Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Granville Street: Performance Space

For those of us that do not have the time or money to attend "real" events and pavilions for the Vancouver Olympics, there is Granville Street. As soon as you depart the Granville Station you have arrived. Most of the street is blocked off, the police are stationed at every intersection and a wave of people move up and down creating a street fair/marti gras atmosphere. The general hustle bustle vibe carries you down the street in a wave of energy and good cheer. The regular "don't make eye contact" routine of the downtown Vancouverite is abandoned as strangers cheer for Canada and welcome other nations. I could not help smile the whole way down.

On the night that I was there, mini performances popped up as I walked up and down. A group of Russians played the drums and sang a Russian Folk song. A man dressed in a white unitard cross country skied down the length of the street. Groups of Canadians clumped together to cheer a recent victory. A seemingly endless stream of people jumping up and down on the plywood platforms supporting the lantern trees. The police telling a man he couldn't carry his girlfriend on his shoulders. A man, on his own, running down the street yelling "B.C. buds the best". And as I walked, I felt bright and awake, ready for the next mini performance to begin.
So if you get a chance to experience Granville street during the games, take it, it's free.

1 comment:

  1. My best experience of the downtown scene so far came last night, after exiting the amazing performance of Dark Matters by Kidd Pivot at the Playhouse. Surfing the wave of bodies back toward the City Centre stop on the Canada line my partner and I were accosted by some animated Russians (they're everywhere), who insisted, despite our vigorous denials, that we must be Italian (!), and that we couldn't possibly be from Vancouver. Go figure.