Cultural Calendar

The Diwali Festival is going virtual. | Photo courtesy of Diwali Fest

The nights will be colder and darker this month – make sure to dress warmly if you’re going out. A lot of the events below are being held virtually online, with a limited number of socially distant events. As we are in the midst of the second wave of coronavirus in British Columbia, please follow health directives by the Office of the Provincial Health Officer and stay home if you are unwell. Stay warm, stay healthy and have a safe November.

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Eastside Culture Crawl

Various dates between Nov. 2–22

Each November – for 24 years and counting – the Eastside Culture Crawl Society has hosted the Eastside Culture Crawl Visual Arts, Design & Craft Festival, in which artists in Vancouver’s east side open their studio to the public. The event is focused on the area bounded by Columbia St., 2nd Ave., Victoria Dr., and the Waterfront, and involves painters, jewelers, sculptors, furniture makers, weavers, potters, printmakers, photographers, and glassblowers, ranging from emerging artists to those internationally established. Because of the pandemic, there will be many virtual crawls hosted online – check out their website for
more information.

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In the Beginning

Nov. 4–7

Storyteller, filmmaker and performer Rosemary Georgeson (Coast Salish/Dené) and the Firehall Arts Centre’s artistic producer Donna Spencer delve into the stories and history of the Indigenous peoples in the area that is now called Vancouver prior to and during colonization. Over five evolving events, Georgeson, Spencer, and moderator Kim Haxton are joined by Indigenous elders, knowledge keepers, and artists from the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh homelands; and from those who came down the rivers, across the waters, or across the mountains to the area. The event includes stories of the land told by people of the land, along with projected images and historic and personal photos.

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Diwali Fest Vancouver (Virtual)

Nov. 7, 2 p.m.

Celebrated across the world, Diwali is the biggest, brightest, and most popular event in the Indian calendar. The word diwali means “row of lighted lamps,” with light symbolizing the triumph of good over evil, prosperity over poverty, and knowledge over ignorance. It’s a time for lighting diyas, laying out colorful rangolis, setting off fireworks, exchanging gifts of sweets, and celebrating with dance, music, and storytelling. This year’s festival will be held virtually so families can join in the festivities safely from home.

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New Westminster Virtual Remembrance Day Ceremony

Nov. 11, 10:30 a.m.

In partnership with the New Westminster Royal Canadian Legion, the Royal Westminster Regiment and other community organizations, Remembrance Day for 2020 has been reimagined to meet COVID-19 safety requirements and to provide the community with a safe way of honouring our veterans and their sacrifices. The community is encouraged to pay tribute to our veterans from home. Though there is no public gathering this year, the virtual ceremony continues an important tradition of honouring our veterans and the sacrifices made. The broadcast will feature poetry readings, a memorial address, two minutes of silence, and wreath ceremony. Music will be provided by the Royal Westminster Regiment Band, the Dowco Triumph Street Pipe Band, and Elizabeth Irving.

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Vancouver Biennale Art & Technology Expo

Nov. 11–15

From November 11th to 15th, the Vancouver Biennale will host #ArtProject2020, a virtual art and technology expo exploring digital art and the newest technologies shifting the art world. This event is free to attend and those without previous exposure to the field will benefit most – everyone is welcome. #ArtProject2020 will be the Vancouver Biennale’s first display of tokenized art, which is powered by blockchain technology and has redefined digital artwork ownership. This fun-filled, educational, hands-on expo will feature panel discussions, workshops and gamified activities including a crypt-puzzle, digital art battle live, and virtual gallery tours. To reserve a spot and see the complete speaker list and schedule, please check out
their website.

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The Red Priest (Eight Ways to Say Goodbye)

Various dates from Nov. 12–Dec. 6

The Jericho Arts Centre will be putting on a production of The Red Priest (Eight Ways to Say Goodbye) from Nov. 12 to Dec. 6. In 1740, Antonio Vivaldi was commissioned to teach a woman to play violin before the King of France in six weeks’ time. Is such a performance possible? And why would either agree to this? In this lush and resonant play by Canadian playwright Mieko Ouchi, the challenges of teaching and the beauty of music are laid bare. For tickets and showtimes, check out the Jericho Arts Centre’s website.

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Zoning Out

The challenges of immigration and autism | Photo courtesy of Presentation House Theatre

Nov. 13–15

The Presentation House Theatre will be putting on a Blackout Theater Production of Zoning Out this November. A single mother from Iran immigrates to Canada with her child. She faces the challenges met by many newcomers in a new country. But her story goes in an unexpected direction when she learns that her child is on the Autism spectrum. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Zoning Out is scheduled for Nov. 13–15 with a limited capacity (30 audience members each night) and live-streamed via Side Door Access on Nov. 15.

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Vancouver Podcast Festival: At Home Edition

Nov. 18–22

The Vancouver Podcast Festival is dedicated to highlighting the power and potential of podcasts, and bringing together local podcast creators with national and international series. Presented by DOXA, The Documentary Media Society, the festival aims to foster new podcast creation in British Columbia and Canada, bring new audiences to podcasting, and deepen the discussion around audio documentary and its potential for education and community building. The virtual festival takes place from Nov. 18–22 online. Given the pandemic, VanPodFest has refined its programming, but still offers a robust mix of live events, workshops, panels and VanPodFest’s first-ever pitch session over the course of five days.

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Vancouver International Mountain Film Festival Fall Series

Nov. 20–29

The Vancouver International Mountain Film Festival will be hosting a virtual 2020 Fall Series featuring several adventure packed shows from November 20–29. The festival features new film and presentation content about climbing, snowsports, the environment and mountain culture. There will be world film premieres, bonus content from filmmakers, a unique panel discussion, and a curated selection of engaging films. Be inspired, entertained, and connect virtually with your outdoor community. For a list of shows and ticket information, check out the
festival’s website.

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Chutzpah! Festival

Nov. 21–28

The Chutzpah! Festival of international Jewish performing arts returns in 2020 with an exciting lineup of performances and stimulating conversations. Programming will be available online with select performances available to attend in person at the Norman & Annette Rothstein Theatre in a special, intimate setting. Check out the festival’s website for tickets and a complete lineup of shows and performers.