John Wittbrodt and Missy Moore in The Edge Theatre's 'Bad Jews,' continuing through Sunday (Aug. 6) in Lakewood. RDG Photography.
New Benchmark Theatre takes control of Lakewood performance space Jan. 1 as Edge 'rests and reinvents'
By John Moore
Senior Arts Journalist
The Edge Theater Company's evolving partnership with the new Benchmark Theatre Company has now turned into a sabbatical. Executive Director Rick Yaconis has announced that The Edge will go on hiatus in mid-2018 to give him time to rest and reinvent his company.
"We will remain intact and complete the 2017 season as planned with Bad Jews, Dinner, A Delicate Balance and Resolutions," Yaconis said. The Edge will then stage two as-yet unnamed shows in March and June 2018 before ceding control of its Lakewood performance space to Benchmark.
The companies plan to make a combined 2018 season announcement on Monday, Aug. 7.
In April, Yaconis announced he would be scaling back The Edge Theatre operations by half, from eight shows each year to four. He cited the toll that running a prolific, year-round theatre company has had on Yaconis and his wife, Managing Director Patty Ionoff Yaconis, both of whom maintain outside careers. The plan was to enter a year-round partnership in which Benchmark and The Edge would each present four shows a year. But Yaconis has since decided to take a more significant leave of absence.
"I simply need a break from all of this, and then re-invent The Edge to come back in 2019 with a new model," Yaconis said.
The Edge Theatre, which launched in 2010, has been one of the few upstart local theatre companies in recent years to take root and make a significant impact on the local theatre ecology. But it didn't start from scratch. Yaconis assumed control of the former E-Project Theatre, and its established 501c3 non-profit status, in November 2010.
"However, we changed the name so we could completely re-brand and be known for our own theater," Yaconis said. "After seven years, we have decided to hand The E Project off to new leadership."
More Colorado theatre coverage on the DCPA NewsCenter
Effective Nov. 1, Benchmark co-founder Rachel Bouchard
will become the Executive Director of The E Project, and as of Jan. 1, Benchmark Theatre will assume full control of The Edge's theatre space (known as 40 West) located at 1560 Teller St. in Lakewood.
"We'll be doing a lot of thinking concerning the future of The Edge Theater and what it might look like in 2019 and beyond," Yaconis said, "but I can assure you that it won't resurface with the eight-show season model that we've done for the past seven years."
Since 2010, The Edge has produced 50 plays (and one musical), which has infused the local theatre with many challenging titles and award-winning performances.
Benchmark Theatre is newly founded by Bouchard and Haley Johnson. Its inaugural production of The Nether
, followed by a sci-fi-themed new-play festival called Fever Dream
, were staged this year at Buntport Theater.
(Pictured above and right: Haley Johnson and Rachel Bouchard at the 2017 Henry Awards. Photo by BLF Photography.)
Upcoming for The Edge Theatre:
Through Aug. 6: Bad Jews
Aug. 25-Sept. 17: Dinner
Oct. 6-Nov. 5: A Delicate Balance
Dec. 1-31: Resolutions
March 2018: TBA
June 2018: TBA
Information: 303-232-0363 or theedgetheater.com
Upcoming for Benchmark Theatre:
Dec. 1-23: Smokefall
(at Buntport Theater)
Information: or benchmarktheatre.com
Recent related NewsCenter coverage:
Edge Theater partnering up with new Benchmark Theatre
In the Spotlife: Marc Stith
of Benchmark’s The Nether
New Benchmark Theatre
plans to have a deep bench
2016 True West Awards: After Orlando
, Warren Sherrill
and Patty Yaconis