Canada Golden Maple Film Festival

It was an honour to have the UpCYCLEd Stories film be exhibited as part of the first annual Canada Golden Maple Film Festival (Sep 19-24, 2016) and equally an honour to have won an award – Best Documentary! Sarah Van Borek, the UpCYCLEd Stories lead actress Kai-Chi She and her mother Pen Hsuan-Hsing, and volunteer extraordinaire Halley Tang participated in the festival’s red carpet gala and award ceremony on Saturday, September 24th at UBC.

Final Movie Premiere Celebration

We did it! Thank you to everyone who attended the final movie premiere celebration on Thursday, September 15, 7:30-9:00pm, in the Mount Pleasant Primary School Gym. We were prepared to hold an outdoor bike-in at the next door Dude Chilling Park however the ground was too damp for the projection equipment on the day so we moved the festivities inside.

Thank you to our generous event sponsors, Collingwood Community Policing Centre, lead by Partap Sahota, who provided all the film screening equipment and services and to Glen Young and Buy-Low Foods for sponsorship towards refreshments. Thank you to the Vancouver School Board for access to the venue. Thank you to Parks Board Commissioner, Casey Crawford, and Mount Pleasant Community Centre Association Board member, Tom Fahey, for the opening remarks. Thanks to Erin Mullen, MPCC youth worker and Rosa Aravena, MPCC Youth Coordinator, for overseeing the youth fundraiser/bbq & refreshments.

Leg4cy Youth Dance Troupe Film Shoot


On Wednesday, August 17th, a dynamic trio of award-winning dancers from Tupper Secondary School known as “Leg4cy” were filmed performing an original (bike-inspired) choreography for a musical segment in the UpCYCLEd Stories film. The film shoot took place at 2 locations: first (above) in front of a mural next to Dynasty Fashionwear (138 East 8th) painted by mural artist, Ilya Viryachev, and members of the Mount Pleasant Community Centre  Youth Group earlier this year, and secondly (below) in front of a mural painted by Tupper Secondary students on a wall next to the basketball courts at Tupper Secondary school. Thanks to Rosa Aravena (pictured above centre), Mount Pleasant Community Centre’s Community Youth Worker, for helping make this collaboration possible and for assisting with production during the film shoot.

Filming at Ache Brasil Academy

Ache Brasil screenshot

On Tuesday, August 16th, we filmed a music and dance rehearsal featuring children who study with Frederico Texeira at the Capoeira Ache Brasil Academy (341 E Broadway), including Frieda Mestinsek who was interviewed for the film and who had a bike marionette created in her likeness for the project. Thanks Fred and crew for such a fun-filled evening!

Bike Dance Flash Mob at Van Mural Fest

hands up

On Saturday, August 20th at 4pm diverse people from the Mount Pleasant community, including some who had previously appeared in the UpCYCLEd Stories movie, participated in a bike dance flash mob on main street (in front of the Beaumont stage at Broadway) as part of the inaugural Vancouver Mural Festival. The dance, choreographed and facilitated by artist in community Sarah Van Borek, is called “drivetrain” because that’s the part of the bike that makes everything move and consists of 6 easy moves inspired by bicycle safety. The dance is accompanied by the song “On My Bike” by Vancouver-based worldbeat dance band, Roots Roundup.

UpCYCLEd Stories had a booth in front of Our Community Bikes, our year-long sponsor of recycled bike parts, where passers-by could find a bike-generated video projection of the “drivetrain” dance choreography and practice the dance with others in preparation for the flash mob.


Bike Dance Flash Mob

bike dance

The UpCYCLEd Stories bike-inspired community musical film project is in its final phase. Star in one of the closing scenes and celebrate bikes, art and community by joining our BIKE DANCE FLASH MOB!

When: this Saturday, August 20th, 4pm

Where: The Beaumont Stage (Main & Broadway), as part of the first annual Vancouver Mural Festival

Come on your bike and learn a short choreography then dance in the street (on your bike) with the rest of the community and be filmed in one of the final scenes of the UpCYCLEd Stories movie!

UpCYCLEd Stories will have a tent in front of Our Community Bikes 12-4pm where you can practice the choreography with others before the flash mob.

The bike dance choreography is available online if you want to practice in advance:

The dance features the song “On My Bike” by Vancouver-based worldbeat dance band, Roots Roundup. The dance is called “drivetrain” because this is the part of the bike that makes everything move. The dance is inspired by bike safety tips so please be sure to wear your bike helmet! Please bring your friends, family and neighbours – all are welcome!

*Note: Participants are welcome to join even without bikes*

Help us get the word out by sharing the facebook event page:

Hope you can join us for a worldbeat street dance party on bikes!

Capoeira Girl Marionette-to-be


Meet Frieda! She’s 12 years old and has been studying brazilian music and capoeira dance at the neighbourhood’s Ache Brasil Academy since a very young age. She visited the UpCYCLEd Stories pop-up studio on July 22 to be photographed (above) as a reference for the bike marionette that is soon to be made, based on her. Stay tuned for Frieda’s marionette and story in the final film…

Bloco Energia animate bike marionettes

Bloco marionettes still.JPG

On July 20th, members of local brazilian samba band, Bloco Energia, animated bike marionettes for the camera outside their rehearsal space (La Casa del Artista). Throughout July, UpCYCLEd Stories has been hosting interactive bike marionette shows at various locations to engage community members in animating the marionettes on camera to contribute scenes for the film, including at Mount Pleasant Community Centre’s Seniors Ballroom Dancing (July 19) and Mount Pleasant Park Festival (July 23).

Ron Wallace drum-making with bike rims


Ron Wallace, of the Native Education College (NEC), and I visited Our Community Bikes on July 15th to pick out a pair of recycled bike rims to use as a frame for an aboriginal drum that Ron would be making (on camera, footage to be used in the film). Ron has been making drums for approximately 30 years and has taught drum-making at NEC.