Right Here – March 10
Walking Mad and Other Works
Watch beauty in motion as Ballet BC kicks off its 2012 season with Walking Mad & Other Works, made up of three premieres by artistic director Emily Molnar, renowned Swedish choreographer Johan Inger, and leading Canadian dance maker Aszure Barton, who has created works for Mikhail Baryshnikov, The National Ballet of Canada, American Ballet Theatre and more (at the Queen E Theatre Saturday; also in Surrey, Maple Ridge and Chilliwack March 13-17, balletbc.com).
Learn about baby marine animals from heroic wolf eels to dancing seahorses – the males are the ones who end up pregnant – at Babies, a new exhibit at the Vancouver Aquarium where you can meet real moon jelly babies, see a ribbiting display about threatened frogs, and discover the weird and wonderful ways different animals breed and care for their young (until May 6, vanaqua.org).
Emily Carr and the Theatre of Transcendence
Discover Emily's Carr's belief in nature as a transcendent force and its link to human consciousness at Emily Carr and the Theatre of Transcendence, a new exhibit that also features other-worldly works by Karin Bubaš, Kate Craig, Lawren Harris, Kevin Schmidt, Jack Shadbolt and more (at the VAG until Sept. 9, vanartgallery.bc.ca).
First Nations Dance Festival
See aboriginal dance from across the Northwest Coast and around the world, including Haida, Tsimshian, Kwakwaka'wakw, Gitxsan, Carcross/Tagish, and Wiraduri, Gunggari, Bidjarra from Australia at the Coastal First Nations Dance Festival – a celebration of songs, dances and stories that have been handed down for centuries (at the Museum of Anthropology, damelahamid.ca).
Women in Film Festival
Catch top shorts and features made by women at the Women and Film Festival, where you'll also find director appearances, industry exhibitors, panel discussions and a networking brunch (at Vancity Theatre through Sunday, womeninfilm.ca). More International Women's Day celebrations? Sip a free cup of tea and learn about early Vancouver poet and performer Pauline Johnson, who gave Lost Lagoon its name (Saturday, stanleyparkhistory.ca) .
Care for a little music to your ears? Catch fast-rising Ontario dream pop duo Memoryhouse, who just released their debut full-length album, The Slideshow Effect, on Sub Pop (Saturday, waldorfhotel.com). For more inventive indie soundscapes, you can find Blackout Beach – the solo effort of Frog Eyes' Carey Mercer – along with Apollo Ghosts at the Biltmore (Saturday, biltmorecabaret.com).
How to Disappear Completely
Speaking of indie art, don't miss How To Disappear Completely, Itai Erdal's sweetly funny and highly acclaimed play about caring for his dying mother (at the Shadbolt Saturday, shadboltcentre.com); Boca del Lupo's Micro Performance Series at the Anderson Space (Saturday; also March 28-31 and April 11-14, bocadellupo.com); and Goodness, the tale of a Jewish-Canadian writer who goes in search of his family's past, and finds a woman who has survived a much more recent genocide (at the Firehall through Sunday, firehallartscentre.ca). Victoria-bound? Don't miss all kinds of great thespianism at the Spark Festival (until March 25, sparkfestival.ca).
Celts on the Creek
Don a little green and get a wee taste of the upcoming CelticFest Vancouver at Celts on the Creek, a free festival preview that includes live music, Irish dance, storytelling, food, and even appearances by King Henry VIII and Queen Catherine of Aragon (Saturday, celticfestvancouver.com). Irish eyes on the other side of the Strait can head for the Bastion Square Celtic Festival (Saturday, bastionsquare.ca) or find celebrated Celtic music duo Qristina & Quinn Bachand at Fairfield United Church (Saturday, qbachand.com).
Victoria French Festival
For une expérience culturelle différente, head for the Victoria French Festival, where you'll find performances by Cirque du Soleil co-founder Ben Labarouette et Les Transporteurs de Rêves (The Dream Circus) and a Centennial Square celebration with live music and culinary treats from maple taffy to poutine (francocentre.com).
BC Log Home Show
Always dreamed of a cozy retreat outside the city? Hit the BC Log Home, Timber Frame and Country Living Show, where you can meet log home builders, check out hand-crafted log furniture, learn about off the grid solar and wind systems, and even pick up tips for those summer country barbecues (at Tradex in Abbotsford through Sunday, fvtradex.com).
Raj Kapoor and the Golden Age of Indian Cinema
See one of Bollywood's most legendary stars as Pacific Cinémathèque offers up 13 films featuring Raj Kapoor, whose Clark Gable swagger, Gene Kelly showmanship and Charlie Chaplin underdog heroism made him a superstar in India and beyond (until March 31, cinematheque.bc.ca). On the other side of the moat, brave the Fire Swamp, escape the Rodents of Unusual Size and repeat "My name is Inigo Montoya" at a special quote-along screening of The Princess Bride (Saturday, victoriafilmfestival.com).
Invasive Plant Removal
Show Mother Nature who's boss – for a few days, anyway – at invasive plant removal events around the Lower Mainland, this weekend at Blackie Spit by Crescent Beach (Sunday, meetup.com/The-Lower-Mainland-Green-Team), or at a pruning course at the UBC Botanical Garden (Saturday, botanicalgarden.ubc.ca). Want to get things growing? Hit the seed swap at the Renfrew Community Centre Saturday, ccseedsavers.wordpress.com), and pick up tips from top pros at the Victoria Home and Garden Show (chbavictoria.com).