Centre Point: Raise a glass

The first few weeks of January always seem so calm and serene compared to the hustle and bustle of the Christmas season. And who can forget the frantic scenes throughout Boxing “Week”?

Similarly, the arts scene takes a brief intermission as students, teachers, artists and touring groups recharge after a typically jam-packed fall and holiday season.

As someone who tends to see many performances in a given year, this works out to be a great time to reflect on my favourite performances from last year: the charming Les Ballets Jazz de Montréal, the hilarious The Number 14, and the unexpectedly brilliant Deck show, just to name a few.

With 2013’s arrival, it’s also a great time to check out what’s in store for the coming year. A quick glance at the Ticket Seller website at www.ticketseller.ca reveals a diverse lineup of shows in every genre. Examples include Ballet Jörgen’s full-scale performance of Swan Lake this February, four-million album seller Terri Clark live in concert in March, the live-action comic book of Intergalactic Nemesis in April or Powerhouse Theatre’s Last of the Red Hot Lovers coming up in May.

Have a look for yourself and start getting excited about the shows that appeal to your individual preferences.

And you won’t have to wait long for this seasonal intermission to end as the highly successful Snowed In Comedy Tour blows back into the Performing Arts Centre for its fifth year Jan. 17.

Up at the ski resort by day, top comedians Arj Barker, Dan Quinn, Craig Campbell and Pete Johansson descend from the slopes to host a hilarious evening of comedy by night. These four comedians represent a powerhouse of talent: their honours include winning Just for Laughs competitions and countless appearances in festivals along with televised specials and sitcoms.

As always, there’s adult content and language to consider – none of which will be censored in a live performance. Call the Ticket Seller at 549-SHOW (7469) to book your tickets.

Then on Jan. 18, the Montréal Guitar Trio is on stage at the Performing Arts Centre as part of the North Okanagan Community Concert Association’s season.

Described by CBC as “the hottest guitar ensemble in Canada”, this trio has quickly established itself as a unique force in the Canadian music scene.

Winners of the 2011 Opus prize for concert of the year in the jazz/world music category, their repertoire includes selections from within and far beyond Canada’s borders and their stage performance is packed with creativity, energy and humour.

The music starts at 7:30 p.m. and you can get your tickets through the Ticket Seller at 549-SHOW (7469).

Let’s raise a glass to making the most of 2013, and enjoy the shows!

Brian van Wensem is the audience development coordinator at the Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre.

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