• DPS Shakespeare Festival returns with DCPA as new partner

    by John Moore | Apr 20, 2015
    John Moore's photos of the 2014 DPS Shakespeare Festival for the DCPA NewsCenter.


    The Denver Public Schools Shakespeare Festival returns for a 31st year this Friday (April 24) under a new partnership with the DPS Foundation that now includes the Denver Center for the Performing Arts.

    This is the oldest and largest student Shakespeare Festival in the country. About 5,000 DPS students from kindergarten through high school will perform on 14 stages in and around the Denver Performing Arts Complex. Students from 70 schools will tackle 630 short scenes, dances, soliloquies and sonnets. That’s a 15 percent increase in participation over last year.

    "There is nothing else even remotely on this scale anywhere else," said Michael LoMonico of the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C.

    DPS QuoteThe daylong party opens with welcoming ceremonies at Skyline Park and continues with an Elizabethan parade down Curtis Street. A sea of kings, soldiers, maidens, jesters and ghosts donning everything from Elizabethan to African tribal garb will then spread throughout the grounds for their performances.

    The city-owned arts complex has long hosted this annual Shakesplosion, but this is the DCPA’s first year as a full partner. DCPA Chairman Daniel L. Ritchie says his non-profit champions the student fest for two simple reasons: It’s important … and it’s fun.

    “We have a common history over 30-plus years in the community,” said Ritchie. “Our focus on great theatre classics provides a shared vision. And our commitment to engage youth through theatre education motivates us with a unified purpose. Together, we will combine history’s greatest plays with passionate teachers and inspired young actors to expose thousands of students and spectators to the joy of live theatre.”

    Kristin Heath Colon, President and CEO of the Denver Public Schools Foundation, calls the new partnership with the DCPA “a prime example of what it takes to help every child in the Denver Public Schools succeed. We can’t do this alone.”

    Since 2006, the DPS Foundation has awarded 946 classroom grants totaling $1.26 million that subsidize enrichment programs and activities that go beyond individual schools’ limited budgets. Among these “A to Z” grants are stipends that help the poorest schools make costumes or help pay for other festival costs.


    Students from Lowry Elementary School perform Sonnet 74 for the Denver Sonnets Project as part of last year's DPS Shakespeare Festival.

    The free festival, started in 1985 by teacher Joe Craft, has now given about 100,000 students the chance to jump on a stage and screw their courage to the sticking post. One of them was Marty Schettler, a 1999 graduate of Manual High School. He’s now a 34-year-old mathematician, software developer and father of two boys.

    “I was in the festival a couple times; most memorably in 10th grade,” said Schettler. “We did a scene with the two sets of lovers from A Midsummer Night’s Dream. I just remember it being so much easier to connect with the text after rehearsing and performing it. It was a really great way to get a taste of performing without having to commit to a whole play - especially a Shakespeare play.” 

    That’s because Shakespeare can be nothing if not intimidating at first. But, four centuries later, the Bard continues to be regarded as the most important playwright in the English language. And the DPS Shakespeare Festival allows students to get used to his language early in life. That gives them a competitive academic advantage because studies have shown that when students don’t encounter Shakespeare for the first time until they are in a high-school class, they have more difficulty understanding Shakespeare and engaging with the words.

    Dana Bergren Dana Bergren, a senior at George Washington High School (pictured right) has been performing in the Shakespeare Festival almost every year since the fourth grade. She says that annual exercise helped her overcome the intimidation factor long ago. 

    “Since I've done it for so long, I have a better understanding of it,” said Bergren, who will be portraying the brooding prince Hamlet in a gender-swapped scene on Friday. “I also feel like it helps take the stigma and intimidation of it away. When you realize that it's just words like any other play, that makes more fun and less scary.”

    Colon said the DPS Shakespeare Festival not only gives students the chance to perform and develop their public speaking and critical thinking skills, it gives them an important opportunity to express themselves and interact with peers.

    That is particularly important in the Denver Public Schools district, which in 2011 reported that 70 percent of its students live below the poverty level, 12 percent have identified education disabilities and 46 percent speak languages other than English in their homes.

    “In my classroom, 100 percent of my students speak English as a second language,” said Rachael Nyberg-Hampton, a teacher at Munroe Elementary. “So one of the things we struggle with is expression when speaking.” Shakespeare, she adds, provides students with new strategies for improving their reading levels.

    Colon says that’s all part of the school district’s commitment to the development of the whole child. “And the Shakespeare Festival is a critical component of that,” she said.


    John Moore was named one of the 12 most influential theater critics in the U.S by American Theatre Magazine in 2011. He has since taken a groundbreaking position as the Denver Center’s Senior Arts Journalist.

    The 2015 DPS Shakespeare Festival parade. Photo by John Moore.

    The 2014 DPS Shakespeare Festival parade. Photo by John Moore. 


    2015 DPS Shakespeare Festival Schedule: 

    10 a.m.: Opening Ceremonies in Skyline Park (15th and Arapahoe)
    10:15 a.m.: Elizabethan Parade from Skyline Park to the Denver Performing Arts Complex
    10:45 a.m.-4:15 p.m.: Student performances on 14  stages throughout the DPAC
    Noon-2:45 p.m.: The Shakespeare Challenge Bowl at The Joe Craft Theatre (inside the Helen Bonfils Theatre Complex).

    Schools and stages:
    (Name of stage, followed by participating schools. Note: Schools that are in The Challenge Bowl might be on two stages.)

    The theme of the 2015 DPS Shakespeare Festival is 'The Tempest.' BLACKFRIARS STAGE: Gateway, Southmoor, Kennedy, Montclair, Colfax, Greenwood, Traylor, Carson and Edison.

    BOAR’S HEAD:  DSST at Green Valley Ranch, Hill, Brown, Newlon and Bill Roberts.

    CURTAIN:  Grant Ranch, Dennison, Doull, Skinner, Goldrick and DaVinci Academy.

    FORTUNE:  Denver School of the Arts

    HOPE: McAuliffe, Lowry, Marrama, Thomas Jefferson, Columbian, Lincoln, Golden and Palmer.

    INNS OF COURT:  University Park, Park Hill, MSLA, Ashley, Cheltenham, Corey, Aurora Academy, Sandoval, Henry, Kaiser and Hamilton.

    JOE CRAFT:  Munroe, Holm, DCIS at Fairmont and Archuleta.  This is also The Challenge Bowl Stage.

    RED LION:  Steele, Morey and Grant Beacon.

    ROSE:  Polaris at Ebert, GALS, Denver Green School, George Washington and Bromwell.

    SWAN:  Highline Academy, Merrill, George Washington, Force, Thomas Jefferson, Slavens and DSST at Cole.

    THEATRE:  Swigert, Highline Academy and Steele.

    WHITEFRIARS:  Steck, Gust, McKinley Thatcher, Sabin, Kunsmiller, Denver Montessori, DSST at Stapleton and Lowry.

    WHITEHALL :  Bradley, Kennedy, Teller, Hamilton and Smith

    OLDE GLOBE:  Hill, Montclair, Newlon, Polaris at Ebert, GALS, Morey, University Park, Sabin, Merrill, Smith, Skinner, Barrett, DSST at Stapleton, Palmer, North, Slavens and Bromwell

    For stage locations and other information, click here

  • Meet the cast video series: Gregory Treco

    by John Moore | Apr 19, 2015


    In this ongoing series, we briefly introduce you to the actors performing in our plays in a fun way. Episode 95: Meet Gregory Treco, a graduate of Eaglecrest High School in Aurora who is making his DCPA debut playing the revolutionary disciple Simon in the Theatre Company's world premiere production of the new rock musical The 12.

    Treco is part of the long line of accomplished performers who sang at Elitch Gardens as teenagers, a list that includes Nick Sugar, Andy Kelso, Jim Miller and many more.

    Now one of Treco's overriding social concerns is bettering our understanding of mental illness among young black men. "I am a light-skinned African-American man, so I have an interesting perspective on race relations," he says. "That crazy black man over there isn't necessarily crazy; he's just somebody who needs help."

    The 12 imagines what happened when the disciples went into hiding for the three days following Jesus' crucifixion. It plays through April 26, 2015, in The Stage Theatre.

    Video by John Moore and David Lenk. Run time: 2 minutes, 20 seconds.

    The 12: Ticket information
    Through April 26
    Stage Theatre
    Tickets: 303-893-4100 or BUY ONLINE
    Toll-free: 800-641-1222 | TTY: 303-893-9582
    Groups of 10 or more: 303-446-4829
    ASL interpreted, audio described and open-captioned performance: 1:30 p.m. April 26

    More The 12 Meet the cast videos (to date): 

    Tony Vincent as Tom
    Christina Sajous as Mary Magdalene

    Our previous coverage of The 12:
    Video: Colin Hanlon and Gregory Treco talk The 12 at the Tattered Cover
    Photos: Opening night of The 12
    Robert Schenkkan's Opening Night reflections
    Neil Berg and the rockin' roots of The 12
    Video montage: Your first look at The 12
    The 12: Three days that rocked the world
    Watch short video samples of 'The 12' songs from the first sing-through
    Video: Robert Schenkkan introduces The 12
    The 12 opens rehearsals with a mandate to 'dig deep'
    Full casting announced for The 12
    Final offering of Theatre Company season: Rock musical The 12

    Eaglecrest High School graduate Gregory Treco performs as Simon in 'The 12' for the DCPA Theatre Company. Photo by Jennifer M. Koskinen.
    Eaglecrest High School graduate Gregory Treco performs as Simon in 'The 12' for the DCPA Theatre Company. Photo by Jennifer M. Koskinen.



    Previous 2014-15 "Meet the Cast" episodes:

    Leslie Alexander, A Christmas Carol
    Joyce Cohen, Benediction
    Amelia Marie Corrada, Benediction
    Jason Delane, One Night in Miami
    Allen Dorsey, A Christmas Carol
    Meet Adrian Egolf, Benediction
    Donna English, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
    Charlie Franklin, Lord of the Flies

    Patty Goble,The Unsinkable Molly Brown
    Sam Gregory, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike
    Matthew Gumley, Lord of the Flies
    Lenne Klingaman, Appoggiatura
    Darrie Lawrence
    , Appoggiatura
    Colby Lewis, One Night in Miami
    Eddie Lopez, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike
    Beth Malone, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
    Nick Mills Appoggiatura
    Paolo Montalban, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
    Burke Moses, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
    Linda Mugleston, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
    Rob Nagle, Appoggiatura
    James Newcomb, Benediction
    Leslie O'Carroll, A Christmas Carol, Benediction
    Morocco Omari, One Night in Miami
    Ben and Noah Radcliffe, Lord of the Flies
    James Michael Reilly, A Christmas Carol
    Socorro Santiago, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike
    Lesley Shires, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike
    Gregory Isaac Stone, Lord of the Flies
    Nik Walker, One Night in Miami
    York Walker, One Night in Miami
    Nance Williamson, Benediction

  • Testimonials as 'One Night in Miami' closes today

    by John Moore | Apr 19, 2015

    'One Night in Miami' cast on opening night. Photo by John Moore.
    'One Night in Miami' cast on opening night. Photo by John Moore.


    As Kemp Powers' One Night in Miami closes its remarkable run with today's matinee performance by the DCPA Theatre Company, we thought we would compile and share some of the thoughts of cast, creatives and audience members have sent us or posted on social media. The play imagines what happened the night Cassius Clay won the heavyweight boxing championship in 1964 and immediately withdrew to a hotel room with Jim Brown, Sam Cooke and Malcolm X:

    Actor Jason Delane (Malcolm X), center, meets with students from Denver's  Contemporary Learning Academy after a recent performance of 'One Night in Miami.' Ty Jones (Classical Theatre of Harlem): Why I love theatre. No. 1: People like Jason Delane, currently starring as Malcolm X in Kemp Powers' One Night in Miami, taking the time to speak to these young men (pictured at right) who attend an alternative school in Denver for at-risk youth (Contemporary Learning Academy). These young men had never been to theatre before. No. 2: The Denver Center for the Performing Arts. Hope Grandon and Kent Thompson's team made this happen. Keep up the good work. You may have just changed the trajectory of the lives of these young men. To the cast, Director Carl Cofield, and the team at Denver Center, thank you.

    (Photo: Actor Jason Delane (Malcolm X), center, meets with students from Denver's  Contemporary Learning Academy after a recent performance of 'One Night in Miami.' )

    Miami QuoteTerri Valliere (Contemporary Learning Academy): I can’t thank everyone enough for making this happen for these kids. This is the first time any of them had ever been to a play, and they were completely mesmerized by the play, the people, and the experience. They were still talking about it today at school because the meaning behind the play touched them. Thanks for supporting the activity for kids who would have never been able to go if not for your generosity. Finally, thanks to actor Jason Delane for taking the time to talk to the children after to show them that there is so much more outside of the world they live in when they fight for change.

    Kemp Powers (playwright): Sending good wishes to the One Night in Miami... crew on their final performance at the DCPA today. Congrats to Carl Cofield, Jason Delane Lee, Nik Walker, Colby Lewis, Rocc Omari, York Walker and William Oliver Watkins for your wonderful work. And thank you to Kent Thompson for bringing the show to Denver!




    Colby Lewis QuoteColby Lewis (Cassius Clay): Feeling like Ali in this speech (above) on this truly bittersweet morning. I close one of the best shows I've ever been a part of. When Kemp Powers wrote a play about his heroes, I'm sure he didn't think about writing a masterpiece. When Carl Cofield gave me a chance to step into the role of Cassius Marcellus Clay, I don't know if he realized he'd just given me one of the biggest gifts of my life. When I met York Walker, Nik Walker, William Oliver Watkins, Jason Delane Lee, Rocc Omari, I'm sure they didn't think they were about to change life as I viewed it. I could go on forever about the things they called Cassius Clay (soon to be Muhammad Ali). But through this amazing journey at DCPA, I found out what's most important. And that is what you call YOURSELF. This process has changed me not only as an artist, but more as a man. Everyone has doubts, fears, and insecurities. But what makes you WHO you are, are your convictions, the ideals you stand behind, the words you speak, and the courage to defend those beliefs. I am not perfect; no one is but God. But I've learned from Cassius and the others I've worked with in Denver that I can and will be great, not just as an artist but as a human being. To truly be a STUDENT AND A SERVANT of the world. Maybe even the "Greatest of All Time." I love you all, fellas BOMAYE!!!!!

    Actors conduct a student talkback after a recent matinee performance of 'One Night in Miami.' Photo courtesy Kristen Adele. Jason Delane (Malcolm X) (excerpt): This has been a very special experience. Thank you, Kemp Powers, for crafting such a powerful piece of theatre and for providing six black male actors with these awesome characters to inhabit. There are way too many people to thank here on Facebook. I've already typed and deleted one post I was about to put up because I tagged over 100 people. I am humbled by the amazing men and women of the theatre that I have met through my participation in this play both here in Denver and in Los Angeles back in 2013. I thank all friends and family members who traveled near and very far to come here to Denver to see and support our work. Carl Cofield: Thanks for entrusting Brother Malcolm to me. Role of a lifetime. Kent Thompson: Thank you for bringing us to Denver. Your theatre is a gem. Kemp: THANK YOU. Rocc Omari, Nik Walker, Colby Lewis, William Oliver Watkins, York Walker: Y'all Family. Lets kill it one more time this afternoon and then go home.

    Nik Walker (Sam Cooke): Theaters like this. Casts like this. Roles like this. Directors like this. Scripts like this. Crews like this. This is why I became an artist, in the hope that I would one day have an experience...like this. Happy closing, #‎DCPAMiami‬. Now let's blow this thing and go home.

    York Walker (Jamaal): Today we close One Night In Miami. This is a hard one to say goodbye to. Thank you to everyone at the DCPA for making this one of the best experiences I've ever had in the theatre. Kemp Powers has written an incredible play and it has been a blessing to be a part of it.

    One Night in Miami
    montage of scenes:



    Video: One Night in Miami
    production photos by Jennifer M. Koskinen:


    Our previous NewsCenter coverage of One Night in Miami:
    Video: Jasone Deland and Colby Lewis talk Miami at the Tattered Cover
    To Miami creator, 'It feels a lot like 1964 right now'
    How Miami playwright accidentally discovered The Black Justice League
    Video: Bringing four icons to the stage in Miami
    Watch a video montage of scenes from the play
    Fourth-graders have tough questions for One Night in Miami cast
    Photos: One Night in Miami is getting ready to rumble
    Video: An inside look at the making of One Night in Miami
    Video: DCPA cast gives shout-out to Baltimore Center Stage
    Full casting announced
    Video: Interview with One Night in Miami Director Carl Cofield
    New Denver Center season includes One Night in Miami
    Go to the official show page

    One Night in Miami 'meet the cast' videos:
    Meet Colby Lewis
    Meet Morocco Omari
    Meet Nik Walker
    Meet Jason Delane
    Meet York Walker
    Meet William Oliver Watkins


    Photos: Them making of One Night in Miami ... in Denver:

  • Meet the cast video series: Christina Sajous

    by John Moore | Apr 18, 2015
    In this ongoing series, we briefly introduce you to the actors performing in our plays in a fun way. Episode 94: Meet Christina Sajous, who is making her DCPA debut playing Mary Magdalene in the Theatre Company's world premiere production of the new rock musical The 12.

    Sajous grew up in New York City but is familiar with the Denver area because she has a brother who lives in Windsor. She has been especially impressed with the Denver Performing Arts Complex. "It feels like New York City to me, especially this area where the Denver Center is," she says. "It's kind of like a mini-Lincoln Center, which I love. There is a lot of activity. A lot of appreciation for the theatre. It is so exciting."

    The 12 imagines what happened when the disciples went into hiding for the three days following Jesus' crucifixion. It plays through April 26, 2015, in The Stage Theatre.

    Video by John Moore and David Lenk. Run time: 2 minutes, 50 seconds.

    The 12: Ticket information
    Through April 26
    Stage Theatre
    Tickets: 303-893-4100 or BUY ONLINE
    Toll-free: 800-641-1222 | TTY: 303-893-9582
    Groups of 10 or more: 303-446-4829
    ASL interpreted, audio described and open-captioned performance: 1:30 p.m. April 26

    More The 12 Meet the cast videos (to date): 

    Tony Vincent as Tom

    Our previous coverage of The 12:
    Video: Colin Hanlon and Gregory Treco talk The 12 at the Tattered Cover
    Photos: Opening night of The 12
    Robert Schenkkan's Opening Night reflections
    Neil Berg and the rockin' roots of The 12
    Video montage: Your first look at The 12
    The 12: Three days that rocked the world
    Watch short video samples of 'The 12' songs from the first sing-through
    Video: Robert Schenkkan introduces The 12
    The 12 opens rehearsals with a mandate to 'dig deep'
    Full casting announced for The 12
    Final offering of Theatre Company season: Rock musical The 12



    Christina Sajous performs as Mary Magdalene in 'The 12' for the DCPA Theatre Company. Photo by Jennifer M. Koskinen.
    Christina Sajous performs as Mary Magdalene in 'The 12' for the DCPA Theatre Company. Photo by Jennifer M. Koskinen.



    Previous 2014-15 "Meet the Cast" episodes:

    Leslie Alexander, A Christmas Carol
    Joyce Cohen, Benediction
    Amelia Marie Corrada, Benediction
    Jason Delane, One Night in Miami
    Allen Dorsey, A Christmas Carol
    Meet Adrian Egolf, Benediction
    Donna English, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
    Charlie Franklin, Lord of the Flies

    Patty Goble,The Unsinkable Molly Brown
    Sam Gregory, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike
    Matthew Gumley, Lord of the Flies
    Lenne Klingaman, Appoggiatura
    Darrie Lawrence
    , Appoggiatura
    Colby Lewis, One Night in Miami
    Eddie Lopez, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike
    Beth Malone, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
    Nick Mills Appoggiatura
    Paolo Montalban, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
    Burke Moses, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
    Linda Mugleston, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
    Rob Nagle, Appoggiatura
    James Newcomb, Benediction
    Leslie O'Carroll, A Christmas Carol, Benediction
    Morocco Omari, One Night in Miami
    Ben and Noah Radcliffe, Lord of the Flies
    James Michael Reilly, A Christmas Carol
    Socorro Santiago, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike
    Lesley Shires, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike
    Gregory Isaac Stone, Lord of the Flies
    Nik Walker, One Night in Miami
    York Walker, One Night in Miami
    Nance Williamson, Benediction

  • Building Bridges honors Magic Moments at Seawell Ballroom

    by John Moore | Apr 18, 2015
    Photos by John Moore.

    Since 1983, Magic Moments has produced a massive annual pop-music revue that integrates persons with physical and developmental disabilities with able-bodied actors both amateur and professional. Shows often feature close to 200 cast members of all ages.

    Keegan Flaugh. Photo by John Moore. The goal of the organization is to raise community awareness of the special gifts of persons with physical and developmental disabilities while providing the performers with an opportunity to give back to their community through theatrical performance.

    On Friday, Magic Moments was one of three honorees at the 10th annual Circles of Change Awards luncheon hosted by Building Bridges at the Seawell Ballroom in the Denver Performing Arts Complex.

    By celebrating others’ accomplishments each year, Building Bridges hopes to demonstrate that positive change by individuals can be expanded into much greater circles of change. The other honorees were Nichole Flores, n instructor of theology at St. Anselm College; and Harold Fields, a nationally renounced facilitator for creating dialogue centered on race in America.

    Magic Moments recently presented its 32nd annual comedy and music revue, ghoulishly titled A Dark and Stormy Night. It was again directed by Ken Quintana, otherwise known as "K.Q."

    Magic Moments President Ted Kuenz accepted the Building Bridges Award and introduced a medley of songs from the most recent Magic Moments show. Performers included former University of Colorado football star Ed Reinhardt, who went into a coma for 62 days after getting hit in the head during a game his senior season; busy local actor and singer Keegan Flaugh (pictured, above and right), and a bevy of youngsters.

    Flaugh is currently performing in Performance Now's production of 42nd Street through April 26 at the Lakewood Cultural Center.

    A Dark and Stormy Night was a comic tribute to our favorite pop-culture ghost stories. It included songs such as Let it Go and Hotel California, classics from The Doors, Elvis and Led Zeppelin, and current pop stars American Authors and Young Blood Hawke.

    The costs of producing Magic Moments’ annual revue are covered by grants, corporate and patron sponsors, donations, ticket sales and program advertising. Over the years, Magic Moments has donated more than $200,000 back to companies that provide services to the disabled community.

    Building Bridges' mission is to equip young people with the communication and leadership skills necessary to address the root cause of hatred, discrimination and violent conflict. It creates safe spaces for young people to meet face-to-face with those they have been taught to fear.

    Magic Moments President Ted Kuenz accepts the Circles of Change Award. Photo by John Moore. Magic Moments President Ted Kuenz accepts the Circles of Change Award. Photo by John Moore.
     

    Some of our previous coverage of Magic Moments coverage:

    Ed Reinhardt: Never met a man I didn't like
    Photos: Backstage on opening night of Spirit & Soul

    Magic Moments’ rotund roster includes big-name local actors
    Video podcast: Magic Moments' Death of a Star
    Magic Moments pays actors in a different kind of currency
    Wheelchair dancers ready for some rockin' and rollin'

    Magic Moments performs at the Circle of Change Awards. Photo by John Moore.
    Magic Moments performs at the Circle of Change Awards. Photo by John Moore.
  • Actor Jonathan Crombie of 'Benediction' has died at 48

    by John Moore | Apr 18, 2015

    Jonathan Crombie. Photo by John Moore.
    Jonathan Crombie in 'Benediction.' Photo by John Moore.

    Actor Jonathan Crombie, who played two roles in the DCPA Theatre Company’s recent world premiere of Benediction, has died, Producing Artistic Director Kent Thompson announced today.

    jonathan-crombieCrombie, who was best known for his work in the Anne of Green Gables movies, the Canadian TV series Slings & Arrows and starring on Broadway in The Drowsy Chaperone, suffered a sudden brain hemorrhage on Wednesday in New York City, and physicians could not revive him. He was 48.

    Thompson said it is both deeply painful and ironic that Crombie’s last job in the theatre was in Benediction, “a play about death, loss and pain, and how do we deal with it and go on?” he said.  

    Benediction was performed in January and February at the Denver Performing Arts Complex. Thompson already is grieving Crombie’s smile, sensitivity and good spirit. “He was imaginative and clever and funny," Thompson said, "and I know everyone in the Benediction company is devastated by this news."

    Crombie came to Denver as a heartthrob turned major TV and film star. Thompson, who already had been a fan of Crombie's work, remembers doing a double-take when Crombie's name came up for possible casting. Thompson was impressed by Crombie's continued reinvention throughout his career, including his work with his stand-up comedy troupe, Skippy's Rangers.

    Benediction cast members knew Crombie as a fun and friendly colleague they finally convinced to come along with them to “Motown nights” at the nearby Beauty Bar in Denver.

    "The company liked him so much, and we were always very happy to have him around," said castmate Benjamin Bonenfant. "He almost even seemed embarrassed by the attention. He was kind, amiable and engaged. He was always game to talk about movies or politics or the craft. He was very generous, on and off stage."

    Added castmate Amelia Corrada, a student at Denver School of the Arts: "I remember on my first day of rehearsals, he was the first one to come up to me," she said. "Nervous as I was, he was the one who encouraged me. Such a fantastic man. Another quiet genius lost."

    Benediction was the final chapter in the late author Kent Haruf's Plainsong trilogy, which brought the Colorado plains and its rural residents to vivid life. The final chapter focused on a dying hardware store owner who is estranged from his adult son (Crombie).

    Richard and Frank presented two small but challenging roles for Crombie. The former was an unsuitable suitor to the dying man’s grown daughter; the latter, Frank, was presented onstage as a manifestation of the son the old man drove away as a teen when he discovered the boy was gay.

    Frank was a particularly challenging character, Thompson said, “because we never know for sure if he’s ghost, or real, or something in-between.

    “I was impressed because even though the roles were small on the page, Jonathan just kept working with his fellow actors, going over his scenes over and over to see what else he could discover. I am sure that kind of work ethic was the secret of his success throughout his career."

    Said audience member Marilyn Welsh: "He was absolutely riveting in those two small roles in Benediction. His performance exemplified the saying that it isn't the role, but the actor."

    Jonathan Crombie was born on Oct. 12, 1966, in Toronto. He was the son of David Crombie, who was mayor of Toronto from 1972 to 1978 and served as a federal Progressive Conservative cabinet minister in the 1980s.

    Crombie played Gilbert Blythe in the CBC movie series Anne of Green Gables between 1984 and 2000. He and his character became so popular in Canada, he happily took to answering to Gil as his new nickname. 

    “I think he was really proud of being Gilbert Blythe,” his sister, Carrie Crombie, told the CBC. “He really enjoyed that series and was happy; very proud of it. I think his proudest part was when he played the lead in Drowsy Chaperone on Broadway. That was just an amazing thing for him to be able to do.”

    Slings & Arrows was a popular Canadian TV series set at a fictional Shakespearean festival similar to the real-world Stratford Festival (which Crombie performed at). In the second season, Crombie played a comically inept playwright named Lionel Train.

    Backstage at Benediction, the most drama you would get out of Crombie were epic cribbage matches with castmate Adrian Egolf.

    Carrie Crombie said she didn't think her brother had any major health issues, and was committed to staying healthy. She said his organs have been donated, "which is something he would have been proud of."

    John Moore was named one of the 12 most influential theater critics in the U.S by American Theatre Magazine in 2011. He has since taken a groundbreaking position as the Denver Center’s Senior Arts Journalist.

    Click here to read the CBC’s full tribute to Jonathan Crombie


    Jonathan Crombie with the cast of 'Benediction' on opening night. Photo by John Moore.
    Jonathan Crombie with the cast of the DCPA Theatre Company's 'Benediction' on opening night. Photo by John Moore.


    Jonathan Crombie: Theatrical bio

    U.S. theater includes: Freud's Last Session (Pittsburgh Public, Hartford Theaterworks); Clybourne Park, Beneatha's Place (Baltimore CenterStage); Drowsy Chaperone [as Man In Chair] (Broadway, National Tour).

    Canadian credits include: Oxford Roof-Climbers Rebellion, Dishwashers (Tarragon); Arcadia, What The Butler Saw (CanStage); Romeo & Juliet, Oedipus Rex, Comedy of Errors, Hamlet (Stratford); Godspell (New Vic); Dig? (Flatzbo); Film/TV includes: Haven, Good Wife, Cottage Country, Slings & Arrows, Power Play, Mount Royal, Bullies and Anne Of Green Gables. He's a member of the sketch troupe Skippy's Rangers and co-director of the documentary Waiting For Ishtar.

    Our previous coverage of Benediction:
    Opening night photos
    Kent Haruf: The complete final interview
    For two inaugural DCPA company actors, you can come home again
    Video, photos: DCPA celebrates life of Colorado novelist Kent Haruf
    'Benediction' opens as a celebration of ‘The Precious Ordinary’
    Video: Your first look at Benediction
    Doris Duke Foundation awards $125,000 for Benediction
    Bittersweet opening for 'Benediction' rehearsals
    Kent Haruf, author of 'Plainsong' Trilogy, dies at age 71
    Kent Thompson on the 2014-15 season, play by play
    2014 Colorado New Play Summit will complete 'Plainsong' trilogy
    Video: 'Benediction' reading at the 2014 Colorado New Play Summit

    Jonathan Crombie with castmaet Nance Williamson on opening night of 'Benediction.'. Photo by John Moore.

    Jonathan Crombie with castmate Nance Williamson on opening night of 'Benediction.' Photo by John Moore.
     
  • Meet the cast video series: Tony Vincent

    by John Moore | Apr 17, 2015


    In this ongoing series, we briefly introduce you to the actors performing in our plays in a fun way. Episode 93: Meet Tony Vincent, who is making his DCPA debut playing the doubting Tom in the Theatre Company's world premiere production of the new rock musical The 12.

    Vincent grew up in nearby Albuquerque and signed a major record deal while just a sophomore in college. His theatre resume includes American Idiot, Rent, We Will Rock You and Jesus Christ Superstar, but the world (or 17 million of them anyway) saw Vincent compete every week on the second season of TV's The Voice in 2012.

    The 12 imagines what happened when the disciples went into hiding for the three days following Jesus' crucifixion. It plays through April 26, 2015, in The Stage Theatre.

    Video by John Moore and David Lenk. Run time: 2 minutes, 50 seconds.

    The 12: Ticket information
    Through April 26
    Stage Theatre
    Tickets: 303-893-4100 or BUY ONLINE
    Toll-free: 800-641-1222 | TTY: 303-893-9582
    Groups of 10 or more: 303-446-4829
    ASL interpreted, audio described and open-captioned performance: 1:30 p.m. April 26

    Our previous coverage of The 12:
    Video: Colin Hanlon and Gregory Treco talk The 12 at the Tattered Cover
    Photos: Opening night of The 12
    Robert Schenkkan's Opening Night reflections
    Neil Berg and the rockin' roots of The 12
    Video montage: Your first look at The 12
    The 12: Three days that rocked the world
    Watch short video samples of 'The 12' songs from the first sing-through
    Video: Robert Schenkkan introduces The 12
    The 12 opens rehearsals with a mandate to 'dig deep'
    Full casting announced for The 12
    Final offering of Theatre Company season: Rock musical The 12


    Tony Vincent as Tom in 'The 12.' Photo by Jennifer M. Koskinen.

    Tony Vincent as the doubting Tom in 'The 12.' Photo by Jennifer M. Koskinen.


    Previous 2014-15 "Meet the Cast" episodes:

    Leslie Alexander, A Christmas Carol
    Joyce Cohen, Benediction
    Amelia Marie Corrada, Benediction
    Jason Delane, One Night in Miami
    Allen Dorsey, A Christmas Carol
    Meet Adrian Egolf, Benediction
    Donna English, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
    Charlie Franklin, Lord of the Flies

    Patty Goble,The Unsinkable Molly Brown
    Sam Gregory, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike
    Matthew Gumley, Lord of the Flies
    Lenne Klingaman, Appoggiatura
    Darrie Lawrence
    , Appoggiatura
    Colby Lewis, One Night in Miami
    Eddie Lopez, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike
    Beth Malone, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
    Nick Mills Appoggiatura
    Paolo Montalban, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
    Burke Moses, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
    Linda Mugleston, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
    Rob Nagle, Appoggiatura
    James Newcomb, Benediction
    Leslie O'Carroll, A Christmas Carol, Benediction
    Morocco Omari, One Night in Miami
    Ben and Noah Radcliffe, Lord of the Flies
    James Michael Reilly, A Christmas Carol
    Socorro Santiago, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike
    Lesley Shires, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike
    Gregory Isaac Stone, Lord of the Flies
    Nik Walker, One Night in Miami
    York Walker, One Night in Miami
    Nance Williamson, Benediction

  • Page to Stage: Colin Hanlon and Gregory Treco of 'The 12'

    by John Moore | Apr 16, 2015


    Colin Hanlon and Gregory Treco Brief video highlights from this month’s Page to Stage noontime conversation at the Tattered Cover Book Store with The 12 cast members Colin Hanlon (Peter) and Gregory Treco (Simon).

    The pair fielded a variety of questions from host John Moore, including potential audience preconceptions and the show's ultimate message. "I think the creators' hope is that you will walk out having an experience that everyone can relate to of losing somebody really important," says Hanlon. "I think people walk out hopefully saying, 'What a  beautiful message that is, love.' "

    The 12 plays through April 26 at The Stage Theatre. Video by John Moore and David Lenk.


    The 12 production photos by Jennifer M. Koskinen:



    The 12: Ticket information
    Through April 26
    Stage Theatre
    Tickets: 303-893-4100 or BUY ONLINE
    Toll-free: 800-641-1222 | TTY: 303-893-9582
    Groups of 10 or more: 303-446-4829
    ASL interpreted, audio described and open-captioned performance: 1:30 p.m. April 26

    Our previous coverage of The 12:
    Photos: Opening night of The 12
    Robert Schenkkan's Opening Night reflections
    Neil Berg and the rockin' roots of The 12
    Video montage: Your first look at The 12
    The 12: Three days that rocked the world
    Watch short video samples of 'The 12' songs from the first sing-through
    Video: Robert Schenkkan introduces The 12
    The 12 opens rehearsals with a mandate to 'dig deep'
    Full casting announced for The 12
    Final offering of Theatre Company season: Rock musical The 12
  • Art and artist: Kevin Copenhaver tips his hats to Broadway's 'Doctor Zhivago'

    by John Moore | Apr 16, 2015

    Kevin Copenhaver. Photo by John Moore.
    Kevin Copenhaver. Photo by John Moore.


    There is not a more easily identifiable employee of the Denver Center for the Performing Arts than Kevin Copenhaver with his full silvery beard, layered mustache, tattoos and barbell-pierced ears.

    Copenhaver has a style all his own. On his face. On his skin. And in his work as both Costume Crafts Director and a resident Costume Designer for the DCPA Theatre Company.

    Ironically enough, Copenhaver owes much to the bullies back home in Ohio for both his personal style, and the man he has become.

    “Growing up, I was a really fat kid,” said Copenhaver, who was relentlessly teased in school. “My senior year, I just decided: ‘If you are going to make comments about the way I look … I'll give you something to look at.’ ”

    Copenhaver worked hard and lost weight. He colored his hair. Got his first ink. Pierced his ears.

    “I wanted to have some control over what was happening,” he said. “So that was my way of saying, ‘You can make fun of my purple hair, because I made the choice to color my hair. But don't make fun of me for being fat, because I didn’t make the choice to be a fat kid.' ”

    The skinny exhibitionist who has emerged is now completing his 24th season with the DCPA Theatre Company, and it is culminating with a major career milestone: Copenhaver was hired to build 16 hats for the Broadway production of Doctor Zhivago. It’s an adaptation of the epic 1957 novel by Boris Pasternak that follows a turn-of-the-century Russian poet who falls in love with a political activist's wife and experiences severe wartime hardships.

    Sophia Gennusa, left, wears a hat by Kevin Copenhaver in Broadway's 'Doctor Zhivago.' Photo by Matthew Murphy.Sophia Gennusa, left, wears a hat by Kevin Copenhaver in Broadway's "Doctor Zhivago." Photo by Matthew Murphy.


    Copenhaver has worked on many national tours including the Denver-born Book of Mormon and The Lion King. But when Doctor Zhivago officially opens on Tuesday, it will be the first time Copenhaver’s work will have been seen on Broadway.

    And he has the DCPA’s launching of the new The Unsinkable Molly Brown last fall to thank for it. Paul Tazewell, the show’s New York-based Costume Designer, called on Copenhaver to help pull off that high-stakes world premiere here in Denver. And Tazewell called on him again, out of the blue, in February, to help him out with Zhivago.

    “We were running into a great challenge in Manhattan because the shops were so overbooked with upcoming Broadway openings and national tours, and no one could take on as much work as we needed,” said Tazewell, who has five Tony Award nominations. So he called Copenhaver.

    Paul Tazewell Quote.“Kevin is a wonderful artist, and I trusted that he could work long distance with me because that’s exactly what he did for me on Molly Brown," Tazewell said.

    The task: Build 16 hats from two different Russian periods: 1903 and the 1930s. The style, Tazewell said, is similar in period to Molly Brown.

    “When you see hats from 1903, you often just see lots of flowers. But 1903 hats were more than that,” Tazewell said. “There were flowers and ribbons and all kinds of bows. Kevin’s work is beautiful and beautifully finished. He gave me exactly what I was looking for and more.”

    Copenhaver said it was a creatively liberating project because Tazewell doesn’t design down to the tiniest little detail and then ask you to simply mimic what he has drawn. He sent Copenhaver research photos of the period and sketches of what he had in mind, and then gave Copenhaver freedom to create.

    “And then one day, boxes started arriving with fabric and feathers and trims with a note that said, ‘Here’s what you need for this actor - make me a hat,’ ” Copenhaver said.  

    He then built a “mock-up” of each hat. (Think of it as rough draft.)  He sent those back to New York, where they were fitted for each actor. Tazewell then asked for small revisions, such as, “Can we make this a half an inch higher?” or, “Can we switch this brim?" From that direction, Copenhaver built the actual hats.

    “Kevin was really a life-saver,” Tazewell said. “I am grateful for his work, and I am honored that I can help showcase his work in this show.”

    Copenhaver describes the unexpected assignment as “sort of surprising,” but it didn’t occur to him that making his Broadway debut is sort of a big deal until he started telling friends about it. “The people I told that I got this gig seemed more excited than I was at first because, you know, it's really just building some hats,” he said. “But the more I think about it ... yeah, it's pretty cool.”

    He now thinks of the assignment as not only an affirmation of his body of work, but of the DCPA itself. And he hopes this is just the beginning of a beautiful relationship with Tazewell.

    “I absolutely plan to stay here at he DCPA - this is my home,” he said. “But if Paul wants to throw some stuff my way every now and then, that would be great.”

    Copenhaver’s work will be seen locally next at the Town Hall Arts Center, where he is designing costumes for Young Frankenstein, directed by Nick Sugar and featuring Annie Dwyer. It opens May 15 (303-794-2787 or click here).

    Kevin Copenhaver's hats for 'Doctor Zhivago' in process. Photos courtesy Kevin Copenhaver.

    Kevin Copenhaver's hats for "Doctor Zhivago" in process. Photos courtesy Kevin Copenhaver. 



    We took the opportunity to reflect further on Copenhaver’s 24 years at the DCPA. Here are excerpts of our conversation:

    John Moore: When did you move to Colorado?

    Kevin Copenhaver: I moved here in September of 1990 for the job here at the DCPA. I was hired by Jan MacLeod to run the costume crafts shop for the 1990-91 season.

    John Moore: What’s the difference between a Costume Designer and a Costume Crafts Designer?

    Kevin Copenhaver: The crafts shop builds “things,” like hats, mask, armor and that kind of stuff. Not the dresses. Jan is the Costume Shop Director.

    John Moore: But you design costumes here as well.

    Kevin Copenhaver: Yes, I think I’ve designed 29 shows here, including A Christmas Carol five times. Once I designed five shows in one season.

    John Moore: So how does a crafts artist end up designing costumes?

    Kevin Copenhaver: The first show I designed here was A Servant of Two Masters. (Then Artistic Director) Donovan Marley put that in the season specifically because I had gone to Italy and studied the commedia dell'arte. Initially the thought was, “Kevin will do the masks for this show." And then they decided, "No, you should just design the show.” So that was the start of that. A year or two later, (Resident Costume Designer) Andrew Yelusich and I co-designed Pierre. Then the former Production Manager started slotting me in to design shows as a regular costume designer.

    John Moore: Can you name a show that has been a personal favorite?

    Kevin Copenhaver: Oedipus Rex. I really love Greek tragedy, so it was exciting to get the chance to work on an authentic production with all the masks. Also, Andrew was clinging to life at that time, and we became really good friends. It was just a very emotional time for me to be doing this huge Greek production while I was losing the person I most considered to be my mentor. I was very proud of how that show turned out.

    John Moore: What will your 25th season at the DCPA mean to you?

    Kevin Copenhaver: It’s kind of astonishing to me that it has been that long already. When I initially got the job, I was in the gypsy mode, as a lot of us are when you first start out. So it just didn’t occur to me that this would become home. It’s kind of unheard of in this industry. So I am an anomaly.

    John Moore: When did you know this place was home?

    Kevin Copenhaver: Probably after my third or fourth season. We were doing some really interesting stuff. This was a very supportive place. And I wanted to keep working with Andrew.

    John Moore: So what's your next tattoo?

    Kevin Copenhaver: My mom died two summers ago. I would like to tattoo something that is symbolic of her - but I also want to weave something of myself into it as well.

    John Moore: Is your father still alive?

    Kevin Copenhaver: Yes. He is a retired preacher, and he certainly did not approve of a lot of things I did in terms of my appearance. He used to harass me because I had really long hair. But when I was visiting him one day in Ohio after my mom passed away, we were just hanging out and he told me that he was jealous of my beard.

    John Moore: Really?

    Kevin Copenhaver: Oh, yeah. He said, "I always wanted whiskers … but I could never grow any." I thought that was sweet.

    John Moore: I don’t think I have ever seen you clean-shaven.

    Kevin Copenhaver: I have had some form of facial hair since college.

    John Moore: How come?

    Kevin Copenhaver: I just feel like I look better with facial hair. 

    Kevin Copenhaver quote, John Moore: And how do you describe your personal style?

    Kevin Copenhaver: I was a freshman in high school when I discovered alternative music. I was at a party and somebody put on the B-52s’ “Rock Lobster,” and it changed my life. I am not kidding you. At the time, that was considered alternative. That is when I started visually exploring. I grew my hair long. I was wearing mascara and guyliner to school, and I pierced my nose. When I was in college, I worked really hard at not looking like everybody else. I used to spend a lot of time putting my outfits together. Now I just need to be comfortable. But honestly, if I knew I wouldn't look ridiculous - I would probably still have purple hair.

    John Moore: You have had pretty much all colors, haven’t you?

    Kevin Copenhaver: Yes. When we were doing Tantalus, the work on that show was crazy. Someone would be in the shop by 6 in the morning, and we would all be here until 1 or 2 in the morning. There were a couple nights where we would just get slap-happy. I had bleach-blonde hair then, and I started adding color in. I wound up with red and orange hair, and I used to joke that my head was on fire from trying to get through Tantalus.

    John Moore: How many ear piercings do you have?

    Kevin Copenhaver: Right now I have four on one side and two on the other. I used to have them going all the way up. I had seven or eight at one time in one ear. 

    John Moore: So if you were to run into your bullied, pudgy, 16-year-old self now, what would you tell him to encourage him through those tough times?

    Kevin Copenhaver: Probably, "Don't be afraid." I used to really care about what people thought of me. I used to think, “Well, if they are saying it, that must be the truth.” I don't feel like that now.

    John Moore was named one of the 12 most influential theater critics in the U.S by American Theatre Magazine in 2011. He has since taken a groundbreaking position as the Denver Center’s Senior Arts Journalist.


    Previous DCPA 'Art and Artist' profiles:
    Stage manager Jennifer Schmitz
    Costume Designer Megan Anderson Doyle
    Graphic Designer Kyle Malone
    Stage Manager Kurt Van Raden
    Teaching Artist Jessica Austgen
    Head of Acting Lawrence Hecht
    Lighting Designer Charles MacLeod
    Director of I.T. Bruce Montgomery
    Stage Manager Lyle Raper

    Video: Kevin Copenhaver and the art of Costume Quackery
    :


    Check out our video from 2014 following Kevin Copenhaver and the creation of three separate costumes for "Animal Crackers."


    Kevin Copenhaver. Photo by John Moore.
  • Page to Stage: Jason Delane and Colby Lewis of 'One Night in Miami'

    by John Moore | Apr 14, 2015


    Brief video highlights from this month’s Page to Stage noontime conversation at the Tattered Cover Book Store with One Night in Miami cast members Jason Delane (Malcolm X) and Colby Lewis (Cassius Clay).

    Jason Delane and Colby Lewis at Page to Stage. Photo by Joohn Moore. The pair fielded a variety of questions from host John Moore, including the value of a predominantly white audience base seeing this play right here and right now.

    "If I do my job well," Lewis responded, "all of you can have a conversation about what's going on in the play that translates into the news that you watch the next morning."

    One Night in Miami
    plays only through April 19 at The Space Theatre.

    Video by John Moore and David Lenk. Photos by Jennifer M. Koskinen and John Moore.


    One Night in Miami production photos by Jennifer M. Koskinen:



    One Night in Miami: Ticket information
    Performances through April 19
    Space Theatre
    Performances daily
    Call 303-893-4100 or BUY ONLINE

    Our previous coverage of One Night in Miami:
    To Miami creator, 'It feels a lot like 1964 right now'
    How Miami playwright accidentally discovered The Black Justice League
    Video: Bringing four icons to the stage in Miami
    Watch a video montage of scenes from the play
    Fourth-graders have tough questions for One Night in Miami cast
    Photos: One Night in Miami is getting ready to rumble
    Video: An inside look at the making of One Night in Miami
    Video: DCPA cast gives shout-out to Baltimore Center Stage
    Full casting announced
    Video: Interview with One Night in Miami Director Carl Cofield
    New Denver Center season includes One Night in Miami
    Go to the official show page

    One Night in Miami 'meet the cast' videos:
    Meet Colby Lewis
    Meet Morocco Omari
    Meet Nik Walker
    Meet Jason Delane
    Meet York Walker
    Meet William Oliver Watkins
  • Annaleigh Ashford raises $735 for new Bobby G Awards memorial fund

    by John Moore | Apr 13, 2015
    Annaleigh Ashford meets high-school thespians from Denver School of the Arts at her Saturday cabaret performance. Photo by John Moore.
    Annaleigh Ashford meets high-school thespians from Denver School of the Arts at her Saturday cabaret performance. Photo by John Moore.


    Tony-nominated Broadway star Annaleigh Ashford raised $735 over the weekend for the new Randy Weeks Memorial Fund for The Bobby G Awards, which supports the advancement of musical theatre for Colorado high school students.

    Ashford, a graduate of Wheat Ridge High School, signed 60 posters that were then put up for sale during her two special cabaret performances at the Garner Galleria Theatre this past weekend.

    Annaleigh Ashford. Photo by John Moore. The posters went for $10 each, and they all sold. And because some patrons contributed more than $10, the total exceeded the $600 goal.

    Weeks, who spearheaded the creation of The Bobby G Awards in 2013, worked at the DCPA from 1978 until his sudden death in 2014. The DCPA President and Broadway Executive Director was instrumental in opening the Garner Galleria Theatre in 1992, as well as creation of the Women’s Voices Fund

    The Bobby G Awards, named for Broadway touring pioneer Robert Garner, is both a local high school musical theatre celebration and a participant in the National High School Musical Theater Awards every spring in New York City.

    Randy Weeks, PresidentThe Bobby G Awards are now in their third year. Thirty high schools throughout Colorado have had their musicals adjudicated by professional theatre experts this school year. Participating schools receive detailed feedback on their musical production and may be nominated for May 28 annual awards show, modeled after the Tony Awards and held in The Buell Theatre.

    The awards ceremony includes performances from all shows nominated for Outstanding Overall Production and a medley featuring all nominees for Outstanding Performance by an Actor or Actress in a Leading Role. Students and educators also are honored in the areas of performance, design, direction, choreography, technical production and overall production excellence.

    And the male and female winners for Outstanding Performance by an Actor or Actress in a Leading Role will travel to New York to represent Colorado at the National High School Musical Theater Awards (The Jimmys).

    Contributions to the Randy Weeks Memorial Fund are tax deductible. You can make a gift online, or by check, payable to the Denver Center for the Performing Arts.

    Mail to DCPA Development Office
    1101 13th St, Denver, CO 80204.
    Call 303-572-4593 with any question


    Annaleigh Ashford signs posters to benefit the Bobby G Awards' Randy Weeks Memorial Fund. Photo by John Moore.
    Annaleigh Ashford signs posters to benefit the Bobby G Awards' Randy Weeks Memorial Fund. Photo by John Moore.


    Our previous NewsCenter coverage of Annaleigh Ashford:

    Photos: Annaleigh Ashford's smashing return to Denver
    Video: Annaleigh Ashford's Day in Denver
    Our exclusive interview with Annaleigh Ashford
    Our backstage interview backstage at Kinky Boots including Andy Kelso
    Video: Watch Annaleigh perform at last week's Miscast in New York


    Our photo gallery covering Annaleigh Ashford's return to Denver. All photos are available for free downloading, in a variety of sizes.
    Just click here.
  • 'Motown' moments: Smooth moves earn retired Colonel trip to Boston

    by John Moore | Apr 13, 2015



    Shel and Karen Oli with 'Motown' star Allison Semmes. Photo by John Moore. Retired Air Force Colonel Shel Omi of Wheat Ridge won CBS-4's Motown superfan contest by submitting video of his father-daughter wedding dance to the Motown "My Girl," with his daughter, Paige.

    Omi won a trip to see 'Motown the Musical' in Boston, where he met cast members and took a private a backstage tour. DCPA Senior Arts Journalist John Moore and Video Producer David Lenk talked with Col. Omi at Opening Night of the national touring production's current stop in Denver, which runs through April 19.

    Footage from Boston courtesy CBS-4 Critic-at-Large Greg Moody. Pictured above: Shel and Karen Omi with Motown the Musical star Allison Semmes. Photo by John Moore.

    Watch the video of the full father-daughter dance by clicking here

    Motown the Musical: Ticket information
    Through April 19
    The Buell Theatre
    ASL, Open Caption and Audio Described performance: April 18, 2 p.m.
    Tickets: 303-893.4100 | buy online
    800-641-1222 | TTY: 303-893-9582
    Groups (10+): 303-446-4829
    Click here to go to the show's official web site

    Previous NewsCenter coverage of Motown, The Musical:
    9News' TaRhonda Thomas is a Supreme for a Day
    Video: A 'Motown' national anthem at Denver Nuggets game
    Mayor declares 'Motown the Musical Day' in Denver
    Video: Our Little Michael Jacksons in Denver
    Video: Allison Semmes on channeling Diana Ross
    Video: Scott Shiller's first day as DCPA CEO is Motown's opening night
    How Berry Gordy turned a slogan into The Supremes
    Photos: Motown in Denver
    Official show page
    Video: Montage of scenes

    Shel Omi with his family at the opening of 'Motown the Musical' in Denver. Photo by John Moore. Shel Omi with his family at the opening of 'Motown the Musical' in Denver. Photo by John Moore.
  • Photos: Annaleigh Ashford's smashing return to Denver

    by John Moore | Apr 12, 2015

    Our photo gallery covering Annaleigh Ashford's return to Denver. All photos are available for free downloading, in a variety of sizes.
    Just click here.


    Tony Award-nominated Broadway star Annaleigh Ashford returned home Saturday for the first of two special cabaret performances at the Garner Galleria Theatre.

    Annaleigh Ashford and Molly Nash. Ashford once perfdormed a benefit concert to defray Nash's medical expenses. Photo by John Moore. Lost in the Stars was an evening of songs and stories that she will perform again at 5 p.m. tonight (Sunday, April 12). Ashford revisited the disco of Donna Summer, Judy Garland at Carnegie Hall, and even emceed an Alanis Morissette singalong. She also performed a medley from her Broadway and off-Broadway shows. It was all woven together by Ashford's heartfelt stories, many of which covered the Wheat Ridge High School alum's days growing up in Denver.

    Saturday's performance brought dozens of friends and influences from Ashford's days growing up in Denver. There was a meet-and-greet after the show, and we were there for pictures. (There is not a similar reception after tonight's show because Ashford has a plane to catch.) Photos by John Moore.

    Pictured above right: Annaleigh Ashford and Molly Nash. Ashford once performed a benefit concert to help defray Nash's medical expenses.


    READ OUR EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH ANNALEIGH ASHFORD HERE


    Steven Tangedal played Annaleigh Ashford's grandmother in 'Ruthless the Musical' when Ashford was 10 years old. Photo by John Moore.

    Steven Tangedal played Annaleigh Ashford's grandmother in "Ruthless the Musical" when Ashford was 10 years old. Photo by John Moore.


    Annaleigh Ashford's family after the Saturday night performance. Photo by John Moore.
    Annaleigh Ashford's family after the Saturday night performance. Photo by John Moore.


    Annaleigh Ashford
    – Lost in the Stars: Ticket information

    • 5 p.m. Sunday, April 12
    • Single tickets start at $50
    • To charge by phone, call 303-893-4100
    • buy online
    Please be advised that The Denver Center for the Performing Arts – including  DenverCenter.Org – is the only authorized online ticket provider for the Denver engagement of “Annaleigh Ashford – Lost in the Stars”




    Our previous NewsCenter coverage of Annaleigh Ashford:


    Video: Follow Annaleigh Ashford's day in Denver promoting "Lost in the Stars," including co-hosting "Colorado's Everyday Show" with Kathie J, and a stop at the DCPA's Page to Stage monthly conversation at the Tattered Cover Book Store. Video by John Moore and David Lenk.

    Our exclusive interview with Annaleigh Ashford

    Our backstage interview backstage at Kinky Boots including Andy Kelso
    Video: Watch Annaleigh perform at last week's Miscast in New York


  • 'Joseph ... ' brings Boulder native Ace Young home

    by John Moore | Apr 10, 2015
    Ace Young as Joseph and his wife, Diana Degarmo, as the narrator in the national touring production of 'Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.' Photo by Daniel A. Swalec
    Ace Young as Joseph and his wife, Diana Degarmo, as the narrator in the national touring production of 'Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.' Photo by Daniel A. Swalec


    Boulder native Ace Young was born to be on “American Idol.” Being the youngest of five boys, he says, “made me very competitive very early in life.”

    That life began in 1980 at Boulder Community Hospital. The Youngs bounced around Boulder from rented house to rented house because, Young says with a laugh, “no one ever wanted us in their house for more than a year.”

    Why not? Five boys, he said.

    “It was like a tornado.”

    Young Ace was a bit of a rough-houser, he claims, but he also was an Eagle Scout who sang choir, played sports and took International Baccalaureate classes at Fairview High School. To pretty much anyone but Ace…he was a good kid.

    “To my parents’ knowledge, I was a good kid,” he says with another chuckle. “But that didn’t mean everything I did was always parentally approved. Let’s just say my brothers got me out of a lot of trouble.”

    Ace YoungYoung started (parentally approved) voice lessons at age 9. His first paid performance was singing in front of the food court at Boulder’s Crossroads Mall when he was just 11. It was a family affair: His brothers carried speakers and his dad ran lights for a 30-minute show that included original songs and covers by the likes of Michael Jackson. There was even some 11-year old rapping in his set because, Young said, “Hey, Kris Kross was huge back then."

    Young has been huge ever since appearing on “American Idol” back in 2006. He is now starring in the title role of the national touring production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and he is fulfilling a lifelong dream by closing that 15-month tour at his hometown Buell Theatre.

    “You have to understand: The first theatre show I ever saw was Phantom of the Opera at The Buell Theatre in 1992,” he said. Family outings meant a day at Boulder’s Dinner Theatre. “That was like going to church,” he added. “We got dressed up, we got a meal, and we watched an amazing show. I loved it.”

    Young is starring in Joseph... with his wife, Diana DeGarmo, playing the Narrator. She was the runnerup on Season 3 of “American Idol,” but Young is happy that’s not where they met. “That’s because she was only 16 when she was on ‘Idol,’” he said, “and that would have been weird.”

    No, Young met DeGarmo as a 22-year-old woman when they both were featured in the Broadway revival of Hair (he as Berger and she as Sheila). “That was a very challenging show, and we both jumped fully into it,” he said. “Not only did we become best friends, but we fell in love.”

    They are now performing together in a Joseph... that Young guarantees is different from any you have seen before.

    “We like to say this is not your mamma’s Joseph... ,” he said. “Andy Blankenbuehler, our director, is a Tony Award winner for a reason. We call him our modern-day Joseph. He has really pushed this production to a brand new level.”

    In this staging, every brother has a unique personality. There are no throwaway songs. Every moment matters. And that titular technicolor dreamcoat?

    “It has its own dressing room,” said Young – and he’s not kidding. “It is worth more than all of us.”

    The coat was hand-sewn and hand-dyed with all 29 of its lyrical colors. It was designed after Marc Chagall’s famous stained-glass windows. “It literally jumps off the stage,” said Young.

    Recent technological advances have allowed the creative team to push the visual limits of the show in other ways. Instead of just hearing about the troubling dreams Joseph interprets, for example, “You actually see the dreams happening onstage,” Young said.

    Composer Andrew Lloyd Webber approved a change to the ending of the show that allows Young and DeGarmo to sing a wholly reimagined reprise of the opening song as a duet played to an acoustic guitar. “We sing it with a Simon and Garfunkel harmony vibe,” said Young, “and it tears the roof off every night.”

    The couple is grateful for the growing trend of casting popular singers from competitive TV shows such as ‘'American Idol’' and “The Voice” into Broadway and touring productions. And Young’s wife started it all.

    “Diana was the first-ever 'American Idol' finalist to do a Broadway show,” he said of DeGarmo’s year with Hairspray in 2006. “If it weren’t for her paving the way, I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to make my Broadway debut in Grease in 2008.”

    He has advised anyone who follows in his TV footsteps to never take work that follows in TV, film or theatre for granted. “I let them know that the next thing you do after this has to matter, because so many of them don’t take it seriously and they think it is going to last forever,” he said. “But if you don’t do a good job, you are never going to be asked back.”

    Young can’t imagine a better place to close this chapter of his professional career than Denver. “To be able to finish in my hometown where I grew up for the first 20 years of my life is just going to be amazing,” he said. But he’s even happier for his parents.

    “My mom has about 170 friends coming to one performance — and I have known every single one of those 170 people my entire life,” he said. “I bet half of them changed my diapers.”

    Those diaper-changers will see a show, Young promises, “that shoots you out of a cannon from the very beginning.”

    And yet, what he loves most is the very end.

    “Every night, I see kids in the crowd that have the bug,” Young said. “They are feeling what I felt when I saw Phantom at The Buell Theatre as a kid. They are being inspired to be part of the arts. And when you are the one onstage giving that out, it feels like you are passing it forward.”

    Video: Ace Young proposes to Diana DeGarmo live on "American Idol'':

    Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat:
    Ticket information

    April 22-26
    Buell Theatre
    Call 303-893-4100 or buy online
    Groups (10+): 303.446.4829
    Note: ASL interpreted, Audio described and Open Captioned performance: 2 p.m. April 25
  • 9News' TaRhonda Thomas is a Supreme for a Day

    by John Moore | Apr 10, 2015


    TaRhonda Thomas of 9News got to be a Supreme for a Day. She got to wear the hot pink, she got dance and vocal lessons, and yes, she got to stop in the name of love during the Friday morning newscast, with some help from the national touring production of "Motown the Musical" cast and crew. We followed the making of the fun 9News segment. Helping out were Musical Director/Conductor Darryl Archibald, Dance Captain Rod Harrelson,  Wardrobe Supervisor Heather Yerrick and, as The Supremes, Jennie Harney and Krisha Marcano.

    Video by David Lenk. Photos by John Moore for the DCPA NewsCenter.

    Click here to watch TaRhonda Thomas' report for 9News

    And here are our photos from TaRhonda's Day as a Supreme:




    Motown the Musical: Ticket information
    Through April 19
    The Buell Theatre
    ASL, Open Caption and Audio Described performance: April 18, 2 p.m.
    Tickets: 303-893.4100 | buy online
    800-641-1222 | TTY: 303-893-9582
    Groups (10+): 303-446-4829
    Click here to go to the show's official web site

    Previous NewsCenter coverage of Motown, The Musical:
    Video: A 'Motown' national anthem at Denver Nuggets game
    Mayor declares 'Motown the Musical Day' in Denver
    Video: Our Little Michael Jacksons in Denver
    Video: Allison Semmes on channeling Diana Ross
    Video: Scott Shiller's first day as DCPA CEO is Motown's opening night
    How Berry Gordy turned a slogan into The Supremes
    Photos: Motown in Denver
    Official show page
    Video: Montage of scenes




    TaRhonda Thomas of 9News plays Diana Ross with Jennie Harney and Krisha Marcano of 'Motown the Musical' as her Supremes. Photo by John Moore.
    TaRhonda Thomas of 9News plays Diana Ross with Jennie Harney and Krisha Marcano of 'Motown the Musical' as her Supremes. Photo by John Moore.
  • 'Miami' playwright: 'It feels a lot like 1964 right now'

    by John Moore | Apr 10, 2015
    One Night in Miami quote

    The morning after Cassius Clay shocked Sonny Liston — and the world — to win the world heavyweight boxing title in 1964, the brash 22-year-old announced he was changing his name to Muhammad Ali and pledging his allegiance to the Nation of Islam.

    To understand the resulting shock in today’s terms: Just imagine if LeBron James, the most popular basketball player in the world, announced he was going off to fight for Al-Qaeda.

    “It was that mind-bending, upending and sensational,” said Carl Cofield, director of the DCPA Theatre Company’s critically acclaimed staging of Kemp Powers’ One Night in Miami.

    The Nation of Islam was never a terrorist organization, but this was more a matter of public perception. The Nation was thought to be a hate group. FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover had declared it Public Enemy No. 1. The very name terrified Americans then, Cofield said, the way Isis terrifies them today.

    “I think it is an apt comparison,” added Powers, the playwright. “The Nation of Islam never burned crosses or murdered anyone like the Ku Klux Klan. But it was in Hoover’s best interest to get the perception out there that these were the kind of people who would come for your kids.”

    Several weeks before the fight, which Sports Illustrated later named the fourth-greatest sports moment of the 20th century, the Miami Herald published an article quoting Cassius Clay Sr. saying his son had joined the Black Muslims four years earlier, back when he was 18. “Muslims tell my boys to hate white people; to hate women; to hate their mother,” Clay’s father told the newspaper. The ensuing uproar was so intense, fight promoters threatened to cancel the bout unless Clay publicly disavowed the Nation of Islam. He refused. The fight went on only after Malcolm X, Clay’s friend and incendiary spokesman, agreed to leave town (although he returned the night of the fight).

    Immediately after Clay dispatched Liston in a mere seven rounds, the new champ bypassed the post-fight celebration and instead retreated to a Miami hotel room with Malcolm X, Jim Brown and Sam Cooke. All that’s known of what happened next between four of the most iconic figures of the 1960s is that they only had vanilla ice cream to eat.

    One Night in Miami quote“What we definitely know is that the next morning, Cassius Clay changed his name to Muhammad Ali,” said Cofield, the play’s director. Powers, a longtime journalist and first-time playwright, wrote One Night in Miami two years ago to imagine what might have transpired in that room — a fictional flight of fancy with a very real historical context.

    While One Night in Miami is set five decades ago to many African-Americans, Powers said, “It feels a lot like 1964 right now.

    “One of the things that inspired me to write the play is that some of the issues the characters are dealing with are, sadly, still very much contemporary issues,” Powers said. “As I was writing it, I realized that all of the characters have modern contemporaries. So I do want people to see the modern parallel.”

    But Powers was not expecting One Night in Miami, which had its premiere in Los Angeles last year, to become this timely: Trayvon Martin. Ferguson. Eric Garner. Retaliatory cop shootings. At the cineplex, Selma graphically laid bare the atrocities that surrounded the conspiracy to deny African-Americans the right to vote in 1964.

    “The second week after the play opened in L.A., the Trayvon Martin- George Zimmerman thing happened,” said Powers. When the play opened a few months ago in Baltimore, he added, “People assumed I wrote it in response to Ferguson.

    “I hate to say it, but as far as race in America goes, it seems as if there has been a bit of a regression. I just think there are harder lines between different groups right now.”

    One of the primary, and still red-hot issues in the play, he added, is the social responsibility of the black artist.

    “Malcolm X thought Sam Cooke could have pushed the envelope to get people more fired up and agitated,” Powers said. “Malcolm X’s oratorical style was very much in-your-face and it propelled you to action; Sam’s style was more to let you discover the meaning of a song on your own, like an art piece.."

    Just as Powers finished One Night in Miami, singer Harry Belafonte instigated a public sparring match with the rapper Jay-Z. Belafonte claimed current pop superstars “have turned their back on social responsibility.” He said that simply being a rich black man in the world is not enough.

    “When I saw that, I was like, ‘Oh my God, that is quite literally the whole question of social versus business responsibility, and which one determines black success,’ ” Powers said.

    “I knew this play was going to be contemporary. But I had no idea it was going to be this nail-on-the-head contemporary.”

    John Moore was named one of the 12 most influential theater critics in the U.S by American Theatre Magazine in 2011. He has since taken a groundbreaking position as the Denver Center’s Senior Arts Journalist.

    One Night in Miami production photos by Jennifer M. Koskinen:



    One Night in Miami: Ticket information
    Performances run through April 19
    Space Theatre
    Performances daily except Mondays
    Call 303-893-4100 or BUY ONLINE

    Our previous coverage of One Night in Miami:
    How Miami playwright accidentally discovered The Black Justice League
    Video: Bringing four icons to the stage in Miami
    Watch a video montage of scenes from the play
    Fourth-graders have tough questions for One Night in Miami cast
    Photos: One Night in Miami is getting ready to rumble
    Video: An inside look at the making of One Night in Miami
    Video: DCPA cast gives shout-out to Baltimore Center Stage
    Full casting announced
    Video: Interview with One Night in Miami Director Carl Cofield
    New Denver Center season includes One Night in Miami
    Go to the official show page

    One Night in Miami 'meet the cast' videos:
    Meet Colby Lewis
    Meet Morocco Omari
    Meet Nik Walker
    Meet Jason Delane
    Meet York Walker
    Meet William Oliver Watkins
  • Video: A 'Motown' national anthem at Denver Nuggets game

    by John Moore | Apr 09, 2015

    Rodney Earl Jackson Jr., who plays Jermaine Jackson and a Temptation in the national touring production of Motown the Musical that plays in Denver through April 19, sings the national anthem before the Denver Nuggets' impressive victory over the Los Angeles Lakers at the Pepsi Center on April 8, 2015.

    Video by Emily Lozow, Alicia Giersch, Heidi Bosk and John Moore for the DCPA's NewsCenter.

    Rodney Earl Jackson Jr. Photo by Heidi Bosk.
    Rodney Earl Jackson Jr. at the Pepsi Center before singing the national anthem at the Denver Nuggets' game against the Los Angeles Lakers. Photo by Heidi Bosk.


    Motown the Musical: Ticket information
    Through April 19
    The Buell Theatre
    ASL, Open Caption and Audio Described performance: April 18, 2 p.m.
    Tickets: 303-893.4100 | buy online
    800-641-1222 | TTY: 303-893-9582
    Groups (10+): 303-446-4829
    Click here to go to the show's official web site

    Previous NewsCenter coverage of Motown, The Musical:
    Mayor declares 'Motown the Musical Day' in Denver
    Video: Our Little Michael Jacksons in Denver
    Video: Allison Semmes on channeling Diana Ross
    Video: Scott Shiller's first day as DCPA CEO is Motown's opening night
    How Berry Gordy turned a slogan into The Supremes
    Photos: Motown in Denver
    Official show page
    Video: Montage of scenes

    Photos of Motown the Musical's stay in Denver:


    Here are  photos from the national touring production of 'Motown The Musical' in Denver. Photos by John Moore and Emily Lozow.



  • DenverCenter.Org named Best Entertainment Website of the year

    by John Moore | Apr 08, 2015
    a web 2

    The DCPA's new website, which was relaunched in September following nearly two years of research and development in partnership with Denver's Faction Media, today was named Entertainment Website of the Year for its "creativity, design, user experience, functionality and overall presentation" by Telerik® Sitefinity™.

    a web 3The awards honor the best websites developed using the Sitefinity Content Management System during 2014 in 16 categories, including automotive, aviation, e-commerce, education, government, sports, tourism and more. 

    More than 40 organizations were named as finalists by Forrester Research. After narrowing the field, voting was opened up to the community at large.

    Here is a link to the full  announcement.

    Faction Media has launched two detailed blogs detailing the reinvention of the DCPA's website. The way Faction described it:


    By late 2012, the DCPA had been entertaining and educating audiences of all types for  40 years.  As an undisputed institution in Denver, the DCPA was beloved, and the quality of its productions was top-notch. But  there had been a general, industry-wide downward trend in attendance. Audiences were aging and new ones weren’t coming in to replace them with the same kind of numbers or passion.

    Under the leadership of new Chief Marketing Officer Jennifer Nealson, DCPA partnered with Faction Media to breathe new life into the brand.  Over the course of almost two years, we researched, interviewed, wrote, designed, and got inspired by the unique relationship between Faction and DCPA, and between DCPA and Denver.

    With a fresh new brand look and feel and new messaging rules established, DCPA and Faction set out to craft a new website. The new site needed to improve the overall customer experience and launch the new brand by consolidating five existing websites and enabling new technology. It would also need to improve brand recognition and position DCPA as thought leaders through a vibrant, integrated news portal and social media engagement strategy.


    To read the entire Faction blog items, click here:


    Part 1: Rebranding a Denver Tradition
    Part 2: Rebranding a Denver Tradition

    A major part of the reinvention of the DCPA website was the creation of the DCPA's NewsCenter, a groundbreaking journalistic mission that serves as its own media outlet for covering the local theatre community. In less than a year, it is already an active and vibrant source for news about the DCPA and the local theatre community. It is headed by DCPA Senior Arts Journalist John Moore, former longtime theatre critic at The Denver Post, and award-winning Video Producer David Lenk, who are posting fresh theatre stories several times a day using words, photos, audio and video.

    The in-house DCPA team that primarily served on the website reinvention committee were Jennifer Nealson, Suzanne Yoe,  Bruce Montgomery, Rob Silk, John Moore, Simone Gordon, Janet Flesch and many more.

    VISIT DENVERCENTER.ORG HERE

    A look at the DCPA NewsCenter home page:

    a web 1
  • Photos: Opening Night of 'The 12'

    by John Moore | Apr 07, 2015

    It took seven years to bring The 12 to the stage. On April 3, the new rock musical had its world-premiere performance by the DCPA Theatre Company. Here are photos from backstage before the show, the curtain call, and at the Opening Night afterparty.

    Robert Schenkkan, Richard Seyd and Neil Berg. Photo by John Moore.  The gallery continues with various shots taken during the rehearsal process. All photos by John Moore for the DCPA NewsCenter.

    To access these photos in a free, downloadable format from our Flickr gallery, click here.

    The 12 covers perhaps the three most impactful days in the history of man, and remarkably little is known about them: the 72 hours between Jesus’ crucifixion and what Christians believe was his resurrection. The 12 imagines what those three days must have been like for his closest followers in the immediate, dangerous aftermath of Jesus' death. The disciples were being hunted and went into hiding. Nothing is historically known of what happened in that room, but we do know the disciples emerged both determined to spread the gospel that would become the birth of Christianity, and that they did so knowing they faced certain death for doing so.

    The 12 is written by composer Neil Berg (music and co-lyrics) and Robert Schenkkan (book and co-lyrics) The director is Richard Seyd (pictured above). The cast includes Terence Archie (John), Mike Backes (Swing), Jeannette Bayardelle (Mother Mary), Anthony Fedorov (Andrew), Colby Foytik (Jimmy), Colin Hanlon (Pete), Jordan Leigh (Matt), Andrew Mayer (Bart), Christina Sajous (Mary Magdalene), Maximilian Sangerman (Thad), Heath Saunders (Swing), Jordan Barbour (James), Brad Standley (Phil), Gregory Treco (Simon), Tony Vincent (Tom), and Erin Willis (Swing). 


    'The 12' band: Justin Francoeur, Blake Eberhard, Todd Talbot, Jim Harvey and conductor Michael Mancini. Photo by John Moore.

    The unsung heroes of 'The 12': Band members Justin Francoeur, Blake Eberhard, Todd Talbot, Jim Harvey and Mikey Smith. The conductor is Michael Mancini. Photo by John Moore.


    The women of 'The 12': Erin Willis (Swing), Jeannette Bayardelle (Mother Mary) and Christina Sajous (Mary Magdalene). Photo by John Moore.
    The women of 'The 12': Erin Willis (Swing), Jeannette Bayardelle (Mother Mary) and Christina Sajous (Mary Magdalene). Photo by John Moore.


    Actor and Fight Captain Andrew Mayer having some pre-show fun with castmates Tony Vincent and Gregory Treco. Photo by John Moore.
    Actor and Fight Captain Andrew Mayer having some pre-show fun with castmates Tony Vincent and Gregory Treco. Photo by John Moore.


    TO SEE OUR PRODUCTION PHOTOS FROM 'THE 12,' CLICK HERE


    The 12
    : Ticket information

    Through April 26
    Stage Theatre
    Tickets: 303-893-4100 or BUY ONLINE
    Toll-free: 800-641-1222 | TTY: 303-893-9582
    Groups of 10 or more: 303-446-4829
    ASL interpreted, audio described and open-captioned performance: 1:30 p.m. April 26

    Our previous coverage of The 12:
    Robert Schenkkan's Opening Night reflections
    Neil Berg and the rockin' roots of The 12
    Video montage: Your first look at The 12
    The 12: Three days that rocked the world
    Watch short video samples of 'The 12' songs from the first sing-through
    Video: Robert Schenkkan introduces The 12
    The 12 opens rehearsals with a mandate to 'dig deep'
    Full casting announced for The 12
    Final offering of Theatre Company season: Rock musical The 12
  • Video: Annaleigh Ashford's Day in Denver

    by John Moore | Apr 06, 2015


    In advance of Annaleigh Ashford's performances of her critically acclaimed Lost in the Stars cabaret act, she returned to her hometown of Denver to talk about the show.

    Annaleigh Ashford. Photo by John Moore. We followed the Tony-nominated Broadway star
    as she co-hosted the Everyday show on KDVR FOX31 with Kathie J., and then at her appearance at the DCPA's monthly Page to Stage conversation at the Tattered Cover Book Store hosted by DCPA Arts Journalist John Moore.

    Lost in the Stars will be an evening of song, story and sequins at the Galleria Theatre on April 11 and 12.  Performing alongside Will Van Dyke and the Whisky 5 band, Lost in the Stars honors the disco of Donna Summer to Judy Garland at Carnegie Hall. There will be an Alanis Morissette singalong as well as a mash-up of Stephen Sondheim and Kurt Weill. All woven together by Ashford's heartfelt stories, many of which cover her days growing up in Wheat Ridge.

    Video by John Moore and David Lenk.

    READ OUR EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH ANNALEIGH ASHFORD HERE

    Our Annaleigh Ashford in Denver photo gallery:


    Annaleigh Ashford – Lost in the Stars: Ticket information

    • 8 p.m. Saturday, April 11
    • 5 p.m. Sunday, April 12
    • Single tickets start at $50
    • To charge by phone, call 303-893-4100 | TTY: 303-893-9582) | Groups of 10 or more: 303-446-4829
    • Purchase in person at The Denver Center Ticket Office, located at the Helen Bonfils Theatre Complex lobby
    • buy online
    Please be advised that The Denver Center for the Performing Arts – including  DenverCenter.Org – is the only authorized online ticket provider for the Denver engagement of “Annaleigh Ashford – Lost in the Stars”

    Video: Watch Annaleigh perform at last week's Miscast in New York

    Annaleigh Ashford with Kathie J. Photo by John Moore.

    Annaleigh Ashford with Kathie J. Photo by John Moore.

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ABOUT THE EDITOR
John Moore
John Moore
Award-winning arts journalist John Moore has recently taken a groundbreaking new position as the DCPA’s Senior Arts Journalist. With The Denver Post, he was named one of the 12 most influential theater critics in the US by American Theatre Magazine. He is the founder of the Denver Actors Fund, a nonprofit that raises money for local artists in medical need. John is a native of Arvada and attended Regis Jesuit High School and the University of Colorado at Boulder. Follow him on Twitter @moorejohn.

DCPA is the nation’s largest not-for-profit theatre organization dedicated to creating unforgettable shared experiences through beloved Broadway musicals, world-class plays, educational programs and inspired events. We think of theatre as a spark of life — a special occasion that’s exciting, powerful and fun. Join us today and we promise an experience you won't soon forget.