Stretch your imagination and support Vancouver arts with these upcoming events and festivals

Every time I read the news it seems another arts program or venue is shutting down or losing funding. There's an argument that the arts should be self-sustaining, and if people wanted to see theatre, music or film, they’d pay good money for it.

So why should we care if theatres are closing and galleries stand empty?

I'm in Brisbane, Australia right now, and while I never expected Australia to be a Mecca of the arts, you can’t pass a corner without seeing some form of public art. Theatres and galleries are everywhere and free public performances are a weekly occurrence.

Sure, Australia’s economy is booming, but this dedication to the arts isn’t just about money: in fact it seems to be more about national identity and pride than simply funding.

In an admittedly unscientific exercise I asked my 10-year-old daughter how it felt to be surrounded by art. “It makes me imagine that anything is possible,” she told me. And she’s right.

Again and again studies have shown that hearing new music, watching a play, examining a painting, or seeing a film forces us to think in alternative ways, develop new assumptions and to entertain different points of view.

The trend we’re seeing of an eroding arts culture isn’t actually saving money, but instead stifling our growth and creativity. So head out, challenge yourself see a play, visit an art gallery take in a film.

Vancouver Arts and Entertainment Events