Services is out. Culture is in.
Thanks to commenter Natalie, I’ve changed things up for the month of May. This month I’m adding ‘culture’ to the mix.
What do I mean by ‘culture’? Anything cultural that doesn’t fit into one of my other media categories (TV, movies, books, magazines and music). To start, I’ll only be seeing Canadian live performances–theatre, ballet, opera, author readings and so forth–for the rest of the year.
This will be a bit of a sacrifice, because I attend a lot of theatre. So, it’s prairies and raven tricksters for me for the rest of the year. I joke, but when I was in theatre school, it seemed to me that every Canadian play I worked on was either set in a depressed, wind-blasted, incest-riven prairie farm house or on a depressed, wind-blasted First Nations reserve where some traditionally-clad bird dancer hovered over the action. Add in Canadian theatre’s love of historical dramas, and we rarely see a play set in a contemporary Canadian city. There’s always Brad Fraser, I suppose. I just checked, and none of the 2011 plays at either of Vancouver’s biggest theatres, the Arts Club or the Playhouse, qualify as Canadian. I’ll have to seek out some smaller venues.
And then there are cultural institutions. I have a membership to the Vancouver Art Gallery. For the rest of the year, I can only look at Canadian works of art. I’ll be really sorry to miss this Eadweard Muybridge exhibit, for example. Cursed Welshman. A few weeks ago I was in Quebec City, and took care to only look at Canadian paintings at the Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec. I spent my time looking at Jean-Paul Riopelle’s work, and the Modernist review in Salle 7. I’ll do the same when visiting the Vancouver Art Gallery for the rest of the year.
What foreign culture would you miss if you went all-Canadian for a year?
Photo shows Kevin MacDonald in the Arts Club Theatre Company’s
production of Paradise Garden, a Canadian show I saw last year. Photo by Ross Den Otter.