; Fun! Fun! Vancouver!: December 2012

Monday, 31 December 2012

Happy New Year!!

Here's wishing everyone an awesome Happy New Year! All the best to each and every one of you for 2013! Hope it's filled with lots of FUN!

To get the night started, here's Nelly Furtado performing her latest single, Waiting For The Night! We'll all be waiting for the night tonight! Happy New Year everyone!

Saturday, 22 December 2012

Michael Buble - Christmas (Baby Please Come Home) live on The Voice

Here's BC boy Michael Buble spreading some holiday cheer on The Voice recently. Happy Holidays everyone!

Thursday, 20 December 2012

Winter Solstice Lantern Festival - Friday Dec 21

If you're not already busy celebrating the End of the World on Friday, December 21st, then why not celebrate the Winter Solstice with this annual Lantern Festival!?

The event takes place all across Vancouver, from the East Side to Granville Island, down into Yaletown , Strathcona, False Creek, and Chinatown. Check out the Secret Lantern Society's website for route information and in the case of bad weather, where the indoor venues are located.

Monday, 17 December 2012

Last Minute Christmas Gift Idea!

Check out this children's book that would make a great gift for folks of all ages!!

 Yes, I wrote it!! :)

And you can purchase it at your local book stores or online here!

Sunday, 16 December 2012

Postcards: Lights of Hope

Tis the season. Here's a snapshot of the front of St. Paul's Hospital with their annual display of the Lights of Hope, which represents all the donors who have given gifts to the hospital this year.

taken on iPhone 5

Saturday, 15 December 2012

Postcards: BCAA's Angel

I was walking around on my lunch break the other day and came across this "BCAA Angel" hanging about over by the Vancouver Art Gallery.

Friday, 14 December 2012

Vancouver Aquarium

With my Vancouver Inspiration Pass, I was able to go and visit the Vancouver Aquarium.

 It's a definite must if you're a visitor and you're making your way around Stanley Park and checking out the seawall. The Aquarium is a beautiful place and has awesome exhibits and shows for people of all ages. I opted to take my mom with me as she's never been before. Here she is taking in the breathtaking beauty of the beluga whale:

Then it was time to step into the Amazon, a newer exhibit that I had yet to witness. It had butterflies flitting about, giant blue birds, huge hissing cockroaches, other insects and amphibians from the Amazon rain forest, a mean lookin' crocodile, monkeys, and this giant ANACONDA snake!!

There is also currently a Luminescence exhibit being featured, which is "a celebration of aquatic light!" Fun! Check out these amazing jelly-fish:

And finally, the Aquarium's latest addition are these super cute penguins!!

There's also a Beluga show, a sea otter show, and a dolphin show, and much much more! Isn't it time you visit the Vancouver Aquarium

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Christmas Wish Breakfast Toy Drive at the Pan Pacific

It's that time of year again! Time for the Christmas Wish Breakfast Toy Drive down at the Pan Pacific Hotel. It takes place Thursday, December 13th from 6am - 9am.

Back in its 25th year, the annual event benefits the Lower Mainland Christmas Bureau, by asking the public to bring down a toy to donate to needy children. As a thank you, everyone who donates gets to eat from the hot buffet breakfast from Cafe Pacifica Restaurant.

Come down for a good cause, good food, and good entertainment!

* Please note, each year they get more than enough stuffed toys and the LMCB is in most need of toys for teenagers.

Monday, 10 December 2012

The Santaland Diaries - Arts Club

Monday night was a sold out audience at the Arts Club theatre's production of The Santaland Diaries playing at the Revue Stage on Granville Island.

Maybe it's because I'm familiar with the David Sedaris short story that this is based off of, or maybe it's because I've heard David Sedaris read this, but I found the production a bit off.  Some of the other audience members were heartily enjoying it, but a few of us thought that the pacing of the show was a bit too fast and that jokes got lost or stepped on.

Ryan Beil has his work cut out for him, delivering a 75 minute soliloquy about the ups and downs, mainly downs, of being a 30something year old Elf at the Macy Department Store's Christmas display. I wished it wasn't as frenetic, but perhaps it was the show's way of showcasing the frenzy of the holidays and the downward spiral into insanity that one can get caught in while working in Santaland.

The Santaland Diaries runs until December 29.

Friday, 7 December 2012

The Lion The Witch and the Wardrobe - Pacific Theatre


When we got to Pacific Theatre for opening night of The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe, we were wondering, how is this gonna work? How are they gonna transport the landscape that is Narnia into the tiny theatre space that itself could've been the size of a wardrobe? How will they show us Aslan and the White Witch in all their grandeur?

Then we looked at the program and noticed there were only two people in the cast. Curioser and curioser.

 Photo by Michael Julian Berz. Pictured: Mack Gordon and Kaitlin Williams

It turns out, this play is a stripped down bare bones show that introduces us to Lucy and Peter, all grown up now, and reuniting to reminisce about the good ol' days, those being the ones when they would escape into a magical wardrobe and into an enchanted land. If I wasn't familiar with the story of Narnia, I'm not sure if I would have gotten everything. I was trying to imagine myself as somebody who has never heard of the books or the movie before and decided to go to this play and what they might have thought.

It's cleverly done, with the two actors trading hats and coats to become a multitude of characters, from fawns and beavers to their rival siblings. Mack Gordon and Kaitlin Williams don their best British accents and transform from character to character, all the while narrating the action for the audience to imagine. They transition seamlessly between roles, and I can't imagine the amount of work they had to put into this. It's a hefty feat and a daunting task, for sure, so kudos to the two actors!

Photo by Ron Reed.
Pictured: Kaitlin Williams and Mack Gordon.

Imagination is the key to the production, as the set is minimal. The liner notes admit that no matter what was done, no matter what kind of budget they could have had, there was no way that they could match the Narnia of the mind. What we create in our imagination is always going to win out, thus the reasoning behind the simplistic telling of this tale.

The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe runs this holiday season until December 15 at Pacific Theatre. For more information on the upcoming tour of the lower mainland, check out the show's site.

Thursday, 6 December 2012

H.R. MacMillan Space Centre

AKA, the Planetarium! I remember going here as a kid, but I can't remember the last time I was there as an adult. It was most likely for a Radiohead laser show one evening.

With my current possession of the Vancouver Inspiration Pass, I've been trying to go out to do more things and visit places I haven't been to in awhile. The H.R. MacMillan Space Centre is one of the places you can visit with the pass! And there are some fun things to do there!

For one, you can touch a moon rock!!

You can also take a turn at trying to lift up this meteor, which is a LOT heavier than it looks! And how cool is it to be touching a METEOR!?!?

And of course you can go and catch the daily shows going on in the theatre, with HAROLD The Star Projector!

The show itself was great to watch and learn about the planets and the Solar System, with footage of Earth from space as well as the surfaces of some of the other planets in our universe. It definitely made me feel that much smaller in this world we live in. A fun and educational experience for all! 

If you've never been, or if it's been awhile, then might I suggest a visit to the H.R. MacMillan Space Centre!

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Leo at the Cultch

This has got to be the hottest show of the season! LEO (pronounced "lay-o") is a visually stunning mind bending odyssey that had the audience laughing and completely enthralled from beginning to end.

Take the simple humour of Mr Bean and mesh it with the agility of Spider Man and the grace of Fred Astaire, and you have German performer Tobias Wegner in a thrilling one-man show that combines music, art, dance, and movement into an epic journey across dimensions. At one point, chalk drawings are incorporated and I so badly wanted them to come alive... and perhaps if it's a special night like tonight, they might!

This is a co-production with Germany's theatre group Circle of Eleven, who put on the equally astounding SOAP - The Show, which I had the good fortune to catch over in London, England. You better get yourself to The Cultch because it's not often that we get this type of international calibre in town! This is definitely an acrobatic accomplishment that will leave you completely satisfied and overjoyed with pure unadulterated happiness.

After it was over, I wanted to prance down the street and leap over cars (but only managed to sidestep puddles). You will be inspired by a performance brimming with joy and emotion and absolute heart. You will witness an energy so unique and an experience completely memorable that you'll want to go back again and again and bring all your friends with you!

LEO plays at The Cultch now until Dec 15. Get your tickets quick!  Go see LEO now!!

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Vancouver Opera: Pirates of Penzance

I've been busy with the Vancouver Inspiration Pass lately, and one of the many things I've done is attend the Vancouver Opera production of Pirates of Penzance!

I'm not a huge opera person so this was a good way for me to check out an opera. I have seen a few operas in the past, such as Porgy and Bess and Madame Butterfly, but Pirates of Penzance is a great introduction for people like me who are not huge enthusiasts, because 1) it's in English while most other operas are not and 2) it's a comedy and the show itself is rather entertaining and funny.

I saw my first opera when I was in high school, and wouldn't you know it, it was Pirates of Penzance! I was too young to appreciate it, I think. I'm glad I got to see it again and actually get the story and find myself enjoying it! This particular production also puts a modern twist on things with lines written specifically for Canadian audiences.

The Pirates of Penzance is on now at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre until Dec 9.