The Daisy Theatre Opening Night Photos!

On Sept 23 we kicked off our 2014/2015 season with Ronnie Burkett’s rollicking performance of The Daisy Theatre. The lounge was just buzzing with excitement prior to the show and it’s clear that that buzz will continue for the rest of the run.

“The Daisy Theatre is one of the best shows you’ll ever see. What are you waiting for? Pick up the phone” – Colin Thomas, Georgia Straight

Here are some of our opening night photos (taken by one of our volunteer photographers, Edward Juo). A big congrats to Ronnie and his team.

The Wine Guy with our lovely interns, Maude, Teresa and Alex

Paul Martin with our lovely interns, Maude, Teresa, and Alex

Alex Hung and Annalies Camfferman

Alex Hung and Annalies Camfferman

Rich and Sue Baerg

Rich and Sue Baerg

Cindy Reid, Garnet Nelson, and Phillip Waddell

Cindy Reid, Garnet Nelson, and Phillip Waddell

Heather Redfern and Ken Gracie

Heather Redfern and Ken Gracie

Tara Travis and Dusty

Tara Travis and Dusty Hagerud giving the keynote speech

Frank Costanzo

Frank Costanzo

Garnet Nelson, Lydia Lovison, Lucy Komori, and Kath Bourchier

Garnet Nelson, Lydia Lovison, Lucy Komori, and Kath Bourchier

Dusty Heather Redfern, Ronnie Burkett

Dusty Hagerud, Ronnie Burkett, and Heather Redfern

Tara Travis, Dusty, Ronnie Burkett, Heather Redfern and Evalyn Parry

Tara Travis, Dusty Hagerud, Ronnie Burkett, Heather Redfern and Evalyn Parry


The Daisy Theatre runs September 23 – October 12. Tickets are selling out fast! Tickets are available Online or through the box office at 604.251.1363. Tickets from $19!





Enter to win two tickets to Butt Kapinski – Winner of last year’s Cultchivating the Fringe Award! (Contest Closed)

 

This filthy, funny and fully interactive ride is riddled with sex, sin, shadows and subterfuge. Butt Kapinski isn’t your typical private eye in this hilarious new kind of murder mystery for the daring theatregoer. It can hardly be described as a one-woman show: Deanna Fleysher is witty, mysterious, and sexy; blurring the lines between cast and spectator. Come see how the story unfolds in this hilarious and unique theatrical experience.

From the Fringe to The Cultch, the “Cultchivating the Fringe Award” pays tribute to the show that is ready for professional presentation and rewards it with a run at The Cultch as part of a future season program. This prestigious award is presented annually as a part of a longstanding relationship between The Cultch and the Vancouver Fringe Festival. To celebrate this incredible performance, The Cultch is giving away a pair of premium tickets to the opening night performance on Sept 30 at 8pm ($50 value).

“To say audience members surrendered themselves wholeheartedly to their roles would be an understatement… Fleysher’s ability to create community in the space of 60 minutes is nothing short of amazing”

The Georgia Straight

Enter to win by simply leaving a comment (and email or phone number) on this post about why you’re dying to see Butt Kapinski. (One comment per user, please). Contest ends September 14 , 2014 at 10am.

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Single tickets for the new season are now on sale!

Single tickets for our 2014/2015 season are now on sale! You can book seats to your favourite shows online or by calling our Box Office at 604.251.1363!  You’ll find the full calendar for our upcoming season on our website.  Here’s a sneak peek at three of our most anticipated 14/15 shows: The Daisy Theatre, Cinderella: An East Van Panto, and Famous Puppet Death Scenes.

The Daisy Theatre by Ronnie Burkett opens our season September 23 in the Historic Theatre. This season’s edition of The Daisy Theatre will feature new variety acts and characters in addition to existing favourites! Here are some of Ronnie Burkett’s puppets in preparation!

Cinderella: An East Van Panto by Theatre Replacement will be at The Cultch from December 3 – 28, 2014. It is the perfect show to share with your loved ones, kids and adults, during the holidays! This modern adaptation of the classic tale in an East Van setting will make your whole family laugh! See below for a look at pre-production pictures from the show:

From March 31 – April 19, 2015, we will host The Old Trout Puppet Workshop with their brilliant show Famous Puppet Death Scenes! This show will make its long-waited return to The Cultch after touring the world and changing lives. Don’t miss it! Check out the video below:

These three shows are very popular and the tickets won’t last long. To avoid disappointment, book now!

The Cultch’s Not-To-Miss List: Our picks for the 2014/2015 Season (Part 2)

Last week we brought you the season highlights of three Cultch staff members: Caitrin Innis (Development Coordinator), Zoe Forsyth (Cultch Concierge), and Lisa Wu (Design and Web Coordinator). This week we continue the series by asking Ricky Choi (Marketing Coordinator), Isa Szeto (Design and Web Coordinator), and Maria Kerninon (Marketing Intern) what shows they are most excited to see next season!

IsaIsa Szeto, Design and Web Coordinator

Cadre by Chicago Shakespeare Theater and Richard Jordan Productions Ltd

This sounds like a very interesting story of watching someone’s life change when one governing regime falls and another takes its place. How much control does one have in a situation like this? It’s a universal story of wanting and dreaming of a better future.

Music Creates Opportunity by Bboyizm

Street dancing on the stage? Sign me up! I hardly ever get to see this kind of stuff live, living in Vancouver. Since I don’t have “the moves” myself, the next best thing is watch others popping, locking and rocking.

Famous Puppet Death Scenes by The Old Trout Puppet Workshop

I loved the Old Trout’s Ignorance, so I’m looking forward to this show, as I expect its going to make me think about my own mortality again, plus make me laugh at the same time (death and chuckles: a fine combo).

Ricky

Ricky Choi, Marketing Coordinator

Cinderella: An East Van Panto by Theatre Replacement

I got a chance to attend a reading of this production this past June and was blown away. I feel like Charles Demers did it again, creating a witty and modern adaptation of Cinderella with an East Van twist. Everything from the cultural references, casting, and music (psst they cover Sinead O’Connor) were right up my alley.

Loon by Wonderheads

What intrigues me most about LOON is that it deals with the idea of loneliness in a unique and whimsical manner – can a man really fall in love with the moon? It’s also a show that I really want to see with my parents, as english is their second language and I feel like the production’s focus on visual storytelling will make it make it accessible for all of us to enjoy.

Maria

Maria Kerninon, Marketing Intern

Broken Sex Doll by The Virtual Stage

I have read so many positive reviews about this show and it really makes me want to see it! I really like the fact that they use electronic music to portray the futuristic setting. It makes it a very modern musical. This is a new version of Broken Sex Doll so it will probably be interesting even for people who have already seen it. I also can’t wait to see the set and the costumes!

Cinderella: An East Van Panto by Theatre Replacement

I got the chance to attend a reading of Cinderella: An East Van Panto at the beginning of the summer and it made me really eager to see the show. I didn’t think it would be my kind of humour but it was really hilarious! I can’t even imagine how amazing the show will be with the songs, the costumes, and everything else! I also love the fact that it is the perfect family show for the holidays and that both kids and adults will be able to laugh together with this modern East Van adaptation of the classic tale.

 

Q&A with David Pay, creator of The Orpheus Project

The Orpheus Project by Music on Main starts tomorrow at The Cultch! This musical adventure will take you to every corner of The Cultch for an immersive, site-specific experience. The fantastic creator of this unique piece, David Pay, shared with us his inspirations, the context of the show, as well as his own experience working on it.

What was the inspiration for The Orpheus Project?

The idea first came about when, at the Holland Festival in Amsterdam, I saw dreamthinkspeak’s Before I sleep, which was inspired by Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard. You explore an entire building and see theatrical installations and interact with actors. I thought it was totally magical, and when I fall in love with art I want to possess it. When I see exceptional visual art I want to see it all the time. When I see amazing music I want to figure out how to present it. So when I saw Before I sleep, I thought, “How could this work, using music as the basis of an immersive experience rather than theatre?” Once I decided I wanted to develop an immersive musical experience, I really focused on seeing as much of that kind of work as I could, including large-scale works like Sleep No More, and smaller scale works that are more in line with The Orpheus Project.

How does that kind of experience translate into a musical one?

I explored a whole bunch of different ways to create an immersive musical experience, and with our ace creativity team, led by theatrical consultant Amiel Gladstone, we have landed on what theatre calls a “promenade experience.” Audiences are led on a path through the theatre discovering different rooms; different pieces of music inspired by Orpheus; installations and sets created by Naomi Sider; video, both with music and on its own; lighting by Adrian Muir; and new and existing compositions performed in surprising environments.

Can you give us a little hint of what people will see and where they’ll go?

We’re using both the Culture Lab and Historic Theatre at The Cultch; we’re exploring dressing rooms and stairwells; filling passageways with surprises, lounges with live performance. It is a show where the audience is on its feet, climbing stairs, stopping to listen. Keep an eye out for oracles, who might foretell your future as well. People should make sure to wear comfortable shoes! We’re asking people with mobility or other issues to let us know in advance, so we can create a special journey just for them.

What have you learned by being involved in the creative process for The Orpheus Project?

Conceiving The Orpheus Project is a natural progression for me. I’ve never been the kind of music presenter who simply chooses great artists and puts them on stage. I’ve always taken a hands-on approach to the performance environment, the relationship between artists and audiences, and how repertoire can speak to us across time periods and genres. Developing The Orpheus Project as a more theatrical music experience has allowed me to work with theatre experts who are helping me shape what feels like a new, but really authentic way of interacting with live music.

What do you hope people will take away from this experience?

I hope this will be a fun, intriguing, and new experience for every audience member. My ultimate goal is that we each see ourselves in the myths and stories and ideas presented by the composers. I think if you approach the show with an intellectual or analytical bent, you’ll have a really rich experience imbued with music and art history. But the creative team and I also want this to be a really fun, sexy date night, so you can just immerse yourself in the sights and sounds at the theatre, and that will be a fantastic experience, too.

The Orpheus Project runs from July 16 – 20 at The Cultch. Tickets start at $20 and can be purchased online or by calling the Box Office at 604.251.1363.

Q&A with Peter Chu:
Cultch Artist-in-Residence

Right now Peter Chu can be found completing an artistic residency at The Cultch for his new solo work. We caught up with him to find out a bit more about his project and how he feels about completing an artistic residency with us here at The Cultch!

For those of us who don’t know, can you tell us what a residency is?

A residency can be approached in many different ways. Artists can use a residency to explore movement ideas, themes, or simply to better understand subject matter they would like to explore. I have chosen to use this 12-day residency at The Cultch as a technical residency – a place to dive into exploration of the lighting, sound, and multimedia elements that will be incorporated into this work. Stepping into this space last Wednesday, the first few days were spent with projection and lighting designer Eric Chad, and production manager Lois Dawson to introduce them to the movement vocabulary and themes involved in this piece. Next it was on to the technical side of this residency – getting into the nitty gritty details as to where and how we want to incorporate all the technical elements. I am extremely grateful to Heather Redfern and The Cultch to have been given this amazing opportunity to explore, discover, and research themes technically without the expectation of a final products – something that’s often expected of artists during a residency.

Photo by Lisa Wu

What does a Cultch residency mean to you as a choreographer?

One of the first shows that I saw at The Cultch was Crystal Pite’s Uncollected Work. Many years later, I was fortunate enough to actually perform here with Kidd Pivot. I have always adored this theatre and the range of dynamic shows they present in their seasons. The Historic Theatre has big personality and a beautiful energy, and I feel so honoured to have been given the opportunity to dig deeper into the themes of this new work in such a significant space.

What are your thoughts on the importance of organizations helping out the artistic community though programs such as this?

Support from community organizations is absolutely crucial in allowing for the growth and development of creativity, regardless of the art form. This kind of backing is what allows artists to thrive and flourish, and produce significant lasting works. Without this assistance, there would be countless ‘hidden gems’ – beautiful works of art that would remain as the seed of an idea, never making it through to creation.

Can you talk a bit about your creative process when creating new works?

It’s hard for me to speak on my creative process – like all things in life it’s constantly in flux, changing and mutating depending on the work and the circumstance. I hold my creative process for this specific project very near and dear to my heart: I have been trying to better understand my process while I develop this movement vocabulary for the past several years.

Photo by Lisa Wu

Where do you look for inspiration when creating choreography?

For this specific show, the word ‘ community’ continued to present itself at the forefront of my mind. I was on the road constantly for roughly five years, living out of two storage units until I made the choice to move back to Las Vegas last July. I fell in love all over again with that city and the rich range of art and entertainment it has to offer. Inspired by the opulent history of Las Vegas lounge act artists and sounds from the 1960 s, I chose to use my new home and community as the focus and starting point for this new work. This is why The Cultch is the perfect theatre to develop this performance – it has the same intimate, charming personality as many of the Las Vegas venues that have been my inspiration.

Can you tell us a bit about the work you are currently rehearsing and what your hopes are for it in the future?

I can tell you as much as I can – as this is still a work in progress, things are constantly evolving and changing. This work revolves around themes of obsession, perfection, control, and doubt. It runs with the dangers of glorifying false appearances, and pulls back the curtain to expose the truths behind the “put on” smile. The character I have developed listens to what doubt has to say, almost befriending it in a way to truly understand why doubt has such a driving force in his life. On top of all of this, we’re blending cutting edge multimedia with these deep-rooted concepts and ideas. It is incredibly exciting stuff!

The Orpheus Project: a groundbreaking musical event!

blogAttention Music lovers!

The Orpheus Project by Music on Main is coming to The Cultch from July 16 – 20! This immersive journey is filled with musical and theatrical intrigue and will absorb you into the life of Orpheus: a poet, musician, and prophet in ancient Greek mythology who inspired generations of artists such as Jean Cocteau, Tennessee Williams, and Albert Camus.

The myth of Orpheus is centered around his ability to charm all living things even inanimate stones with his music; his attempt to retrieve his wife, Eurydice, from the underworld; and his death at the hands of those who could not hear his divine music.

Imagine roaming an entire theatre, discovering rooms filled with mysterious music and surprising interactions. Through creations by Jocelyn Morlock, Veda Hille, Cassandra Miller, James Maxwell, Barry Truax, Alfredo Santa Ana, Colin Browne, George Frideric Handel and others, you’ll explore The Cultch’s Historic Theatre, Culture Lab, as well as the dressing rooms and backstage and lobby areas. You might even break a sweat as you climb stairs and roam around! Be sure to wear comfortable shoes and prepare to jump into this unique and fascinating adventure!

Music on Main have developed a growing local, national, and international reputation as tremendous storytellers for a post-classical age, creating music to bring people together. Their aim is to always create shows which give people the opportunity to make new friends, meet the artists, and to escape their to-do list for an hour or two.

Now in its eighth season, Music on Main has produced more than 180 events featuring nearly 500 musicians, creating music that has touched the souls of thousands of listeners, and helping artists around the world connect with each other and The Vancouver community.

The Orpheus Project starts on July 16 and runs until July 20 at The Cultch. Tickets start at $20 and can be purchased online or by calling the Box Office at 604.251.1363.

Photo scrapbook of our 40th season!

The Cultch closed its 40th season on May 31 and we decided it was the perfect time to do a little recap! This season was such an important one and it’s hard to believe all the major events that happened over the past year! We celebrated our 40th anniversary, opened the York Theatre, received a $2 million gift from West Coast Reduction, produced Jack and The Beanstalk: An East Van Panto with Theatre Replacement, organized our New Orleans and All That Jazz Gala, and so much more! Here’s our photo recap of the last year!

ThenAndNow

The Cultch then and now

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Friends, donors, subscribers, and staff members at our 40th anniversary photo shoot

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Left: Jennifer Spry and Chris Macdonald excited about the kickoff of the Vancouver Fringe Festival, our first year as a venue/Right: Robert Leveroos and Cindy Reid awarding Deanna Fleysher with the Cultchivating the Fringe Award for her show Butt Kapinski

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Heather Redfern, Executive Director of The Cultch, on the cover of The Georgia Straight for a feature story about the opening of the York Theatre!

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The York Theatre officially opened its doors on December 6! Here’s a beautiful shot taken of the venue before the grand opening!

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We received our largest donation in Cultch history, a $2 million gift, from our longest standing corporate partner, West Coast Reduction! Here’s a photo of West Coast Reduction Ltd.’s Barry Glotman, Gordon Diamond, and staff from the Grandview-Woodland community with The Cultch’s Executive Director, Heather Redfern at the York!

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The cast of An East Van Panto: Patti Allan, Maiko Bae Yamamato, Raugi Yu, Allan Zinyk, and Dawn Petten

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Allan Zinyk, star of last year’s Jack and the Beanstalk: An East Van Panto, and young guests

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The Cultch team taking a group shot with the cast of An East Van Panto

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Guests and friends dining on the Historic stage at The Cultch’s New Orleans and All That Jazz Gala

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Subscribers and audience members during our 14/15 Season Launch on March 17

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Robert Leveroos, Youth Program Manager, with The Cultch’s Youth Panel Members celebrating the end of the IGNITE! Youth Arts Performing Festival!

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Our lovely Cultch volunteers helping out with our subscription mailing this past March!

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The Cultch’s staff members celebrating the end of a successful season with some bubbly

We hope you enjoyed these photos, this is just a small example of all the events that took place this last season. None of this would have been possible without your help, and we want to thank you – our friends, donors, and subscribers – for your support. We feel really lucky to have such a strong community behind us and we can’t wait to see you next year to share other great memories!

Q&A with the stars of DVOTE, Noam Gagnon and Nova Bhattacharya

Everybody at The Cultch is thrilled to welcome Noam Gagnon from Vision Impure (Vancouver) and Nova Bhattacharya from Nova Dance (Toronto) for the world premiere of their show DVOTE! The last show of our 13/14 season promises to be memorable! DVOTE offers an intimate world where longing and hope are magnified by the effort to find a connection between what was, what is, and what will be. In this first collaboration, Noam and Nova investigate the topics of spirituality and sexuality. We got a chance to catch up with two of Canada’s most innovative dance artists for an interview about their artistic process and chemistry.

We know you come from completely different worlds with different dance genres and inspirations, how did you decide to work together?

Nova & Noam: Yes, we are both from galaxies far, far away! Seriously though, we are both dance artists and we aren’t the first ones to boldly go into the studio with the assumption that as such we could communicate with each other and with an audience. We had a choreographic idea, we played around with it in the studio, and we decided that there was something there worth pursuing.

What do you like the most about each other’s dance style, and were you following each other’s work before beginning to create this show together?

Noam: I had heard lots about Nova as she had worked with a few of very close colleagues of mine but I had never seen her work. What I liked about her when we first met is her humour and her wit.

Nova: I’ve been watching Noam since the 90s. I love his explosive energy and how visceral and passionate his dancing is.

As shown on the poster, you will wear masks during your performances, which will make you blind from each other. What does it symbolize and how did you manage to dance while being blind?

Nova: The masks started as a device to bring the two of us onto the same page. If we were both “blinded” and destabilized, we hoped it would create a common ground. They then evolved into a metaphoric statement: when are we hiding? When are we revealing? When is it voyeuristic?

Noam: As Nova said the way it started was to create a common state beyond our known personal style of dance. Dancing with it is probably one of the hardest and most challenging tasks I have had to do. It’s an untamed beast with a life of its own, unwilling to be tamed. As for the metaphor for me, it is to reveal what is behind “the mask” and attempt to express what is invisible to the naked eyes.

What was the hardest thing about working together coming from such different backgrounds (contemporary dance and Bharatanatyam)?

Noam: Our very different views on how to generate and develop the theme of a work, and having to face a world of opposites in regards to our methods of accumulating movements into phrasing, and into creating structure. We created a work independently from one another since we were in different cities and that was a new experience for me.

Nova: My technical training is in bharatanatyam but for well over a decade I have been immersed in contemporary practice and have collaborated with many artists including Peggy Baker, José Navas, Louis Laberge-Côté and others whose techniques are different from mine. So the hardest thing about working together was not about background, but probably just the fact that we were trying to create a work while living in two different cities. We had a series of residencies in B.C., Ontario, and Quebec – it’s a challenging way to work – only coming together for short intense bursts.

The show investigates subjects such as spirituality and sexuality, what kind of audience do you think would enjoy this dance piece?

Noam: I honestly have no idea on this one, as this process could not have been farther from anything I have ever known; but that said there is a lot of HEART in this work and I hope it connects with theirs.

Nova: Spirituality and sexuality are not so much the subject matter as they were elements of conversation and inspiration that we drew on amongst others. I hope that anyone who has loved, or has wanted to love, will be moved by the images in the work.

DVOTE starts tonight and runs until May 31 at the Historic Theatre. Tickets arts at $18 and can be purchased online or by calling the box office at 604.251.1363.

Nominations for the 32nd annual Jessie Richardson Awards

It’s that time of  year again – Jessie Award season! The nominations for the 32nd annual Jessie Richardson Awards were announced this week, and four productions from our 13/14 season have been nominated! The Jessie Awards celebrate and promote the outstanding achievements of the Vancouver professional theatre community. Congratulations to all the nominees, we can’t wait to hear the results! The shows from our 13/14 season that got nominated are listed below in their respective categories.

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Whose Life Is It Anyway? – Realwheels Theatre

Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Lead Role – Small Theatre
Bob Frazer, Whose Life Is It Anyway?, Realwheels Theatre

Outstanding Performance by and Actress in a Supporting Role – Small Theatre
Jennifer Lines, Whose Life Is It Anyway?, Realwheels Theatre

Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role – Small Theatre
Kyle Jesperson, Penelope, Rumble Theatre

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Uncle Vanya – Blackbird Theatre

Outstanding Lighting Design – Small Theatre
Adrian Muir, Whose Life Is It Anyway?, Realwheels Theatre
Alan Brodie, Uncle Vanya, Blackbird Theatre

Outstanding Set Design – Small Theatre
Drew Facey, Penelope, Rumble Theatre
Jergus Oprsal, Inside The Seed, Up in the Air Theatre
Pam Johnson, Whose Life Is It Anyway?, Realwheels Theatre

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Penelope – Rumble Theatre

Outstanding Costume Design – Small Theatre
Marti Wright, Uncle Vanya, Blackbird Theatre
Drew Facey, Penelope, Rumble Theatre

Outstanding Direction – Small Theatre
John Cooper, Whose Life Is It Anyway?, Realwheels Theatre
Richard Wolfe, Inside The Seed, Up in the Air Theatre

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Inside The Seed – Up in the Air Theatre

Outstanding Production – Small Theatre
Inside The Seed, Up in the Air Theatre
Whose Life Is It Anyway?, Realwheels Theatre

Significant Artistic Achievement – Small Theatre
Inside The Seed, Up in the Air Theatre

Outstanding Original Script
Jason Rothery, Inside The Seed, Up in the Air Theatre

To see a full list of the nominations, visit the Jessies website. The awards ceremony will take place on Monday, June 23 at the Commodore Ballroom. For tickets, click here.