The PuSh Festival expands the horizons of Vancouver artists and audiences with work that is visionary, genre-bending, multi-disciplined, startling and original. The Festival showcases acclaimed international, Canadian and local artists and mixes them together with an alchemy that inspires audiences, rejuvenates artists, stimulates the industry and forges productive relationships around the globe.
Bicycle Thieves: January 26 and 27
Composer and musical director Joelysa Pankanea guides a group of six musicians and four actors as they provide live musical and voice accompaniment to the landmark neorealist film Bicycle Thieves.
Kiinalik: These Sharp Tools: January 30 – February 2
A concert, a conversation and a multimedia performance all in one, Kiinalik: These Sharp Tools is the meeting point for two people—Inuk artist Laakkuluk Williamson Bathory and queer theatre-maker Evalyn Parry—and two places: Canada’s North and South. After having met on an Arctic expedition from Iqaluit to Greenland, Williamson Bathory and Parry now share a stage; these two powerful singers and storytellers, aided by music and video projection, give voice and body to the histories, culture and climate we’ve inherited, and ask how we reckon with “these sharp tools.”
Marginal Consort (Japan): January 20
These four musicians come with enough instruments for an orchestra; some are acoustic, some are electronic, and quite a few are of the artists’ own invention. For three hours they make ambient, heavily manipulated music, far apart and fully independent of each other. It’s a sonic adventure, with the audience as liberated as the performers. Listeners are free to sit, lie down or move around as they see fit—in fact, changes in position are encouraged, because different positions in the space can bring radically different experiences.
PALMYRA: January 22 – 24
In this prizewinning piece, the set is almost bare and broken crockery is the main prop; PALMYRA may seem slight at first glance, but it’s about as rich in implication as one could ask for. The situation can be described bluntly and simply: two men are onstage, and one of them has a plate while the other does not. From this, conflict emerges that ranges from the comical to the brutal. The audience is drawn into the work in surprising and provocative ways.
Ringo: January 18
The wildly inventive Tetsuya Umeda uses tin cans, dry ice, bowls, hot plates and more to create an experience so beguiling and unique as to redefine those very objects. The rhythm of dripping water, melodic air vibrato, mechanical groans and much more make up his music; pulsing electric light and wall projection by most unconventional means make up some of his visuals. What looks like an elaborate science project onstage is actually a system for generating wonders.