It’s finally December, which means the holiday season is here at last! There are plenty of indoor and outdoor holiday themed events to check out. From theatre plays, dances and musicals to Christmas and New Year’s festivals, there’s no shortage of things to see and do in our great city! I hope 2018 has been an amazing year for all of you, our Source Newspaper readers! My best wishes for a safe and happy holiday season, and I’ll see you in 2019!
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Oct. 29, 2018–March 22, 2019
Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden, Vancouver
Mother’s Cupboard is a public art exhibition currently on display at the Classical Chinese Garden until March 22, 2019, featuring the works of artist-in-residence Paul Wong. To a child, a cupboard is filled with mysterious treasures, and for Wong, his mother’s was no different. Inside, Chinese herbs and medicines replaced the original contents of mayo-nnaise and instant coffee jars, labelled in Chinese handwriting and carefully dated. Of specific intrigue were the jars of hak dew, a homemade compound used for healing cuts and bruises that has no written recipe. Research has helped identify the various ingredients within such elixirs as hak dew, which are still found at Chinese herbal stores in Chinatown today. Wong’s pieces evoke memories and loss for the generations of Chinese-Canadians who built a community within a segregated Chinatown.
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Positively Petite: Annual Miniature Exhibition
Nov. 16–Dec. 20
Place des Arts, Coquitlam
Positively Petite is an annual exhibition currently on display at Place des Arts in Coquitlam that showcases miniature artwork created by local artists. All two-dimensional artwork on exhibit is less than 12 square inches and all three-dimensional artwork is less than 36 cubic inches. This year’s show features small artworks in various mediums including painting, ceramics, sculpture, mixed media and drawings from 30 artists. There are handmade pieces available for sale; proceeds support cultural programming at Place des Arts.
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Glow Gardens: Christmas
Nov. 22, 2018–Jan. 19, 2019
Milner Village Garden Centre, Langley
Glow is the largest indoor Christmas festival in Greater Vancouver. Bring together the people you love to stroll, laugh and play under the twinkle of a million lights. The playgrounds and interactive features will entertain the kids for hours, while the adults kick back at the licensed bar and enjoy some seasonal beverages and live music. Glow’s illuminated sculptures are the perfect backdrop for selfies and holiday family photos. You can even whisper your Christmas list to Santa! Please check out their website for more information!
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Robin Hood and the Skytrain of Doom
Coast Capital Playhouse, White Rock
The volunteer-based White Rock Players’ Club is a much-loved community theatre, producing family-friendly comedies, thrillers, dramas and the ever-popular Christmas Pantomime. This year’s Christmas performance is Robin Hood and the Skytrain of Doom, written and directed by Lower Mainland actor Dann Wilhelm. The day before Robin Hood is to marry Maid Marion, the evil Sheriff of Nottingham hatches a scheme that would level Sherwood Forest to make way for a new Skytrain expansion. Robin and his Merry Men, along with the minstrel-fairy Alana Dale, must stop the Sheriff’s plan. Will good triumph over evil? And how do The Beatles fit into all of this? Find out at the Coast Capital Playhouse this month.
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It’s a Wonderful Life
Gateway Theatre, Richmond
It’s a Wonderful Life, set to soaring songs from the ‘20s, ‘30s, and ‘40s, is a timeless holiday classic, currently on show this month at Richmond’s Gateway Theatre. With a little help from his guardian angel, George Bailey, is brought back from despair on Christmas Eve to see how he has truly touched all the people in his life. Travel to Bedford Falls for a joyous journey that will have you checking for Zuzu’s petals in your own pockets and make you believe that every time a bell rings, an angel gets his wings. For tickets and showtimes, please visit the theatre’s website.
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Ilhan Saferali Quartet
Dec. 14, 9–11 p.m.
Cafe deux Soleils, Vancouver
Award-winning pianist, trumpeter and composer, Ilhan Saferali is taking the Vancouver jazz scene by storm, and he will be performing with his piano trio at Commercial Drive’s Cafe deux Soleils on Dec. 14, playing a selection of his favourite jazz standards and original compositions. Saferali has worked with the David Suzuki Program for their ECOmusic-ology project and was recently interviewed on CBC Radio Canada. Over his years as a musician, Saferali has cultivated a versatile repertoire of play styles such as jazz, rock, funk and Latin. Visit the cafe’s website or Saferali’s website for more information.
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Music for the Winter Solstice
Dec. 19–20, 8 p.m.
Heritage Hall, Vancouver
For the fifth year in a row, Music on Main will celebrate the solstice in style with holiday merriment and luminous music. Featuring music by Composer in Residence Nicole Lizée, Corey Payette, Julie McIsaac, Alfredo Santa Ana, past Composers in Residence Caroline Shaw and Jocelyn Morlock, and others. Musical highlights include the return of favourites such as Nicole Lizée’s Solstice Noir, Alfredo Santa Ana’s A Short Song for the Longest Night of the Year and Caroline Shaw’s beloved singalong Winter Carol. This year will also feature music from two new Canadian musicals, Cold Isn’t Permanent from Corey Payette and Julie McIsaac’s hit show Les Filles du Roi and Gimikwenden Ina (Do you remember?) and from Corey Payette’s powerful Children of God.
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25th Annual Winter Solstice Lantern Festival
Dec. 21, Evening
Various neighbourhoods around Vancouver
The dance of the sun and earth has inspired celebrations of the human spirit, expressed through art and music, throughout the ages. Honouring many cultural traditions, the annual Winter Solstice Lantern Festival illuminates the darkest night of the year with lanterns, fire, singing, drumming, music and dancing! Come celebrate this free community event with a glowing constellation of lanterns shining in three Vancouver neighbourhoods. For the latest updates, please visit the festival’s website.
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Concord’s NYE Vancouver
Dec. 31, Evening
Canada Place, Vancouver
Mark the date! Say goodbye to 2018 on New Year’s Eve in style at Canada Place. This family-friendly event will feature plenty of concerts, exhibitions, food and live entertainment. There will be two fireworks shows, one at 9 p.m. for the children who need to go to bed early and another at midnight to usher in 2019. For further information and event details, check out their website.
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The Full Light of Day
Jan. 7–12, 2019
Set in Canada’s urban financial centres, The Full Light of Day, which will be playing at the Vancouver Playhouse in January 2019, tells the story of a mother who must contend with her husband’s corrupt legacy before she dies. This play is a pro-vocative film/theatre experiment for the stage that looks at crucial choices facing Canadians today – how to live, love and die in a world in transition. Bold characters, bracing text, wit and suspense all mix together in this new script by award-winning artist Daniel Brooks. For tickets and showtimes, please visit the Electric Company Theatre’s website.