April 6, 2023 edition - Let's go girls

A Shania Twain EXCLUSIVE


There are always so many exciting things to update you all about when it comes to what the Straight is up to that we hardly get a chance to wax poetic in these intros about nothing in particular. How ’bout that weather, right? Those Canucks! Hooo boy. Okay, back to business.

It’s a PRINT week, so grab that umbrella and hunt down your local Georgia Straight box to pick up an issue featuring an exclusive interview with none other than Shania Twain, a few thousand words on D&D in Vancouver, and a whole lotta other ink and paper goodness.

But wait, that’s not all! Voting is underway for the 2023 Golden Plate awards, so once you’ve secured that precious newspaper get back online and head over to the Golden Plates page on our website to cast your votes. You have to be a newsletter subscriber to participate, but if you’re reading this intro then you’re likely already part of that super exclusive club. And we’re oh so glad about it.

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The radical self-empowerment of Shania Twain

From the desk of Yasmine Shemesh: It just so happened to be International Women’s Day when I sat down to speak with Shania Twain. We didn’t really talk about that. What we did talk about—along with the meaning behind her new album, Queen of Me, the trails she blazed in the ’90s, and finding her voice again after risky open-throat surgery—was how self-empowerment comes from within.

“You are in charge of how powerful you are,” Shania told me. “Only you. It's not given to you… And you have to believe that it’s there, that you have it, first of all.”

I was taken with how warm, down-to-earth, and easy to talk to Shania was. It felt like gabbing with a girlfriend, not interviewing one of the most significant artists of my generation.

But, perhaps more importantly, I left our conversation feeling incredibly inspired. Proud to be a woman—and myself.


New Store Opportunity - M&M Food Market in Vancouver

M&M Food Market is undertaking an aggressive coast-to-coast expansion, wanting you to grow alongside with them!

For a limited time only, eligible franchise partners will receive up to 50 percent of construction costs for their new store, reducing the initial capital and upfront investment.

Contact Liz Riley at [email protected] or 905-814-2420 to inquire further about the opportunity of owning an M&M Food Market store in Vancouver.


Sue Big Oil lawsuit continues to gather municipal support

The organizers behind Sue Big Oil, a made-in-BC lawsuit, are looking to expand after Gibsons City Council unanimously agreed to use at least $1 per resident to help fund the fight against global fossil fuel companies.

Sue Big Oil’s premise is simple: gather money from municipalities around BC, and use it to pay a team of lawyers to bring a class-action lawsuit to cover the costs of climate change.


The Genesis guide to Vancouver drag

Every year in the bleak midwinter (February), Celebrities on Davie comes alive as 24 performers compete over four weeks to be named Vancouver’s Next Drag Superstar. On March 2, Genesis emerged as cream of the crop—becoming the first person assigned female at birth to win in the competition’s 10-year history. They accepted their crown in a spangled bodysuit, with a face full of glam and a dramatic black moustache.

“It’s been so crazy,” they tell the Straight over the phone. “It feels like a lifetime ago, but also like no time has passed because I’ve barely left my house since then.”

Featured arts listings

  • Last Film Show: Check out this semi-autobiographical tale of a 9-year-old whose life is changed the first time he goes to the movies. Playing at Vancouver’s Vancity Theatre from April 7 to 14. | April 7 to 14 | $15 | Vancity Theatre

  • Disco Inferno: Running from April 7 to 15—and with more shows expected to be announced soon—Disco Inferno is equal parts musical comedy and disco dance party that transports audiences back to 1976. | April 7 to 15 | $30 | Russian Hall

  • We Love Arabs: The Dance Centre and Théâtre la Seizième present Israeli choreographer Hillel Kogan’s provocative, hilarious take on power dynamics and misplaced good intentions. Apr. 13-15 at Scotiabank Dance Centre. Details here.*

  • Cheer on competing poets at the Canadian Individual Poetry Slam Finals, Apr 28. This year's featured artist is Ontario’s first Poet Laureate, Randell Adjei.*

  • Matriarchs Seen and Unseen: Featuring over 20 striking portraits of matriarchs of the Northwest Coast, the photography exhibition celebrates and honours the work of these women, showcasing their strength, wisdom, and deep connections. | To June 25 | $13 | Bill Reid Gallery of Northwest Coast Art

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Taste the World this Spring! A week-long celebration of the grape, the Vancouver International Wine Festival, Apr. 22-30, featuring South America with a global spotlight on sparking wine.

Check out an International Festival Tasting or indulge in themed lunches, dinners, minglers, and more.


Pink Mountaintops spread the love on "Going Coastal" tour

Check out the itinerary for Pink Mountaintops’ latest tour and you’ll think, “What the eff—has Stephen McBean hit the skids?”

He’s hitting Powell River, Gibsons, and Cumberland (Cumberland!), along with dates in Victoria and Vancouver. And look, these aren’t bad places. These are, in fact, wonderful places! But they’re hardly conventional tour stops for a musician whose band once opened for Coldplay on a strange stadium tour many moons ago, and who took Bon Iver on that outfit’s first tour a couple years later.

Featured music events

  • Covet: Catch the exploratory math rock sounds of Covet when they perform with guests Scarypoolparty and altopalo at the Biltmore. | 6pm | April 8 | $30 | Biltmore Cabaret

  • Two Another: The Australian dance pop duo will be performing at the Fox Cabaret next Tuesday. | 7pm | April 11 | $22.50 | Fox Cabaret

  • Del Barber: Canadian folk music icon Del Barber is coming to Vancouver with Lucette for a show on April 12. | April 12 | 7pm | $14.50 | Biltmore Cabaret

  • A musical celebration of Canadian civil rights hero Viola Desmond—the fearless woman on Canada’s $10 bill. Don’t miss Hey Viola! at Gateway Theatre.*

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The Odlum Brown Fort Langley Jazz and Arts Festival has announced the headlining acts for the Cool Blues Show at Fort Langley Park Jul 21-22.

Experience Grammy-nominated Ruthie Foster Band, Juno winner Crystal Shawanda, Five Alarm Funk, The Harpoonist & the Axe Murderer, among others.


Is Vancouver’s independent restaurant community okay?

On March 22, when Ubuntu Canteen shared on Instagram that its final day of service would be April 16, the comments section said it all. People were sad (“Truly heartbreaking”). They were appreciative (“Thank you for everything you’ve done”). And a few had questions (“The people, the food, the bread will all be missed. I would love to know why”). It mirrored the collective sentiment from a week earlier, when news broke that Chinatown’s Kent’s Kitchen would shutter after 40 years.

Ubuntu and Kent’s are just two of a long list of restaurants to recently announce closures for varying reasons. We took a look into the perils of opening an independent restaurant in Vancouver.

The Rest of the events

  • Bad Company Burlesque Presents: Spring Fling: Get ready to shake off the winter blues with Bad Company Burlesque presents: Spring Fling! at The Morrissey Pub. Hold on to your drinks cause the cast is on FIRE and looking to burn it down. | April 8 | $22 | Morrissey Pub

  • Sakura Days Japan Fair Apr. 15-16 celebrates all things Japan: Over 20 food trucks, performances, arts, and crafts surrounded by the spring-blooming VanDusen Garden!*

  • Vinyl Record Show runs Apr. 16 at the Vancouver Flea Market from 10am to 3pm. Make your way to 703 Terminal Ave, admission only $4!*

  • Experience SYNCRA: Experience SYNCRA is a futuristic cyberpunk city with interactive exhibits that merge music, tech, sci-fi, interactivity and visual design. | To April 30 | $25 | Croatian Cultural Centre

  • Pottery Classes at Kate Metten Ceramics: Bring your favourite book, podcast, blog, zine, or other piece of media to kickstart conversation at this speed friending event. Lightning rounds of six minutes will keep conversations moving and you might just meet your next bestie. | To April 24 | 6 to 8pm | $350 | Kate Metten Ceramics

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