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.

Live Nation has announced that Vancouver-based indie-rock group Mother Mother will play a show at the Orpheum Theatre--with guests USS (Ubiquitous Synergy Seeker)--on Saturday, December 13, in support of its fifth studio album, Very Good Bad Thing.

The Juno-winning group--comprised of Ryan Guldemond, Molly Guldemond, Jasmin Parkin, Jeremy Page, and Ali Siadat--has been one of Canada’s most aired acts on the alternative-radio charts for the past two years.

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.

We’re all for bike lanes and public transit, but there are some fantastic B.C. destinations that aren’t so easy to get to without a car.

Deep Cove Canoe and Kayak Centre, for example, which in 2013 won the Georgia Straight’s Best of Vancouver readers' pick for kayak/canoe store. Or Tofino, which last year was named best romantic getaway. Or Mission Hill Family Estates, which was named 2013's best white winery in B.C.

The September 18 edition of the Straight could help you get to those far-flung locations. (It will also include the 2014 readers' choice results for those three Best of Vancouver categories plus 270 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.

During the first annual Phrike FilmFest 72 Hour Film Competition, novice and professional filmmakers of all ages will be challenged to bring their own unique horror-themed short films from script to screen in less than three days. From October 11 to 13, they will be competing for a $5,000 cash prize, the Grand Goblin Award, and more.

The 13 qualifying films will be premiered for the public and judged at the inaugural Vancouver Halloween Parade & Expo on October 18 and 19 at downtown Vancouver's Sheraton Wall Centre.

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.

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