Edmonton, the home of the University of Alberta, offers many diverse and interesting cultural and arts events you can be a part of – because as we know being a University student is not just about getting the good grades: it’s about growing personally and professionally as well! At the University of Alberta you will be put in the middle of an amazing culture and arts scene in both the city and at the university. Here is our list of 5 events/locations that are uniquely Edmontonian and that we feel will make you, as an international student, feel like the long journey to UAlberta was worth it!
Every year the University of Alberta hosts an “International Week” which is a week filled with films, theater performance, art projects, keynote speakers, workshops and more, which are meant to expand the UAlberta and the Edmonton community consciousness of global issues. Every year the week focuses on a different theme and this year the theme is “Conscious Culture: Finding Paths to a Better World”. Some of my most inspirational and educational moments of my university experience have happened at this event so it’s something that I think everyone should experience if they come to the University of Alberta. Stay tune for our blog post for on this year’s International Week to discover more about the event.
The University of Alberta’s department of drama is widely regarded as one of North America’s top training grounds for theater so it is almost criminal if you don’t at least enjoy one play production by the UAlberta drama department while you are here. The prices for students are very economical as well so it makes for a great night out on a student budget!
The Art Gallery hosts a number of different events ranging from Talks and Panels on a number of different subjects, films, and of course world class art exhibitions for which it is most widely known. One of its most popular events is the Refinery Late Night Art Parties which are a series of themed art parties that center on current exhibitions and features projects by local artists. Past themes have included a “Monstrous Baroque” party! It’s the perfect opportunity to get all dressed up and enjoy some lovely art and great company.
The Metro Cinema Society is a community-based not-for-profit society that is devoted to exhibiting and promoting Canadian, independent and international film and video in Edmonton. The Society focuses on screening films that you won’t find anywhere else in the city and also focuses on educational, cultural and innovative works. What I love most about this theater is that unlike the ultra-modern movie theater’s you find scattered around the city and in the suburbs, this theater retains a classic retro vibe that is hard to replicate…if not impossible.
Canada as a whole is like most other Western countries – it is very multicultural and globalized, so on the outside, especially if you are only visiting for a few weeks, it can seem no different than the USA or even the UK. At least culturally. But if you think that there are not distinct differences then you are very wrong and up for a surprise when you stay for longer than the average tourist length. That is why whenever I have family visiting from out of country, or even out of town, I try to make sure they have time to visit the Royal Alberta Museum. The museum features a number of different and changing exhibitions but the permanent exhibitions are what I think everyone should see. They include an exhibition related exclusively to Aboriginal Culture in Alberta and Canada as a whole, as well as an Alberta Wildlife exhibit, which will help any international student better appreciate the history of their new home.
By: Nathalie Batres