The Best Arts and Culture Events Happening in Vancouver in May 2024

Get ready for your social calendar to bloom.

Vancouver Opera Presents Carmen

The Sopranos: Vancouver Opera Presents Carmen

WHEN April 27 to May 5

WHERE Queen Elizabeth Theatre

COST From $150

Georges Bizet’s Carmen is one of the most popular operas for a reason: it’s packed with more passion, betrayal and obsession than Love Island (and 100 percent more singing).

What’s Up Doc: DOXA Film Festival

WHEN May 2 to 12

WHERE Various theatres

COST From $15

A festival dedicated to the art of documenting our lives on camera—sort of like a longer TikTok without the dance instruction.

Bombay Bicycle Club

Heavy Pedals: Bombay Bicycle Club

WHEN May 3

WHERE Vogue Theatre

COST From $40

With their sixth album in tow, the English indie rock quartet of thirty- something dudes is rolling into town, ensuring that all your exes have an excuse to accidentally hang out.

The 2018 BMO Vancouver Marathon.

Runner’s High: BMO Vancouver Marathon

WHEN May 5

WHERE Queen Elizabeth Park

COST From $60

Remember in January when you said you’d run a marathon this year? Just saying.

Ballet BC’s For Ever
Photo by Marcus Eriksson

Pointed Performance: Ballet BC’s For Ever

WHEN May 9 to 11

WHERE Queen Elizabeth Theatre

COST From $25

Get your top buns over to the Queen E for an evening of premieres by Ballet BC artistic director Medhi Walerski, bringing the season to a close with a fusion of artistry and athleticism.

Depressed Mode: Verboden Festival

WHEN May 9 to 12

WHERE Various venues

COST From $40

Canada’s top darkwave music fest is back for its seventh year with four jam-packed nights featuring 40 artists and DJs ready to make you dance and bum you out.

Michelle Wolf

Howl Fest: Just for Laughs Presents Michelle Wolf

WHEN May 10

WHERE Vogue Theatre

COST $46

The comedy writer known for her work on Late Night with  Seth Meyers and The Daily Show with Trevor Noah is here to make you belly laugh.

The Go! Team

Go Off: The Go! Team Celebrating 20 Years of Thunder, LightNing, Strike

WHEN May 12

WHERE The Pearl

COST $25

Sure to be a high-energy dance party circa your early 2000s iPod playlist.

David Sedaris

Funny Pages: An Evening with David Sedaris

WHEN May 14

WHERE Queen Elizabeth Theatre

COST From $55

The Me Talk Pretty One Day bestselling author and storyteller is looking to have some words with you—from his latest dark humour essay collection, Happy-Go-Lucky.

Stars on Ice performer
Photo by Danielle Earl

Ice, Ice Baby: Stars on Ice

WHEN May 14

WHERE Rogers Arena

COST From $32

It’s some of the world skating greats (think: Elvis Stojko and Patrick Chan) here to flip, spin and double-axel their way into your heart—with guest director and choreographer Kurt Browning. 

Lady Luck: Guys and Dolls

WHEN May 16 to June 30

WHERE Stanley Industrial Alliance Stage

COST From $39

Here’s your chance to catch this Tony-award-winning, must-see-at-least-once-in-your-lifetime musical comedy and sing along to certified Broadway bangers like “Luck Be a Lady” and “Sit Down, You’re Rockin’ the Boat.”

Vancouver Comic Arts Festival
Photo by Justin Gradin

Big Draw: Vancouver Comic Arts Festival

WHEN May 18 to 19

WHERE Roundhouse Community Centre

COST Free!

Nerd out for comics? Get thee to this indie comics festival and spend the weekend learning there’s more to the world of comics than Archie Double Digest.

Avril Lavigne

Later Sk8er: Avril Lavigne at Rogers Arena

WHEN May 22

WHERE Rogers Arena

COST Resale tickets from $150

Millennials! This is not a drill! The early 2000s “Sk8er Boi” singer and Canadian pop punk princess is doing a greatest hits tour; grab your thickest eyeliner and baggiest jeans—we ride at dawn!

Tortured Poets Department: The Simon and Garfunkel Story

WHEN May 26

WHERE Queen Elizabeth Theatre

COST From $55

Nostalgia? Check. Turtlenecks? Check. Velvety smooth harmonies? Check.

Child’s Play: Vancouver International Children’s Festival

WHEN May 27 to June 2

WHERE Granville Island

COST From $14

A week-long fest just for the wee ones that includes performances, puppets, pyjama nights and a very special guest from our childhoods, Fred Penner.