2018 True West Awards Day 3 Fun Home

2018 True West Awards: ‘Fun Home’

2018 True West Awards Day 3 Fun Home


Groundbreaking musical found a home on stages across Colorado

Fun Home, the coming-of-age story of a lesbian cartoonist whose gay father killed himself, was never supposed to make it to Broadway. It couldn’t possibly win the Tony Award for Best Musical. There was no chance a touring production could ever succeed traveling the conservative heartland. And surely small theatres across America would never have the courage to stage the story themselves. And yet … all of those things have happened. Every state in the country had at least one homegrown production of Fun Home in 2018. Colorado had three — in Fort Collins, Golden and Colorado Springs. “That gives me goosebumps bigger than the Rockies,” said Boulder’s Liz Armstrong, a co-producer of the underdog musical that starred Douglas County native Beth Malone on Broadway. “Fun Home has this magical ability to incrementally shift people’s attitudes,” Malone said. “It has a way of teaching people how to think and how to feel from a different spot in themselves than they are used to operating from.” In all, the three Colorado stagings, presented in theatres ranging in capacity from 90 to 400, were witnessed by more than 10,500 people who just may have experienced that incremental shift. And the creative risk was rewarded by the Colorado Theatre Guild Henry Awards, which honored the Colorado stagings with a combined 19 nominations and seven awards, including Outstanding Musical for the Miners Alley Playhouse in Golden.

Fun Home Susannah McLeod and Rory Pierce. Sarah Roshan Photography

Sarah Roshan Photography

Miners Alley Playhouse, Golden

Attendance: 2,130

  • Director: Len Matheo
  • Musical Director: Mitch Samu
  • Bruce: Rory Pierce
  • Helen: Heather Lacy
  • Small Alison: Sophia Dotson
  • Adult Alison: Susannah McLeod
  • Medium Alison: Abigail Kochevar
  • Joan: Chloe McLeod
  • John: Brody Lineaweaver
  • Roy/Mark/Pete/Bobby/Jeremy: Marco Robinson
  • Christian: Jack Eller

Critics Corner: “Beneath Fun Home’s lightness of touch, there’s profound emotional depth — and this beautiful production does every moment full justice. ” Juliet Wittman, Westword

Beth Malone: Fun Home in Colorado ‘pleases me more than I can express’

Midtown Fun Home. Photo by Dyann Diercks

Photo by Dyann Diercks

Midtown Arts Center, Golden
Attendance: 4,500

  • Director: Kurt Terrio
  • Musical Director: Paul Falk
  • Bruce: Vince Wingerter
  • Helen: Alisa Metcalf
  • Small Alison: Julia Gibson and Ella Sokolowski
  • Adult Alison: Monica Howe
  • Medium Alison: Sarah Briana Lewis
  • Joan: Zulfiya Julia Asquino
  • John: Ryan Fisher
  • Roy/Mark/Pete/Bobby/Jeremy: Corbin Payne
  • Christian: Matthew Farley

Critics corner: “This is a no-holds-barred look at a slice of the American dream that has rarely been so carefully dissected. Fun Home is an eye-opening glimpse into the challenging world of gay and lesbian persons coming to terms with themselves, their families and society as a whole.” Tom Jones, coloradotheatrereviews.com

Fun Home Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center. Photo by Alex Niforatos

Photo by Alex Niforatos

Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center at Colorado College
Attendance: 3,904

  • Director: Nathan Halvorson
  • Bruce: Patrick Oliver Jones
  • Helen: Megan Van De Hey
  • Small Alison: Kelly Tanburg
  • Adult Alison: Allison Mickelson
  • Medium Alison: Jessica Kahkoska
  • Joan: Mackenzie Beyer
  • John Bechdel: Gabe Levy
  • Roy/Mark/Pete/Bobby/Jeremy: Parker Fowler
  • Christian Bechdel: Atticus Baker
  • Child Understudy: Ellie Levy

Critics corner: “Fun Home is an odd choice for a conservative town, but one I wholeheartedly support. Telling the story of a lesbian cartoonist and her sexual awakening can introduce people to homosexuality and the emotional weight that coming out carries. As a lesbian woman, seeing another woman’s story portrayed in such a powerful way was liberating.” Charlotte Schwebel, catalystnewspaper.com

About The True West Awards: ’30 Days, 30 Bouquets’

The True West Awards, now in their 18th year, began as the Denver Post Ovation Awards in 2001. DCPA Senior Arts Journalist John Moore — along with additional voices from around the state — celebrate the entire local theatre community by recognizing 30 achievements from 2018 over 30 days, without categories or nominations. Moore was named one of the 12 most influential theater critics in the U.S. by American Theatre magazine in 2011. His daily coverage of the DCPA and the Colorado theatre community can be found at MyDenverCenter.Org

Find all of the announced 2018 True West Awards to date