10 Do-Not-Miss Vancouver Performing Arts Experiences

Whether you’re looking for theatre, opera, dance or music, when Vancouver’s performing arts scene takes to the stage, you won’t be disappointed! Here are 10 top Vancouver performing arts experiences that you shouldn’t miss.

  1. Vanier Park hosts perennial Vancouver favourite Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival from June to September. Free pre-show talks, fireworks and an Operas & Arias program add to the summer’s Shakespearean delights.

  2. The Arts Club Theatre Company has been bringing popular theatre productions to Vancouver since 1964. Each year, 14 productions spanning musicals, comedies, new works and classics make their way to the company’s three stages – two on Granville Island, and one in South Granville neighbourhood.

  3. With programs like Tea and Trumpets, Kids’ Koncerts, VSO Pops and several masterworks series, the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra has programs for everyone from the lifelong classic music aficionado to the novice concert-goer.

  4. As British Columbia’s biggest theatre festival, the Vancouver Fringe Festival stages more than 700 alternative performances each September. Any artist is welcome to apply, making for truly eclectic shows and one of the locals’ most beloved theatre events.

  5. One of North America’s largest film events, the Vancouver International Film Festival in late September/early October is as diverse and innovative as its home city. The festival is known for its significant screenings of Canadian and British Columbian films, as well as the most East Asian films shown anywhere outside of that region.

  6. The TD Canada Trust Vancouver International Jazz Festival boasts 10 days, 1,300 global musicians and 400 concerts that bring 500,000 toe-tapping, be-bopping jazz lovers to its indoor and outdoor venues late June/early July.

  7. Visionary music, theatre, dance and hybrid performance forms make the PuSH International Performing Arts Festival one the city’s signature events. Held late January/early February, the performances showcase the best new genre-bending works from Canadian and international artists.

  8. The Vancouver Opera, Canada’s second-largest opera company, offers a balance of traditional opera favourites and new and rarely produced productions, all of which are exquisitely staged and performed.

  9. One of Vancouver’s most unique cultural festivals, the Talking Stick Festival features the music, dance, theatre, and performance and visual arts of local, national and international Aboriginal artists.

  10. Held in sunny July each year, the Vancouver Folk Music Festival brings grassroots artists and a mellow vibe to Jericho Beach, where the ocean-and-mountain backdrop is beyond compare. Folk music headliners come together with world-music stars to create a laidback, family-friendly festival.