by Michelle Sproule | The main objective of this website is to scout out and promote the things that make Vancouver such a sweet place to be. We do this with an emphasis on the city’s independent spirit to foster a sense of connectedness within and between our communities, and to introduce our readers to the people who grow and cook our food, play the raddest tunes in our better venues, create our most interesting art, and design everything from what we wear to the spaces we inhabit. The Scout List is our carefully considered, first rate agenda of super awesome things that we’re either doing, wishing that we could do, or conspiring to do this week. From our calendar to yours…
1. SCORE TICKETS TO WINE FEST | Tickets to the Vancouver Playhouse International Wine Festival go on sale this Tuesday (January 10) and you don’t want to wait on this. The Festival itself doesn’t run until February 27th (to March 4th), but the tickets go fast. This year there will be 180 participating wineries from 15 countries to give tastings and seminars (the 2012 theme country is Chile). Tickets can be had by calling 604-873-3311 (or online) starting at 9:30am on January 10. DETAILS
2. GET SCHOOLED IN FILM PHOTOGRAPHY | Ditch the DSLR for a stretch, because film is making a comeback and VNB’s fine art photo workshops are all over it. VNB is offering beginner, intermediate and advanced level workshops. I particularly like the sound of the four hour crash course (Sunday, January 15) and the six week one dealing with the Foundations of Film (starting this Monday night at the Cineworks Annex workshop in Railtown). The pitch: “How does a camera work? What is a lens, a shutter? How does one ‘see’ light? This course first walks novices and beginners through a coherent set of answers to ‘picture’ photography in all its complex multiform reality.”
January 9 – February 13 | Tuesdays 7-10pm | Cineworks Annex (235 Alexander) | $95 – $295 | DETAILS
3. NERD THE HELL OUT | There’s a wicked-sounding lecture going down this Thursday night entitled Whales versus Worms – Who’s Eating Whom? Dig it: “Like a classic horror story, eyeless, mouthless worms lurk in the dark, settling on dead animals in the deep ocean and sending out green roots to devour their bones. But is this story real?!?! Join Sheila Byers, marine biologist specializing in polychaete worms, as she reveals the incredible recent discovery of zombie worms and the role they play in controlling the fate of whale falls and the cycling of large organic matter into the surrounding deep-sea community. From artificial experiments to fossils, the macabre saga continues.” D0uble whammy marine biologist nerd out and horror story! You should so go to this!
January 12 | 7:30 pm | 5840 Oak Street (Oak at 42nd Ave) | Free | DETAILS
4. PAY A VISIT TO CATALOG | Catalog is showing the works of Vancouver painter Andrew Young for the balance of this month. The show opens Thursday and, as always is the case at Catalog,the night will kick ass. Succumb focuses on lost and found adolescence and the way we become lost in our self-indulgent primal behavior, “In these images we reflect on our own experiences of these dark visceral moments and places. Our juvenility is found when we disregard our age and act on impulses, often finding ourselves demonstrating irreverent, self-gratifying exploits.” This look like some wonderful work.
Thursday, January 12th – 29th | Catalog Gallery | Free | DETAILS
5. WATCH & LEARN ABOUT ELECTRIC CARS | The Vancouver Electric Vehicle Association presents the local premier screening of director Chris Paine’s sequel to his popular 2006 film Who Killed the Electric Car? Learn plenty about developments in the electronic vehicle world by sticking around for the expert panel that follows the show. This is an important topic that is being made entertaining, so get involved and check it out. Oh, and bonus: whenever you hit Tinseltown for a movie you can stop in at the Ayden Gallery on the way out.
January 12 | 6:30 pm | Tinseltown (88 W Pender) | $12 | DETAILS
6. BE ENTERTAINED | The PuSh International Performing Arts Festival gets rolling this weekend. The opening night gala takes place on Saturday night at The Waldorf. Expect live music, video projections, spontaneous performances, an accordion rock band and flamenco dance lessons – all in PuSh style. If you can’t make it on opening night, don’t worry. The Festival presents a wide variety of performing arts gigs around town for the next three weeks. Check out the full line-up here.
January 17 | 9:30pm | The Waldorf Hotel | 1489 East Hastings | DETAILS
7. SUFFER OPENING SCENESTERS GLADLY | Catriona Jefferies is throwing up a solo Ian Wallace show to kick off her gallery’s 2012 exhibition roster. Masculin/Féminin will include photography, inkjet prints, maquettes and large scale canvases. There will likely be a swell opening party on Thursday night (packed to the gills with scenesters). If you don’t feel up to the glam of opening night, don’t worry, the show runs through to February 18th, 2012. DETAILS
8. GET UNSETTLED WITH FEELINGS OF DESIRE | The Helen Pitt Gallery and The Dunlvey Snackbar are joining forces this weekend to present An Evening With A Canadian Romantic. I don’t know how to explain this one. It’s a one of a kind evening combining large amounts of shared laughter with soft music and unsettling feelings of desire? Try to figure it out for yourself here. Or just trust that the Dunlevy wouldn’t jerk you around with a crap night on the town. Ever.
Friday, January 13 | Dunlevy Snack Bar (433 Dunlevy) | $25 for performance plus dinner | DETAILS
9. CATCH A FLICK | When the weather sucks a warm theatre and a bucket of popcorn is a good place to hideout. The Iron Lady opens at The Fifth Avenue Cinemas on Friday (January 13). The movie may not be scoring with critics (LA Times review here), but you gotta respect Thatcher, at least for her intransigence (and Streep for her talent). At Vancity Theatre, it’s Animation Express 2; a compilation of the very best National Film Board short animated films created between 2009 to 2011. “Vancouver’s animation legend Marv Newland is represented by CMYK, a riotous kaleidoscope of colour and energy. Another local filmmaker, Anne Marie Fleming, turns to animation for very different ends in the quizzical, poignant I Was a Child of Holocaust Survivors (based on Bernice Eisenstein’s illustrated memoir). And of course there is plenty of humour, too.” And, for the brave among you, The Shining is on at the Rio at midnight this Friday night…creepy.
10. DANCE YOUR HEART OUT AT THE BILTMORE | Brazilian Girls are at the Biltmore this Thursday (9pm). I’m not sure what else I could tell you to convince you that this is where you need to be tonight. Isn’t “Brazilian Girls are at the Biltmore” enough? It really should be. How about this: “Imagine Grace Jones, Blondie, The Sugar Cubes, and Astrud Gilberto having a wild party and you are only half-way there.” DETAILS
Michelle Sproule grew up in Kitsilano and attended Bond University in Australia and the University of Victoria before receiving her graduate degree in Library Sciences from The University of Toronto. She lives in beautiful Strathcona and enjoys wandering aimlessly through the city’s shops and streets with her best friend – a beat up, sticky, grimy, and uncooperative camera.