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Theatre Review: La Cage aux Folles

In: Dan, Random Reads, The Arts

This past week Alasdair and I were fortunate enough to see the opening night performance of La Cage aux Folles at the Vancouver Playhouse in Vancouver. The Vancouver Playhouse was yet another venue within the Vancouver arts scene that I had yet to see a performance at, so I was extremely excited to get the opportunity. The theatre was the perfect setting, as it’s attached to the Queen Elizabeth Theatre, yet not as grand and bordering on the campier side of venues. If you know the story of La Cage, then I guarantee you thought to yourself, how perfect. La Cage aux Folles is playing now until December 24th, Christmas Eve, and there are still some tickets available so if you’re interested I recommend you get them soon before you miss your chance!

I personally wasn’t up to speed on the story behind La Cage, or its spin off feature film, The Birdcage starring Nathan Lane, so Alasdair quickly filled me in on the highlights (and I don’t mean the hair). After scanning through the program I was ridiculously ecstatic to see a number of local drag queens had been cast in the starring roles, typically played by touring actors. Some of the familiar faces included Peach Cobblah playing Hanna, Kiki Lawhore playing Phaedra, and Iona Whipp playing Derma. Granted, the other three queens were equally fabulous in their performances as well. If you’re a local Vancouverite I guarantee you’d recognize a face or two in the production as well! It really made for a genuine, hometown feeling of a show, which is exactly what the doctor ordered to kick off the 49th season of the Vancouver Playhouse schedule!

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Photograph by Laura Nguyen

The gay community is pretty amazing at coming together as one to support each other. Think about how many online campaigns there that everyone participates in, regardless of their location. We can all connect with each other in many ways, considering most of us grew up in a society that made us feel ashamed of who we are. But how did we get to where we our now in our very own community? Who paved the way? I’m not so sure myself, but I’m looking forward to finding out!

A Vancouver art and culture magazine called Sad Mag will be launching its Queer History issue on Thursday, November 3. This special double issue of the magazine commemorates Vancouver’s queer history from 1960 to today, in step with the City of Vancouver’s celebration of 125 years since incorporation.

“No history of Vancouver would be complete without a look at the rich and varied history of gay and lesbian communities here,” says Sad Mag’s Creative Director, Brandon Gaukel. “Not only have our queer communities been a force of creative and artistic production in the city, but they’ve also had a huge impact on the day-to-day lived culture in Vancouver.”

More info & pictures after the jump…

This guy has some serious issues with drinking. That being said, Vancouver’s Granville Street is full of drunk idiots looking for trouble on the weekend so he went to the right place. Last week, Transformers star, Shia LaBeouf got into it with some guy inside a bar called Cinema Public House here in Vancouver. When security kicked them both outside, they got into it and the man tore off his shirt and started punched LaBeouf in the face. Based on his reputation, I’m sure this was provoked and LaBeouf may have been stirring things up after having too much to drink. Who knows.

After friends break up the fight, the guy takes off and LaBeouf wants to go after him. His friends tell him, “You gotta lay low right now!” That’s what makes me thing this is just another night of trouble for him and his friends are trying to keep him in line. Fights are so stupid.

LaBeouf has been in town filming “The Company You Keep” and has apparently been a regular at the venue while here filming. If he needs to lay low right now, he should not be getting plastered and not be on Granville Street where trouble awaits. The only thing LaBeouf should be transforming is his drinking problem and his reputation. Watch the video footage obtained by TMZ below.

Watch the footage after the jump…

Remember the June 15th Vancouver Stanley Cup Riots that made headlines worldwide? People looting, destroying property, beating people up, etc.? Well a spa chain in Vancouver now wants to offer the guilty parties involved a $50 Calm Down & De-Stress gift certificate to use at their facilities, should they meet a few requirements first…

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DJ Qualls, best known for his role on Road Trip, took to Twitter today to inform everyone that he had been beaten by the Vancouver Police Department last night for no reason. The actor, who recently signed on to be part of Supernatural (which is why he is here in Vancouver I’m assuming) said he witnessed a fight in the street where one girl got punched in the face by a guy, so he tried to ID one of the attackers to a police officer.

It didn’t really work out as he had planned, as the officer then turned on him and threatened to arrest him. Eventually, the officer tackled him to the ground, busted his face, handcuffed him and according to Qualls, “Taunted me for 1/2hr b4 the ambulance came. I was held, no calls, no attorney. AND I had to pay an $800 ER bill. Free healthcare, Canada?”

Qualls now wants to be reimbursed for his hospital bills and will be taking up the matter with internal affairs. So far, the VPD said that they are “not aware of the incident” or “who Mr Qualls is.”

Check out Qualls series of tweets about the incident after the jump…

If you’re a gay couple or a single parent, you may discriminated against when trying to rent an apartment in Metro Vancouver. A recent study from the University of British Columbia (UBC) found that this is occurring in Vancouver but the percentage may be higher if you live in other cities.

The research is courtesy of Prof. Nathanael Lauster who is the first to explore how that kind of discrimination varies by region. Lauster is a little concerned by his findings considering that Vancouver is known for it’s tolerance and acceptance on diversity and has strong housing laws to protect against discrimination. Therefore, if the discrimination occurs in Vancouver, how does it effect other cities?

I honestly don’t find these findings too shocking. When I lived in Winnipeg, I was looking for an apartment with a boyfriend at the time. We were looking for a one bedroom. When the landlord or rental agency asked who was living there and we said both, we were questioned on the matter. We were able to find an apartment eventually but feel like we may have lost out on a few due to the fact that we were a gay couple. Check out the numbers from the study conducted in B.C below.

Check out the percentage of landlord discrimination in Vancouver after the jump…

Check Out The Pinoy Indie Film Fest In Vancouver

In: Movies, Patrick

This weekend in Vancouver is debuting the Pinoy Indie Film Festival for the first time ever. The Pinoy (Filipino) festival will show 10 films over 9 days that are all proudly “Pinoy”. The festival starts tomorrow and runs from August 20th – 28th at the Empire Theatre on Granville Street in Vancouver.

With the Queer Film Festival wrapping up this weekend, you can now broaden your horizons even more by checking out a few of these films. The festival will give you an idea of what is going on in Pinoy films, give you a glimpse of some of the social issues that are present in the Philippines today, and simply entertain you. Having many Filipino friends (Two of them even from Homorazzi: ahem… Donovan & Redd), I am definitely planning on checking out the festival. We also have a lot of loyal readers from the Philippines too!

Check out the film schedule & festival teaser video after the jump…

Theatre Review: Mamma Mia!

In: Patrick, Random Reads, The Arts

Last night, Tyrell and I went to the opening night of Mamma Mia at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre. Actually, Dan & Jonny were there too! I saw Mamma Mia several years ago, and the movie a while back, so it was great to get a fresh dose of “Abba-cadabra” with this fantastic cast!

In case you don’t know the story, I’ll give you a little synopsis. On a Greek island called Kalokairi, 20-year-old bride-to-be Sophie (Chloe Tucker) sends three wedding invitations to three different men that she believes one of which is her father (thanks to her mother’s diary). Without her mom Donna (Kaye Tuckerman) knowing, these three men show up. Now Sophie must figure out which one it is, all while going through the whole wedding process and trying to keep the whole project under wraps. This story is also told through the unforgettable songs & lyrics from Abba.

More of my review & more photos after the jump…

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