Herald Winter Arts Guide: frosty fun and festivities

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From theatre to music to dance, and everything in between, we’ve compiled a comprehensive list of marquee productions and exhibits on Calgary’s arts calendar. There’s something for everyone in our Late Spring Arts Guide.


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Theatre Calgary

This year marks the introduction of Theatre for All, a new $39 ticket initiative.

Nov. 30-Dec. 31: A Christmas Carol. A timeless tale of redemption, told as only Theatre Calgary can tell it: full of life, spectacle, and backed by a huge cast. A new Scrooge and a new Tiny Tim lead the cast of Christmas characters.

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Jan. 23-Feb. 11: Meteor Shower. Steve Martin’s absurd comedy about a chaotic dinner party amid a once-in-a-lifetime meteor shower.

Alberta Theatre Projects

Feb. 20-Mar. 10: The Black Bonspiel of Wullie MacCrimmon. The W.O. Mitchell play about a curler making a deal with the devil happens to coincide with the Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Calgary. Wullie MacCrimmon, a shoemaker in the 1930s, says he’d give anything to skip his curling team in the MacDonald Brier. So the devil makes him an offer. 

Vertigo Theatre

Nov. 18-Dec. 17: Sleuth. The ultimate game of at and mouse concerns a mystery novelist who lures his wife’s lover to his country home and convinces him to stage a robbery of her jewelry. It sets off a chain of events that leaves audiences trying to decipher who is in control.

Jan. 27-Feb. 25: Heist. A world premiere from a Calgary playwright, Heist shows there is no honour among thieves when you’re planning the perfect diamond robbery.

Downstage Theatre

Feb. 29-Mar. 10: beautiful man. Tickets are $30 for this biting satire about the portrayal of women in film and television. A whirlwind tour of a world where women rule society as politicians, hunters, queens and policewomen – all while gazing at the semi-nude Beautiful Man. 

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The music of boy bands like The Bee Gees will be showcased at Stage West. Credit: HBO PST

Stage West

Nov. 17-Feb. 4, 2024: Step by Step, Evolution of the Greatest Boy Bands. The show recreates music history from the Beatles to The Bee Gees to the New Kids on the Block and finally on to *NSYNC and the Backstreet Boys.

StoryBook Theatre

Nov. 24-Dec. 30: Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. Everyone’s favourite flying car comes to life in this musical adaptation of the classic family film! An eccentric inventor with the help of his children restores an old race car from a scrap heap. They soon discover that the car has magical powers.

Lunchbox Theatre

Nov. 28-Dec. 17: With Bells On. A mild-mannered accountant heads out for his first night of adventure after a nasty divorce and gets stuck in the elevator with a 7-foot Glamazon from down the hall. The unlikely duo have to work together to escape, especially since the Christmas Queen is expected on stage.

In a scene from Rosebud Theatre’s All Is Calm, Allied and German soldiers lay down their weapons and meet in No Man’s Land during a Christmas truce in 1914. jpg

Rosebud Theatre

Nov. 3-Dec. 23: All is Calm. The remarkable true story of the Christmas truce of 1914 –an extraordinary night of camaraderie, music, and above all peace, told in the words and songs of the men who lived it.

Pumphouse Theatres

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Nov. 22-25: Common Ground Festival 7. Every night has something new and exciting.

Dec. 8-6: It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play. Based on the classic film by Frank Capra. An inspirational, heartwarming story about giving and receiving, about life and all the paths we walk, about true and lasting love and guardian angels. 

Imagine Performing Arts

Coming in March 2024. The Magician’s Nephew, from The Chronicles of Narnia, by C. S. Lewis.

University of Calgary School of Creative and Performing Arts

Nov. 24-Dec. 2. Shakespeare in Love. Set in 16th-century London, upstart playwright William Shakespeare battles with writer’s block and discovers unexpected inspiration in the irrepressible pull of a forbidden romance. 


Calgary Philharmonic

Nov. 25: Price + Schumann². The evening opens with Florence Price’s spiritually-inflected Andante Moderato, then Clara Wieck Schumann’s Piano Concerto is performed by Ukrainian pianist Anna Fedorova who makes her Calgary Phil debut, and the evening ends with Robert Schumann’s Rhenish Symphony.

Dec. 1-2: Handel’s Messiah. The glorious Christmas tradition returns. 

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Jan. 1: Salute to Vienna New Year’s. Timeless music, dazzling costumes, and breathtaking dancing.

Jan. 13: Starman, David Bowie. A night with the music of one of the greatest pop/glam/rock enigmas.

Calgary Opera

Nov. 24-26, Dec. 1-3: Beauty and the Beast. A timeless story about valuing kindness and character over superficial traits like physical beauty and social refinement. Vittorio Giannini composed this one-act opera in 1938, which provides a charming entry point for children into the world of opera.

Feb. 3, 4, 7, 9: The Elixir of Love. A light and lyrical comedy in the bel canto style. It is an opera with the tenderest of hearts and the sweetest of melodies, including Nemorino’s beloved aria ‘Una furtiva lagrima’.

Festival Hall

Dec. 1: Katie Tupper. A Saskatoon neo-soul singer.

Alberta Ballet’s production of The Nutcracker runs Dec. 15-24 in Calgary at the Jubilee Auditorium. Photo by Nigel Goodwin jpg


Alberta Ballet

Dec. 15-24: The Nutcracker. A treasured holiday tradition with 120 performers. Klara and her Nutcracker travel across an unknown kingdom, battle the dark magic of the Rat Tsar and dance with the courtiers of the Sugar Plum Fairy.

Feb. 15-17: Beijing Dance Theatre in Hamlet. Yuanyuan Wang, one of China’s leading choreographers shares that there is no singular moment when Shakespeare’s famous speech, To Be or Not To Be, is delivered, but rather is a question pondered throughout the entire ballet.

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Jeunesse Classique Ballet

Dec. 8-10: The Nutcracker. A purely classical ballet company for young and talented dancers.


Dec.4-31: Family of Jazz live stream. Filmed live during the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival 2023 in Massachusetts, accompanied by the six-piece ensemble led by Rubim de Toledo with vocalist Karimah.

Jan. 18-28: Olio. Part of One Yellow Rabbit’s High Performance Rodeo. A new performance created by company dancers Catherine Hayward, Sabrina Naz Comanescu and Kaja Irwin; DJD alumnus Deanne Walsh; and DJD artistic director Kimberley Cooper. 

University of Calgary School of Creative and Performing Arts

Nov. 24-25: TRANSFoRM. An evening dance program featuring choreographers Mario Obeid and Zaria Rajha, Rufi Oswaldo, and Roma Thakore.

Jann Arden sings Christmas songs at Arts Commons. Photo by LBMG /jpg


Arts Commons Presents

Nov. 24: The Barra MacNeils, An East Coast Christmas. A musical potpourri of traditional MacNeil favourites gleaned from Christmas ceilidhs, midnight masses, and the festive frolics.

Dec. 19-20: A Jann Arden Christmas. A festive evening filled with favourite Christmas songs and Jann’s best-loved hits.

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Scotiabank Saddledome

Dec. 1: Jeff Dunham, Still Not Cancelled tour. Ventriloquist and comedian.

Feb. 12: City and Colour with Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats.

Bella Concert Hall

Nov. 26: Christmas with the Ennis Sisters. Sibling harmonies and endearing humour with a mix of original songs, holiday classics, humorous recitations and a little Irish step-dancing.

Dec. 18: Calgary Jazz Orchestra takes the stage for its season opener.

Dec. 20, 22, 23: The Heebee-jeebees are celebrating three decades of a cappella harmony and humour.

Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity

Nov. 25: The Debaters Live Holiday Tour. Comics go toe to toe in a battle of laughs and logic and the audience picks the winner. 

Dec. 16: Mariya Stokes. Alberta-born singer is known for her quick wit and signature retro style. With expressive vocals and gritty steel guitar, Stokes is committed to empowering women and telling their stories.

In 1993, four lads from Calgary started a singing group to get dates. Now, countless songs, stories and shows later, the Heebee-jeebees are bringing their comic a cappella stylings to the Bella Concert Hall for a 30th-anniversary event. Calgary

Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium

Nov. 28: Christmas with The Tenors, an operatic pop and classic group.

Nov. 21-26: Hadestown, Broadway Across Canada. Winner of eight 2019 Tony Awards including Best Musical and the 2020 Grammy® Award for Best Musical Theater Album.

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Jan. 16-21: Mean Girls, Broadway Across Canada. The story of a naïve newbie who falls prey to a trio of lionized frenemies.

Grey Eagle Resort and Casino

Nov. 24: Gord Bamford. Canadian country musician is a 26-time CCMA award-winner.

Nov. 30: Glass Tiger. Grammy-nominated and 5x Juno Award winners.

Dec. 31: Trooper, New Year’s Eve gala.


Telus Spark Science Centre

Dec. 15: Greatest Hits 2023. This Spark After Dark (18+) event will whisk guests back to all the unforgettable moments and incredible fun had throughout the year.


Newzones Gallery of Contemporary Art

Nov. 30-Jan. 5: Peter Hofer, Charlevoix, 2023. Landscape works from a Canadian contemporary artist.

Contemporary Calgary

Nov. 30-April 14: Resistance and Respiration. Exploring how contemporary disabled artists make breathing more dynamic and less so dangerous.

Sculptor Katie Ohe will showcase some of her early work in an exhibit at Herringer Kiss Gallery. Photo by Azin Ghaffari /Azin Ghaffari/Postmedia

Herringer Kiss Gallery

Nov. 25-Dec. 22: Optical Wonders: Velma Foster & Katie Ohe. Exhibition of the women’s early work including richly coloured serigraph prints. Both artists were on the cutting edge of optical printmaking in the province. 

Studio Bell, home of the National Music Centre

Dec. 14-15: The Andy Kim Christmas. The holiday benefit concert will feature a star-studded lineup led by singer Andy Kim.


Nov. 25-Dec. 17: Once Upon a Christmas, at Heritage Park.

Dec. 7-31: Glow, At Stampede Park. An indoor holiday experience with live entertainment, and a light garden illuminated by millions of twinkling bulbs.

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