Culture: Pet Shop Boys and Vancouver Strippers

In Music


In Music

Pet Shop Boys  For many of us no longer young, scanning the 23 years between the Pet Shop Boys’ first number-one song (“West End Girls,” from their debut album Please) and their most recent release (“Love Etc.,” now on the charts), is to confront a formative period. My own journey takes me from McDonald’s orange drink and handball in Etobicoke parking lots to an expensive Apple computer and a daily commute to Burnaby. The aging Boys have got consumerism on their minds, and “Love Etc.” begins – as Britney Spears’s last album did – with an incantation: “Gimme more.” But unlike Ms. Spears, the Boys’ intention is irony – not gluttony. Sept. 19, the Centre in Vancouver for Performing Arts,

Burlesque WestIn Books

Burlesque West: Showgirls, Sex and Sin in Postwar Vancouver In the four decades after the Second World War, Vancouver became the favourite port of call for the U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet. This could be for many reasons, but it wasn’t; our erotic entertainments were second only to Las Vegas, which is harder to get to by boat. Vancouver’s reputation for high wages and tony venues drew striptease talent from all over North America, and it’s this period of the city’s ascendancy that Becki Ross examines in her critical history of the notorious scene. With the Vancouver erotic scene now in full retreat, a question that Ross asked one dancer bears repeating: Why did the striptease fall from grace? The dancer’s reply: “Because the world stopped dreaming.” University of Toronto Press,

International Fringe FestivalIn Theatre

Vancouver International Fringe Festival With 400 performances by 65 groups over 11 days, the silver-anniversary Vancouver Fringe promises a mixed bag. From this vantage point, three performances glint with potential: The Hefner Monologues, in which John Hefner, cousin of Hugh, attempts to make a name for himself where someone else already has; The Power of Ignorance, a “darkly comic” mock motivational seminar in which the star, Chris Gibbs (pictured above), argues that it’s our brains that hold us back from our dreams; and Some Reckless Abandon, a one-woman show about signing up for Jesus camp in Honduras. Choose wisely, friend. Sept. 9 to 20, various venues,