“Driving to work listening to CBC, you get the sense that people here [in Edmonton] seem to have a larger, more established appreciation for the arts,” saxophonist Ian Smith told the Calgary Herald a few years back. The Calgary-born musician moved to Edmonton shortly before he made his observation, which seems to be a similar experience for many newbie Edmontonians.
There is a profusion of innovative and thought-provoking artists of all capacities throughout Edmonton, pouring their hearts and souls out into paintings on the cafe walls, sculptures in the parks and plazas, or murals on the sides of historic buildings. Anything is a canvas here and there’s no shortage of talented maestros ready to transform whatever it is you got, from electrical boxes to back alleys.
Some of Canada’s most praised and applauded painters, photographers, sculptors, illustrators, and designers hail from Edmonton, where there’s an abundance of year-round festivals (Nextfest, Art W…
When the middle of August rolls around, some Edmontonians instinctively begin to panic. It means that summer is coming to a close, and the nippy seasons are just around the corner. Others look forward to mid-August all year round, because it means that their favourite season has arrived...Fringe season!
Unless you count K-Days, the Edmonton International Fringe Theatre Festival is Edmonton’s most attended and sought-after festival of them all, and one of the oldest ones too, and that means something in a town rightfully known as “Festival City.”
There’s something about the Fringe that enlivens Edmonton, bringing out locals who appreciate authentic and often experimental live theatre at its best, incorporating all forms of performing arts, including music, dance, spoken word, comedy, improv, cabaret, burlesque, puppetry, poetry, circus, and even magic.
Some 120,000 tickets are sold for more than 200 shows and 1,600 performances at the 11-day event, making it …
We couldn’t have asked for better next-door neighbours than the likes of St. Albert, Sherwood Park (Strathcona County), Fort Saskatchewan, Spruce Grove, Stony Plain, Leduc, Nisku, Devon, and Beaumont!
These nearby communities that surround our city limits offer that small-town mentality on those days when you just need to get away from the hustle and bustle of a large metro like Edmonton. The Capital Region, as it is often referred to, is really just one large community at heart, each offering their own special personalities and attributes.
St. Albert, for example, is one of Canada’s “best-kept secrets,” according to MoneySense magazine, which consistently ranks the small city of about 64,000 as one of the best places to live in the whole country, even reaching #1 on the list as recent as 2014.
That says a lot about the people who live in St. Albert, practically and almost literally a hop, skip, and a jump from Edmonton’s northwest. In fact, it’s quite c…
For most Edmontonians, downtown is a place for weekend drinks and dancing, for dinner at high-end restaurants, coffee at trendy cafes, gleaming office and condo towers, or markets with fresh produce and locally-made crafts.
For others, downtown is despair and discouragement. It means sleeping on park benches and in alleyways, dragging their things around in abandoned shopping carts, belittled by passersby and threatened by others who are also so far below the poverty line that we couldn’t possibly imagine putting ourselves in their worn-out shoes.
Many of the people who we see on the streets in these conditions have or have had problems with drugs, alcohol, gambling, or all three, though not everyone who is considered “homeless” in Edmonton has substance abuse issues.
Some are folks who have recently moved to the city and couldn’t find or hold onto a job; some are youth who were not welcome at home anymore because they came out of the c…
I’ll admit it, I choked up singing along to “No One Needs to Know” at the 2015 Shania Twain concert at Northlands’ Rexall Place. Judge me all you want, I don’t care! I couldn’t help it, after all...I had some sort of weird gay crush on Shania when she was one of the world’s superstars back in the ‘90s.
I knew all of her songs by heart and I knew everything there was to know about the Canadian icon, and now there I was, singing her lyrics right alongside her to a glowing audience tipsy on expensive booze and the sounds of their high school days.
But that certainly wasn’t the only time I stood in the aisles of Rexall belting out to the songs of one of my favourite singers or bands. Nope, it all stemmed back to when I was 12 years old and went to the Paula Abdul concert with my buddy Peter. Again, judge me all you want, it doesn’t phase me! It was one of the fondest memories I have of growing up.
Since then, I’ve had the chance to see everyone from Jay-Z and Ti…