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Lively City: Royal City Youth Ballet holds auditions

If there's an aspiring ballerina in your house, then this one's for you - and act quickly, because it's happening this weekend. Auditions for the upcoming season of the Royal City Youth Ballet Company are being held this Sunday, Sept.

If there's an aspiring ballerina in your house, then this one's for you - and act quickly, because it's happening this weekend.

Auditions for the upcoming season of the Royal City Youth Ballet Company are being held this Sunday, Sept. 8 at 511 Columbia St.

Students chosen as company members will then be able to audition for roles in the company's Christmas Nutcracker production.

Anyone interested is asked to call 604-521-7290 or email

For more about the ballet company, check out its website at


Poetry lovers, there are plenty of chances for you to discover the poetic talent that's flourishing in the Royal City.

Poetic Justice sessions are running Sunday afternoons in the back room at the Heritage Grill, 447 Columbia St.

Each session runs 3 to 5 p.m., with three featured poets and an open mike.

This Sunday, Sept. 8, is hosted by Franci Louann and will feature Loree Gibson, Hélène Levasseur and Amabile Ranta.

On Sunday, Sept. 15, the session will be hosted by Candice James and feature Fran Bourassa, Alan Hill and Carol Shillibeer.

Franci Louann will host again on Sunday, Sept. 22, when Ashok Bhargava, Jennifer Suzanne Getsinger and Bonnie Nish will be featured.

For more, check out



Also on the poetry front, mark your calendars for Sunday, Sept. 15.

Poets Franci Louann and Shelley Haggard will celebrate the launch of Beautiful Women, an anthology from Lipstick Press, in a special event at Renaissance Books.

It runs from 1 to 3 p.m., with the book launch followed by an open mike session, hosted by Janene White.

Renaissance Books is at 43 Sixth St. in downtown New Westminster. Call 604-525-4566 or see




Love to dance? Then get your dancing shoes on and head out to a Dance For Fun Club event in New Westminster.

The dance nights are held at what organizers are billing as "The Best Little Dance Spot In Town," the Heritage Hall at 728 12th St.

Mondays are rock'n' roll nights, with jive, waltz, cha cha, two-step, classic pop and some swing. Wednesdays are for swing dancing, including West Coast swing, Latin and some ballroom and two-step, while Saturdays are ballroom nights - with cha cha, waltz, jive, foxtrot, samba, rumba, Latin and more.

Doors open at 6:30, with beginner/intermediate lesson at 7:30 p.m. and dance starting at 8:30 p.m. Snacks and beverages are available.

The dance nights cost $10.

For more details, email or call 604-726-0153. You can also check out for more.



Here's yet another event for the literarily inclined in our fair city.

The Royal City Literary Arts Society is hosting its next short story open mike on Wednesday, Sept. 11 in the back room at the Heritage Grill.

Margo Prentice hosts the event, which gives writers of short stories a chance to share their work in a friendly setting.

Writers are also welcome to read excerpts from longer works - but it's only fiction, not poetry.

Margo, who's been featured in these pages before, is the artistic director of Golden Age Theatre here in New West and reads regularly at Poetic Justice events.

She's also a stand-up comic and fiction writer, with more than 150 stories to her credit.

For more details, see

Heritage Grill is at 447 Columbia St. in downtown New West.




If you're at River Market on Saturday, Sept. 28, be sure to keep your eyes open for the Westcoast Harmony Chorus.

The chorus - the 2013 International Harmony Classic champions - will be showcasing their music during a 12-hour sing-a-thon around the Lower Mainland. Donations will be welcome.

They'll be kicking off the day in Surrey, followed by a couple of stops in Burnaby before arriving in New Westminster to sing at noon at River Market.

They'll continue through the afternoon and evening with more singing in Surrey, Delta, Fort Langley and White Rock.

Check out for more details about the chorus and their sing-a-thon.




Looking for a new musical experience? Children, youth and adults are all invited to learn to ring handbells at Queens Avenue United Church.

Sessions for children aged eight to 12 - teaching music reading and handbell ringing - run Thursdays from 3:45 to 4:30 p.m. No previous musical experience is needed.

Youth aged 12 or older, as well as adults, can also learn to read music and ring handbells on Thursdays from 5 to 6 p.m., starting Sept. 19.

Experienced handbell ringers or adults with a musical background can join the Memorial Bell Ringers, who meet from 6:15 to 7:30 p.m. on Thursday nights.

Call 604-522-1606 for more details.



If you're a French-speaking singer, then this one's for you.

Les Échos du Pacifique, Maillardville's francophone choir, is celebrating the launch of its 40th season.

The first rehearsal is Monday, Sept. 9, and new singers are invited. Rehearsals take place at Place Maillardville, 1200 Cartier Ave. in Coquitlam.

For information, call 604-764-2808, email or see




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