Bah!Humbug! (2014) / Tom Quirk photoBah! Humbug! features some of the city’s finest professional and First Nation actors and singers (Sam Bob, Jenifer Brousseau) on stage with Downtown Eastside actors and singers (Stephen Lytton, Mike Richter, Savannah Walling). Our adaptation of Dickens’ Christmas Carol has moved substantially from its origins with Charles Dickens, changing the theme from extolling charity to instead promoting social justice. Each year, the script is adapted to reflect modern, and specifically Downtown Eastside, issues. This year the backstory for Bob Cratchit has him on a journey of recovery—all done with a redemptive light. While the content deals with serious issues, Bah! Humbug! is also hailed as a creative, fun, family event filled with humour and compassion. The production embraces a modern songbook, and has more than twenty-five musical numbers ranging from traditional Christmas carols to First Nations songs and arrangements of modern rock, pop, and soul songs, including those by Buffy-Sainte Marie and Nine Inch Nails. The song list comes to life with the cast of exceptional singer-actors joined by the talented accompaniment of the acclaimed Downtown Eastside-based Saint James Music Academy Choir. Before each performance, audiences may join a sing-along carol session with members of the cast. The Downtown Eastside-themed setting comes to life with colourful large-scale mono-print and linocut projections of Downtown Eastside streets, waterfront, businesses and houses by award-winning Downtown Eastside/Strathcona-based artist Richard Tetrault. Proceeds from the show support the Downtown Eastside Heart of the City Festival, which partners each year with over fifty Downtown Eastside arts and non-arts organizations.
Featuring Juno award-winning musician Jim Byrnes as Ebenezer Scrooge.Preview: December 10 at 7:30 pm. December 11-13 & December 16-20, 7:30 pm. Saturday matinees December 13 & 20 at 2:00 pm. Fei and Milton Wong Experimental Theatre, SFU’s Goldcorp Centre for the Arts, 149 West Hastings Street Tickets: www.sfuwoodwards.ca or at the door one hour before show time General - $29 Student/Seniors - $15 Dec. 10 preview - $10 Don’t miss this festive and seasonal favourite. Each show features a turkey draw and an audience sing-along of holiday favourites before show start. Reconceived as a tale where Scrooge owns a pawn shop on Hastings Street, this imaginative all-ages production offers a bittersweet twist on a cherished classic that celebrates the transformative power of human redemption. Now more than 150 years old, Dickens’ timeless story remains relevant today, especially in light of parallels between the economic disparities of Victorian London and Vancouver’s DTES. “Each year, the adaptation has different creative twists and turns as we continue to highlight vital issues affecting the DTES. Taking inspiration from Dickens, we’re proud to work in partnership with Vancouver Moving Theatre to benefit a dynamic cultural program in our community” says Michael Boucher, Director, Cultural Programs & Partnerships, SFU Woodward’s Cultural Programs. Commissioned and co-produced by SFU Woodward’s Cultural Programs in partnership with Vancouver Moving Theatre with support from SFU’s Vancity Office of Community Engagement, Bah! Humbug! supports the flagship Downtown Eastside Heart of the City Festival, which partners each year with forty-plus Downtown Eastside involved community arts and non-arts organizations. Directed by Max Reimer, Bah! Humbug! features Juno award-winning musician Jim Byrnes, First Nations actors Margo Kane as the narrator and Sam Bob as Ghost of Christmas Past and Dumpster Diva, and gospel and blues singer/actor Tom Pickett as Bob Cratchit. These Vancouver favourites are joined by a cast of professional and DTES community actors. Musical performances are diverse and include pop songs, folk, blues, gospel and industrial rock along with traditional seasonal favourites, directed by Neil Weisensel. “At the darkest hour of a winter’s night, Scrooge confronts spirits of the past, present and future. Emerging from Coast Salish land buried under city sidewalks, they bring the old pawn broker face to face with memories he cannot bear and relationships he cannot heal,” says Savannah Walling, Artistic Director of Vancouver Moving Theatre, “Dickens’ haunting ghost story is filled with social satire, heartbreak and compassion. We hope that our music filled adaptation shines the light of truth on this old tale and today’s Downtown Eastside.” Media inquiries Leanne Prain, Marketing and Promotions, SFU Woodward’s Cultural Programs T: 778-782-9223 | E: firstname.lastname@example.org www.sfuwoodwards.ca
Developed in partnerships with over five Downtown Eastside organizations and Toronto’s Jumblies Theatre, The Big House is all about connection. It is about coming together under one roof to share with each other through food, stories and art. We are preparing a feast, creating a theatrical event and breaking bread together. As we build The Big House – sharing resources, culture and good, healthy food – creative things can happen, new connections form and relationships renew.
“Our future and the well-being of our children rests with the kinds of relationships we build today.” - Chief Robert Joseph, Ambassador for Reconciliation Canada
In the indigenous traditions of our neighbourhood’s founding communities, feasts are a time for nourishing relationships, marking important events, offering gifts and acknowledgements, sharing learning and teaching: a storehouse of memories for the future. The Big House is re-creating feasting in an urban context. We will mark memories of our communities coming together; acknowledge land, waterways, and gathering places that keep our community strong; share cultural teachings around food and hospitality; mourn what has been displaced, lost or forgotten; listen to youth and elders, and honour the neighbourhood’s continuity, its wisdom. We are weaving together oral history and cultural teachings, poetry and song, drumming and design, theatre and dance with culinary art. Witnessing and creating shared memories, we celebrate who we are, acknowledge where we come from, what’s left behind, what’s preserved; we stand facing the future.
“The Big House is a place for learning and teaching.” - Rosemary Georgeson (Coast Salish/Dene), Storytelling/Culinary artist
“As ancestors of tomorrow, we are caretakers, creators and witnesses to our communities and stories, who live on with new caretakers in each generation.” - Savannah Walling, Artistic Director, Vancouver Moving TheatreIn development since 2010, The Big House Project is evolving via a series of invitational theatrical feasts hosted by VMT in community partnerships: City of Vancouver Dialogues Project, Oppenheimer Park, Downtown Eastside Neighbourhood House, Vancouver Native Housing, Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden and Jumblies Theatre (Toronto). Some of these long-standing relationships date back ten years and more. Oncoming community partners include the Aboriginal Front Door, the Association of United Ukrainian Canadians, Carnegie Community Centre and Downtown Centre for the Arts. The Big House Project culminates May 10, 2015 in a closing feast at the historic Ukrainian Hall (venue tbc). Building on a residency concept and performative feast structure originated by Ruth Howard and Savannah Walling, the project team includes Ms Walling (Artistic Director), Terry Hunter (Producer), Renae Morriseau (Dramaturge), James Fagan Tait (Director), Rosemary Georgeson (Storytelling/Culinary artist), Ms. Howard (Design and Community engagement Consultant), Paula Jardine (Social Design consultant and Co-designer) and Candice Curlypaws (Co-designer), Beverly Dobrinsky (Music Director), Sarah May Redmond (Facilitator - inter-activity and hospitality theatre), Mark Eugster (Lighting Designer), joined by participants and cultural presenters.
- Create original art, the content, form and presentation of which is developed with, for and about people and places engaged;
- Play with/allow artistic forms to mutate to suit aesthetic, social and community realities;
- Engage with and create inclusive community;
- Further collaborations, alliances and understanding between Indigenous and settler/ immigrant cultures in Canada.
- Address the social and cultural divide in our province and country;
- Make a significant and high impact contribution to knowledge transfer about best practices in community engaged cross-cultural art in BC/Canada;
- Provide opportunities for artists, organizers, thinkers and educators from BC/Canada to network;
- Build the collegial community in community engaged practice; and create legacies for the future.
Thanks to our funding partners! The 7th Canadian Community Play and Arts Symposium is made possible with the generous support of our funding partners: City of Vancouver, and the BC Arts Council: Arts Based Community Development Program. Thank you!
May 12 - June 10, 2015
Create, Discuss, Travel, Feast, Learn, Change TracksTrain of Thought is an evolving community arts journey from west to east coast, with on-board activities and at least 15 stops along the way. At each stop, a travelling company will get off and stay until the next train comes through. Local arts organizations and communities will host interactive events, and add to cumulative creative tasks. Additional travellers will hop aboard in overlapping and growing numbers, with conversations, art-making and special guests en route. Train of Thought was hatched by a group of Canadian community play producers who wanted to share practices and projects. As the idea percolated, we asked ourselves what theme merited such a huge cross-country undertaking. The answer we came to is: collaborations and alliances between First Nations and settler/immigrant artists and communities. We believe this is the most challenging and urgent matter that all of us are grappling with and learning about, as community-engaged art-makers from our different regional and cultural perspectives. Train of Thought will take an intentionally counter-colonial route to collect and share stories, buried histories and imagined landscapes of the land where we live: as it might have been, as it is, as it could be: drawing on perception, memory, history and imagination; merging whimsy and serious intent, bringing together artists and community members, the land’s first people and all those who have found refuge here over the years and generations. Train of Thought will ask many questions and perhaps find some answers: What's not on the map? What other forms of mapping are there? How can we see the places where we live through new eyes? What protocols are there of arrival, gathering and departure for the territories we pass through? What other place names are there to learn and imagine? What stories are important to pass across the country? How can we both grieve and celebrate together in the shadow of colonialism? How can community-engaged arts help us enter into these questions? Train of Thought is less about trains than about the relationships and discoveries that the journey will enable. When the train can't take us where we want to go, we'll defect for a while to buses and cars, and rejoin the VIA train route when we can. Train of Thought is an imperfect and incomplete adventure - part of a longer and unending imperative to learn, connect and help to change tracks. Train of Thought will be launched in Vancouver by VMT’s The Big House and the 7th Canadian Community Play and Arts Symposium. The train will have its send-off at 8:30 pm on Tuesday May 12, 2015. Victoria BC is also hosting a Train of Thought Prelude May 6-7, 2015. For more on the Victoria event, contact Will Weigler at email@example.com. Draft itinerary (to be adapted and likely expanded, especially from Ontario on):
|Vancouver- National Community Arts Symposium||May 10-12, 2015|
|Depart Vancouver||May 12|
|Enderby B.C.||May 13-15|
|Edmonton, Alberta||May 16-18|
|Saskatoon, Saskatchewan||May 19-20|
|Winnipeg, Manitoba||May 22-24|
|Sioux Lookout, Ontario||May 25-26|
|Northern Ontario||May 27-31|
|Toronto, Ontario||June 1- 4|
|Ottawa, Ontario||June 5|
|Kingston, Ontario||June 6|
|Montréal, Québec||June 6-7|
|Moncton, New Brunswick||partner(s) to be confirmed): June 8?|
|Halifax, Nova Scotia - Finale||June 10|
Vancouver Moving Theatre and Jumblies Theatre are pleased to announce the newest round of the Downtown Eastside Artfare Institutes. This three-day workshop on community-engaged practice will explore the gathering of personal and ancestral histories; images of landscapes and waterways from False Creek to Burrard Inlet and beyond; and their application in community-engaged art making. The workshop is facilitated by two of Canada’s leading community-engaged artists, Ruth Howard (Jumblies Theatre, Toronto) with Savannah Walling (Vancouver Moving Theatre, Vancouver/Downtown Eastside). Join Ruth and Savannah and guests on this intensive, experiential journey of learning and art-making. Workshop activities will blend presentations, hands-on activities, discussions, demonstrations, creative explorations and take-home resources. We will: • Consider approaches, methods, challenges, ethics and aesthetics involved in researching and expressing community stories through oral history and mapping; • Explore interview and mapping-based arts processes via a variety of interdisciplinary activities; • Touch on stages of research, creation, presentation, performance, evaluation and legacy; • Work with themes and forms linked to current Vancouver Moving Theatre/Jumblies creative partnerships scheduled for spring 2015: The Big House project, a Downtown Eastside performative feast; and the Train of Thought, a coast to coast community arts journey.
WHO IS IT FOR? • Emerging and professional artists from all forms and traditions; • Practitioners from related fields (e.g. oral history, community development, etc.); • People with experience in community engaged arts; • People with past projects or in-process projects involving oral history, interview or mapping research; • People who can apply what they learn and share it with others through their practice. WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS? • Deepen and expand your community arts skills and experience; • Learn skills for your own oral history or mapping arts project; • Meet and network with like-minded creative people; • Jumblies’ workshops are recognized nationally as credentials by arts employers and academic institutions; • It will be lots of fun! MEALS AND ACCOMMODATION Snacks and the makings for lunches are provided. For out of town registrants, we can help you locate a budget hotel. CERTIFICATION Those attending the full course will receive a certificate of completion from Vancouver Moving Theatre and Jumblies Theatre. FEE: $150 Work trade places are available for those for whom the fee is a barrier Application deadline: May 5, 2014 (5pm)
APPLICATION PROCESS Limited to twenty participants, selected partly based on experience and potential to benefit, with a view to creating a compatible and diverse group, including Downtown Eastside community members. Registration form can be downloaded HERE Email completed application to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please see details in application form about mailing the application. Applications arriving by May 5 will be assessed and space confirmed by May 12. Late applications will be considered only if there is space available.
For information on our other activities, visit www.vancouvermovingtheatre.com www.jumbliestheatre.org
“Coming out of war and internment camps, we knew we needed a meeting place for mutual support. There was no welfare or social services – we had to do it for ourselves…. We didn’t know how to build a hall, we just did it – built it with our own hands in 1928, then paid off the mortgage in three years, paid it off in pennies, nickels, dimes.” - Bread & SaltImmediately upon opening the association sponsored a full slate of cultural, educational and social activities. But within a year of the hall’s opening, Vancouver was hard hit by the Great Depression. The hall became a focal point of labour struggles of the Dirty 30s. It was the organizational headquarters for the occupation of the Carnegie Museum and the On-to-Ottawa Trek in 1935 and a place of refuge for strikers in the great Post Office Sit-in of 1938. After Germany invaded Poland, Canada entered the war, invoking the War Measures Act. The hall was padlocked under “Defense of Canada Regulations”. Although the Association had lost their hall, they were welcomed by the Croatian Hall (now called the Russian Hall), and the Italian and Finnish Halls, so they continued their dancing and language schools and raised thousands of dollars for the war effort.
“After the Soviet Union allied with Canada in the war against the Nazis, the ban against the Association was lifted. But we had to petition the federal government to get back our halls. There was a 6 ½ block parade when the Ukrainian Hall reopened… We were coming back to our home.” – Bread & SaltTHE STORY OF “WAITING FOR LEFTY” During the 1935 six month lock-out strike between the Longshoremen’s Union and the Shipping Federation, Labour Defense lawyer Garfield King got together with actor/director Guy Glover to form Vancouver’s Progressive Arts Club.
“We felt an urgency in the air, a need for theatre with a little blood to it, some substance and real life themes.” – Bread & SaltPutting out a call for workers interested in “plays of social significance with revolutionary implications” (BC Worker’s News), Glover and King organized a workers’ theatre troupe composed of unemployed workers. They found help at the Ukrainian Labor Temple who gave them free rehearsal space and volunteers from its cultural programs. Two thirds of the actors were Ukrainian, including sixteen year old Harry Hoshowsky (who played mandolin in the Vancouver Folk Orchestra up until last Christmas). The cast rehearsed and premiered a new play that had been banned in seven cities: Clifford Odet’s “Waiting for Lefty”, the story of New York taxi drivers meeting to vote on whether or not to go on strike. Playing to packed houses and standing ovations at this very hall Oct. 25, 1935, and then across the Lower Mainland, the play toured Canada to the 1936 Dominion Drama Festival where it won the prize for Best English Language Play. 85th ANNIVERSARY OF THE ASSOCATION OF UNITED UKRAINIAN CANADIANS (AUUC) The Association of United Ukrainian Canadians has a rich and proud heritage in the Downtown Eastside. Since its founding in 1928, the Hall has been involved in efforts to support social justice and in building cultural programs, providing a continuous program of instruction and performance in dance and choral and instrumental music. Today the AUUC sponsors Vancouver’s longest running folk orchestra, the Barvinok Folk Choir, the AUUC School of Dancing, the highly trained Dovbush Dancers, and the annual Malanka, a Ukrainian New Year Celebration. The Association produces artistic activity throughout the year and is a host of rehearsals and cultural events produced by visiting cultural groups and arts organizations. For more information visit: www.auucvancouver.ca
Vancouver Moving Theatre and Jumblies Theatre in partnership with Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden present
The Art of Hospitality: 3rd Downtown Eastside Artfare Institute
A volunteer work-learn opportunity and mini-practicum in art that engages with and celebrates community
- People interested in and/or with experience in art that engages community;
- People with flexibility and reliability who enjoy working creatively with diverse people;
- People with arts-related background (experience &/or training) to contribute to the creation of our performative feast (e.g. visual arts, design, music, performance, calligraphy, culinary arts);
- People who can apply what they learn and share it with others through their work.
- Participate fully from April 7-15 (days off April 10 & 14), including core group sessions, individually-tailored work plans and schedules, final rehearsals, culminating performative feast and closing gathering;
- contribute in a spirit of collaboration, cooperation, and respect for community needs;
- notify project coordinator in advance of any scheduling conflicts and changes and to work out a solution.
- Deepen your community arts skills and experience;
- Meet and network with like-minded creative people locally and from across the country;
- Be part of an ambitious and innovative multi-year Vancouver project with Toronto partners;
- Jumblies’ training workshops are recognized nationally as credentials by arts employers and academic institutions;
- It will be lots of fun!