An image of the US Mexico border wall

Anywhere But Here

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World Premiere

A family. A border wall. A million memories and the quest for home.

By Carmen Aguirre

Raps created with Shad Kabango

February 4 – 15, 2020

Vancouver Playhouse – 600 Hamilton Street

Produced in association with Playwrights Theatre Centre and presented in partnership with the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival.

Tickets from $19.99

**NOTE – Eventbrite Issues Placing Orders

Certain browsers and devices have had problems completing orders. We have been working with Eventbrite to solve these issues. If you are having trouble booking tickets – please email us at or call 604-253-4222 and we will ensure you get your tickets (include the performance date and requested row and seats if specific). Sorry for any inconvenience.



Aguirre’s think piece is a time-defying meditation on essential journeys of the heart. -Georgia Straight

It’s dramatic. It’s funny. And the set is gorgeous…This is a desert in more ways than one.-Globe and Mail

I rocketed out of my seat for the ovation at the end. And the production is always bracingly vibrant and confident.-Colin Thomas on Theatre

It’s 2020 at the US/Mexico border in Trump’s America.

In 1979, a family drives back towards Chile from Canada. With past, present, and future encircling their journey, this profoundly poetic story is about the universal quest for home – in whatever form that takes.

A spellbinding blend of dark comedy and magical realism, Anywhere But Here is a vibrant celebration of Latinx theatre, with music and raps by Shad, that chronicles the many paths, real and imagined, we take to discover the truth —  the truth about who we are, and where we may be headed.

Telling an engrossing story that intersects multiple timelines and spaces, Anywhere But Here introduces us to a host of fantastical characters who have experienced the pull of home, the ache of displacement, and the harsh realities of the border as they attempt to cross, guard, or survive it.

REFUND & TICKETING POLICIES – Including companion tickets. 

Duration: 145 minutes including one intermission

Audience Advice: There is foul language, brief nudity, mature subject matter, fake guns on stage, limited stage violence, use of smoke and strobe lighting/projection during the performance. If you require more detailed information, don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Box Office opens 90 minutes prior to the show (6:00pm Tuesday to Friday, 12:30pm Saturday).

The Playhouse Lobby opens 60 minutes prior to the show (6:30pm Tuesday to Friday, 1:00pm Saturday – 6:00pm on Thursday, February 13).

Accessibility information: The Vancouver Playhouse is Wheelchair accessible, and has a wheelchair accessible washroom.  Please inform us if there are wheelchair users, as inventory is limited.

Bus and Transit Info: There is a bus loop in front of the theatre, and the theatre is located 1 block from STADIUM Skytrain Station.

For more on transit, parking and accessibility please click here: The Vancouver Playhouse (scroll down to the bottom).

Performance Plus Offerings

Pre-Show Artist Talkbacks

February 6th with Shad, Juliette Carrillo and Carmen Aguirre – 6:45pm, Upper Lobby

February 11th with Playwright Carmen Aguirre – 6:45pm, Upper Lobby

February 14th with Internationally Acclaimed Latinx Theatre Artists Bárbara Santos, Nancy Garcia Loza, Evelina Fernandes and Beatriz Pizano, to celebrate the launch of Coyuntura – 6:45pm, Upper Lobby.

Post-Show Artist Talkbacks – February 7th and 13th following the 7:30pm performance.

VocalEye Live Described Performance – February 8th  – 2pm

VocalEye Pre-show TOUCH TOUR – February 8th  – 1pm

Sanctuary City Community Dialogue with panelists from Sanctuary Health, the City of Vancouver and Dogwood BC – February 13 at 6:15pm, Upper Lobby.

Community Shrine Building with Marina Szijarto – ONGOING – click here for more information.

If you have any questions – or want to buy over the phone – just call us at 604-253-4222 or email us at


Composite picture of headshots of artists from Anywhere But Here


Playwrights Theatre Centre, rice & beans theatre, November Theatre, Banff Playwrights Lab


Canada Council for the Arts, British Columbia Arts Council, the City of Vancouver, The Province of BC, Vancouver Civic Theatres, the Georgia Straight, The Province of British Columbia, MJY Fabrication, rice and beans, Deux Mille Foundation, Hamber Foundation, McLean Foundation, Vancouver Latin American Cultural Centre, Latincouver, Cloverdale Paint, Associated Plastics, The Lazy Gourmet

Anywhere But Here is an external representation of the inner turmoil of exile. Using magic realism tropes, it follows a family on a journey back towards Chile from Canada. They drive in a mythological chrome convertible along the desert border between the US and Mexico, each with different emotions about the North they are leaving and the South they are approaching, reversing their refugee flight, refusing the state of exile. The father and his two young daughters encounter an increasingly fantastic range of characters. They are encircled by past, present and future, in a collective vision that takes them, and the audience, into the compelling experiences of people crossing and guarding the border. Threaded through the external journey is the internal search for home in an unstable world. With the arrival of the mother of the family, they confront the costs of exile and the true nature of home.

Dark and comic, Anywhere But Here is a psycho-social-spiritual-physical journey based on the relationship to land; it could only take place at the U.S./Mexico border during the world’s current refugee crisis. It is a play that celebrates working-class Latinx culture, spotlighting the invisible, undocumented brown workers that people the Americas. It honours the richness of Latinx culture and the strength of its resistance, neither of which are accidents.

A celebration of Latinx theatre in Vancouver, this deeply relevant, imaginative piece will premiere at the Vancouver Playhouse in February, 2020. Carmen Aguirre’s new play is both hilarious and deeply poignant, featuring a borderless cast of nine artists of colour and a creative team led by Carmen, and an acclaimed Chicanx duo: director Juliette Carrillo and designer Christopher Acebo.

Music features heavily in the play, with rap pieces co-written by Rwandan-Canadian Hip-Hop Artist Shad Kabango, and compositions by Vancouver-based musician and percussionist Joelysa Pankanea. From 1970’s disco, to the batucada and the blues, the musicality of the piece carries the story across timelines and historic events past and to be. Woven throughout the piece is the story of two young daughters discovering the world in a 1970s convertible.