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Lively City: Bridesmaids' woes, abstract art, Nordic fashion and more

Anyone who’s ever donned satin or taffeta to stand up next to a friend while she says her I Do’s will appreciate this one. Metro Theatre is offering up 5 Women Wearing the Same Dress, onstage Feb.

Anyone who’s ever donned satin or taffeta to stand up next to a friend while she says her I Do’s will appreciate this one.

Metro Theatre is offering up 5 Women Wearing the Same Dress, onstage Feb. 20 to March 12 – and Burnaby’s own Laura Luongo is one of the stars.

The play was written by Alan Ball (best known for his Academy Award for American Beauty and for creating the hit HBO series Six Feet Under) and tackles problems of the modern world through the eyes of five bridesmaids at a fancy Southern wedding.

“Throw together a mixed and mostly bitter party of five bridesmaids (in hideous dresses) and let them steal away from the reception to repeatedly dish the shallow bride and guests,” an outline explains. “With the help of a little booze and a little pot, initial venting about their current situation soon develops into tales of malaise about where they are in life and then more potent social commentary.”

Luongo stars alongside Yvette Benson, Michelle Weinbom, Christine Reinfort and Melanie Preston, with Devon Oakande providing the male presence as an usher who falls for one of the bridesmaids.

Metro Theatre is at 1370 Southwest Marine Dr., Vancouver. Call 604-266-7191 or see



An art student from Burnaby has his work on display in a solo exhibition at a Vancouver gallery.

Franco Ferrari, a 17-year-old Moscrop student, has a show underway at the Omega Gallery.

Rational Emotion features a collection of abstract art in which Franco’s goal is to capture the essence of the human spirit.

“These paintings are my thoughts,” he says in an artist statement. “They vary in colour, thickness and strokes. I express rage, loss, happiness, love, sadness … the human colour spectrum.”

Franco works to express the emotions that every person experiences as they move through life.

“Some things just make us so angry or so in love that we can’t contain them,” he says. “That’s what I wanted to paint.”

Rational Emotion is on display until Feb. 23.

The Omega Gallery is at 4290 Dunbar St. in Vancouver, and it’s open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Saturday. Check out for details.



Do you love art? The Burnaby Art Gallery is looking for volunteers to help lead school tours through the gallery.

The gallery is seeking “people with a passion for art, who are friendly and outgoing.” If that sounds like you, and if you have daytime availability at least one day a week, then you may be just the right fit.

Extensive training and orientation are provided. If you’re interested, apply at or call 604-297-4414.



If you’re interested in Nordic cultures, here’s one for you.

The Scandinavian Community Centre is hosting Nordic Design 2016, a textiles and fashions exhibition, on Saturday, Feb. 27 and Sunday, Feb. 28.

The exhibition will explore textiles, costumes and fashions from five Nordic countries and from Viking and Saami cultures. It’s on 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. by donation both days, with an opening reception and concert on Saturday at 11:30 a.m. There’s also a Saturday evening fashion show at 7 p.m. (tickets for the fashion show are $10).

Check out for more details.



Why paint? It’s a simple enough question, but there isn’t an easy answer.

If you’ve ever pondered why anyone would want to be a fine art painter and what value there is to making paintings in the 21st century, then check this one out.

The SFU Philosophers’ Café series is tackling that very discussion in a session at the McGill branch of Burnaby Public Library on Tuesday, March 1. The discussion is set to run from 7 to 8:30 p.m.

Annie Ross moderates, and everyone is welcome. No registration is needed, and it’s free.

Check out for more information.



Dance fans, here’s one you’ll want to mark in your calendars.

To Colour Thought is coming to the stage at Shadbolt Centre for the Arts from March 2 to 5.

It’s a mixed program of new contemporary dance works by Action at a Distance, the company headed by choreographer Vanessa Goodman, and it’s billed as “an exciting tapestry of movement and sound.”

Tickets are $32 regular or $27 for students and seniors if bought at least seven days ahead, or $35 and $30 otherwise. Call 604-205-3000 or buy through


Do you have an item for Lively City? Send arts and entertainment ideas to Julie,, or find her on Twitter, @juliemaclellan.