A remarkable gift

Tom and Caleb Chan and their family make a generous gift to the university, the foundation upon which the idea for a performing arts centre at the University of British Columbia (UBC) became a reality. The building would ultimately be named the Chan Centre for the Performing Arts after their family, with its beautiful concert hall named in honour of their father, Chan Shun.

The earliest sketches

Commissioned architect Bing Thom begins to conceive the design for the Chan Centre for the Performing Arts - with a pen and paper.

“The design of a performing arts centre encapsulates everything I love and believe about architecture. Like music, a building must always respond to human emotional needs, especially our yearning for the next surprise or the next delight.”

— Bing Thom, Chan Centre architect

Michael Noon comes on board

Previously with the St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts in Toronto, Michael Noon is hired by UBC as the Chan Centre's founding managing director.

Broken ground

Members of the Chan family, former BC Lieutenant Governor David Lam, former UBC president David Strangway, founding managing director Michael Noon, and others celebrate the official groundbreaking of the Chan Centre site.

Constructing a masterpiece

Scenes from the two-year construction period of the Chan Centre for the Performing Arts.

Isaac Stern-approved

One of the world's most famous violinists visits a yet-to-be-opened Chan Centre to meet with staff and UBC School of Music students and share his valued opinion of the new hall's acoustics. The verdict? Five stars!

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Mar 14

The Hour Has Come

The UBC School of Music and the Chan Centre

The UBC School of Music performs the first-ever concert at the Chan Centre (before the seats had numbers!). Program: Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Mozart's Concerto in E flat for Two Pianos, and Srul Irving Glick's The Hour Has Come.

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Looking back

UBC School of Music faculty reflect on the opening of the Chan Centre.

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May 11

Sir Peter Maxwell Davies' Jõb

Chan Centre for the Performing Arts

The inaugural Spring Festival at the Chan Centre kicks off with the world premiere of Sir Peter Maxwell Davies' oratorio, Jõb, adapted from Stephen Mitchell's translation of the ancient biblical poem.

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Now blooming at the Chan Centre

Vancouver journalists are alerted to the official opening of the Chan Centre and its Spring Festival lineup with an innovative "hard hat planter" press release!

May 12

Chan Centre Official Opening Concert

Chan Centre for the Performing Arts

The Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, led by conductor Zuohuang Chen, performs at the official opening of the Chan Centre.

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May 15-31

the tree. the tower. the flood.

UBC Department of Theatre and Film

Part rock opera, part mystery cycle, UBC alumnus John MacLachlan Gray takes the Garden of Eden, the Tower of Babel, and the Great Flood and places them in a contemporary context.

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Sep 21

CBC Radio Orchestra's Avison Series moves in

The CBC Radio Orchestra's signature Avison Series, named for the orchestra's founder John Avison (1915-1983), moves from the Orpheum Theatre into the new Chan Shun Concert Hall. The orchestra would call the Chan Centre home for the next decade until it's untimely disbanding in 2008.

Nov 24

APEC held at UBC

The Chan Centre was located inside the secure zone for the fifth-ever APEC (Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation) meeting.

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Apr 22

The Peking Acrobats

Chan Centre for the Performing Arts

28 of China's most gifted contortionists, jugglers, cyclists, gymnasts and musicians bring their 2,000-year-old tradition of tumbling wizardry and acrobatics to the Chan Centre.

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April 26

The Complete Beethoven Piano Sonatas

Chan Centre for the Performing Arts

After decades of studying and performing Beethoven's piano sonatas individually, pianist and former director of the UBC School of Music Robert Silverman undertakes the mammoth task of performing all 32 throughout 1998.

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"I cannot remember enjoying the complete Beethoven sonatas as much as in these utterly engaging performances by Robert Silverman."

Fanfare Magazine
Oct 14

The Duke Ellington Orchestra

Chan Centre for the Performing Arts

The legendary orchestra, under the direction of Paul Mercer Ellington, performs in the Chan Shun Concert Hall. Proceeds from a post-concert reception with the artists benefited the Black History Month project.

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Oct 23

The VSO becomes a permanent fixture in the concert hall

The Vancouver Symphony Orchestra performs the first concert of their first official series at the Chan Centre - a program of Stravinsky' Danses Concertantes, Bolcom's Orphée-Sérénade, Respighi's Ancient Airs and Dances, and Mozart's Symphony No. 35 in D Major, K. 385. Keith Lockhart, conductor.

Apr 1

A beloved Schubert Octet

Musicians from the ensemble Octagon '99 reflect on the beauty and uniqueness of Schubert's Octet, Op. 166.

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May 2

The Juilliard String Quartet

Chan Centre for the Performing Arts

The famed quartet-in-residence from New York City's prestigious Juilliard School performs as part of the Spring at the Chan festival.

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Feb 20

Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir

Chan Centre for the Performing Arts

The internationally renowned choir, led by Tõnu Kaljuste, makes the first of three memorable visits to the Chan Centre.

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Estonian choir members prove great cultural ambassadors

"Under the fine hand of conductor Tönu Kaljuste, the ensemble performed three motets by Johann Sebastian Bach with profound attention to detail, flawless rhythmic precision..."

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Feb 28

Recital Society and Chan Centre join forces

The Vancouver Recital Society and the Chan Centre combine resources to co-present an entire series of classical music for the first time, entitled Great Performers at the Chan.

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Apr 5

Renée Fleming with Jean-Yves Thibaudet

Vancouver Recital Society

One of the world's most famous sopranos, Renée Fleming, performs her long-awaited Vancouver debut. With pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet.

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“It was just unbelievable. You could hardly imagine it — and yet there she was. It was unforgettable.”

— Rod Mickleburgh, Renée Fleming audience member
May 6

Jon Kimura Parker

Vancouver Recital Society

The Vancouver native performs his Chan Centre debut, and appears for the first time with the VRS since 1985.

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Jul 19 - 26

This way to set: Josie and the Pussycats

The Telus Studio Theatre and the Glass Lobby get transformed into sets for the film Josie and the Pussycats, starring Tara Reid, Rachel Leigh Cook, and Rosario Dawson.

Nov 30

Elgar: The Dream of Gerontius

The UBC School of Music

The UBC Symphony Orchestra, University Singers, and UBC Choral Union perform Elgar's choral masterpiece, based on text from John Henry Newman's poem The Dream of Gerontius.

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Nov 30

UBC musicians excel with Elgar's Dream

"...it would be hard to imagine (Elgar's) first audience not being at least partially swayed had they heard the quality that a student body of singers and players brought to its performance at the Chan Centre on Friday."

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Mar 14

A special space for theatre

“The physical shape of a space can be critical to framing a community’s experience of a theatre event. How we are oriented near or around the action of a play determines how we receive and absorb it. When directing The Creation (March 14 - 23, 2002), I knew I needed a space that was different than a conventional proscenium arch: something more intimate, something that wrapped the play in the embrace of the audience and drew the actors’ gaze upwards towards the heavens. The Telus Studio Theatre is the most remarkable and unique performance space in Vancouver, one that breathes with the needs of the play, that helps us remember that theatre is based in ritual, and that we are all actors surrounded by the watching world.”

-Stephen Drover, MFA Directing, UBC Department of Theatre and Film

Apr 7


UBC School of Music

Special concert marking the 50th anniversary of a major 1952 UBC presentation of Stravinsky's music, as well as the donation of a significant collection of Stravinsky memorabilia from musicologist and UBC alumnus H. Colin Slim.

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From 1952: An all-Stravinsky program

A relic! The original program from the 1952 all-Stravinsky concert presented by UBC.

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May 18

Rebuilding Bill Reid's bridges

Bruce Cockburn, the Haida Rainbow Creek Dancers, the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and more perform in The Spirit Concert, the 10th anniversary of the Bill Reid Invitational Concerts.

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"I can think of no more precious series of happenings than these concerts. They bring together under one roof a stimulating selection of exceptional talents from an unbelievably wide range of musical expression."

— Bill Reid, 1994

Sid Katz becomes managing director

Following the retirement of Michael Noon, Sid Katz becomes the second managing director of the Chan Centre. Katz had been a member of the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences at UBC since 1975 and also held a position with the UBC President's Office in external affairs from 1999 - 2011.

Mar 6-9

The Bartered Bride

UBC Opera

UBC Opera Ensemble and UBC Symphony Orchestra perform the famous Czech masterpiece. With Norbert Baxa, guest conductor, and Josef Novak, guest director.

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UBC offers an authentic Bride

"The chorus sang with the kind of zest often missing in professional performances, and director Novak had them interact with each other in a convincing, natural way."

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Apr 7


Scooby Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed, starring Freddie Prinze Jr. and Linda Cardellini, film scenes in the Chan Centre's glass lobby.

Aug 5-8

The Coronation of Poppea

Early Music Vancouver

First performed at the Teatro Grimani, Venice, in the winter season 1642/43, this 2003 Festival Vancouver highlight brings together a unique group of musicians who specialize in 17th century repertoire.

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Sep 14

Stuart McLean's Canada

CBC Radio Orchestra

Stuart McLean's The History of Canada combines his trademark humour with music by the Joe Trio's Cameron Wilson, and the CBC Radio Orchestra. A world premiere!

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Jan 18

Engaging the audience with words and music

"While doubtless many of the sold-out crowd at the Chan were there to hear old favourites, Glass’ ongoing series of Etudes provided the most extraordinary music of the evening."

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Apr 19

Honorary degrees for Nobel Peace Prize winners

His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Dr. Shirin Ebadi, and Archbishop Desmond Tutu receive honorary degrees from UBC.

View news article
Aug 2-15

Festival Vancouver

Organizations such as the National Youth Orchestra, the CBC Radio Orchestra and Early Music Vancouver perform at the Chan Centre as part of the 4th Festival Vancouver (which later became MusicFest Vancouver), directed by George Laverock. The themes of that year's festival were "The Music and Musicians of France", and "The Music of Haydn".

Dec 10

Yo-Yo Ma, cello, and Emanuel Ax, piano

Vancouver Recital Society

Two of the world's greatest classical musicians return to Vancouver as a duo for the first time since 1986.

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Glamourous piano-cello duo shines

"The approachable A major Sonata, Op.69 provided a sure and clever conclusion, with a performance that emphasized formal design in the opening movement, rhythm in the scherzo, and glittering showmanship in the finale."

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Apr 19

Arlo Guthrie

Chan Centre and Capilano College Performing Arts Theatre

The folk legend of "Alice's Restaurant" fame returns to the Chan Centre for a solo concert.

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May 26

Raffi tosses his cap

The beloved children's entertainer (of "Baby Beluga" fame) is celebrated with an honorary degree from UBC.

Nov 12

Meredith Monk and vocal ensemble

Chan Centre and International Arts Initiatives

Legendary singer, composer, director, and choreographer Meredith Monk explores the uniqueness of voice as an instrument, along with her vocal ensemble.

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Jan 28

Nunavut: Kronos Quartet featuring Tanya Tagaq

Chan Centre and the PuSh Festival

The Kronos Quartet and Tanya Tagaq join forces for an exciting program which includes a world premiere, Nunavut, co-commissioned by the Chan Centre, PuSh Festival, CBC, and the Canada Council for the Arts.

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Apr 27

The sweet spot

"In the audience at the Krystian Zimerman recital was the acclaimed Polish contralto Ewa Podles, who was to give a recital for the VRS three days later at the Chan Centre. Mr. Zimerman was very particular about pianos and travelled with his own piano and piano technician. So, after the concert and after the greetings backstage, Mr. Zimerman went onstage and lay down under the piano to start dismantling it. Bing Thom had come back stage and so had Ewa Podles. Next thing, I noticed Bing and Ewa Podles engaged in an animated conversation on the stage in front of the piano (with Mr. Zimerman underneath!). I heard Bing telling Ewa Podles: ”you must stand here on this spot exactly. It’s the sweet spot and you will sound best from here."

Leila Getz, founder and artistic director, Vancouver Recital Society

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Jun 1

Al Gore: An Inconvenient Truth

UBC President's Office

Former US Vice President Al Gore visits UBC for an invite-only talk on his favourite topic, climate change. The event coincided with the release of his book, An Inconvenient Truth, and the farewell of outgoing UBC president Martha Piper.

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Sep 29

Toope takes the reins

Professor Stephen J. Toope is installed as the 12th president and vice-chancellor of the University of British Columbia.

Read Installation Address
Oct 11

Crofton House Gala

A gala event presented by Crofton House school featuring music by Chantal Kreviazuk and appearances by Olympic athletes Cassie Campbell and Becky Scott. Hosted by CBC's Peter Mansbridge.

Oct 22

Bill Duthie Memorial Lecture with Adrienne Clarkson

Vancouver Writers Fest, the UBC Alma Mater Society, and the Chan Centre

Former Canadian Governor General Adrienne Clarkson presents stories from her memoir, Heart Matters.

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Nov 19

New works celebrate Shostakovich's birthday

"Montreal cellist Dyachkov was the soloist who gave us an intense, beautiful performance, with a solo cadenza that was a gripping, more than speech-like soliloquy."

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Nov 25

Del McCoury Band

Global Arts Concerts, Pacific Bluegrass and Heritage Society, and the Chan Centre

Calling all Del-heads! Bluegrass legend Del McCoury and his all-star band bring their classic down home tunes to the Chan Centre stage.

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Mar 17

Chan Centre 10th Anniversary Celebration

UBC School of Music

Jesse Read and Bruce Pullan lead an all-Beethoven program featuring pianist Jane Coop and others, in recognition of the 10th anniversary of the Chan Centre's opening concert.

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Nov 24

Why the Dervishes whirl

The whirling ritual is one of the world’s most exquisite spiritual ceremonies—and no one performs it better than the Whirling Dervishes of Turkey.

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Feb 17

Ornette Coleman

The Chan Centre for the Performing Arts in partnership with Coastal Jazz and Blues Society

One of the most brilliant jazz musicians of all time, Ornette Coleman, plays at the Chan Centre as part of the 2010 Cultural Olympiad following his 2007 Pulitzer Prize win.

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Mar 2

The Dream Healer

UBC School of Music

World premiere performances of Lloyd Burritt's The Dream Healer is based on Timothy Findley's book, Pilgrim. Focused on Carl Jung at the Burghölzli Clinic in Zürich, it is a story about disintegration of the psyche.

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"(The Dream Healer's) music has a delicate, impressionistic perfume to it – mysterious, with a hint of poison in the air…and, emerging from the swirl like a shining dagger, an aria of spectacular beauty. Emma's aria "Orchard" does a wonderful job of capturing a subject dear to Timothy Findley’s heart, the conflicted being."

— Max Wyman, arts and culture commentator
Sep 28

UBC Centenary Gala

Chan Centre and CBC Radio Orchestra

Ben Heppner and the CBC Radio Orchestra perform in this celebration of the 100th anniversary of the signing of UBC's 1908 University Act. Also on the program is the world premiere of Stephen Chatman's Earth Songs, a newly commissioned work for orchestra and choir.

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"(Earth Songs) is the most major work I've ever written. It expresses a real concern for the environment and for the fragility of the Earth."

— Stephen Chatman, composer and professor at the UBC School of Music
Apr 18


Chan Centre for the Performing Arts

Portugal's "queen of fado" Mariza returns to the Chan Centre for her second visit, celebrating the release of her album Transparente, which features tributes to Fernando Mauricio, Carlos do Carmo and Amalia Rodrigues.

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Fado: Joy, Heartbreak, and Yearning

Mariza specializes in this emotive genre that was born in the neighbourhood tabernas of Lisbon and is marked by its signature feeling of yearning, or 'saudade'.

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Sep 17

The Live Sessions

The Chan Centre, in collaboration with CBC Radio Two, launches The Live Sessions in the Telus Studio Theatre which were recorded live for CBC's Canada Live series and included bands such as Hey Ocean, Jets Overhead, and Hayley Sales throughout 2009 and 2010.

Nov 21

Dan Savage - Savage Love Live

The Chan Centre and UBC AMS

American author, journalist, and LGBTQ2S activist Dan Savage brings his popular "Savage Love" column to life on the Chan Centre stage.

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Feb 4 - 7

Louis Riel

UBC School of Music and Theatre at UBC

The UBC Opera Ensemble and UBC Symphony Orchestra perform the Western Canadian premiere of Harry Somer's Louis Riel, originally written for Canada's 1967 centennial. With Nancy Hermiston, director, and Dwight Bennett, conductor.

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Olympic and Paralympic athletes making a difference

UBC presents a series of provocative dialogues surrounding the 2010 Olympics entitled Sport and Society. Featuring Richard Pound, Shirley and Sharon Firth, Stephen Lewis, Rick Hansen, and more.

“We wanted to choose athletes, both Olympic and Paralympic, who have used their celebrity to make a difference. This series is meant to inspire and engage Canadians through an open dialogue about sport and the social impacts of the Olympic Games.”

— Sid Katz, Chan Centre managing director (2002 - 2010) and former executive director of UBC Community Affairs
Oct 17

Margaret Trudeau

Chan Centre Presents

One of Canada's most formidable voices, Margaret Trudeau, visits the Chan Centre to discuss her memoir, Changing My Mind, which centres around her profound journey with bipolar disorder.

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Joyce Hinton and Cameron McGill become co-managing directors

The Chan Centre moves to a leadership structure, and two of founding managing directors Michael Noon's very first hires, Joyce Hinton and Cameron McGill, move into the position of co-managing director.

Dec 17 + 18

Vivaldi's Four Seasons

Vancouver Symphony Orchestra

Each year, the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra presents Vivaldi's timeless Four Seasons. In 2010, former VSO concertmaster and acclaimed violinist Dale Barltrop led the piece.

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Mar 12

Hugh Masekela

Chan Centre for the Performing Arts

Legendary South African trumpeter performs at the Chan Centre for the first time, and gives a free public lecture at UBC's Robson Square on the musician’s role as a cultural ambassador and how music can raise social and political awareness.

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Jun 18

VISI turns five

The Vancouver International Song Institute (VISI), headed by the UBC School of Music's Rena Sharon, celebrates it's 5th anniversary with a "Vancouver Schubertiade" gala concert and party at the Chan Centre.

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Oct 16

Still preaching at 73: The Globe and Mail talks with Mavis Staples

"I have come too far, and I am still on that highway and I will be there until Dr. King's dream has been realized." Mavis Staples opened her only Canadian tour date with a powerhouse rendition of Freedom's Highway. On the day that a monument to Martin Luther King was dedicated in the National Mall in Washington, Staples was celebrating."

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Oct 23

2011 CBC Massey Lectures - Adam Gopnik


The CBC Massey Lectures celebrate 50 years with author, cultural observer, and famed New Yorker contributor Adam Gopnik's meditation on Winter. This was the fourth in a series of five lectures.

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His turn at the lectern: The National Post talks with Adam Gopnik

"Adam Gopnik was waiting for the bus at the corner of 58th Street and Madison Avenue in New York City. He’d recently purchased his first iPhone and, while checking his email, received a message from Bernie Lucht, the executive producer of Ideas, a show on CBC radio. The email was an invitation for Gopnik to deliver an upcoming instalment of the Massey Lectures. Gopnik immediately knew that he would accept the offer, but, getting on the bus, was struck by the question that must greet all potential Massey lecturers: “What am I going to talk about?” He wanted to talk about something quintessentially Canadian, but with universal appeal. Almost immediately, an idea popped into his head. "By the time I got off the bus at 86th Street, I had the thing worked out in my head."

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Nov 3

David Suzuki on the global eco-crisis

In conjunction with the opening of UBC's Centre for Interactive Research on Sustainability (CIRS), David Suzuki speaks at the Chan Centre on the urgency of environmental degradation and its connections with human society. Co-presented by the UBC Sustainability Initiative, the Office of the VP Research and International, and the Provost and VP Academic.

Nov 17

Terry Global Speaker Series: Bill McKibben

Bill McKibben shares experiences and first-hand accounts from the global grassroots climate change fight.

Nov 19

Requiem for Peace: Reflections of Hiroshima

Vancouver Chamber Choir and the Chan Centre

Jon Washburn leads the Vancouver Chamber Choir in a performance of Larry's Nickel's Requiem for Peace. Presented in conjunction with the Museum of Anthropology's Ishiuchi Miyako exhibit "Hiroshima".

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Requiem for Peace at UBC

The Vancouver Chamber Choir's Jennifer McLaren speaks with Museum of Anthropology curator Karen Duffek and Requiem for Peace composer Larry Nickel.

“This piece takes on a very serious challenge, which is to try and represent and reconcile the many different cultures we have in this country. It’s a tall order for any composer but I think Larry has done a wonderful job and the students have responded with tremendous togetherness.”

— Bruce Pullan, former music director of the Vancouver Bach Choir
Aug 13

MusicFest Vancouver: Vancouver Sings

MusicFest Vancouver

MusicFest Vancouver celebrates the 75th birthday of the CBC with a program of choral performances.

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Jan 22

Listen: Martin Santangelo on flamenco

As part of the Chan Centre Connects series, Noche Flamenca artistic director Martin Santangelo talks about the origins and evolution of the art form of flamenco.

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Feb 9 - 18

Problem Child & The End of Civilization

Theatre at UBC

In these two blistering one-act plays, a single seedy motel room houses the world of one of Canada’s most accomplished playwrights, George F. Walker.

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Apr 24

Inti-Illimani 45th Anniversary Celebration

Brisa Productions and Caravan World Rhythms

Internationally renowned Chilean ensemble Inti-Illimani perform in honour of their 45th anniversary, traversing selections from their nearly 400-song repertoire.

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Oct 12

Listen: Angélique Kidjo speaks at UBC

Kidjo speaks on women's rights in Africa and beyond. The panel discussion, "Africa at UBC: Performance, Projects, and Pedagogy" also featured UBC's Annette Henry, Maneo Mohale, Samson Nashon, Bonny Norton, Zilna Shavdia, and Handel Wright.

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Nov 22

Margaret Atwood: Writing the Future

Terry Global Speaker Series

Canadian literary icon Margaret Atwood will explore whether or not one can write about “the future”, including a significant exploration of the meaning of "zombie apocalypse".

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Nov 22

Bramwell Tovey, Doctor of Laws

Vancouver Symphony Orchestra music director Bramwell Tovey receives an honorary degree from UBC for his contributions to the community through his relationship with the UBC School of Music and the Chan Centre.

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Nov 24

Punch Brothers

Chan Centre for the Performing Arts

Five uber-talented string players come together for this lively performance, full of sophisticated, stacked harmonies and lots of fun.

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"I was in New York for a conference and a colleague had invited me to come to a club for a musical showcase where they were playing. (The Punch Brothers) came on and they were so young...they were having so much fun and teased each other - you could feel their joy. And then they would play and they were fantastic. The audience just loved them."

— Joyce Hinton, Chan Centre co-managing director
Jan 23

Q & A with Linda Lee Thomas

Ahead of Ziegler's Chan Centre Presents performance, VSO principal pianist shares her thoughts on Astor Piazzolla, her favourite Pablo Ziegler piece, and the ‘magic’ of her beloved tango.

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Feb 21

Violinist is no standard-issue virtuoso

"Calling violinist Augustin Hadelich something of an enigma isn't meant as condescension in any way. I can think of no young fiddle player at the moment whose work is more intriguing."

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Mar 9

UBC Faculty of Medicine Spring Gala

The Spring Gala returns for its 19th year, featuring 175 performers in 24 performances, all in the name of charity. 2013 proceeds supported the Kelty Patrick Dennehy Foundation.

See photos
Aug 7

G.F. Handel's Israel in Egypt

Early Music Vancouver

Outgoing EMV artistic director José Verstappen's legacy is celebrated with a grand gala production of Handel's Israel in Egypt.

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Sep 2

New UBC students imagine the possibilities

Each September, UBC hosts Imagine Day, where new students are oriented to campus and their faculty. The Chan Centre plays host for 'Meet the Dean' and exciting first-day activities.

"I see arts students on their first day on campus in (the Chan Centre) for Meet the Dean, and I see them at the end when they graduate four years later. So they bookend their experiences at UBC with this hall.”

— Gage Averill, Dean of the Faculty of Arts at UBC
Sep 7

African Grandmother's Tribunal

The Stephen Lewis Foundation

Six grandmothers from across sub-Saharan Africa present their personal testimonies before the Tribunal's judges: Gloria Steinem, Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond, Joy Phumaphi, and Stephen Lewis.

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Oct 19

Kronos at 40

Chan Centre for the Performing Arts

The Kronos Quartet perform a 40th anniversary program that includes the world premiere of Philip Glass' String Quartet No. 6 and Canadian premiere of Nicole Lizee's Hymnals. A pre-concert talk with Glass and CBC's Eleanor Wachtel took place onstage before the show.

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Kronos enthralls with the eclectic and electric

"At 40, Kronos remains fiercely democratic, fearlessly open-minded, and as committed to the truly new as ever."

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Philip Glass and String Quartet No. 6

Glass shares his thoughts on his sixth string quartet, a world premiere performed by the Kronos Quartet at the Chan Centre in celebration of their 40th anniversary.

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Dec 1

Christmas at the Chan

Trinity Western University and the Chan Centre

The tenth anniversary of this annual concert includes the Trinity Western University family of choirs, the Langley Fine Arts School Senior and Children's Choirs and Pacific Mennonite Children's Choir, all with full orchestra under the direction of Dr. Wes Janzen.

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Jan 18

Danse Lhasa Danse

The Chan Centre and the PuSh Festival

Bringing seven dancers, four singers and five instrumentalists together, artistic visionary Pierre-Paul Savoie’s Danse Lhasa Danse combines beautiful music with powerful choreography to create a profound tribute to Lhasa de Sela.

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Listen: Pierre-Paul Savoie on his tribute to Lhasa

The artistic director of PPS Danse speaks with CBC's Yolaine Mottet about the Danse Lhasa Danse project, which was performed as part of the Chan Centre Presents series in partnership with the PuSh Festival.

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Mar 1

Wynton Marsalis meets the next generation

Famed trumpeter Wynton Marsalis meets with some budding horn players after his Chan Centre Presents performance.

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Mar 15

SamulNori with Kim Duk Soo

Chan Centre for the Performing Arts

Korean drumming ensemble SamulNori, led by Kim Duk Soo, brings their remarkable tradition of percussion and visually stunning acrobatics to the Chan Centre for the first time for both a performance and a free all ages workshop.

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UBC's Dr. Nathan Hesselink on Kim Duk Soo and SamulNori

UBC ethnomusicologist Dr. Nathan Hesselink, who has dedicated his professional life to studying South Korean drumming, on what SamulNori's visit to the Chan Centre means to him and his students.

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Mar 19 + 20

UBC Opera Ball

Each year, UBC Opera hosts a special fundraiser on the Chan Shun Concert Hall stage with a 3-course dinner and dancing to the big band sounds of the Dal Richards Orchestra.

Oct 16 + 17

Severn Cullis-Suzuki and Tanya Tagaq combine passion and innovation

A unique collaboration between environmentalist Severn Cullis-Suzuki and experimental vocalist Tanya Tagaq, who forged their respective talents to premiere a work of art that addressed issues such as global warming and mass extinction with fearlessness, creativity, and grace.

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"It was truly a transformative experience with gifted performers, in the ideal venue. The audience was so moved after Tagaq's song there was an awed silence in the Telus Studio Theatre as people tried to process the experience."

— Mary-Lynn Young, associate dean, Faculty of Arts at UBC
Oct 24

Diego El Cigala connects with Vancouver's Roma community

This event—a mixture of arts, academia and advocacy—brought together a cross section of Vancouver's communities, including the diverse Romani communities, in conversation and in experience. People were describing the event as "moving," "informative," and even "epic." There were UBC students, musicians, flamenco-aficionados, refugee advocates and curious folks who wanted to expand their mind. The Chan Centre supported the first public Romani event in Vancouver in 15 years and did so in a way that allowed Roma to speak and represent themselves. You provided the space and support for true public engagement. All we can say is: thank you, nice tuke, ov sasti, kosonom, gracias."

-Dr. Shayna Plaut, Liu Institute Scholar and UBC alum

View Event
Jan 9

Brian Regan

Live Nation

Legendary comedian Brian Regan, of whom both David Letterman and Jerry Seinfeld are big fans, returns to the Chan Centre for another rousing stand-up performance.

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Mar 15

Chick Corea and Herbie Hancock

Chan Centre for the Performing Arts

Two of the world's most famous pianists and musical innovators, Chick Corea and Herbie Hancock, visit the Chan Centre for a historic performance. And yes, they signed the piano.

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Stunning! Two masters in tune with each other and reverent of each other, there was much more than the unique improvisational magic happening at that concert. I am thrilled to have taken part in it as an audience member.

— Wlad Nefedow, Chan Centre Presents subscriber
May 29 + 30

Karen Gomyo plays Mendelssohn

Vancouver Symphony Orchestra

Violinist Karen Gomyo and popular guest conductor Jun Märkl join the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra for Mendelssohn's beautiful Violin Concerto.

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Oct 1

A Buena Vista Social Club Farewell

Orquesta Buena Vista Social Club farewell tour audience members filled out postcards with goodbyes and fond memories of their beloved music.

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Mar 18

Words in Motion

Chan Centre for the Performing Arts

Three pairs of Vancouver-based writers and choreographers perform brand new collaborative works as part of the Beyond Words series in the Telus Studio Theatre.

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Apr 2

Q & A with Gary Cristall

Vancouver Folk Music Festival co-founder, artist manager, and arts administrator Gary Cristall discusses the history of folk music in Canada, including Woody Guthrie and his son Arlo, who performed as part of the Chan Centre Presents series.

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Apr 26

Roots and Shoots program introduces young ones to world music

Roots and Shoots is a music education outreach program run by the Chan Centre for under-resourced Vancouver area elementary schools, offering students the opportunity to experience a local world music ensemble such as Masabo in concert, plus workshops held in each school.

May 26

Behind the Scenes at UBC Graduation

The Chan Centre's assistant technical director Andrew Riter explains the work that goes on behind the scenes in order to prepare the stage for bi-annual UBC graduation ceremonies.

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Nov 18

John Corigliano master class

Part of alumni UBC's Master Mind Master Class series, a deep look into the mind and method of Oscar-winning composer John Corigliano.

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Nov 22

Installation of Professor Santa J. Ono

UBC Ceremonies and Events

Professor Santa J. Ono is installed as the 15th President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of British Columbia. The new president even played cello during the celebration concert on our stage.

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Nov 23

Elvis Costello in conversation with Stephen Quinn

The Vancouver Writers Fest presents iconic singer-songwriter Elvis Costello. He discusses his new memoir, Unfaithful Music & Disappearing Ink with CBC's Stephen Quinn, and even performs a few impromptu tunes.

Feb 7

Manual Cinema's Ada/Ava

The poignant tale of aging twin sisters who care for a lighthouse is portrayed through vintage overhead projectors, screens, puppets, actors, live-feed cameras, sound design, and live music in Manual Cinema's Ada/Ava, part of the Chan Centre's Beyond Words series.

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Mar 25

Salsa at the Chan

Sal Ferreras and his Latin Orchestra

Renowned percussionist, educator, and cultural catalyst Sal Ferreras and his Latin Orchestra perform an evening of sizzling live music & dancing, all in support of The Lipstick Project.

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Mar 26

Anda Union share throat singing techniques

Members of Anda Union conduct a special Chan Centre Connects workshop at UBC's Wesbrook Village that includes a throat singing demonstration and lesson.

Mar 26

The Choir of King's College Cambridge

Early Music Vancouver

One of the world's best known choral groups. led by long-time conductor Stephen Cleobury, makes a very special sold out appearance in Vancouver.

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Apr 8

A Song of Joys: Celebrating the Chan Centre at 20

UBC School of Music

The UBC School of Music celebrates the 20th anniversary of the Chan Centre with a special program of Mozart's Requiem and Stephen Chatman's A Song of Joys.

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"This beautiful place embodies our sense of community in every way: students coming together in shared aspiration; faculty and students working together in shared accomplishment; and performers and audience members gathering together in shared excitement and delight."

— Richard Kurth, director of the UBC School of Music
Jan 17 - Feb 3

UBC Theatre: She Kills Monsters

UBC Theatre

The students of UBC Theatre take over the Telus Studio Theatre for their yearly run in the theatre’s flexible space.

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UBC Theatre’s production perfectly conveys the geekery, heart, heroics, and humour found in Qui Nguyen’s pop-culture play.

— Andrea Warner, Georgia Straight
Feb 19

A conversation with Abdullah Ibrahim

The legendary South African jazz musician discusses his career, artistic journey, and the Jazz Epistles with CBC’s Michael Juk at Vancouver Community College.

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Apr 23

Laurie Anderson

Chan Centre Presents

Fans have the chance to meet Laurie Anderson following her sold-out multimedia performance in support of her new book All the Things I Lost in the Flood.

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Apr 28

The circus comes to the Chan

Chan Centre Presents

Australian contemporary circus troupe Circa amazes audiences with their stark acrobatics in Opus, where they are accompanied live by the Debussy String Quartet.

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Sep 26

Listen: Michio Kaku on physics and the universe

UBC Connects and Professor Santa J. Ono present theoretical physicist and best-selling author Michio Kaku in a sold-out lecture.