The newest craze from the Asian sweat shops? VooDoo Babies--a line of dolls handmade in Thailand with one piece of string (from 2.5 to 10 cm tall)--retail for $11.95 and $22.00--each one has a name, a story about its "voodoo" powers, and they even have a disclaimer saying they do not possess any cursing powers. Riiight.
The names include: Hell Kitty (banish poseurs); Lady Flying Dagger (Achieve your goals); Money Boy (more coin); Z (liberate you from clingy people); Demon Warrior (wards off those trying to trip you up); Baby Dudu with Pant (first up--you laughing at the name? second, the website says "pant" not "pants" so unsure if Dudu is a heavy breather or is not going commando....anyways, Baby Dudu casts super spells); Kill Jean (trips up those trying to steal your man/woman)...many more. A bit creepy, yes, but whatever works...
(source: Love dolls casting a spell--Voo Doo Babies toy line the latest teenage craze by
Linda Nguyen, The Vancouver Sun. Read Full Article HERE)
This past week marked national celebrations of Canada's diversity, beginning with National Aboriginal Day (June 21), Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day (June 24) and Multiculturalism Day (June 27), leading up to the celebration of Canada Day (July 1st).
"Across the country, community groups partake in Canadian Multiculturalism Day events, aimed to increase awareness and encourage racial and ethnic harmony and cross-cultural understanding by providing an opportunity for communities across Canada to celebrate diversity." Read the complete article by Jon Sarpong on insidetoronto.com
For info on National Multicultural Day click here
Coinciding with the tenth anniversary of the handover from British rule to Mainland China, the Vancity Theatre is presenting a collection of Hong Kong cinematic classics, from the first Cantonese film in colour (starring a young Bruce Lee) to the very contemporary commentary of HK in the World Premier of 0506HK. Epic triad gang mythology, tragic love triangles and romantic visuals are all part of this HK showcase -- evidence to the influence of HK filmmaking on our global imagination.
HONG KONG STORIES | June 29-30, July 1-2, 4-7
Films: ELECTION 1 and 2 (Johnnie To, 2005 and 2006) | ROUGE (Stanley Kwan, 1987; starring Anita Mui and Leslie Chueng) | THE ORPHAN (Li Changfeng, 1960; starring Bruce Lee) | THE KILLER (John Woo, 1989; starring Chow Yun-Fat) | AS TEARS GO BY (Wong Kar-wai, 1988; starring Andy Lau and Maggie Cheung) | THE LONG ARM OF THE LAW (Johnnie Mak, 1984) | BOAT PEOPLE (Ann Hui, 1982) | 0506HK (Quentin Lee, 2007)
For more info on the films and screening times, see the Vancity Theatre's website.
Delicious regional Italian food will be on hand during the (FREE) Italian Week, June 24-29, 2007, at the Italian Cultural Centre Society (Grandview Hwy)...mmm, savour. (Info @ www.italianculturalcentre.ca)
Synopsis: "Highlights include performances by the Italian Choir of BC, operatic Destino and more. Enjoy also face painting, a craft zone and a magic show with balloon art by Rick Mearns and Friends of Ferrari for the children! A festive afternoon filled with appetizing culinary delights, market vendors and fun for the entire family! Vi aspettiamo al mercato!"
June 24 - OPENING DAY - MARKET DAY
June 25 - FAUSTO CIGLIANO IN CONCERT
June 26 - THREE CHOIR SPECTACULAR and SOLOISTS
June 27 - AN EVENING WITH THE VANCOUVER ITALIAN FOLK CHORUS AND GUESTS
June 28 - VOICE OF THE NIGHT
June 29 - FESTA DELLE REGIONI BANQUET AND DANCE
Full on feeling French today? It's pouring rain; you're satorially all in black; eyeliner smears making your devastion appear more, well, devastating; the dark shadows under your eyes bely your blues, all the while you're languidly smoking gauloises as you tip the ashes into the empty porcelain cafe au lait cup...oh heartache!
Perfect timing to catch the French film LA VIE EN ROSE (original French title La Mome--The Kid) by Olivier Dahan about singer Edith Piaf, one of the queens of singing about despair in love. Just listen to "La Vie en Rose" or "Non, je ne regrette rien" for a lesson in pain de coeur. The title role is played by Marion Cotillard, unrecognizable from her role as Russell Crowe's love interest in A Good Year.
The film follows Edith Piaf, the French chanteuse, from the streets of the Belleville district of Paris to the dazzling limelight of New York's glamorous concert halls:
"This love has taken it's toll on me
She said goodbye too many times before
And her heart is breaking in front of me
I have no choice cause I won't say goodbye anymore..."
Circa 2002, you may recognize Maroon 5's lyrics for their first release This Love...but have you heard the remixed, r&b flavoured, Korean-ized cover version of This Love? No?
Look no further, as popular Korean rapper G.Dragon (yes, that's his moniker--no clue what the G stands for), aka. Kwon Ji Yong, and leader of the boy band Big Bang has taken Maroon 5's This Love, and repackaged it for the Korean teenage girl market. Well played...and quite catchy (you don't have to be a teenage girl to likey--but that can be your secret shame). Look under the cut to watch the video, or click HERE.Posted by Tamiko | June 19, 2007 | Comments (0)
The true north strong and free ... save for the melting ice caps, malnourished polar bears, and societal issues affecting the Aboriginal Peoples of the north. What exactly is going on there?
Check it out on The National special presentation of Road Stories: Native Lands on CBC TV, coming LIVE from the Hupacasath First Nations near Port Alberni BC on June 19, and from Tyendinaga Mohawk territory on the Bay of Quinte in Ontario on June 20, leading up to National Aboriginal Day (June 21).Posted by Tamiko | June 18, 2007 | Comments (0)
The Japanese have an odd obsession with "the future" (hello, robots!) -- anime storylines often portray the coming doom --Princess Mononoke (ecology), Akira (nuclear destruction), Ghost in the Shell (cyborgs), etc -- and sure enough they keep cranking them out...including the new anime film PAPRIKA (opening in North America this month) about dream manipulation in the near future.
Synopsis: "29-year-old Dr. Atsuko Chiba is a Japanese research psychotherapist whose work is on the cutting edge of her field. Her alter-ego is a stunning and fearless 18-year-old 'dream detective,' codenamed Paprika, who can enter into people's dreams and synchronize with their unconscious to help uncover the source of their anxiety or neurosis.
At Atsuko's lab, a powerful new psychotherapy device known as the 'DC-MINI' has been invented by her colleague, Dr. Tokita, a nerdy overweight genius. Although this device could revolutionize the world of psychotherapy, in the wrong hands the potential misuse of the device could be devastating, allowing the user to completely annihilate the dreamer's personality while they are asleep.
When one of the only four existing DC-MINI prototypes is stolen in the final stages of research around the same time that Dr. Tokita's research assistant Himuro goes missing, Atsuko suspects it's not a coincidence...." (dun dun dun)....Posted by Tamiko | June 17, 2007 | Comments (0)
UBC-Laurier Institution Multiculturalism Lecture Series was launched in 2004 to celebrate Canada's diversity by examing today's multicultural society. Previous speakers include Roy Miki, and Mina Shum.
This year's lecture entitled, "Pundits, Pachyderms and Pluralism: The Never-Ending Debate on Multiculturalism," will be delivered by featured guest speaker Dr. Karim H. Karim, Director of Journalism and Communication at Carleton University.
The event will open with music by Safa, a trio ensemble of Canadian musicians who delight their audiences with Persian instrumental sounds from traditional instruments. Musicians Amir Koushkani, François Houle and Sal Ferreras are world renowned musicians and their performance will not disappoint.
* Hosted by Paul Kennedy of CBC Radio One, the lecture will be broadcast across the country on Ideas (690AM Vancouver) on Tuesday, June 26 @ 9:00 PM.
* Info: www.communityaffairs.ubc.ca
* Tickets are FREE
* Pre-registration is required by calling 604-822-1444
When one's talking about the wave of immigrants that left the Old World and settled in the New World, inevitably Ellis Island comes to mind...found in films such as The Godfather and America, America. Now Italian director Emanuele Crialese's new film GOLDEN DOOR (NUOVOMONDO) successfully joins the group with his story set in 1913 of the Mancusos, a peasant family from Sicily, who find their way to New York's Ellis Island. Their trials and tribulations don't seem so far off compared to those who immigrate for a better life today-the dream of a better life:
"To become citizens of the New World, they must die a little and be reborn, leaving behind the antiquated customs and superstitions of their homeland. They must be strong in body and healthy in mind, learn to obey and swear loyalty if they wish to pass through the Golden Door. Aided by a mysterious American woman (played by luminous French actress Charlotte Gainsbourg) aboard the ship, this metamorphosis occurs during the 4 difficult weeks of crossing the ocean, which leads to the final judgment: the Island of Tears, Ellis Island."Posted by Tamiko | June 16, 2007 | Comments (0)
Some pretty crazy news is brewing up for the Filipino (and boxing) community in Vancouver on the eve of its first ever Filipino community picnic on Saturday, June 16 at Slocan Park. The news probably couldnt be of any bigger fashion as the Province reports that none other than national Pinoy hero, world super-featherweight boxing champion, Manny Pacquiao, is apparently close to a deal that would have him defend his WBC title against Mexican Humberto Soto at GM Place on Oct. 6.
According to Vancouver businessman, Geoffrey Hughes, the deal is "99.5%" sealed but fans of boxing know that until its gone that extra 0.5% to a signed, sealed, 100% delivered deal, its not done just quite yet. Still, Hughes is confident that only minor formalities have to be worked out and that the official announcement is only days away.Posted by Boon Kondo | June 15, 2007 | Comments (0)
While it make take some time a Chinese Canadian Brad Pitt or Indo-Canadian Eminem to come along, Toronto's Russell Peters has now become an internal man of comedy based on his busting balls of ALL stereotypes. As funny as the Chris Rocks and Dave Chappelles of this world are, they really dont stray much from talking about black people and white people. With Peters, you get impersonations of the Chinese shop owner bargaining with you and Indian dad threatening to lay the smack down, stories of hangin out with the Jamaicans and nailing the white Canadian accent too.
But what about crackin Arab jokes? Funny enough Peters actually starting catching some flack from Arab fans for not making fun of them: "I kept getting e-mails from Arab kids going, 'Hey, why did you forget about the Arabs?' It's funny because people are complaining to me, asking me why I didn't pick on them." And, sure, he's played the UK and South Africa but what about.....Dubai? According the the Straight, when he "announced a concert this year in Dubai, there were near riots at the ticket outlets. The onslaught of ticket requests crashed computers. Peters had no idea who his fan base was there, but he added three extra shows."
June is Portuguese heritage month, as mentioned, and it never hurts to highlight the one aspect of a culture that can be tried and appreciated by all - the food! Though lesser known than some of its other European or Mediterranean counterparts, Portuguese cuisine is still very familiar.
This week in the Straight, they review A Taste of Portugal, off Kingsway & Victoria. The menu is heavy with tapas ("More of the bocconcinilike homemade cheese sat on five large tomato slices adorned with olives and drizzled with olive oil, both from Portugal.") and represents Portuguese food from the different regions: From "the yellowish slabs of salted, dried cod in the bacalhau shops" around Lisbon to northern regions of places like Nazare, "where fat sardines sputter over a charcoal grill, emitting delicious smoky, fishy smells" along with your bottle of vinho verde. Since much of the country is on the coastline, the seafood isnt much of a surprise and neither are the similarities that some of the dishes share with its neighbor to the east in Spain: "Pork and clams combined sounds challenging, too, but works in the same way that sausage and shrimp work in paella."
A TASTE OF PORTUGAL
2141 Kingsway (just east of Victoria), Vancouver
Open Wednesday to Monday 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.
At this moment in Vancouver, you have 2 chances to see 2 French flicks set in lovely Paris, the aforementioned Paris, Je-t'aime (@ the Ridge), which I just checked out last weekend (quite different as you might expect from the premise but def worth seeing) and also Luc Besson's (the Professional, the Fifth Element) Angel-A starring popular French actor Jamel Debbouze (the giddy guy that worked at the grocery shop in Amelie) and Danish model/actress Rie Rasmussen.
The reviews haven't been the greatest but a Besson flick shot in black & white in Paris about a shady con-man aided by his (Danish model) Angel-A is still appetizing for the visual senses in a way that only a black & white shot in Paris can be as this page of stills and trailer will prove.
Its playing at Tinseltown exclusively at the moment
The self proclaimed biggest midget in the game and Def Jam's first UK MC signing, Lady Sovereign will be coming down to Shine for a small but very live set after her opening gig for Gwen Stefani brings her town this June 15.
For a chance to see one of the world's hottest MCs in a small venue, this event cant be beat. The night will also feature a set by DJ Frampster from the infamous garage clique So Solid Crew. Tickets are only $15 and can be bought online at Clubzone HERE
Shine nightclub: 364 Water Street in Gastown (at Richards)Posted by Boon Kondo | June 13, 2007 | Comments (0)
The Bombstress known as M.I.A. is getting ready to do what is known as "dropping on load on em." As she's already leaked 2 singles from her upcoming album KALA, (XR2 and Birdflu), hooked up with Timbaland on his solo record (Come Around), which will also be included on KALA, dropped another single, Hit That, which will not be on the album, Ms. Maya Arulpragasam has now unleashed her Boyz single and video and come at us with a freshly revamped website as well and also revealed the entire tracklist for KALA which is due out her in August.
"M.I.A.: World Party" - URB mag cover story
Boyz on Youtube
Recording the little Tamil girls' playground hooks on Birdflu
Pics from Boyz, Birdflu shoots, new press pics and DIY silkscreen shirt designs
Blog for Boyz
Complete video anthology
Was it the best portrayal of a mob/Italian-American/American (period) family ever?
"I said to myself, This show is about a guy who's turning 40. He's inherited a business from his dad. He's trying to bring it into the modern age. He's got all the responsibilities that go along with that. He's got an overbearing mom that he's still trying to get out from under. Although he loves his wife, he's had an affair. He's got two teenage kids, and he's dealing with the realities of what that is. He's anxious; he's depressed; he starts to see a therapist because he's searching for the meaning of his own life. I thought: The only difference between him and everybody I know is he's the don of New Jersey. So, to me, the Mafia part was sort of the tickle for why you watched. The reason you stayed was because of the resonance and the relatability of all that other stuff."
"An American Family" article in Vanity Fair
"'Sopranos' set a new standard for portraying life in the underworld" article in Popmatters.
This weekend visit the UBC student exhibition VANCOUVER FROM THE 1907 ANTI-ASIAN RIOTS TO HONGCOUVER: A CENTURY OF CHANGE THROUGH STUDENTS' EYES on Sunday, June 10, 2007, 2:00-4:00 pm at the Vancouver Museum.
This event debuts a number of UBC student projects inspired by the series of important anniversaries in 2007 for Vancouver and Canada as a society connected to the Asia Pacific world. 2007 is the 100th Anniversary of the anti-Asian riots of 1907 that targeted Chinese, Japanese, and South Asian residents of Vancouver, but it also marks the 60th, 40th and 10th anniversary of other watershed moments of change that transformed our society.
The student projects include:
* "The 1907 Anti-Asian Riots from the Perspective of the Victims", by Woan-Jen Wang
* "Why Do Indians Love Chinese Food?"; by Karrmen Crey and Amy Perreault
* "Beyond Chinatown: Re-Making Vancouver", by Denise Wong
* "New Voices Project"; experiences of new migrants, by Johnson Chan, Viola Chan, Nancy Fong, Eugene Lin, Robert Parungao, Heather Joan Tam, Araya Vivorakij and Zizian Zhong
Embrace the 3rd Annual Portuguese Heritage Month in June! Celebrate Portuguese Heritage Month by taking part in a wide variety of activities reflecting the art, music, food, wine and sports of Portuguese speaking countries from around the world (Angola, Brazil, Cape Verde, Guine-Bissau, Mozambique, Portugal--including Azores and Madeira Islands, S. Tome & Príncipe and Timor, Macau (China) and Damao and Goa (India), Galizia (Spain)).
The goal of this celebration, open to all, is to promote the existence of such a unique and diverse community to Canadian society. Canada's Portuguese Film & Video Festival has announced their line-up of films to be showcased during Portuguese Heritage Month. An unprecedented 25 films will be showcased this year - many of them shorts. Portugal Day festivities at Trout Lake Community Centre, community picnics, free Portuguese language lessons,Sara Marreiro's concert performance, and direct from Portugal the Helena Lavouras Quartet and much more, including concert with Bebel Gilberto--the breathy Brazilian chanteuse.
For a full listing of events visit www.portuguesemonth.com.
Taglines are meant to hook you in..and the ones for the film PARIS, JE T'AIME (Paris, I Love You) do just that: "One City. 10 Million Hearts. One Love Story. One Film" and "Fall in love with Paris 18 times". *sigh* You'll probably be aching to listen to Goldfrapp's Ooh La La right about now...
Paris, je t'aime is a 2006 film starring several well-known actors such as Elijah Wood, Bob Hoskins, Natalie Portman, Gerard Depardieu, Juliette Binoche, Willem Dafoe, Steve Buscemi, Maggie Gyllenhaal, and Gena Rowlands. The 2-hour film consists of 18 five-minute short, each written and directed by a different person, including Alfonso Cuaron (Y Tu Mama Tambien), Gus Van Sant (Good Will Hunting), Wes Craven (Red Eye), Alexander Payne (Sideways), Gurinder Chadha (Bend it Like Beckham), Joel and Ethan Coen (Fargo), and Canadian Vincenzo Natali (Cube). The film is now showing in theatres across North America.Posted by Tamiko | June 9, 2007 | Comments (0)
All of Kamloops weren't the only ones cheering on the Anaheim Ducks towards their eventual win of the Stanley Cup. In the Anaheim home crowd, spending some father-son quality time, was Snoop Dogg. Turns out Snoop's son wanted to watch a hockey game and Snoop caught the hockey bug. A refreshing reminder that "Canada's Game" has a more diverse following that most people assume. Kudos to CBC Sports for not shying away from the opportunity.Posted by Alden | June 7, 2007 | Comments (0)
This immersive, interactive exhibit is inspired, in part, by the evolution of Bhangra music and dance from its folk roots to hip hop, paired with the increasing importance of Bollywood films, and the presence of its movie stars within western media.
This project responds to the significance of India's contributions to the development of technology, and the changing character of club culture with the globalization and digitization of both traditional and popular music. Using the strategies of DJ and VJ artistry, combined with viewer-activated technology, this edgy mashup will "show and tell" as you dance.
Featuring sound by Beats without Borders, visuals by Suez, and more by project team members: Tarun Nayar, Lady Ra, Suez, Leonard Paul and Niranjan Rajah.
Cultural Mashups: Bhangra Bollywood and Beyond!
March 31 to June 24
Surrey Art Gallery (13750 - 88 Ave Surrey) 604-501-5566
An interactive exploration of Digital Technology and South Asian art and culture