Cultural Olympiad 2010 announces first 20 projects; tickets on sale now at

    VANCOUVER, April 28 /CNW/ - An explosive love story set in a theatre of
ice, a massive hand-painted mural on a downtown Vancouver landmark and a
cutting-edge theatrical production by a Québécois visionary are among the
exciting Canadian and international artistic works coming to Cultural Olympiad
2010 presented by Bell. With less than 300 days to go until the start of the
Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games, tickets and information for the first 20
projects are available at
    The 20 projects being announced today include works by Robert Lepage,
Alberta Ballet, Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of
Taiwan. The third and final edition of the Cultural Olympiad festivals will
start on January 22, 2010 and run throughout the Olympic and Paralympic Winter
Games concluding on March 21. The extensive program will include more than 600
ticketed and free performances and exhibitions in 50 venues in Metro Vancouver
and British Columbia's Sea to Sky corridor.
    "With the incredible wealth of talent and outstanding value these shows
have to offer, we expect them to sell out and encourage people to go online
now and get their tickets," said David Guscott, executive vice-president,
celebrations and partnerships for the Vancouver Organizing Committee for the
2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (VANOC). "This is just the first
installment of the hundreds of artists who will participate next year as part
of the Cultural Olympiad 2010 lineup. In the coming months, we'll add even
more projects to our program with the support of the Government of Canada and
the home provinces and territories of the performers."
    Burke Taylor, vice-president, culture and celebrations, added, "Cultural
Olympiad 2010 is the culmination of a three-year program of developing new
work, building partnerships with the national and international arts community
and delivering outstanding festivals of arts and popular culture. VANOC has
helped create a lasting artistic legacy that will live beyond 2010 by
commissioning major projects, such as Robert Lepage's The Blue Dragon/Le
Dragon Bleu, Compagnie Marie Chouinard's world premiere of a new work and an
extended version of Joni Mitchell's ballet The Fiddle and The Drum."
    Seven of the 20 projects announced today have been commissioned by VANOC
or co-commissioned with Arts Partners in Creative Development, indicating a
major investment in the arts in Canada. These new works highlight the
innovative spirit and diverse character of the Vancouver 2010 Cultural
Olympiad - a diversity that stretches beyond the imagined boundaries of an
artistic discipline, cultural tradition or geography. "The end result," said
Taylor, "is a global dialogue where artists and audiences can connect and
embrace the creative spirit we all share."
    The first 20 projects of Cultural Olympiad 2010, featuring dancers,
musicians, playwrights, and visual artists, are:

    The Blue Dragon/Le Dragon Bleu - Robert Lepage

    Quebec's Robert Lepage continues his internationally celebrated
imaginative and innovative stagecraft with this sequel to his acclaimed series
The Dragons' Trilogy, set in modern China. Co-commissioned by the Vancouver
2010 Cultural Olympiad.

    Moon Water - Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan

    Lauded worldwide for its innovation and grace, Cloud Gate Dance Theatre
of Taiwan's Moon Water is a contemporary exploration of Tai Chi Tao Yin
movement, an ancient Chi Kung exercise, set to Bach's Six Suites for Solo
Cello. It will be the troupe's first performance in Vancouver since 1997.


    Canada's first theatre of ice and snow comes to Lost Lake in Whistler.
NiX follows an arsonist through the fireworks at the end of the world. It
features a flaming tuba, snowman death scene and an explosive love story.
Commissioned by Arts Partners in Creative Development.

    Nunavut - Kronos Quartet featuring Tanya Tagaq

    Performed by Grammy Award-winning Kronos Quartet and featuring Inuit
vocalist Tanya Tagaq, the centrepiece of Nunavut is Tundra Songs - a new work
by Canadian composer Derek Charke that paints a mesmerizing Arctic soundscape.

    Michael Lin: A Modest Veil

    Taipei-based artist Michael Lin will create a massive mural covering the
Vancouver Art Gallery's northern facade using the patterns and exuberant
colours found in traditional Taiwanese fabric designs and decorative art. It
will mark the first presentation of his work in Canada.

    Where the Blood Mixes - Playhouse Theatre Company

    Emerging Canadian playwright Kevin Loring goes beneath the surface of the
Aboriginal residential school system and celebrates its survivors.
Co-commissioned by Arts Partners in Creative Development.

    Joni Mitchell's The Fiddle and The Drum - Alberta Ballet

    This extended, full-length collaboration production of the dazzling
ballet features four additional Joni Mitchell songs, illuminated by her latest
artwork and the choreography of Alberta Ballet's artistic director Jean Grand
Maître. Commissioned by the Vancouver 2010 Cultural Olympiad. Tickets on sale

    Laurie Anderson: Two Sided Plays

    Renowned multimedia artist Laurie Anderson will premiere her newest work,
a compelling series of 10, two-character plays in which Anderson plays both
roles defined through the use of audio and visual effects and set design.
Co-commissioned by the Vancouver 2010 Cultural Olympiad.

    Nevermore - Catalyst Theatre

    Inspired by Edgar Allan Poe, the great master of the macabre, this
whimsical, chilling musical fairytale by Edmonton's Catalyst Theatre reveals
the psychology of a man whose haunting writings continue to resonate.

    Compagnie Marie Chouinard: World Premiere

    This newly-commissioned group piece by Canada's reigning queen of
contemporary dance is based on the notion of time recaptured. For the first
time, Marie Chouinard will create an accompanying vocal score. Co-commissioned
by the Vancouver 2010 Cultural Olympiad.

    Nixon in China - Vancouver Opera

    Vancouver Opera presents the Canadian premiere - and a new production -
of John Adams's modern masterpiece about U.S. President Richard Nixon's
historic 1972 visit to China. Canadian coloratura soprano Tracey Dahl, as
Madame Mao, joins opera greats Robert Orth as Nixon and Alan Woodrow as Mao
Tse-tung under the musical leadership of Maestro John DeMain who led the 1987
premiere of the opera.

    Rain - Cirque Eloize

    Montreal's Cirque Eloize brings the wonder of childhood to vivid life in
this amazing circus arts performance. The company expresses its innovative
nature by combining circus arts with music, dance and theatre.

    Mahler Symphony No. 8: Symphony of a Thousand - Vancouver Symphony

    Maestro Bramwell Tovey and the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra will give a
rare live performance of Mahler's monumental masterpiece, featuring hundreds
of musicians, eight vocal soloists and three choirs, including soprano Measha
Brueggergosman, the Vancouver Bach Choir and the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir.

    Beyond Eden - Theatre Calgary

    Written by Bruce Ruddell and starring John Mann, this spellbinding new
rock musical was inspired by Wilson Duff and Bill Reid's 1957 groundbreaking
and controversial expedition to Haida Gwaii. Beyond Eden will have its world
premiere during Cultural Olympiad 2010.

    Elephant Wake - Globe Theatre

    Globe Theatre's production digs deep into the pain and anger of a man
trying to come to terms with his own marginalized existence and the struggle
to keep his culture, family and town relevant in Saskatchewan. Tickets on sale
June 15, 2009.

    Fear of Flight - Artistic Fraud of Newfoundland

    This music and movement spectacle tracks 14 nervous passengers on a bumpy
transcontinental flight. The production by Artistic Fraud of Newfoundland
combines monologues, choral text and movement - all performed by an ensemble
of singing travellers. Tickets on sale June 15, 2009.

    Tear the Curtain! - Electric Company Theatre

    Murder, mayhem and movies take centre stage in this stylish new thriller
from Vancouver's innovative Electric Company Theatre. Inspired by the true
history of the Stanley Theatre, which opened as a movie house in 1930, this
multimedia spectacle offers a new twist to the classic whodunit.

    Kidd Pivot: Dark Matters

    Created by Kidd Pivot artistic director Crystal Pite, this new work
brings together six dancers for a moving exploration of human significance in
the wake of catastrophe and planetary frailty. Co-commissioned by Arts
Partners in Creative Development.

    Juste pour Rire 2010

    Three brilliant evenings of fun and laughter with la crème de la crème of
Canada's francophone comedians, the hottest emerging and internationally
acclaimed artists on the scene today. Co-presented by Le Centre Culturel
Francophone de Vancouver and the Vancouver 2010 Cultural Olympiad. Tickets on
sale September 1, 2009.

    Martha Wainwright and Jorane: Chanteuses modernes

    Powerfully raw singer/songwriter Martha Wainwright and award-winning
singer/cellist Jorane, known for her unique "cello rock," weave their musical
spell in an evening of emotionally frank and unforgettable songs. Tickets on
sale June 12, 2009.
    The full slate of Cultural Olympiad 2010 events, along with ticket
information, will be available online at as soon as events are announced.


    About the Cultural Olympiad

    The Cultural Olympiad, presented by Bell, is a series of
multidisciplinary festivals and digital programs showcasing the best in
Canadian and international arts and popular culture. Launched in 2008, the
program culminates in the 60-day Cultural Olympiad 2010 (January 22 to March
21, 2010), which begins before and continues throughout the Vancouver 2010
Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.



    Bell is proud to be a Premier National Partner, and the exclusive
Telecommunications Partner to the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter
Games and the presenting sponsor for the Vancouver 2010 Cultural Olympiad.
Bell is Canada's largest communications company, providing consumers and
business with solutions to all their communications needs, including Bell Home
phone local and long distance services, Bell Mobility and Solo Mobile
wireless, high-speed Bell Internet, Bell TV direct-to-home satellite and VDSL
television, IP-broadband services and information and communications
technology (ICT) services. Bell is wholly owned by BCE Inc. (TSX, NYSE:   BCE).
For information on Bell's products and services, please visit For
corporate information on BCE, please visit


    The Vancouver 2010 Cultural Olympiad is grateful for the support of the
Government of Canada and the governments of all of Canada's provinces and
territories and their respective cultural agencies: British Columbia, Alberta,
Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince
Edward Island, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nunavut, Northwest Territories and
Yukon. In addition to the Cultural Olympiad's government and corporate
partners, CODE is proudly supported by the Canada Council for the Arts and the
National Film Board of Canada. New Media BC and Wavefront Innovation Society
are also both active participants in the project. The National Presentation
and Touring Program is generously supported by the Canada Council for the

    Arts Partners in Creative Development

    Arts Partners in Creative Development (APCD) is a strategic investment
partnership to assist BC arts and cultural organizations create and develop
new works or further develop existing works, with the intent of producing,
presenting or exhibiting them at the highest standard. Organizations can apply
for funding to create, commission and develop original work in the performing,
visual, media or literary arts. With an initial investment of $6.5 million
over three years, APCD facilitates the creation and development of new work to
showcase both locally and worldwide. APCD funding partners include VANOC, the
Province of British Columbia, 2010 Legacies Now, the City of Vancouver, the
Canada Council for the Arts and the Vancouver Foundation.

    About VANOC

    VANOC is responsible for the planning, organizing, financing and staging
of the XXI Olympic Winter Games and the X Paralympic Winter Games in 2010. The
2010 Olympic Winter Games will be staged in Vancouver and Whistler from
February 12 to 28, 2010. Vancouver and Whistler will host the Paralympic
Winter Games from March 12 to 21, 2010. Visit

    /NOTE TO PHOTO EDITORS: Two photos accompanying this release are
    available on the CNW Photo Network and archived at Additional archived images are also available
    on the CNW Photo Archive website at Images are
    free to accredited members of the media/

For further information:

For further information: Media contact: Erin Mikaluk, VANOC
Communications, Tel.: (604) 403-2471, E-mail:

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