A still from Youssef Chahine’s Destiny
Youssef Chahine’s Destiny returns for a second, and free, screening this week | Still: Courtesy of Calgary Cinematheque

Free This Week

Enjoy live music, film, and visual arts offerings without breaking the bank

Amy Jo Espetveidt

  • Price Free

A new year of programming kicks into high gear this week with the start of the High Performance Rodeo alongside a plethora of other offers. Even if you don’t have a penny to spare this month, you can get out of the house thanks to these free events.

Here’s what is on our calendar:

ProArts Presents Bessie Wapp & Little Miss Higgins

January 9, 2019, 12:10 – 12:50pm
Cathedral Church of the Redeemer (604 1st St. SE)
Free admission

Kick off the High Performance Rodeo with this free noon-hour performance by Bessie Wapp & Little Miss Higgins. Featuring guitar, accordion, and a shake of good sense, don’t miss this blues and folk concert.

Inversion Opening Reception

January 11, 2019, 8:00pm
The New Gallery (208 Centre St. SE)
Free admission

Jill Ho-You engages with anxiety, fear, and speculation about the future of the planet in this solo exhibition. Blurring the lines between the human body, natural, and manufactured landscapes, Inversion traces a speculative history of the Earth from creation to destruction.

2019 Concerto Competition Semi-Final Round

January 11, 2019, 8:00pm
Eckhardt-Gramatté Hall, Rozsa Centre, University of Calgary (206 University Court NW)
Free admission

Join conductor Edmond Agopian, along with 2019 Concerto Competition semi-finalists Sara Far, Carlos Fernandez, Chinley Hinacay, Brianna Jones, Alison Kim, and Angela Smart, for an evening of classical brilliance.

The Democratic Set

January 12, 2019, 7:00 – 8:00pm
Central Library (800 3rd St. SE)
Free admission

An inclusive, collaborative, and experimental public event that’s part of the High Performance Rodeo, The Democratic Set is a residency model for working with communities. Created using an assembly of short performances for film, it is an unrestricted and uncensored exploration of ideals of equality and freedom. You can even visit Inside Out Theatre in Eau Claire Market on January 9 and 10 to see the process.

Obscura Opening Reception

January 12, 2019, 7:00 – 9:00pm
Alberta Printmakers Gallery & Studio (4025 4th St. SE)
Free admission

Using techniques of photography and printmaking, Angela Snieder’s work proposes that illusion and artifice contribute to our experiences of space. Be sure to explore the show at this opening reception.


January 13, 2019, 2:00 – 5:00pm
Central Library (800 3rd St. SE)
Free admission

If you happened to miss the first time around, don’t worry. Legendary Egyptian director Youssef Chahine’s Destiny is an opulent, large-scale musical spectacle revolving around 12th century Arab Andalusian philosopher Averröes. This afternoon screening includes a short introduction and lecture by Calgary Cinematheque Board Member Jason Wierzba.

BNA Open Doors

January 15, 2019, 4:00 – 7:00pm
McHugh House (1515 Centre St. S)
Free admission

A cozy evening bash at McHugh House, the Beltline Neighbourhoods Association’s community and arts hub, this open house features tours, hot apple cider, treats from local restaurants, and a live broadcast of CJSW’s Freshly Squeezed.

Print(ed) Word: The Salon Series

January 15, 2019, 7:00 – 8:00pm
Simmons-Harvie Community Living Room, Central Library
(800 3rd St. SE)
Free admission

The first of 12 in a series of monthly talks, join artist Kate Baillies and poet Weyman Chan as they discuss their collaborative artist book, ISOBARS.

Public Incubation

January 15, 2019, 7:30 – 9:00pm
Gallery Hall, Taylor Family Digital Library, University of Calgary (410 University Ct. NW)
Free admission

With roots in theatre, author Catherine Hernandez actively incorporates feedback from the first draft to the final manuscript. Engage in a discussion on this brave process and learn how it keeps this artist’s heart open and ego in check.