St John Cowcher preforms in The Adventures of Alvin Sputnik at this year's PuSh Festival. Photo by Richard Jefferson.
St John Cowcher preforms in The Adventures of Alvin Sputnik at this year's PuSh Festival. Photo by Richard Jefferson.

The PuSh International Performing Arts Festival gets underway (Jan 20-Feb 8).  Here are three shows in this opening week that we think you should not miss.

[dropcap]1[/dropcap] From Australia, puppeteer and animator Tim Watts presents his multimedia show The Adventures of Alvin Sputnik (Jan 21-24). As human life lies on the brink of extinction, Alvin Sputnik embarks on a mission ito not only save the world, but also to find the soul of his dead wife.  Performed by St John Cowcher.

[dropcap]2[/dropcap]The ubiquitious Cirque are not the only cirus troupe to come out of Quebec.  Les 7 doigts de la main presents Séquence 8 (Jan 22-24), a contemporary circus performance that draw its inspiration from Carl Jung’s statement: “the meeting of two personalities is like the contact of two chemical substances: if there is any reaction, both are transformed.” A combination of dance, acrobatics, storytelling, circus, this is sure to be an evening at the “theatre” that goes to new heights.

[dropcap]3[/dropcap]The Human Library returns to PuSh for a third year (Jan 23-Feb 8) challenging us to “borrow a book, discover a life”. Only these are flesh-and-blood books covering a diverse range of topics, from “Hitchhiker” to “Autistic Actor” and “Invisible Minority.”  Simply pick from one of 30 human books at the Vancouver Public Library Central Branch and start your own conversation. Partly scripted and partly improvised, these human books may just open your eyes.