Winterruption Festival brings the music to a broader audience

Dec 20 2017, 4:03 am

Pardon the Winterruption – Vancouver’s favourite annual winter festival is back for its 11th year. Running from February 19 to 21 at Granville Island, the Winterruption Festival puts the dreariness of rainy days on pause for a bright and eclectic presentation of music, dance, theatre, food, and more.

Along with pop-up dance performances from New Works and a delicious Donut Spectacular, there is also an incredible lineup of concerts happening at the festival this year. Many of the shows are free, with a select few requiring tickets. Both local musicians and international artists are featured, each bringing their distinct sound to a broader audience here in Vancouver while simultaneously celebrating the diversity of our west coast culture.

West coast world fusion group TANGA will be performing their unique combination of urban groove, Afro-Latin, jazz, and hip-hop. Formed in 2007 by trumpeter Malcolm Aiken, the nine-piece collective’s latest album, “Havanaelectro,” was received with much critical acclaim, called “the most refreshingly contemporary expression of Latin groove music so far,” by WorldBeat International and nominated at both the 2014 Western Canadian Music Awards and the 2014 Canadian Folk Music Awards. At Winterruption, TANGA will be sharing their innovative energy with special guests Bazooka Picnic. Tickets are $20.

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Another band performing at the festival, ElkHorn, also blur the boundaries of genres with their fusion of folk, jazz, country, and rock. Led by guitarist and composer Tom Wherrett, the group plays music inspired by the mid-west, where Wherrett grew up. ElkHorn’s roster features an impressive lineup of talented Vancouver musicians, with Meredith Bates on violin/viola, Sam Davidson on clarinet/bass clarinet, Russell Sholberg on bass, and Mike Magnusson on drums.

One never knows what they’ll get with Vancouver-based improvisational trio Grdina/Houle/Loewen – and that’s precisely what has made them so exciting to watch. For Winterruption this year, the ensemble will be sharpening their focus and performing more compositional material, utilizing graphic scores to create a dynamic sound.

Toronto-born, now Paris-based Alejandra Ribera, too, is a Winterruption must-see. With a distinctive voice that’s garnered comparisons to Tom Waits and Edith Piaf, alongside endearing melodies weaved with English, French, and Spanish, live performances of Ribera’s new album, “La Boca,” have moved audiences to tears. Adventurous jazz artist Ayelet Rose Gottlieb (who splits her time between Tel Aviv, New York, and Vancouver) will be sharing the bill with Ribera and performing “Shiv’a” — her powerful string quartet and percussion composition inspired by the mourning traditions of Jewish and Buddhist faiths. Tickets are $23.

Two Vancouver ensembles, the End Tree and SICK BOSS, will be performing free concerts at Winterruption. String and vocal trio the End Tree will play their special style of hallucinatory chamber-pop, while SICK BOSS are set to mash up rock and folk with modern jazz.

The Coastal Jazz and Blues Society is a non-for-profit arts organization that was incorporated in 1986. With a focus upon a wide scale of jazz, blues, world, and improvised music, the Vancouver-based society works to both strengthen and support the local arts community through special projects, partnerships, initiatives, community programs, and collaborations. Coastal Jazz presents the annual TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival.

Winterruption Festival

When: February 19 to February 21, 2016

Where: Granville Island

Tickets: Available at 1-888-732-1682 or through Coastal Jazz


Vancity Buzz is a proud media partner of Winterruption presented by Coastal Jazz

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