Cultural Calendar

Hopefully you’ve gotten your holiday shopping in early – with the global supply chain crisis, there might not be any good gifts available closer to the holidays! Once you’re done with your holiday shopping, why not check out some of the events below? Remember to socially distance and dress warmly for the colder weather!

* * *

Dolly Parton’s Smoky Mountain Christmas Carol

Nov. 18, 2021–Jan. 2, 2022

Why not check out this performance at the Stanley Industrial Alliance Stage this holiday season? Set during the 1930s in the Smoky Mountains of East Tennessee, this heartwarming musical reimagines Ebenezer Scrooge as the owner of a mining company town, where his callous greed blinds him to the joys of the season. As a Christmas Eve snowstorm approaches, Scrooge is visited by his deceased business partner and three ghosts who compel him to see life and love anew. Dickens’s classic characters and Parton’s one-of-a-kind songwriting expertise make this the holiday event to share with friends and family. Visit the Arts Club website for tickets and showtimes.

* * *

Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel: The Exhibition

Nov. 19–Dec. 23

This unique exhibition being held at the Vancouver Convention Centre invites you to step into the universe of the greatest masterpieces of Michelangelo, seen from a totally new perspective. Visitors can experience the 34 frescoes adorning the Sistine Chapel ceiling in Vatican City. The exhibition grants an intimate encounter with such reproductions as The Creation of Adam and the Last Judgement, offering at close range a new way of seeing every detail, colour and brushstroke of Michelangelo’s iconic and timeless masterwork. For more information, check out the exhibition’s website.

* * *

Canyon Lights

Nov. 20, 2021–Jan. 23, 2022

Canyon Lights returns to Capilano Suspension Bridge Park this holiday season. New this season: the world-famous bridge will be lit, end to end, with a multi-colour changing display, adding to the magic of crossing the canyon above the illuminated Capilano River. Journey into the rainforest and walk high above the forest floor between the eight tallest Christmas trees in the world on Treetops Adventure. The mesmerizing “Arc de Lumina” light tunnel will once again wrap its way along a portion of Cliffwalk. Enjoy live festive tunes and explore the Park in search of lit snowy owls in the popular Snowy Owl Prowl scavenger hunt to win a grand prize Canadian Rockies trip.

* * *

Steven Shearer

Nov. 20, 2021–Feb 13, 2022

The Polygon Gallery is currently hosting a solo exhibition profiling Vancouver artist Steven Shearer, featuring an extensive survey of the artist’s work produced over the past two decades. The exhibition will focus on the importance of Shearer’s monumental archive of photographic and print material, collected over the past 25 years, and showcase how this pictorial reservoir continues to act as source material for works across a variety of media, including sculpture, prints, drawings and painting.

Steven Shearer, Self Plaster Catdrum (detail), 2011

* * *

Speed and Splendour: By Sea to Asia

Nov. 23, 2021– Feb. 27, 2022

Speed and Splendour, on view at the Vancouver Maritime Museum, explores how travel posters in the early 20th century affected western perceptions of Asia. Steamship travel from Vancouver to major ports in Asia increased in the early 20th century. This coincided with changes in ship design and propulsion technology. Ships like the Empress liners of the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) became grander. They also offered more onboard amenities than vessels of the late 19th century. As ships became more luxurious, the marketing of voyages and destinations changed. Posters promoting travel to Asia became common after the First World War and the depression years. For more information, check out the museum’s website.

* * *


Nov. 24–27

Through highly kinetic contemporary dance, Trace maps Anishinaabe sky and star stories into being on the stage, offering a rare glimpse into our origin as well as our future evolution. Under the direction of Sandra Laronde, choreographed by Jera Wolfe and accompanied by composer Eliot Britton’s remarkable score, the Red Sky performers create a richly embroidered constellation, tangled with light, myth and movement. For more information on this performance, check out the Dance House website.

* * *

Kamal Al-Solaylee: Why We Return to Our Homelands

Dec. 1, 7–8 p.m.

Where do you want to be buried? For many immigrants and refugees, this is a profound question about identity and the meaning of home. Come hear Director of the School of Journalism, Writing and Media at the University of British Columbia Kamal Al-Solaylee discuss his new book, Return, where he wrestles with his own feelings of belonging, while meeting people around the world who chose to return to their homelands. Check out the Vancouver Public Library’s website for more information on this talk.

* * *

VSO: Traditional Christmas

Dec. 1–19

The annual tradition returns this Christmas with host Christopher Gaze. Performances take place around the Lower Mainland the first week of December and at The Orpheum Theatre on Dec. 18 and 19. Celebrate the season with your favourite Christmas carols such as Angels We Have Heard on High, Sleigh Ride, Auld Lang Syne, River, and more! Check out the VSO’s website for a complete list of performances and more information.

* * *

Orfeo Ed Euridice

Dec. 4–5

This exquisite opera, hosted by Vancouver Opera, follows the ancient Greek myth of Orfeo, a divinely gifted musician and poet, who moves the deities of the Underworld with the beauty of his music and poetry to lead his love Euridice back to the world of the living. This timeless story of love is directed and choreographed by Idan Cohen as a celebration of opera and contemporary dance. Maestro Leslie Dala will conduct the Vancouver Opera Orchestra and Chorus. This production is a Vancouver Opera premiere and marks the first collaboration with Ne. Sans Opera and Dance, and The Dance Centre. Sung in Italian with English Surtitles.