouse stages at least six plays each season, with 2011/12 featuring, among others, a dance/mime piece in homage to San Francisco’s Tosca Café (October 8-29) and John Logan’s Red (January 14-February 4), which won him a Tony. Hamilton and Dunsmuir St., Downtown. 604-873-3311.

Vancouver East Cultural Centre: Once an abandoned church, the recently renovated Vancouver East Cultural Centre (also known as The Clutch) showcases a variety of theatre, dance and music from local, national, and international artists. 1895 Venables Street, Vancouver. 604-251-1363.



Outdoor Films: Throughout the summer, venues around the Lower Mainland play host to parkside films, most suitable for the whole family. With only one drive-in left locally (the Twilight in Langley), here’s your chance to lounge at the movies.

Pacific Cinémathèque: A centre for arthouse film, the ’thèque celebrates directors through the ages (and contemporary filmmakers, too) with themed programming of classics and unknown gems. International fests tour through this spot, as do locally curated events. Schedule announced bimonthly. 1131 Howe St., Downtown. 604-688-3456.

Vancouver International Film Festival: From the gleaming HQ on Seymour Street—which functions year-round as arthouse destination venue the Vancity Theatre—the VIFF orchestrates a global invasion of new cinema: two weeks of comedy, drama, and docs—as well as excellent Asian programming. September 29-October 14. Various venues. 604-685-0260.

For more information, see our 2011 Guide to the Vancouver International Film Festival.