The Week in Review: March 11

This installation of The Week in Review focuses on festivals in Vancouver, Canada, and throughout the world. We share highlights of the good news, bad news, and innovative news, relating to these artistic behemoths.

EDINBURGH FESTIVAL ANNOUNCES LINEUP

Looking across the Atlantic, Edinburgh International Festival announced their lineup this week, with works by world-renowned artists in numerous genres. Highlights include a conversation between composer Philip Glass and poet Patti Smith, a re-imagining of Hamlet by New York’s renowned Wooster Group, and seminars discussing everything from Moleskine diaries to the way internet behaviour affects literature. Some members of the LMPR team will be visiting the festival this year and have their eye keenly on this exciting program.

Musician and Poet Patti Smith will be one of the hundreds of artists to perform in Edinburgh this August.

STRATFORD FESTIVAL'S NEW LEADERS DISCUSS STRATEGY

The Stratford Festival’s finances for its 60th anniversary year were released last Saturday, showing a deficit of $3.4 million for an annual budget of $60 million. Skeptics pointed to the unusually high number of Canadian-written plays and controversial programming decisions for the lower ticket sales. But The Globe and Mail argues that, in fact, this season looked similar to those in some of its more successful years. In a candid interview with the Festival’s new leadership, they explore this possibility and what may be in store for the festival’s future.

MARGIE GILLIS DEFIES TRADITION WITH NEW VIDF WORK

The Georgia Straight previewed what is sure to be a highlight of the Vancouver International Dance Festival: Margie Gillis’ The Light Between, on stage March 16. After working with Winnipeg sculptor Randal Newman, Gillis’ work features sculptural canvas and paper limbs suspended between the dancers. This, plus Gillis dancing with other artists, makes this work a departure from her traditional solo pieces, and an exciting prospect for the Vancouver stage.

The Light Between will be one of the highlights of the VIDF, which  also featured LMPR clients Joe Ink & Dancers of Damelahamid.

FUTURE OF NEANDERTHAL ARTS FESTIVAL UNCERTAIN

The future of East Vancouver’s summer Neanderthal Arts Festival has come under question as its two founding groups split this March. Upintheair Theatre and Left Right Minds jointly launched the festival in 2010, but after three years of co-producing, Left Right Minds have launched a new project: rEvolver Theatre Festival, to be staged at the Cultch in May. Whether the original festival will be reignited in a different format remains to be seen. Both groups said the split was an amicable, joint decision.

HERBIE HANCOCK TO PLAY AT VANCOUVER’S JAZZ FEST

In more positive news, the TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival has confirmed that legendary pianist Herbie Hancock will perform at this year’s festival on June 30. As the Vancouver Sun attests, Hancock has been a transformative force in the jazz movement since the 60s, espousing new trends and winning more than 14 Grammy Awards during his career. The veteran of the Miles Davis Quartet will produce a one of a kind performance in Vancouver, already highly anticipated.

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