City Something Dec. 13-19

Monday's Top Picks for arts and entertainment in Victoria: Highlights include XXX-mas, Blues Christmas with David Gogo and Chantal Kreviazuk

Irish Music Award winners Quinn (left) and Qristina Bachand are playing two local shows this weekend.

Qristina and Quinn Bachand

Dynamic duo Qristina and Quinn Bachand are sweeping the Celtic music world by storm — the brother and sister won 2010’s Top Traditional Group and 2011’s Top Duo at the Irish Music Awards.

Now, with Qristina home from the Netherlands for the holidays, they’re gearing up to play Celtic Christmas Ceilidh with guests The O’Brien Irish Dancers, Graham Metcalfe, Adam Dobres and Oliver Swain. Sat., Dec. 15 at Knox Presbyterian Church (2964 Richmond). 7pm. $15/10/Under 10 free.

Qristina is known for her expressive and passionate fiddling style and vocal talents, while her brother is a sought-after sideman (he’s toured with Ashley MacIssac and Natalie MacMaster), with his unique harmonies, hard-driving strumming, inventive chord voicing and powerful rhythmic effects on the Celtic guitar.

The Bachands are also playing Celtic Vespers, Sun., Dec. 16 at St. Johns United Church (10990 W Saanich). The show starts at 7pm and admission is by donation. The duo will also be premiering its new music video for “Red Rocking Chair/Halfmoon Bay” produced by local filmmaker (and Black Press reporter) Natalie North with cinematography by Arnold Lim. M

 

 

Naughty but Nice

The Cheesecake Burlesque Revue is hosting its  third-annual XXX-mas show featuring a mix of new acts and classic Cheesecake Christmas — plus a cast of other holiday characters — Santa, elves, reindeer, even nutcrackers.

The peepshow is Fri., Dec. 14 at the Metro Studio Theatre. Clothes start coming off at 8:30pm. Tickets are $22 at Lyle’s Place or cheesecakeburlesque.com.

A few of the Cheesecakes are partaking in the All I Want For Christmas Variety Show Fundraiser for the Mustard Seed, Wed., Dec. 19 at the same location. Hosted by Rosie Bitts, the show also includes Johnny Bottomsworth, The Coventry Carollers, The Ukabellas, Mark Marquette, Shayne Avec I Grec, Ian Case, Wes Lord and Jeremy Loveday. Come support the Mustard Seed and make up the donation shortfall due to the cancelling of the Navy’s ship lighting contest, one of their largest donors in the Christmas season. 8pm. Tickets are $20 at ticketrocket.org or 250-590-6291. M

Christmas Carols

There are no less than five ways to take in Charles Dickens’ Christmas classic this week, with one (Jason Stevens, Craigdarroch Castle) and two-person adaptations (Clayton Jevne and Sandra Ritter, Theatre Inconnu at Emily Carr House), and a full-on professional production at the Belfry Theatre (adapted by artistic director Michael Shamata).

But the most unusual renditions will be improvised by Paper St Theatre (pictured below), Dec. 14 and 15 at 8pm at the Intrepid Theatre Club (1609 Blanshard). $12 (Russell Books, 743 Fort).

And for classic film lovers, check out the Victoria Film Festival’s event Sat., Dec. 15 at 1pm at the historic Vic Theatre (808 Douglas). Santa will also be in attendance. Cash only at the door. M

Chantal Kreviazuk

 

Canadian superstar and classically trained pianist Chantal Kreviazuk performs her greatest hits accompanied by the symphonic splendour of the Victoria Symphony, conducted by Giuseppe Pietraroia.

Sat., Dec. 15 at the Royal Theatre (805 Broughton).

Kreviazuk’s latest album Plain Jane was released in 2011, and in the spring of 2012 her most recent song writing efforts were on Faith Hill’s much anticipated new album.

This one-night only performance will no doubt sell out, so get your tickets at rmts.bc.ca or 250-386-6121. Victoriasymphony.ca. M

A Blues Christmas

Island blues guitarist David Gogo is swinging into the Christmas season with a new festive album, Christmas With the Blues, featuring a blend of traditional blues with hints of roots, gospel and rock ’n’ roll.

Gogo has met recent success with both Juno and Maple Blues Awards nominations for his album Soul Bender.

The Christmas album features Billy Hicks, David Vest, Phil Dwyer, Shawn Hall, Tina Jones, and Camille Miller.

Catch Gogo with his electric trio Fri., Dec. 14 at Hermann’s Jazz Club (753 View). $25 at Lyle’s Place and Ditch Records. M

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ensemble Laude

Three time M Award winners for Favourite Vocal Ensemble, Ensemble Laude offers The Banquet, a lavish feast of choral songs, chants and wassails from medieval and renaissance Europe, enchanted by flavours from India, Flanders, Argentina, Nigeria, Germany and Canadian First Nations. The highlight is an intiricate 12-part piece, Festum Carmen, composed by director Elizabeth MacIsaac specifically for the concert. 3pm at Alix Goolden Hall (907 Pandora). By donation. ensemblelaude.org.

 

 

Zero-Mile Diet Cookbook Launch

 

 

Carolyn Herriot’s The Zero-Mile Diet Cookbook contains over 160 recipes using homegrown ingredients, and is full of ideas for connecting with the environment that surrounds us. Launch 4-6pm at Spinnakers Gastro Brew Pub (308 Catherine). Free. 604-883-2730

 

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