One morning, a young geneticist awakes with a box on his head. The box is simple, unadorned cube and a familar, comfortable shade of brown. At first he thinks it's a dream, or a morning like when you're a sick child and your eyelids stick together, but he soon learns that the box is permanent. His questions begin to loop: am I alone, or is there someone else out there?

Unable to find out, and unwilling to kill himself, [boxhead], the star of the show by the same name, decides: "If I can't change the quality of my life, at...

Boxhead, it's lonely in the city

It’s hard to say anything bad about Andy Jones. He’s just such an affable guy. The kind of guy you just want to sit around drinking and laughing with and listen to him talk.

The opening scene of An Evening with Uncle Val sees Jones begin this one man show as Uncle Val, sitting at a table writing to his dear friend Jack back in his hometown, a village somewhere far away from St. John’s. The year is 1986, and Uncle Val has been banished to live in the suburbs of St. John’s with his daughter Margaret, her husband Bernard,...

Living it up with Uncle Val

Early on Wednesday, a Facebook friend sent me a video of neuroanatomist Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor giving a talk at conference this past March (it’s worth a look). In it Dr. Taylor describes the morning she awoke with a blood clot in her brain causing a massive stroke. Being a brain researcher, she saw the stroke as a great gift for her, and her insights into the event are her gift to us.

[boxhead] from Toronto based Crow’s Theatre in association with Mammalian Diving Reflex, covers some of...

Boxhead, vancouver's a hard place to get to know people

_We are deeply disgusted with the contemporary theatre (verse, prose and musical) because it vacillates between historical reconstruction (pastiche or plagiarism) and photographic reproduction of our daily life; a finking, slow, analytic, and diluted theatre worthy, all in all, of the age of the oil lamp._

That wonderful quote is from Filippo Tommaso Marinetti, one of the founders of the Italian Futurist Movement. It was inside the program for the BellaLuna/Theatre at UBC co-production of Return of the Futuristi. It touches upon an intriguing paradox that...

Return of Futuristi! Susan Bertoia and a vacuum; photo: Ali Sohrabzadeh

As soon as the lights dim, the red stage curtain performs a striptease, rising and falling flirtatiously. After this warm flush, a beautiful Italian woman invites us to use fax machines and cell phones during the show.

Before we know it, a wounded man in a leg cast miraculously rises from his crutches because he (mistakenly) sees a murderer – but there’s no resolution. This sintesi is over and the next one begins.

The show is Bella Luna's The Return of FUTURISTI! Futurism was an Italian avant-garde movement that started in 1909 and thrived until 1914 in its...

The Return of the Futuristi, Kris Tung, Joe Procyk, Stefano Giulianetti, Louis Chirillo, Astrid Varnes; photo: Ali Sohrabzadeh

Magnetic North: Measuring the Synthesis

If Mel Brook’s The Producers – currently running at the Arts Club – can be considered a form of theatre franchise then the productions included in this year’s Magnetic North should be thought of as hand-crafted, one of a kind items. Instead of following a master-plan delivered from New York, London or even Toronto, these are originals hewn from the raw material of the artists involved. They are unique, distilled experiences.

Taxonomy upgrade extras: 
Author Name: 
Andrew Templeton
Photograph Caption: 
Members of HIVE show Canada what they've got.

By a large paper tree, a woman in a paper dress sings about the butterflies fluttering all around her, among the peach flowers and the willow trees.

On her strange, blue shoes she moves gracefully, and the horse-hair whip that she holds in her hands flows from pose to pose. Cai Lun (He Ling) is in a garden thinking about what she can give the Emperor to write on, as he's endlessly dictating missives to all corners of his realm. It's Ancient China, and her current options are silk (too expensive) and bamboo (too heavy). And so, the woman in...

The Life of Paper, Lenard Stanga and He Ling. Photo: Michael Ford

Magnetic North: Inside the Industry Series

The Industry Series is an integral part of Magnetic North. It is four days of activities for those who work in Canadian theatre – artists, producers, presenters, managers and agents. Organized by Toronto-based producer Naomi Campbell, the event is designed to bring together creators and presenters to inspire new collaborations.

Taxonomy upgrade extras: 
Author Name: 
Allyson McGrane
Photograph Caption: 
Darren O'Donnell refuses to get boxed in at the Industry Series

The array of choreographers included in the latest EDAM presentation The Body Eclectic was intriguing enough to draw me from my abode: Jai Govinda, Artistic Director of Mandala Arts and Culture; Emily Molnar, former Frankfurt Ballet superstar; and Peter Bingham, contact dance guru.

There are very few dance companies in Vancouver that have not experimented with Bingham at EDAM. EDAM offers training and workshops in contact dance, a form which focuses on improvisational kinetic experimentation. The company is also known for the many creative collaborations it has encouraged over the years by giving dancers the physical space to rehearse in...

Body Eclectic

Meg Walker and Anna Russell attended sound-garden-scape: Gastown by Eric Powell, May 16, co-presented by VIVO Media Arts Centre. Meg Walker attended Surf and Turf Soundwalk, May 18, curated by Jean Routhier.

AR: Why did you check out the sound walk that you went on? 

MW: For me, I have an affection for new music generally and I remember becoming curious about the nuances of sound-related thought when I first read R. Murray Schaefer's writings a few years ago. He and others ran a project for several years called the World Soundscape Project, and I believe they invented the term...

necessary equipment for the sound walk