Whistler’s prima ballerina learns some new steps 

Shay Saver is just 14 years old and she's already trained under the direction of the prestigious American Ballet Theatre and the Moscow City Ballet. Now, after dancing for less than six years, she's getting ready to venture outside of her comfort zone and try her hand at some high kicks and upbeat style, learning the infamous dance, the cancan.

Saver has been selected to take part in an upcoming cancan workshop with Royal Winnipeg Ballet's principal dancer, Vanessa Lawson. There, she'll learn the basic steps of the cancan along with short choreography sections from Royal Winnipeg Ballet's production of Moulin Rouge - The Ballet. The Royal Winnipeg Ballet was founded in 1939 and holds the double distinction of being Canada's premier ballet company and the longest continuously operating ballet company in North America.

Their new Moulin Rouge - The Ballet production features the fusion of the well-known rowdy romp from turn-of-the-century Paris with traditional ballet, telling the tale of laundress turned cancan star, Nathalie, and her romance with a painter. The pair is drawn to Paris and ultimately, the infamous cabaret, the Moulin Rouge, birthplace of the provocative and timeless cancan.

Choreographed by Jorden Morris and featuring music by French composers Claude Debussy, Maurice Ravel, Jacques Offenbach and Jules Massenet, the final product will be showcased in the Vancouver premiere of Moulin Rouge - The Ballet at The Centre in Vancouver for the Performing Arts Nov. 19 to 22. Tickets range in price from $30 to $79 for adults, and $25 to $74 for students and seniors.


Whistler's official art party

ARTrageous has earned its distinction as "Whistler's official art party" and anyone who comes out to enjoy the festivities tonight will quickly see why.

Hosted by the Whistler Arts Council, the 14 th annual ARTrageous event takes place tonight, Thursday, Nov. 12, at Dusty's Bar and Grill in Creekside. There, the normally laidback après hotspot will be transformed into a creative haven with artists and art lovers uniting to share their perspectives on what makes a true "masterpiece." WAC organizers combed through dozens of applications before selecting over 30 local artists, including Andrea Mueller, Dagan Beach and Lynn Pocklington, to contribute to the evening, sharing their ideals of achieving a masterpiece. The end result is a visual debate that simultaneously celebrates our vibrant arts and culture scene.

On top of the sure-to-be-stunning visuals, trash blues and burlesque entertainment will be provided by Big John Bates and the Voodoo Dollz while guests circulate among a range of creation stations, where they can get in touch with their own creative side. Photographer Matt Walker will also be coordinating the Photo Studio Experiment where attendees can dress up (or down) and get photos taken with friends.

The party starts at 8 p.m. and runs until 1 a.m. Tickets are $15 for WAC members and $30 for the public. Canadian All Terrain is also providing a free shuttle service that leaves from the Whistler Village taxi loop every half hour starting at 8 p.m. taking passengers to Creekside.


Let's get political

Skip the mainstream flicks this week and instead, check out something a bit more thought-provoking at the Cinema Politica weekly screening.

The folks at Late and Unique Nighttime Alternatives (LUNA) have coordinated a fall season of film screenings featuring documentaries and feature-length films with global social, political and environmental themes. The series, dubbed Cinema Politica, is actually part of a North American network of grassroots documentary screenings by the same name which aim to promote discussion of "political cinema by independent artists," particularly films telling stories that are missed by mainstream media.

The third film in the series, "Kanehsatake 270 Years Of Resistance," tells the story of the Oka crisis, a historic confrontation between the Kanehsatake First Nations people and the village of Oka, Québec in July 1990.  The conflict made international headlines and propelled Native issues into the spotlight. In the process of making this film, director Alanis Obomsawin endured 78 days and nights filming the armed stand-off that took place between the Mohawks and the Québec police and Canadian army. The final product is a powerful feature-documentary that transports viewers into the action.

The screening takes place on Monday, Nov. 16 at 6:30 p.m. at the Squamish Lil'wat Cultural Centre in the Upper Village. Admission is by donation, and a discussion will be held after the film, facilitated by Aaron Mercredi, a Métis activist based in Vancouver and organizer with Free the Cuban Five Committee and the Indigenous Rights & Actions Project.



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