The International Performing Arts Festival of Vancouver, known simply as the Push Festival, has opened its 8th edition. And to celebrate that feat, the organizing committee decided to put in place a magnificent gala that took place last Tuesday at the Waldorf Hotel on East Hastings .

Being an internationally-known event, the Push festival opening gala was expected to be a memorable one – and it didn’t disappoint. Kicking off right at 9:30 pm, the party started by the relatively traditional opening speeches, which this year included the festival’s Executive Director Norman Armour, along with representatives from CTV and the City of Vancouver.

From then on, the gala evolved into a fully-blown party that took place simultaneously at three different locations within the Waldorf (the Tiki Bar,  Cabaret, and Hideaway). This 3-front plan allowed to cater all sorts of attendees, who had the opportunity to enjoy performances by music bands like Fang and E.S.L., DJ’s that included The Amigos and Jennifer Paparo, and dance performances and workshops led by Native dancer Nyla Carpentier and flamenco dancer Karen Flamenco, among many others.

Additional to the performances, the party was also well prepared to treat the invitees with appetizing finger food that included chicken skewers and prawn dishes, to be paired to a wide selection of drinks available at any of the three bars available on site.

The 8th edition of the Push Festival is running from January 17 to February 4, 2012, at various venues across the city. Detailed info about venues and schedules is available on the Push Festival Website at