Ballet Jörgen’s masterful performance of Swan Lake

Centre Point: It’s a new year for shows at the centre

Shows in every genre are about to grace the stage at the Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre.

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 jam-packed fall and holiday season.

I see plenty of performances in any given year, and this seems like a great time to reflect on my favourites from 2016: the hilarious and Canadiana-inspired cirque show Timber tops my list, followed closely by Jesse Cook and the thought-provoking play Seeds by Porte Parole.

With 2017’s arrival, it’s also a great time to check out this year’s picks. A quick glance at the Ticket Seller website at reveals a diverse lineup of shows in every genre:

Ballet aficionados will want to look into Ballet Jörgen’s full-scale performance of Swan Lake or Atlantic Ballet’s Phantom of the Opera. Two new on-stage concerts are listed, including Ben Caplan and the Casual Smokers and Coco Love Alcorn. Also the Okanagan Military Tattoo returns to Kal Tire Place this summer. Have a look for yourself and start getting excited about your favourites for 2017.

The Performing Arts Centre’s year kicks off Saturday, Jan. 21 as the Montréal-based 7 Fingers Circus takes the stage for their performance of Cuisine and Confessions. In this cirque show that delights all the senses, the stage is transformed into a fully functional kitchen where the smell of fresh baking banana bread accompanies acrobatic feats, music, storytelling and more. Tickets for this extravaganza are going fast but there are still great seats available if you call the Ticket Seller box office at 549-SHOW (7469) or go online to

The Okanagan Symphony Orchestra is next on stage for its performance of Beethoven Blockbuster. Showing off the many moods of the genius who brought us the romantic era, enjoy the powerful sounds of the Coriolon Overture and the exuberance of Symphony No. 7. Audience favourite pianist Ian Parker joins the symphony on stage for the Emperor concerto in this concert that starts at 7 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 22. Tickets are on sale now at the Ticket Seller.

The North Okanagan Community Concert Association presents the Rémi Bolduc Jazz Ensemble Saturday, Jan. 28. This ensemble brings the soul and brilliance of one of the great champions of cool jazz in its tribute to Dave Brubeck. Their performance is smooth, lustrous, spontaneous and technically brilliant – the defining hallmarks of a great jazz show. Showtime is 7:30 p.m. and tickets are on sale now through the Ticket Seller.

Enjoy the shows!

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

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