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yyc events

15 things to do in Calgary in December

By SHAUNA MCGINN

The holiday season is in full swing, with a variety of markets, shows, craft sales and more underway. But peek behind the festive fun and you’ll find that this December goes above and beyond the typical offerings of the Christmas season, with unique events bound to make this month a memorable one.

Ellen Doty. Courtesy Take Aim Media.

ELLEN DOTY AT STUDIO BELL
As part of the National Music Centre’s Alberta Spotlight Series, Calgary-based singer-songwriter Ellen Doty will take the stage on December 6 for an intimate performance. Doty’s musical touch blends jazz, folk, soul, and indie-pop, which come together to create a style at once unique and distinctly soulful.

BIG ROCK BREWING WORKSHOP
Calgary’s own Big Rock Brewing Company will be at Heritage Park on December 6 teaching beer lovers how to craft their own brew from start to finish.

MIRACLE ON FIRST STREET YYC
Proof cocktail bar has morphed into a magical Christmas haven, complete with special holiday drinks like the Christmaspolitan and the Run Run Rudolph. Sip and get into the spirit from 4:00 pm – 1:00 am until December 23.

THE TENORS
Popular Canadian operatic group The Tenors are performing their Home for the Holidays show on December 8 at the Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium.

A CHRISTMAS CAROL
See Canadian theatre star Stephen Hair play Ebenezer Scrooge for the 25th year in a row in this holiday favourite, on until December 23.

AMAHL AND THE NIGHT VISITORS
Catch this show at the Calgary Opera from December 7-9. Created by Gian Carlo Menotti, this one-act opera is the reimagined tale about the biblical Magi, or “wise men.” The story is told from the perspective of a young disabled boy who winds up accompanying the three men as they bring their gifts to Bethlehem.

AUGMENTED REALITY EXPERIENCE AT SOUTHCENTRE MALL
This display on the mall’s lower level, on until December 24, transports you to the Frozen Forest with Sammy the Snowman for a unique holiday shopping experience.

Courtesy Calgary Zoo.

ZOOLIGHTS
The Calgary Zoo is continuing its annual tradition of making the zoo glow with an array of holiday-inspired light installations that visitors can explore after dark while the animals are asleep in their enclosures. With plenty of chances to visit, Zoolights is perfect for date night, a quick photo-op, or simply to get into the spirit. Visit from November 23 – January 5.

TEDDY BEAR TOSS
It’s one of the only hockey games of the year where throwing something onto the ice is not just allowed — it’s encouraged. On December 9, bring a teddy bear or stuffed animal to this year’s game and aim it at the ice every time our Calgary Hitmen score a goal against the Kamloops Blazers. See if records can be broken for most stuffed toys crowded into a hockey rink at the same time.

HUMAN RIGHTS DAY 2018
On December 10, join the Calgary branch of the United Nations Association in Canada at the new Central Library for a panel discussion and screening of the film Indian Horse, based on the novel by the late Indigenous writer Richard Wagamese, in honour of Human Rights Day.

TELUS SPARK ADULTS ONLY NIGHT
This monthly event, taking place on the evening of December 13, sees the impressive science centre turn into a fun after-hours party where adults can sip and enjoy the space.

LYNDAL OSBORNE: MUTATION OF THE COMMONS
Hosted at the University of Calgary’s Nickle Galleries until December 15, this exhibition displays Osborne’s sculptures, which are inspired by forces of transformation in nature.

ONE BAD APPLE
Local playwright Charlotte Nixon has adapted the classic tale of Snow White into a unique stage experience hosted at the city’s Morpheus Theatre from December 7-15.

Courtesy Heritage Park.

ONCE UPON A CHRISTMAS AT HERITAGE PARK
Heritage Park has transformed into a festive Christmas village, complete with carolling, food and drink, shopping and more. Visit on weekends from 9:30 – 4:30 pm until December 23.

ZORRO: FAMILY CODE
From November 27 – December 30, Alberta Theatre Projects is presenting a fresh, fun take on an old legend.

15 things to do in Calgary in November

By SHAUNA MCGINN

Without the colour-changing leaves or the anticipation of the holiday season, November can get a bad rap for being a lost month. But between the much-awaited opening of the New Central Library, diverse musical performances, and a litany of craft and art shows, November in Calgary is shaping up to be a month worth getting excited about.

Local band Free The Cynics, who are performing at the annual Listen Up! charity event for Calgary’s Distress Centre. Courtesy Free The Cynics.

NEW CENTRAL LIBRARY GRAND OPENING
The much-awaited opening of the architecturally magnificent new library kicks off on November 3, with days of celebrations including live music, crafts, performances, and more.

FLIBBERTIGIBBET’S STORY EXHIBIT
Part of Quest Theatre’s new “Sweet Pea” series, this November 4 show will be a collection of interactive stories and songs for kids aged 3-7 and up.

FESTIVAL OF CRAFTS
From November 1-4, check out one of Canada’s largest holiday craft fairs featuring products from over 250 artisans across the country.

CHRISTMAS IN THE COUNTRY ART SALE
Over a thousand pieces of fine crafts and artwork by local artists will fill the historic Leighton Home from November 3-4 and 10-11. There will be free parking, admission, and complimentary holiday treats.

CALGARY EUROPEAN FILM FESTIVAL
From November 3-11, head out to see some works of art from talented film makers from Slovenia, Switzerland, Italy, and more.

CANADIAN JAZZ FESTIVAL
The Jazz YYC fall series is bringing the best of the genre to Calgary from November 8-11.

EDEN ROBINSON
The Giller Prize-nominated author will discuss her latest novel Trickster Drift. The November 8 event includes an audience Q&A and book signing.

Cécile Doo-Kingué. Photo: Terry Hughes.

CÉCILE DOO-KINGUÉ 
Acclaimed singer, songwriter and guitarist Cécile Doo-Kingué will be on stage on November 9 and 10 at the Arts Commons for a night of music heralded for its ability to be as “soothing and soulful” as it is electrifying. The Montreal-based artist’s latest album, Anybody Listening Part 2, blends blues, jazz, folk and more, and is grounded in inspiration from her Cameroon- American-Canadian heritage. 

MARY AND MAX: A MUSICAL
Don’t miss this story of the unlikely friendship between 10-year-old Mary from Melbourne, and Max, a middle-aged man from New York with Asperger’s, running until November 11.

FLEETWOOD MAC
Four-fifths of the world-famous band — Stevie Nicks, Christine McVie, John McVie and Mick Fleetwood — are making a stop in Calgary on November 12.

TONTO WEEK AT THE NATIONAL MUSIC CENTRE
The NMC will commission one of the most well-known parts of its music and technology collection, The Original New Timbral Orchestra (referred to as TONTO), during TONTO Week from November 14-18. With it, the NMC will host a full week of music programming centred around TONTO, and will feature artists like A Tribe Called Red, who will be the first group to create music with the legendary synthesizer.

DISNEY ON ICE: DARE TO DREAM 
This rendition of the travelling on-ice spectacle will land in Calgary from November 14-18, and features five Disney princesses, each from different eras of the franchise: Moana, Anna from Frozen, Rapunzel, Belle and Cinderella.

LISTEN UP! CALGARY CHARITY CONCERT 
This annual charity concert for Distress Centre Calgary features a mix of local musicians and bands, including Free The Cynics — whose lead singer is a Distress Centre volunteer. Rich Paxton started the concert after seeing firsthand how critical the centre’s services are to Calgarians. Head out and show your support on November 24.

ONCE UPON A CHRISTMAS AT HERITAGE PARK
Calgary’s beloved Heritage Park will be the place to get into the spirit this year as it transforms into a festive Christmas village, complete with carols, wagon rides, and, of course, a chance to take a photo with Santa. You can visit the family friendly park every weekend starting on November 24, up until the day before Christmas Eve.

THE LUNCHBOX THEATRE’S IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE
See this beloved holiday classic that premieres on November 26 at the Lunchbox Theatre, with a cast made up of one of the group’s award-winning ensembles. 

15 things to do in Calgary in October

By KYLEE PEDERSEN AND SHAUNA MCGINN

Autumn in Calgary means the arrival of some cornerstone festivals and events, bringing together the best of the city’s art, culture, food and drink. Read on to find out how to make the most of October!

Photo courtesy Caitie Lawrence.

UNTOLD HISTORIES
There are few platforms in Calgary, let alone in Canada, that allow Indigenous people to tell their own stories. Since 2012, the Making Treaty 7 Cultural Society has been making this possible through theatre. KAAHSINNONIKS (our ancestors), running on October 3 and 4, tell the story of what happened during the signing of Treaty 7 in 1877, through the collection and artistic interpretation of oral histories. The group’s second major production, KIITISTSINNONIKS (our mothers) will run from October 24-26.

JOAN DIDION’S THE YEAR OF MAGICAL THINKING PLAY
A decade ago, Didion’s best selling memoir was adapted into a stage play that’s since been revered by audiences worldwide. Don’t miss your chance to see it this week at the Sage Theatre until October 6.

ANTIBALAS
There is nothing quite like the infectious energy of this collective of musicians hailing from Brooklyn. Self-described as music for “intrepid listeners,” the West African-inspired Afrobeat orchestra is here on October 5 to bring you sounds of stylistic funk dappled with political nuance that you may not have experienced before.

DISNEY IN CONCERT: BEAUTY AND THE BEAST
A tale as old as time gets a special accompaniment: the CPO will bring the feature film to life on October 5 and 6 with performances of all your favourite songs!

SALOON: A MUSICAL ACROBATIC ADVENTURE
Circus, theatre and live music collide in this western-inspired thrill ride on October 6.

WORDFEST
A celebration of all things literature for writers, readers, and wordsmiths, this festival that runs from October 8-15, boasts multiple events each day, ranging from author Q&As, workshops, book signings and more.

ROSENCRANTZ & GUILDENSTERN ARE DEAD
Calgary’s Shakespeare Company are shaking up a classic by casting two women in the title roles. The show runs from October 929.

RODNEY’S CRAB CRACK WITH STEAM WHISTLE BREWING
Rodney’s Oyster House is hosting an evening of messy fun on October 11, with three types of crab served family-style along with a pint of Steam Whistle.

BURTON CUMMINGS
Legendary The Guess Who frontman will rock the stage at Grey Eagle Resort and Casino on October 12.

ROCKY MOUNTAIN WINE AND FOOD FESTIVAL
If the title of this festival isn’t enough to convince you to attend, its menu will. On the docket for 2018? Over 40 different food selections from the city’s best restaurants and vendors, to be paired with an extensive list of global wines, beers and spirits. You’ll also be able to share your favourite sips and bites and vote for the Great Big Taste Awards in two food categories and 14 beverage categories. October 12 and 13.

THE WEATHER STATION
Tamara Lindeman’s cool, feathered voice will coo out the narrative sounds of her fourth EP at Festival Hall on October 14. With her new collection of songs, the Toronto musician will sweep listeners away with unstructured, bold musical storytelling.

CPO: PETER AND THE WOLF
Introducing the perfect performance for young orchestra audiences, this rendition of Prokofiev’s masterpiece accompanied by the ever-charming Saint-Saens’ The Carnival of the Animals is sure to capture the imagination of children and adults alike, as Peter and his animal friends attempt to capture a wolf that is lurking about their village. See it on October 21.

CRAIG FERGUSON
Don’t miss this famed actor, writer and comedian’s newest tour, Hobo Fabulous, on October 21.

ALBERTA BALLET IN THE SLEEPING BEAUTY
A timeless epic at its pinnacle, the whole family will enjoy the story of Princess Aurora set to Tchaikovsky’s beautiful score from October 24-27.

CALGARY SCREAMFEST
The 13thand final ScreamFest is on in the Grandstand building at Stampede Park. Come out to get spooked with haunted houses, rides, escape rooms, and more until October 31.

Hot Art Round-up: Mar 1 – 3

By HOT ART YYC

Art by Jonathan Forrest, courtesy of Newzones.

(more…)

6 things to do in Calgary this week: Nov 20 to 26

By SILVIA PIKAL

SPEEDY GONZALES LUNCH SPECIAL

Everyday between 11 am to 3 pm, enjoy two classic tacos and a mini guacamole at Anejo for $13. Add a margarita for $6.

Anejo, 2116 – 4 St SW, anejo.ca (more…)

7 things to do in Calgary this week: November 6 to 12

By SILVIA PIKAL

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC LIVE: PINK BOOTS AND A MACHETE

Mireya Mayor—primatologist, explorer and National Geographic Channel wildlife correspondent—is sharing her adventures from all over the globe on November 6. Through stories, photos and film clips, she’ll take viewers on a behind-the-scenes look at life in the field, including her discovery of a new species of lemur while on expedition in Madagascar.

Jack Singer Concert Hall, Arts Commons, 205 – 8 Ave SE, artscommons.ca  (more…)