Announcing the 15th annual Downtown Eastside Heart of the City Festival and twelve days of music, stories, songs, poetry, cultural celebrations, films, theatre, dance, spoken word, workshops, discussions, gallery exhibitions, mixed media, art talks, history talks and history walks.
To acknowledge, honour and support our home community’s longstanding commitment to social justice, the theme of the 2018 Festival is “Seeds of Justice, Seeds of Hope”. We celebrate the history of the Downtown Eastside community’s advocacy for human rights and social justice as we move forward and create artistic activity that speaks to today’s vital concerns and burning issues.
The Festival is thrilled to present a number of exciting and powerful events including:
• A Double Bill: The Real Story of the Talking Freds & Woody Sed
Two shows in an evening: The Talking Freds, John Black and Jim Sands, recollect their days in the 1980s as a comic satirical music duo performing at Downtown Eastside events such as the fight for CRAB Park. Woody Sed, performed by Vancouver actor Thomas Jones, explores the life and turbulent times of singer-songwriter Woody Guthrie.
• Material Witness
A funny, biting and searing co-production by renowned Spiderwoman Theater of New York City and Aanmitaagzi from Nipissing First Nation, Ontario. Featuring three generations of Indigenous women performers.
• East End Blues & All That Jazz
This hit production, produced by Vancouver Moving Theatre, is a soul-stirring evening of gospel and blues, jazz and memories about the black community of Vancouver's historic East End. Featuring Candus Churchill, Tom Pickett, Khari Wendell McClelland, Bill Costin, Tim Stacey; with special guests Dalannah Gail Bowen and Thelma Gibson who just celebrated her 90th birthday!
• Call Mr. Robeson - A life, with songs
A tour de force performance by Nigerian-born Tayo Aluko (Liverpool, England) about the remarkable life of Paul Robeson, African-American actor, singer, and forerunner of the civil rights movement.
• Ukrainian Hall Community Concert & Supper
An annual favourite, with performances by The Sojourners, Solidarity Notes Labour Choir, Barvinok Choir, Vancouver Folk Ensemble, and the award-winning Dovbush Dancers. A full meal and concert deal!
The mandate of the Downtown Eastside Heart of the City Festival is to promote, present and facilitate the development of artists, art forms, cultural traditions, history, activism, people and great stories about Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. The festival involves a wide range of professional, community, emerging and student artists and lovers of the arts. Over 1,000 local artists and Downtown Eastside residents participated in last year’s Festival.
On from Wednesday October 24 to Sunday November 4, 2018. Many events are free or by suggested donation. Tickets and Info: www.heartofthecityfestival.com
Photo by David Cooper