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Vancouver Bach Festival: Win a Ticket Package

Tuesday, July 25th, 2017 — 8:28am PDT
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Early Music Vancouver (“EMV”) proudly presents the return of the Vancouver Bach Festival, in the heart of downtown, and at the Chan Centre for the Performing Arts. Following the success of last summer’s inaugural festival, EMV is offering 14 remarkable concerts, ranging from intimate chamber music programmes to a full Passion Oratorio, featuring over 60 performers including guest artists from all over the world.

Vancouver Bach Festival

  • When: August 1 – 11, 2017
  • Where: Christ Church Cathedral (690 Burrard) & the Chan Centre (6265 Crescent Rd at UBC)
  • Tickets: $10 – $68 available online or by phone (604) 822-2697. Enjoy any four concerts of the Vancouver Bach Festival for the price of three. Purchases of more than four concert packages will also receive a 25% discount.

J.S. Bach (1685 – 1750) is regarded as one of the greatest composers in Western musical history. His legacy includes some of the most beautiful and well-crafted music ever written. Almost three centuries after Bach’s passing, his vast catalogue of works are still revered, studied, and reinterpreted by music lovers across the globe.

Inspired by the 500th Anniversary of Martin Luther’s Protestant Reformation, this year’s festival is a celebration of music’s supreme ability to transform and persuade. The festival programming fittingly honours the genius of Bach and other composers who were so profoundly shaped by Luther’s influence.

Gli Angeli Genève
Gli Angeli Genève

Vancouver Bach Festival 2017 Programme

Overtures to Bach
August 1 at 6:00pm and 9:00pm
Renowned as a musical pioneer, Canadian cellist Matt Haimovitz performs four of Bach’s beloved Cello Suites preceded by new commissions written by composers including Philip Glass and David Sanford that anticipate, reflect, and transform the originals. Haimovitz’s new ‘overtures’ build a bridge from the master’s time to our own, and demonstrate that Bach’s influence is even more important and pervasive today than it was in the 18th Century. Between each performance there will be a dinner break for those who would like to attend both hour-long events.

Schumann Dichterliebe and Brahms Four Serious Songs
August 2 at 1:00pm
Internationally acclaimed Canadian baritone Tyler Duncan and his partner on and off stage, internationally renowned collaborative pianist Erika Switzer, perform Schumann’s beloved song cycle with an original 19th century fortepiano.

Songs of Religious Upheaval: Byrd, Tallis, Tye – Music from Reformation England
August 2 at 7:30pm (pre-concert talk 6:45pm)
Audiences who love Renaissance polyphonic choral music will delight in Cinquecento, a premiere vocal quintet with members from five European countries. For this concert, the ensemble will share the emotionally charged and harmonically rich Latin Church music of William Byrd, Thomas Tallis, and Christoper Tye. These exquisite polyphonies were composed during the height of the English Reformation, representing a time of deep conflict and religious turmoil.

Lutheran Vespers: Songs for Troubled Times
August 3 at 1:00pm (an EMV Emerging Artists Event, suggested donation $20)
Eleven Vancouver based performers offer a complete Lutheran vespers. Written to provide comfort and consolation to churchgoers following Europe’s devastating Thirty Years’ War and its aftermath, this music had a huge influence on the young J.S. Bach.

Bach’s Italian Concerto
August 3 at 7:30pm (pre-concert talk 6:45pm)
Hear two of Bach’s most iconic works for keyboard – the French Overture and the Italian Concerto – performed by internationally acclaimed harpsichordist Alexander Weimann. Stephan MacLeod, esteemed Swiss baritone and founding musical director of European ensemble Gli Angeli Genève, joins Weimann for two virtuosic cantatas Dalla Guerra Amorosa by Handel, and Amore Traditore by Bach.

Conversions: Mendelssohn, Moscheles and Bach
August 4 at 1:00pm
Fortepianist Byron Schenkman & cellist Michael Unterman perform works by Mendelssohn and Moscheles, two Jewish artists who converted to Christianity to conform to social norms.

Handel in Italy: Virtuosic Cantatas
August 4 at 7:30pm (pre-concert talk 6:45pm)
For this program, two of Europe’s most accomplished young Baroque vocalists, Terry Wey and Jenny Högström, perform virtuosic cantatas and fiery love duets by Handel from his early Italian period, along with a duet by Agostino Steffani, one of Handel’s mentors.

Playing with B-a-c-H: Sonatas for Violin by Telemann, Pisendel and J.S. Bach
August 8 at 1:00pm
One of North America’s most respected baroque violinists, Seattle’s Tekla Cunningham performs a solo Bach partita, a Pisendel solo sonata, and two solo Telemann fantasias.

Before Bach: “The Fountains of Israel” by Johann Schein (1623)
August 8 at 7:30pm (pre-concert talk 6:45pm)
Leading European vocal ensemble, Gli Angeli Genève, will take audiences on a journey back in time a century before Bach when music in Northern Germany came under the influence of a new and powerful musical language known as the Italian madrigal ­– Johann Schein was one of three German composers who successfully adapted and converted this new form to fit German language. The ensemble will perform Schein’s traditional masterpiece Israelis Brünnlein or The Fountains of Israel, an exquisite collection of madrigals written on biblical texts from the Lutheran Bible.

Bach for Two Flutes
August 9 at 1:00pm
Revered West Coast Baroque flutists Janet See and Soile Stratkauskas beguile with the sweet, matched voices of Baroque flutes. Christopher Bagan joins on harpsichord.

Heavenly Love: Sacred Arias for Counter-Tenor
August 9, at 7:30pm (pre-concert talk 6:45pm)
Alex Potter, hailed by the International Record Review as a “rising star of the counter-tenor world,” treats audiences to pieces set to religious text that were originally not intended for church, but for entertainment or private devotion in family homes. Using the diverse colours of counter-tenor, lute, organ and viola da gamba, this programme presents music by Buxtehude, Schütz, Purcell and Strozzi, and explores their heartfelt and passionate responses to these beautiful texts.

Bach Transcriptions – Victoria Baroque Players
August 10 at 1:00pm
Bach’s trio sonatas for organ are given new life in transcriptions for chamber ensemble.

Music of Missions and Mystery: Latin American Baroque
August 10, at 7:30pm (pre-concert talk 6:45pm)
In this unique programme, Pacific MusicWorks, led by GRAMMY award-winner Stephen Stubbs, explores works written as part of the Catholic Church’s Counter-Reformation. Audiences will hear a vibrant mix of Italian, Spanish, African, and indigenous elements that inspired the new musical style heard in cathedrals and missions of colonial Latin America that continue to speak to us today.

J.S. Bach St. John Passion at the Chan Centre
August 11, at 7:30pm (pre-concert talk 6:45pm)
Join the Pacific Baroque Orchestra, the Vancouver Cantata Singers, and a cast of seven international Bach specialists for a dramatic presentation of one of the greatest works in the classical repertoire. Considered the closest thing that Bach came to writing an opera, St. John Passion is written mostly from Martin Luther’s German translation of the Bible. Led by Alexander Weimann, the part of the narrator will be taken on by Thomas Hobbs, one of the leading ‘Bach Evangelists’ of our time.

To complement the artist lineup, EMV will offer an array of thought-provoking film screenings and expert talks, which audiences can enjoy with wine and refreshments in a relaxed atmosphere.

Alexander Weimann with the Pacific Baroque Orchestra. Image by Jan Gates

Win a Ticket Package

I have a triple pack of tickets to give away to the following performances: Handel in Italy: Virtuosic Cantatas (August 4), Before Bach: “The Fountains of Israel” by Johann Schein (1623) (August 8), and J.S. Bach St. John Passion (August 11). Here’s how you can enter to win:

  • Leave a comment on this post (1 entry)
  • Click below to post an entry on Twitter
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I will draw one winner at random from all entries at 12:00pm on Tuesday, August 1, 2017. Follow Early Music Vancouver on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for more information.

Vancouver Photos of the Week

Monday, July 24th, 2017 — 10:15am PDT
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What a summer it’s been so far, and there’s still plenty to enjoy around Metro Vancouver. Whether you’re at an event, a popular beach, catching a sunset, or capturing our city in beautiful light, thanks for sharing your photos with the Miss604 Flickr Group and #Photos604 on Instagram!

Vancouver Photos of the Week

First Nations Ceremony Gathering of Canoes

Gastown Grandprix 2017

The Place Is Packed

Danger, Buntzen Lake, British Columbia

Garry Point Sunset

Watching The Sunset

A post shared by Scott Graham (@wflbc) on

Sunset Panorama

Kickin' Up A Storm 🐚 Vancouver, BC

Now Nearly Night in New West

Vancouver in the Blue Hour

dancing in the dark

As always, please click through on these images to view more work from the photographers and feel free to share your own photos with the Miss604 Flickr Pool or with the tag #Photos604 on Instagram. View all photo collections here and follow Miss604 on Instagram.

7 Tours to Get to Know Vancouver This Summer

Friday, July 21st, 2017 — 9:31am PDT
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Be a tourist in your hometown, or offer guidance to out-of-town guests, when you experience these tours of Vancouver that each showcase different aspects of our city. Whether you’re walking through Stanley Park or on a walkway 20 meters above the forest floor, you’re touring back alleys or theatre balcony seats, tour Vancouver like a visitor this summer and find a whole new appreciation for the city you call home.

6 Tours to Get to Know Vancouver This Summer

Arts: Tour the Orpheum

One of the most beautiful concerts halls in North America is offering self-guided tours this summer. For 90 years the Orpheum theatre on Granville Street has been far more than an iconic neon sign. Hosting concerts, comedy showcases, the VSO, and even my high school commencement ceremony, this gorgeous venue is an magnificent slice of Vancouver history. Tours are available three times per day on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays.

History: Forbidden Vancouver Walking Tour

Forbidden Vancouver stages walking tours and special events that celebrate Vancouver history. They offer three tours for the more adventurous explorer, looking to discover the city’s not-so glamorous past. Select Prohibition City (mobsters, booze, opium dens!), The Lost Souls of Gastown (a gothic theatre adventure), and Secrets of Stanley Park (notorious crime scenes, historic totem poles, secret cemeteries, bizarre public art). Prohibition runs every night, Gastown is Tuesday, Friday, Saturday, and the Stanley Park tour is on Wednesdays.

Food: Vancouver Food Truck Tour

The world’s best food truck tour in Vancouver is an explosion of multicultural flavour. Running daily at 11:00am, from April to October, you can choose from three different tours: 4 award-winning food trucks, behind the scenes food truck action, or lively downtown streetscapes. Each tour is 2 hours long. Come hungry!

World's Best Food Truck Tour

History: AIBC Architectural Walking Tours

Explore the past and present of Vancouver with the AIBC top-rated guided walks. Through its walking tour program, the Architectural Institute of British Columbia offers stunning architectural perspectives of six Vancouver neighbourhoods: Gastown, Chinatown, Downtown, Yaletown, West End, or Strathcona. Tours are $10 per person and they start at 10:00am and 1:00pm, with walking distances of up to 3km.

Sports: BC Place All Access Tours

The BC Sports Hall of Fame presents All Access Tours of BC Place where you can tour Vancouver’s stadium, home of the BC Lions and Whitecaps FC. Get access to the media lounge, premium suite areas, team locker rooms, and field access when available. Tours start and finish at the BC Sports Hall of Fame.

BC Place Tour

Nature: Greenhart TreeWalk Tours

Experience the magnificence of a coastal temperate rainforest from a bird’s eye view at UBC Botanical Garden‘s Greenheart TreeWalk. Staff typically provide drop-in tours daily with paid TreeWalk admission. Located in the heart of UBC Botanical Garden, the 310 metre-long tree top canopy walkway hangs from huge Douglas firs, cedars and grand firs, many of which are over 100 years old.

Nature & Culture: Talysay Tours

Talaysay Tours offers authentic Aboriginal cultural tourism experiences in and around Vancouver, Squamish and the Sunshine Coast. First Nation guides share ancient and contemporary stories and legends locally on the North Shore and in Stanley Park. Single day and multi-day tours are available, either by walking or paddling.

Read about more Vancouver area tours featured here »

The Sound of Music Pre-Sale for Vancouver

Friday, July 21st, 2017 — 8:43am PDT
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Broadway Across Canada presents the Vancouver premier of a brand new production of The Sound of Music, September 12-17, 2017 at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre.

Produced by NETworks Presentations, the beloved musical story of Maria and the von Trapp Family will once again thrill audiences with its Tony®, Grammy® and Academy Award® winning Best Score, including “My Favorite Things”, “Do-Re-Mi”, “Climb Ev’ry Mountain”, “Edelweiss” and the title song.

The Sound of Music in Vancouver

When: September 12 to September 17, 2017
Where: Where: Queen Elizabeth Theatre (650 Hamilton St, Vancouver)

The Sound of Music Pre-Sale for VancouverThe Sound of Music features music by Richard Rodgers, lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II, book by Howard Lindsay and Russel Crouse, suggested by The Trapp Family Singers by Maria Augusta Trapp.

The Sound of Music enjoyed extraordinary success as a live television production when “The Sound of Music Live!” aired on NBC in December, 2013 and was seen by over 44 million people. 2015 marked the 50th anniversary of the film version, which continues to be the most successful movie musical in history.

Performances in Vancouver will run Tuesday through Saturday evenings at 8:00pm, Sunday evening 7:30pm with 2:00pm matinees on Saturday and Sunday.

General Tickets

Individual tickets go on sale Monday, July 24, 2017 at 10:00am. To purchase tickets, visit Ticketmaster online or call 1-855-985-5000. Group orders of 10 or more may be placed by calling 1-800-889-8457. Ticket prices start at $30.50.

Pre-Sale Code & Link

This pre-sale link will be ONLY available Friday, July 21, 2017 from 10:00am until Sunday, July 23, 2017 at 10:00pm. The code to use is MUSICAL.

Follow Broadway Across Canada on Twitter and Facebook for more information about their shows coming to Vancouver for 2017-2018.

Things to do in Vancouver This Weekend

Thursday, July 20th, 2017 — 7:33am PDT
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This weekend Miss604 is proud to sponsor the Surrey Fusion Festival on Saturday and Sunday. This free cultural celebration will have two full days of performances on 5 stages, with dozens of pavilions serving up delicious food, along with demos, activities, and much more. Here’s what else you can get up to this weekend:

Things to do in Vancouver This Weekend

Things to do in Vancouver This Weekend

Events that run for longer than three days in a row are highlighted in green.

Friday, July 21, 2017
Music at the Cannery
Adult-Only Nights at Playland
Paint Night for kids in Langley
The Art Studios 25th Anniversary & Summer Sale
Bike to Shop Days
Les Contes d’Hoffmann at the York Theatre
Illumination Summer Night Market, Richmond
Richmond Night Market
Shipyards Night Market North Vancouver
Port Moody RibFest
Phantom of the Opera at the QE Theatre
CBC Musical Nooner Concert Series
Excavation Theatre Presents: Girls! Girls! Girls!

Continue reading »

Longwoodstock Music and Craft Beer Festival

Thursday, July 20th, 2017 — 7:13am PDT
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Contributed by Megan Kennedy via FestivalSeekers
Get out of the big city and head to Nanaimo’s Longwoodstock Music and Craft Beer Festival!

The 604 is a great area to explore, but there are times it’s well worth venturing further afield. For BC mainlanders, Vancouver Island holds many attractions, not the least of which is the more laid-back pace of life. Throw in spectacular natural scenery, a strong local food scene and a rich craft beer culture and you have plenty of incentive to hop a ferry or catch a float plane.

On a recent visit to the island, I immersed myself in some of the microbrew culture and got a sneak peak of an upcoming music festival.

Brewmaster Harley Smith gave me a tour of Longwood Brewery, which has been a local success story since its founding in 2000. By “local,” I mean not only Longwood’s own success but also how they support other local businesses. All of the ingredients come from Vancouver Island, some from as near as 15 kilometres from the brewery.

Nothing goes better with local brews than local music and Longwood has combined both with its very own festival, Longwoodstock. The line-up will total eight bands, including The Boom Booms, The Tequila Mockingbird Orchestra, Boomshack and more.

Longwoodstock Music and Craft Beer Festival
Photo by Megan Kennedy for FestivalSeekers

Heading into its third year, Longwoodstock is a festival you don’t want to miss. Check out FestivalSeekers for the latest info about this Nanaimo weekend, happening August 11-12, 2017. It’s a chance to appreciate first-rate music in your own backyard, while sipping a local beer or cider.

While you are in Nanaimo, explore more of this oceanside city. Eat your way along the Nanaimo Bar Trail, snorkel with harbour seals, sail on a catamaran cruise, kayak the local waters, discover artisans workshops wander along the waterfront or hop the foot passenger ferry to Newcastle Island.

Nanaimo Bathtub Race

Nanaimo has plenty of options to feed your wanderlust without leaving British Columbia. Enter to win a getaway courtesy of FestivalSeekers here »

About the Guest Author:

Guest post contributed by Megan Kennedy for FestivalSeekers. Megan Kennedy is a traveller in search of adrenaline rushes, happiness, and local food. She writes about her adventures at Wanderlust Megan. The site highlights accessible adventures in British Columbia from a thirty something, female perspective.