Vancouver Opera opens its 2014-15 season with Georges Bizet’s beloved opera Carmen. Performances take place September 27 to 28, and October 2 to 5 at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre (649 Cambie Street).

The four-act French opera (performed with English subtitles projected above the stage) tells the story of a downtrodden soldier named Don José who falls for seductive gypsy Carmen. Enraptured by Carmen’s beauty and sensuality, Don José abandons his childhood sweetheart and military post to pursue his love. However, Carmen soon abandons Don José for a handsome toreador named Escamillo. In a fit of jealous rage, Don José kills Carmen.

The Dance Centre opens its 2014-15 Global Dance Connections series with Ballet Preljocaj in Empty moves (parts I, II & III. Performances will run September 25 and 26 at 8 p.m. at the Scotiabank Dance Centre (677 Davie Street)

Empty moves (parts I, II & III) was created by French choreographer Angelin Preljocaj. The piece is set to the 1977 recording of John Cage’s Empty Words.

With one of Canada’s largest wine festivals—the Vancouver International Wine Festival—still five months away, the Arts Club Theatre’s Chef Meets B.C. Grape is a popular fall event for local oenophiles. The local theatre company hosted the California Wine Fair in April, but its fall wine-tasting fundraiser—now in its 10th year— is meant to showcase B.C.

The first-annual Vancouver Design Week takes place at various Vancouver venues now until September 28.

The two-week event includes talks, tours, awards, workshops, exhibits, parties, and pop-ups that celebrate and explore the unique design ecosystem of the city.

Highlights of VDW include a special design-focused edition of Pecha Kucha Night at the Vogue Theatre on September 18, a block party at Hawkers Market on September 20, amazing tablescapes and cocktails at Dinner by Design on September 21 and 22, the IDSWest launch party at the Vancouver Convention Centre on September 25, and more.

Vancouver-based dance organization New Works launches its 2014-15 season on September 18 at the Orpheum Annex (823 Seymour Street). The evening will feature four local contemporary dance companies: 605 Collective, the response., Out Innerspace Dance Theatre, and Tara Cheyenne Performance.

Josh Martin of 605 Collective and Tara Cheyenne Performance will present excerpts of critically acclaimed repertoire performed to sold-out audiences earlier this year. Out Innerspace Dance Theatre and the response. will preview upcoming works.

New Works was founded by Barbara Clausen 21 years ago and is a pillar of Vancouver’s dance scene.

Mandolinist Chris Thile and double bassist Edgar Meyer will open the 2014-15 Chan Centre Presents series with a performance at UBC’s Chan Centre for the Performing Arts (6265 Crescent Road) on September 16 at 8 p.m.

The award-winning MacArthur “Genius” Fellows and collaborators will present a high-energy evening of mainly original compositions that blur the boundaries between bluegrass, classical, and pop music.

Assert, Defend, Take Space: Aboriginal Youth Conference on Identity, Activism, and Film takes place October 18 at the Museum of Anthropology (6393 N.W. Marine Drive).

This day-long event combines film screenings with dialogue on issues of concern for Aboriginal youth, and features artists Kelli Clifton and Cody Lecoy as well as filmmakers Damien Eagle Bear and Emilio Wawatie.

As part of the conference, the MOA is also presenting Claiming Space: Voices of Urban Aboriginal Youth until January 4, 2015. This new exhibition features a unique look at contemporary art through the lens of Indigenous youth.

Straight photographer Alex Waterhouse-Hayward has shot his fall arts season preview portraits everywhere from the rooftop of the Scotiabank Dance Centre to an interior-design studio.

His much-anticipated concept this year turned out to be a little more intimate: he shot pairs of up-and-comers from each art form in (or outside) their own homes-as in, in their bathrooms, on their beds, and at their vanities.

The rooms weren't just chosen randomly, though. "As an example, the garage studio of the artist was much too one sided. The apple tree was domestic but more neutral," explains Waterhouse-Hayward.

A small plaza at Clark Drive and Grandview Highway used to be home to a Christopher Columbus statue. But that was years ago.

News reports indicate that, this morning (September 9), East Van commuters noticed that another figure, known by such names as Satan, the Devil, and the Beast, had taken up residence there.

That's not all. This Satan statue bore an erect penis. OMG.

With all the fuss, city crews hastened to remove the statue. It was gone after 3 p.m., according to Global and CTV.

New Forms Festival returns for its 14th year this September 18 to 21, taking place in Science World's geodesic dome (1455 Quebec Street). 

The interdisciplinary festival serves as a platform for media art and new genres of music and will feature screenings, performances, talks, installations, and exhibitions from a variety of national and international artists.