10 hidden gem arts shows coming to Vancouver this March

Feb 28 2018, 10:04 pm

A motley assortment of arts shows coming to Vancouver this month, featuring love, loss, and child beauty pageants.

There are some bittersweet farewells. It’s the last time Chelsea Hotel: The Songs of Leonard Cohen will be performed at the Firehall, so see this gem of a show before it’s too late.

And don’t Forget About Tomorrow, loosely based on Spirit of the West front man, John Mann’s public Alzheimer diagnosis, at the newish Arts Club venue in False Creek.

Sometimes, hidden gems are the best—here are 10 performing arts shows coming to town this March.

See also

Vancouver International Dance Festival

Image: Christopher Duggan

One of Vancouver’s biggest dance festivals is back, offering up everything under the genre of contemporary dance. Running over most of March at various locations across the city, VIDF is a meeting of local and international talent in some of the hottest arts shows around. Possibly the most anticipated performance is from New York-based Shen Wei Dance Arts, presenting two pieces set to Tibetan Buddhist chanting and Stravinsky.

  • Where: Various Locations in Vancouver
  • When: On now to March 24
  • Tickets: At VIDF; Varies

Forget About Tomorrow – Arts Club

Image: David Cooper

A personal tale based on Spirit of the West John Mann’s Alzheimer diagnosis, Forget About Tomorrow is about a family’s experience with the early-onset stage of the disease. John Mann himself contributed to the play, through the last two songs the musician ever wrote. Questions about loyalty, sacrifice and purpose are centre stage in this dramatic comedy.

  • Where: BMO Theatre Centre – 162 West 1st Avenue, Vancouver
  • When: On now to March 25
  • Tickets: At Arts Club; $29-$49+

The After After Party – After Party Theatre Society

Image: Sarah Mabberley

Drug-infused time-travel lands two teens in the middle of a raccoon sanctuary. An irrelevant comedy with strong accolades from the Vancouver Fringe Festival, The After After Party is a tribute to adolescent friendship and lovable outcasts. The souped-up version of the show promises to be a “bigger, better, badder, banger” and looks to be an evening of pure bubblegum fun.

  • Where: The Cultch – 1985 Venables Street, Vancouver
  • When: March 6 to 17
  • Tickets: At The Cultch; $35

These Are The Songs That I Sing When I’m Sad – Boca del Lupo

Image: Jane Miller / Nightswimming

Singer Jane Miller intimately explores why certain sad songs stick with you throughout life. Toronto-based company, Nightswimming, has toured the show in other locations, and will be returning to Granville Island’s Fishbowl for five nights only. The micro-performance allows the audience to get closer to the action, requesting their favourite sad songs in consideration for Miller to perform throughout the show.

  • Where: The Fishbowl – 100-1398 Cartwright Street, Granville Island, Vancouver
  • When: March 13 to 17
  • Tickets: At Eventbrite; $25

Tomorrow’s Child – Shadbolt Centre for the Arts

Image: Shadbolt Centre for the Arts

If blindfolds are your cup of tea, and you’re not sitting through Fifty Shades Freed (shudder), then you’re probably listening to this special, audio-only adaptation of a classic sci-fi short story. Tomorrow’s Child features all of the audio quirks of ’50s retro sci-fi, in an immersive sensory experience that has to be heard in order to be believed.

  • Where: Shadbolt Centre for the Arts – 6450 Deer Lake Avenue, Burnaby
  • When: March 14 to 17
  • Tickets: At Shadbolt; $36

I Lost My Husband – Ruby Slippers Theatre

Image: David Cooper

It’s the first time this hit French comedy—J’ai perdu mon mari—has been translated into English, and Richmond’s Gateway Theatre will see the world premiere. Aging party-girl Evelyn loses her husband in a bar bet, but comes out of the experience with new a direction in life. An ode to female independence and emancipation, this witty and irrelevant tale tackles love/loss in unexpected ways.

  • Where: Gateway Theatre – 6500 Gilbert Road, Richmond
  • When: March 15 to 24
  • Tickets: At Gateway; $29

Little Miss Glitz – Too Fly Productions

Image: Ryan Bolton

Little Miss Glitz is a musical parody/celebration of children’s beauty pageants, chock full of today’s catchy pop hits. Leapfrogging off the popular and derided TV show Toddlers and Tiaras, the play mixes entertainment with questionable beauty standards and parenting practices.

  • Where: Performance Works, Granville Island – 1218 Cartwright Street, Vancouver
  • When: March 16 to 31
  • Tickets: At Eventbrite; $29

Chelsea Hotel: The Songs of Leonard Cohen – Firehall Arts Centre

Image: David Cooper

Firehall’s long-running and popular Leonard Cohen musical tribute will see its final run this month, in celebration of the venue’s 35th anniversary season. Leonard Cohen’s powerful and inspirational music is the heartbeat of Chelsea Hotel, as six performers play seventeen different instruments in a moving tribute to the legendary musician.

  • Where: Firehall Arts Centre – 280 E. Cordova Street, Vancouver
  • When: March 17 to April 21
  • Tickets: At Firehall; $20-$40

The Humans – Arts Club

Image: Humans / Arts Club

A new one-act production that took the Tony Award for Best Play in 2016, The Humans shows the effects of rapidly-changing America through the interactions of a working-class family. Over Thanksgiving dinner, no less, so you already have a sense for how things will go…

  • Where: Stanley Industrial Alliance Stage – 2750 Granville St, Vancouver
  • When: March 22 to April 22
  • Tickets: At Arts Club; $29-$72+

Bar Mitzvah Boy – Pacific Theatre

Image: Bar Mitzvah Boy / Pacific Theatre

Local playwright Mark Leiren-Young, of Dim Sum Diaries and Shylock fame, is back with a new play about the Jewish faith. A successful divorce lawyer dives into bar mitzvah preparations and, with the help of an unconventional rabbi, learns about the meaning of ritual, maturing, and friendship.

  • Where: Pacific Theatre – 1440 W 12th Ave, Vancouver
  • When: March 23 to April 14
  • Tickets: At Pacific; $20-$36.50
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