The Lower Mainland supports the arts in a big way, offering world class performances in a variety of venues. Here’s where to visit and what to see. Tickets go fast, so secure your seats soon.

By Catherine Dunwoody

Shadbolt Centre for the Arts in Burnaby’s Deer Lake Park hosts the upcoming Legally Blonde the Musical and is getting a new theatre this year, making it wheelchair accessible with even more seating (365). The venue is multi-purpose, housing a recital hall, dance and pottery studios, music rehearsal rooms. Aside from live performances, it hosts special events, festivals, and exhibitions. A community hub, The Shadbolt supports artists through their Artist in Residency Program as well.

Presentation House Theatre on Vancouver’s North Shore has a friendly neighborhood vibe having been located on Lower Lonsdale for 40 years. Housed in the historic Presentation House Arts Centre, the theatre is operated by the Presentation House Cultural Society, offering visitors an exciting mix of live theatre, dance, and musical productions. Geared to a variety of ages and interests, the theatre’s calendar offers a little something for everyone. Catch South Asian comedic play Dil Ka plus a great lineup of kids shows including Learning and Forgetting

Music and Theatre

Bez Arts Hub in Langley is a favourite of Canadian rockers Barney Bentall, Danny Michel, and Neil Osborne who claim the acoustics are excellent here. Nowhere to go dancing anymore? Check out the Hub’s My Cousin’s Wedding dance parties.

Music and Theatre

Massey Theatre in New Westminster hosts a variety of entertainment, including the upcoming Relive the Music, classic family  musicals like Mary Poppins, plus international dance festivals of all forms, choir, and orchestral performances. Even bodybuilding competitions! Fun fact: Massey Theatre is one of our country’s only remaining “hemp houses”. Not to be confused with cannabis, the term refers to the traditional use of hemp ropes, pulleys and sandbags in a theatre’s stage rigging system.

The Dance Centre at Scotiabank Dance Centre in Vancouver hosts the very best in professional dance performances, including shows from Shay Kuebler, Ballet BC and more. A non-profit organization, this also serves as a hub for professionals of the dance community seeking resources. The space hosts events, dance workshops and classes and has an Artist-in-Residence program. 

Music and Theatre

Queen Elizabeth Theatre in downtown Vancouver is home to Vancouver Opera (celebrating 65 years) featuring the upcoming Die Fledermaus and Madama Butterfly. This venue also hosts the Broadway Across Canada shows, be sure to catch Hairspray and Frozen, plus comedy shows including Chelsea Handler, and rock concerts from the likes of The Black Crowes. The QE is also home to Ballet BC, and the theatre is acclaimed for its exceptional acoustics and state-of-the-art effects. 

Arts Club Theatre Company celebrates 60 years at their 3 venues including the Stanley Industrial Alliance Stage, Granville Island Stage, and Newmont Stage at the BMO Theatre Centre. Catch upcoming classic musical Guys and Dolls, or Father Tartuffe: An Indigenous Misadventure. Every year the line-up includes productions of contemporary comedies, timeless musicals, and thought-provoking dramatic performances like Angels in America and Choir Boy.

To easily plan the route for your next artistic outing, you can use the TransLink Trip Planner.

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