Add to your Olympic experience with the Cultural Olympiad

Now that phase three of ticket sales for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Games has come to an end and there are likely not many more seats to sporting events to be had it is time to change your focus to the monumental experience that is being staged by the culture and arts community in the city over the Games period…

‘Bright Light’ will bring together 14 art organization in the Downtown Eastside to present public art projects in and around the Carrall Street greenway from December 2009 to March 2010 with displays in alleys, courtyards, galleries, parks and on city streets. A choreographed and dramatically lit ‘rumble’ will be staged from dusk to midnight February 12th to March 21st.

‘Club 2010’ will serve as a hub for jazz and world music aficionados during select evenings of the Games period. It will provide an opportunity to catch some of the very finest national and international performers. The events will be held at Performance Works at 1218 Cartwright Street on Granville Island. All tickets will be $10 and will be available at the door only. View a full listing of performers and dates

‘Spirit of Place’ will be a series of exhibitions and activities, created by young people and presented in the heart of Chinatown. Five bamboo/cedar gates, designed by Emily Carr graduates, will greet visitors to a series of events. The work of 35 young artists from Beijing, 75 from British Columbia, and 17 school-district projects from London will be based on the pillar themes of the Olympic Movement: engaging the body through sport, the planet through sustainability and the meeting of diverse cultures. The exhibit will be open daily from 10am to 5pm from February 11th to March 21st at Zodiac Square at 50 East Pender Street. Admission is free and no reservations are required. More information!

Also during the Olympic Games period the Vancouver Art Gallery will be showing the largest group of drawings ever seen in Canada by Leonardo da Vinci. More details to come

Steve Earle will perform at the Orpheum Theatre on January 23rd with opener Canadian Joel Plaskett. Also at the Orpheum, Canadian singer-songwriter ‘Feist’ will be performing on February 17th. She performed as a dancer at the Opening Ceremony in Calgary in 1988 and is happy to be a part of the 2010 Cultural Olympiad. Tickets went on sale for both events on October 30th but some are still available and range from $32.50 to $49.50.