Local refugee, immigrant, and aboriginal youth get a chance to speak out in the East Vancouver hip-hop, steampunk cabaret show POWER.

Their stories run the gamut from being abandoned by parents or having toxic boyfriends to awaiting deportation as a refugee or having Asperger's Syndrome. They addressed themes such as racism, sexism, mental health, gangs, addiction, immigration experiences, and more.

The show (by Miscellaneous Productions) arose out of workshops, dance bootcamp, and rehearsals, and was first performed in 2009 at the now-defunct Rhizome Café, with a sequel, POWER 2.

The show was dedicated to the late Cass Thompson, an Indigineous youth victims support worker at the Broadway Youth Resource Centre. 

The 25th annual TAIWANfest takes place downtown Vancouver from August 30 to September 1. Canada’s largest Mandarin- and English-speaking event is hosted by the Asian Canadian Special Events Association and includes music and dance performances, films, visual arts, food, and lectures, workshops, games, and more.

This year, several Taiwanese performance troupes will be showcased during the festival. The Elite Artist Trio is one of the most sought-after chamber music groups in Taiwan. The award-winning artists include pianist Sherry Chen, violinist Wen-Chuan Lin, and cellist Ya Limu.

The Portland Institute for Contemporary Art, better known as PICA, presents the 12th annual Time-Based Art Festival (TBA) from September 11 to 21 at various venues throughout Portland, Oregon.

The TBA Festival features artists from Portland, Seattle, and San Francisco, as well as France, Australia, Canada, the Philippines, Japan, and Sweden. Events include live performances, visual installations, concerts, experiments in film and music, pop-up galleries, and more.

Vancouver-based DanceHouse will present five exciting shows at various Vancouver venues during its 2014-15 season, which runs from September 26, 2014 to April 11, 2015.

Their season kicks off with Wayne McGregor/Random Dance in FAR on September 26 and 27 at the Vancouver Playhouse (600 Hamilton Street). This show by England’s most celebrated choreographer is a fascinating creative journey that draws on a radical cognitive research process. FAR includes jaw-dropping visuals, including a computerized pin board of over 3,000 LED lights.

This weekend on a trip to New Westminster, I took a few snapshots of the new Anvil Centre.

The LEED Gold building, which includes a 364-seat theatre and 18,000 square feet of conference space, is on Columbia Street close to the New Westminster Station.

When it opens in September, it will also be home to the New Westminster New Media Gallery, New Westminster Museum and Archives, and Canadian Lacrosse Hall of Fame.

In April of 2012, Mayor Wayne Wright spoke to the Straight about the project when it was a mere hole in the ground.

On Saturday (August 16), the B.C. New Democrats put the B.C. Liberals to shame with their turnout at the Korean Cultural Heritage Festival at Swangard Stadium.

Counting their municipal colleagues with the Burnaby Citizens Association, there may have been 20 elected NDP politicians in attendance.

The opening remarks were delivered by Burnaby-Lougheed NDP MLA Jane Shin, who's of Korean descent, and Burnaby mayor Derek Corrigan.

Sometimes a blogger can hit the wall—run out of new and interesting topics to post.

This might be one of those times.

There’s this paint splash on a low concrete wall I ride past most every night. Many times I’ve noted in passing that it suggests a large flightless bird to me, such as an emu or an ostrich. Last night I finally stopped and took a photograph.

Splatters, like beauty, are in the eye of the beholder

I can’t help but see an ostrich or an emu but none of the handful of other people I showed the photo to agreed with me. They saw a whale, an octopus (an octopus?), a jellyfish, an Imperial Walker from Star Wars, and—“some paint on a wall?”

Move over, Ai Weiwei: almost equally controversial artist Cai Guo Qiang is creating a buzz for some pretty in-your-face statements about China's environmental crisis.

Os Gemeos, the Brazilian graffiti-art twins who are getting up there with Banksy in terms of international renown, are turning the grey Ocean Concrete silos on Granville Island into massive pillars of public art.

But first, the Vancouver Biennale says it needs to raise $125,000 to complete the project through an indiegogo campaign.

The idea appears to be getting the public to fund public art through non-massive donations.

Vancouver native Lachlan Patterson is one of the final three in the Last Comic Standing.

And the chances look good for the now L.A.-based standup comedian who's appeared here at the Comedy MIX to win the August 14 season finale on NBC.

He's brought the laughs for the all-star lineup of comedy judges: Roseanne Barr, Keenen Ivory Wayans and Canadian comedy star Russell Peters. Wayans appears to be a fan of Patterson, after admitting that he had reservations at first because he thought the lanky comic looked like a "store mannequin".