Wednesday, May 29, 2019

America the Beautiful Chorus presents special spring concert, plus more featured events

Posted By on Wed, May 29, 2019 at 12:00 AM

  • Courtesy America the Beautiful Chorus

America the Beautiful Chorus: A Good Day

June 1, 2 and 7 p.m., Sunrise Church, 2655 Briargate Blvd., $10-$15,

As the first song on the program for America the Beautiful Chorus’ upcoming concert, the gospel standard “It’s a Good Day” promises to set a tone: “Stop stressing over all the past problems that you’ve had. / Take the time, now get up, you’ll find the good outweighs the bad. / It’s a good day, it’s a good day.” America the Beautiful Chorus, a 73-year-old, Colorado Springs-based, 30-plus voice men’s barbershop ensemble, took that lyric for the title of their spring show because, yes, it is going to be a very good day.

While America the Beautiful Chorus presents two big shows a year, they’re out to make this one feel special for a number of reasons. For one, A Good Day will acknowledge a population that’s incredibly important to its members: U.S. military veterans. Chorus director Jim Clark says the run-up to the 75th anniversary of D-Day seemed an appropriate time to reach out to the veterans of Colorado Springs. “We have a huge number of our guys in the chorus who have served in one branch of the service or another, so it’s always an easy, easy sell to say, ‘Hey guys, let’s do something patriotic,’” says Clark.

Within an incredibly eclectic program of contemporary and classic songs, the chorus will perform an armed forces medley, meant to acknowledge the vets in the audience, and the vets in their own ranks.

One of these vets, Pete Tyree, 92, is a lifelong singer of barbershop music, and was in training to deploy as World War II reached its end. He will be receiving some special recognition in honor of another important anniversary. In the ’50s, Tyree was the baritone singer of a widely lauded barbershop quartet, The Orphans, which won a gold medal for their performance in an international competition in 1954. Sixty-five years after winning that medal, Tyree still has a passion for the art of barbershop, contributing his seasoned vocals to a group he’s been a part of now for decades.

The concert will also include a feature performance by Southern California barbershop quartet The Newfangled Four, currently ranked sixth internationally by the Barbershop Harmony Society. Between their high-energy performance and the surprises in store from ATB, it should be a special show indeed.

“It just felt like, in this particular time of our lives, in this particular point in history where there seems to be a lot of turmoil, it’s a good thing to give people a respite from that,” says Jim Clark. “So if they get a couple hours where we can take their burden off their shoulders and give them something positive to latch onto, and little breather from our ongoing toil that we have — [A Good Day] seemed like the perfect title for the show.”

  • Kemper Simpich

Simpich Showcase 10th Anniversary Celebration

May 31-June 2, Simpich Showcase, 2413 W. Colorado Ave., $12-$22,

It’s heartwarming to witness families carrying on traditions, and even more so when those traditions benefit and entertain the whole community. At Simpich Showcase, where three generations of artists have come together, puppeteer David Simpich has carried on his parents’ successful doll-making enterprise for 10 years, while creating and presenting marionette shows. Now, with a reenvisioned art gallery that also displays the work of Simpich grandson Kemper (a photographer) and Simpich patriarch Bob (a painter), this showroom/store/museum/theater has more to offer than ever. Help the family celebrate their anniversary and enjoy discounts, signings, giveaways and special performances of Simpich’s show, The Hans Christian Andersen Storybook.

Southern Colorado Kids Fun Fest

June 1, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Acacia Park, 115 E. Platte Ave., free,

While your kids probably don’t need much help getting pumped for summer, you might need some help tiring them out before their long break gets going. Luckily, Southern Colorado Kids Fun Fest, co-sponsored by Smokebrush Foundation for the Arts and Rocky Mountain PBS KIDS, should provide a day of solid family fun to kick their summer off right. Cruise more than 40 vendor booths, enjoy face painting, live entertainment and more, and encourage your kids to dress in costume for a parade around the Uncle Wilber fountain. Smokebrush will be unveiling a newly painted addition to the Uncle Wilber sculpture, so be sure to check it out — Just bring your swimsuit if you plan to get close.

  • Richard Gill

Cirque du Monument

June 1, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., downtown Monument, free,

Thank goodness the sun has decided to grace us with her presence just in time for outdoor festival season. Among the many annual and inaugural offerings this summer: Cirque du Monument promises a whole host of outdoor entertainment and activities. In addition to fabulous fest fare like cotton candy, bratwursts and popcorn, the cirque will offer live acrobatic performances by Aerial Aura, a local aerial dance company. You and the fam can also enjoy music by Sound Junction, a petting zoo and alpaca experience, balloon animals and way more.

Les Misérables

June 5-9, times vary, Pikes Peak Center, 190 S. Cascade Ave., $64-$124,

Did you dream a dream of a beloved Broadway production coming to Colorado Springs? Do you hear the people singing classic show tunes from one of the most celebrated musicals of all time? Are you ready to look down from a balcony at the Pikes Peak Center onto a stage filled with professional triple threats bringing Victor Hugo’s incredible tale to life? American Theatre Guild’s touring Broadway productions continue with one of our all-time faves, and you won’t want to miss it.
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Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Funky Little Theater Company presents August: Osage County, plus more of this week's events

Posted By on Wed, May 22, 2019 at 12:00 AM

  • LaRell Herbert

August: Osage County

Thursdays-Saturdays, 7:30 p.m., through June 1, Funky Little Theater Company, 1367 Pecan St., $15-$19,

When it comes to a beloved play like August: Osage County by Tracy Letts, each production must not only honor, but bolster the Pulitzer Prize-winning script. Actors must come across as genuine and heartfelt, whether delivering the play’s moments of tension-snapping laughter, or throwing themselves into the depths of its drama.

And there is plenty of drama. The dysfunctional Oklahoma family at the center of the action deals with everything from addiction to divorce to suicide to cancer to incest, and at its best it feels like the worst family reunion you’ve never attended. Only in this play, it’s the disappearance of the family’s patriarch that brings everyone together, rather than any desire to spend time in each other’s company.

On Funky Little Theater’s stage, the family home comes to brilliant life with a set I knew was designed by Roy Ballard before I even looked at the crew list. It accomplishes what Ballard’s sets do best: making a small space appear extensive. But even so, when the family starts flooding in — a cast that gets larger with each passing scene until the big family dinner — it feels appropriately claustrophobic and crowded, uncomfortable.

The cast contributes beautifully to that sense of discomfort, bringing these people to life with consistent physical mannerisms and deeply intentional expressions, even when the audience’s focus falls on the other side of the stage. Cara Marshall (Ivy) appears first to the audience curled in on herself with nervous tension, and she carries that tension in her shoulders nearly the entire play. Elisabeth Sells plays 14-year-old Jean with startling authenticity and awkwardness, immediately endearing her to the audience. Then there’s Elizabeth Kahn as Barbara, who has to sustain a level of rage throughout most of the play that would do a number on most actors, but somehow she keeps that fire stoked.

While the rest of the cast performs admirably as well, Karen Anderson as matriarch Violet undoubtedly steals the show. There’s something deeply unsettling about the realism of Violet’s drug-induced ramblings, and how recognizable her addiction is to those of us who have seen it in our loved ones. One of the most powerful moments of the play: Violet sits at the center of the family dinner table (reminiscent of Jesus in “The Last Supper”), smoking a cigarette and verbally attacking her children. The visual drives home the power Violet holds over her family. Kudos to director Chris Medina there.

Ultimately, the Funky cast and crew do a service to August: Osage County; it’s well worth taking the time to be inspired by it.


Wednesdays-Sundays, times vary, through June 16, Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center at Colorado College, 30 W. Dale St., tickets start at $20,

The art of the circus, it turns out, has deep roots at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center. In researching the FAC’s history for the institution’s 100th anniversary this year, FAC staff discovered photos and articles about circus-themed fundraisers hosted by the FAC in 1953 and 1954. These provocative events included acrobats and animal shows, clowns and more, filling up the center from top to bottom and raising both money and eyebrows. In honor of this heritage, and because it’s just a good damn show, the FAC’s award-winning theater company will be putting on Barnum, the 1980 musical about the founder of the famed Barnum & Bailey Circus. You’ll see authentic circus acts alongside some stellar musical numbers, and enjoy the spirit of the FAC’s legacy while you’re at it.

Fire and Ice Figure Skating Exhibition

  • Courtesy Broadmoor Skating Club

May 23, 6:15-8 p.m., Broadmoor World Arena, 3185 Venetucci Blvd., free,

Anything that sticks around 80-plus years has total permission to brag on its successes, and the Broadmoor Skating Club is no exception. As this group has collected coaches, figure skaters and choreographers from around the world, it has produced figure skating national champions since 1950, and some of its current members have brought further recognition to the group. Take Camden Pulkinen, who holds the world record for the junior men’s short program, or ice dance pair Karina Manta and Joseph Johnson, who consistently make it to the U.S. Championships. Tonight’s exhibition will feature members of the Broadmoor Skating Club, plus a lineup of other skaters who are currently training at the World Arena.


Fridays-Saturdays, 7-9 p.m., and Sundays, 3-5 p.m., through June 2, Rialto Theater, 209 W. Main St., Florence, $10-$12,

Self-aware theater can make for incredibly fun theater, as the playwright knows exactly which tropes they’re walking into and can choose to subvert or embrace them, depending on the mood. Though Deathtrap, like its title suggests, is a murder thriller on paper, its total awareness of itself makes for a brilliantly funny dark comedy that wholly embraces all the shock and subterfuge that defines the genre. Deathtrap follows a struggling playwright who plots to kill his colleague and steal his sure-to-be-successful script, but there’s more than one scheme at play here. Check out the Rialto Players’ performance of this 1978 classic.

Ali Wong

May 26, 7-9 p.m., Pikes Peak Center, 190 S. Cascade Ave., $43.75-$80.25,

In the last five years, comedian Ali Wong has gone from relative anonymity to intense fame, partly due to her writing gig on the hit show Fresh Off the Boat and partly due to her two Netflix comedy specials: Baby Cobra and Hard Knock Wife, both of which were filmed when she was seven months pregnant. Wong brings a lot of physicality to her comedy — her often vulgar, painful-truth-telling comedy — and she’s well worth watching live. 
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Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Star Bar Players tackle social issues, and more events this week

Posted By on Wed, May 15, 2019 at 12:00 AM

  • Alissa Smith

The Cake

May 16-18, 7 p.m., and May 19, 4 p.m., The Cellar at Carter Payne, 320 S. Weber St., $12-$15,

In Colorado, we had a front-row seat to the unfolding drama of the Masterpiece Cakeshop court case, wherein Lakewood baker Jack Phillips refused to bake a cake for a same-sex couple’s wedding celebration back in 2012. Though Phillips won his case against the Colorado Civil Rights Commission in the U.S. Supreme Court, the underlying issue about whether bakers can refuse such commissions hasn’t been decided, and as a culture we’re still struggling with the balance between the two sides.

The Cake, a play by Bekah Brunstetter, draws on this and similar cases across the country, but adds a layer that allows the audience to delve deeper into the underlying issues of faith versus fair treatment. The story follows newly engaged lesbian couple Macy and Jen, who return to Jen’s North Carolina hometown to commission a wedding cake from an old family friend — a baker named Della who’s more than a little surprised to find out her little Jenny is marrying a woman.

“So in here, the people who are on the opposite sides of this issue are people who love each other,” says Beth Clements Mosley, director of Star Bar Players’ production of The Cake. “And so that gives them permission. It gives them a glue that sticks it together so that they can actually confront more about [the issue] than the guy who just sends them away from the shop.”
It’s a very human play, presenting vulnerability and stubbornness and tension on all sides of a complex issue of freedom and love, while maintaining a warm sense of humor that keeps it accessible. Della struggles with her faith, and intimacy in her own marriage. Jen struggles with two sides of herself: the woke liberal lesbian she is in New York City, and the religious Southern girl she was raised to be.

The cast includes a lineup of local rock stars, with Kala Roquemore and Cyndi Parr playing Macy and Jen, and Ellen Regina and Dylan Mosley bringing life to Della and her conservative husband Tim. Each plays their role with authenticity, regardless of what their own political beliefs may be. The goal is to let the audience decide what they believe.

“This is a beautifully balanced piece,” Clements Mosley says, “where they’re talking about this issue, which needs talking about right now, but also she [the playwright] has not weighted it in any given direction. ... It’s important to remember that, for the most part, people that we are so horrified by right now on either side ... most of them are not horrible beasts, and they sincerely are wrestling with these issues.”

The Cake is Star Bar’s first production as part of ARTx, a new arts collective presenting performance art in the cellar at the Carter Payne.

  • Sam Scott of Monument Photography

Pikes Peak Whittlers Woodcarving and Woodworking Show

May 18, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and May 19, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Colorado Springs Shrine Club, 6 S. 33rd St., $2-$3,

While the Pikes Peak Whittlers are active year-round, hosting monthly meetings for woodworkers and wood carvers passionate about their craft, this annual show and sale marks their biggest event of the year. More than 40 of PPW’s members will be packed into the Shrine Club, displaying their works, demonstrating their techniques, and offering insight into their art. Check out impressive carvings, furniture, ornaments and knickknacks and more, and vote for your favorite piece to win the PPW’s 2019 People’s Choice award.

Front Range Paranormal Society Meet and Greet

May 18, noon to 5 p.m., Pink Cadillac Boutique, 1635 W. Colorado Ave., free,

While we can’t confirm this ourselves, we have been informed by Facebook (a reliable source, to be sure) that Pink Cadillac Boutique in Old Colorado City is “the most haunted boutique in America.” By day, the store offers women’s clothes and accessories. By night, it comes alive with supposed paranormal activity such as disembodied screams and mysterious mists. The Front Range Paranormal Society has chosen this location for its upcoming meet and greet, where folks interested in paranormal investigation can check out their equipment and some of their evidence. There will be raffles and refreshments, but hopefully there will also be an opportunity to confirm this location’s paranormal reputation for yourself.

  • Alan Ray

ROLL Bike Art Festival

May 18, 5-8 p.m., Buffalo Lodge Bicycle Resort, 2 El Paso Blvd.,

Fifteen years after a group of bikers and artists (and biking artists and art-making bikers) came together to celebrate their passions, ROLL Bike Art Festival is still cycling on. Drop on by to check out this juried, national exhibit of bike-themed and -related artwork, take advantage of group rides and other activities, and enjoy the community that has sprung up around this 15-year tradition. The theme and title of the exhibition this year is BUFF*VELO EVOLUTION, encouraging contemplation on the evolution of the bike or the festival itself.

My Black Colorado Magazine Release Party

May 19, 2-7 p.m., The Social, 3506 N. Academy Blvd.,

In 2018, a group of passionate Coloradans got together to create a resource for the state’s black community. They compiled a massive directory of black-owned businesses, and shared relevant news and events with a growing community of readers. Now, two months after publishing their inaugural print issue, they’re celebrating the accomplishment in style with a party and award ceremony. You’ll find live performers like DJ Craftmatic and Talisa Caldwell, plus vendors, refreshments and plenty more. My Black Colorado will also be announcing the winners of its Golden Ticket People’s Choice Awards, which cover categories from arts and music to businesses and services to education.
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Thursday, April 11, 2019

Pikes Peak Gamers Board Game Convention is back, bigger and better

Posted By on Thu, Apr 11, 2019 at 1:00 AM

April 12, 5-11:45 p.m., April 13, 8 a.m. to 11:45 p.m., and April 14, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., Manitou Springs City Hall, 606 Manitou Ave., $10-$45, - ANGELA SMITH
  • Angela Smith
  • April 12, 5-11:45 p.m., April 13, 8 a.m. to 11:45 p.m., and April 14, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., Manitou Springs City Hall, 606 Manitou Ave., $10-$45,
In its second year, the Pikes Peak Gamers Board Game Convention looks to be even bigger and even better than last year’s exciting inaugural event. The gamers have collected a library of more than 800 board games that you can play at the convention or check out to take home overnight, and they’ll be hosting a flea market to buy, sell or trade; a whole gaggle of vendors; a silent auction and contest with proceeds benefiting local community- building nonprofit Concrete Couch; a nightly raffle; and so much more.
Sunday will be family day, but remember: Board games aren’t just for the kiddos. Go get your game on — you’ve got plenty of titles to choose from.
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Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Tarana Burke wants to build a world free of sexual assault with your help

Posted By on Wed, Apr 10, 2019 at 3:07 PM

7 p.m., UCCS Gallogly Event Center, 1420 Austin Bluffs Pkwy., $4, - LEV RADIN / SHUTTERSTOCK.COM
  • lev radin /
  • 7 p.m., UCCS Gallogly Event Center, 1420 Austin Bluffs Pkwy., $4,
The #MeToo movement has changed our culture in an astonishingly short time. With those who have suffered sexual assault, harassment and abuse speaking out louder than they ever have, and the general public finally paying attention, media and politics have become more aware of women’s voices and the prevalence of sexual violence. This movement, though it has spread like wildfire past its origin, can be traced back to one woman: Tarana Burke, an activist out of New York City who was fed up with silence and decided that she needed to help survivors raise their voices.

Now, 13 years after Burke first wrote the words “Me Too” on a piece of paper that would become her action plan for raising awareness about the prevalence of sexual assault, she stands at the forefront of a pivotal moment in history. It’s an honor, then, that she will be here in Colorado Springs on April 16, speaking as UCCS’ 2019 Significant Speaker — during Sexual Assault Awareness Month, no less.

In a 2018 speech at TEDWomen, Burke confessed that in the face of the movement’s opposition, she had grown tired and, to use her word, “numb.” This was after the confirmation of Justice Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court, after Burke witnessed the hateful rhetoric turned on his accuser, Christine Blasey Ford. It is natural for a movement to tire in the face of such a blow as Kavanaugh’s confirmation, but Burke spoke beautifully about what this numbness means to her: “Sometimes when you hear the world ‘numb,’ you think of a void,” she said. “An absence of feeling, or even an inability to feel. But that’s not always true. ... For me, numbness comes from looking in the faces of survivors and knowing everything to say, but having nothing left to give. It’s measuring the magnitude of this task ahead of you versus your own wavering fortitude. Numbness is not always the absence of feeling, sometimes it’s an accumulation of feelings.”
But for every abuser who has made it unscathed through credible accusations, including our own president, there are countless more people joining movements like this one every day, just waiting to turn the tide. Join Burke’s movement tonight as you listen to her speech, then join the Colorado Springs Feminists afterward for a social hour with food and drinks at Clyde’s Gastropub on the UCCS campus.

“Those who came before us didn’t win every fight,” Burke reminded her TEDWomen audience, “but they didn’t let it kill their vision… so I can’t stop, and I’m asking you not to stop either. We owe future generations a world free of sexual violence. I believe we can build that world. Do you?”
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Thursday, April 4, 2019

TVunscripted is far from your regularly scheduled programming

Posted By on Thu, Apr 4, 2019 at 1:00 AM

TVunscripted Live, 7:30-9:30 p.m., Funky Little Theater Company, 1367 Pecan St., $8-$10, - DANIELLE TRINA FINE ART PHOTOGRAPHY
  • Danielle Trina Fine Art Photography
  • TVunscripted Live, 7:30-9:30 p.m., Funky Little Theater Company, 1367 Pecan St., $8-$10,
Tired of all the remakes, reboots and re-imaginings you see at the movie theaters and on TV? Looking for something original? Well TVunscripted isn’t just an original show, but one that’s created on the spot with suggestions from the audience by seasoned comedians Ryder Tam and Gabe Valdez. In the longest long-form improv comedy you’re likely to find, Tam and Valdez will create an entire original narrative from top to bottom right before your eyes.
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Finding Our Voices marks 12 years with local showcase

Posted By on Thu, Apr 4, 2019 at 1:00 AM

Finding Our Voices Annual Art Show: A Bridge to Your Voice, First Friday opening, April 5, 5-8 p.m., FOV reception, April 13, 1-4 p.m., on display through April 30, Cottonwood Center for the Arts, 427 E. Colorado Ave., - KIM GRIFFIS
  • Kim Griffis
  • Finding Our Voices Annual Art Show: A Bridge to Your Voice, First Friday opening, April 5, 5-8 p.m., FOV reception, April 13, 1-4 p.m., on display through April 30, Cottonwood Center for the Arts, 427 E. Colorado Ave.,
Adult survivors of sexual abuse and assault seldom find the support they need. In fact, many cases of childhood sexual abuse in particular go unreported for 20 or more years, as the child grows up with lingering trauma. That’s why local organization Finding Our Voices has found its foothold here in the Springs, where it hosts art therapy workshops, retreats and, most notably, an annual art show for survivors and their allies. Held in honor of Sexual Assault Awareness Month, this show allows survivors to express long-hidden pain, to overcome long-held trauma, and to receive long-needed support from the community. Take a look at the art during Cottonwood’s First Friday reception, but come back on April 13 when FOV will host a showcase: Nyah Meister, Therese Martin, Monica Holcomb and Tracey Gatson performing poetry, Abigale Vaviades performing dance, and survivor artists speaking on behalf of the organization’s impact.
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Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Springs Dance Theatre, Peridance join forces for a must-see performance

Posted By on Wed, Apr 3, 2019 at 1:00 AM

Peridance Contemporary Dance Company, 7:30-9 p.m., Ent Center for the Arts, 5225 N. Nevada Ave., $30-$50, - ANJOLA TORO
  • Anjola Toro
  • Peridance Contemporary Dance Company, 7:30-9 p.m., Ent Center for the Arts, 5225 N. Nevada Ave., $30-$50,
Colorado Springs Dance Theatre always manages to attract some stellar talent to the Springs. This time: Peridance Contemporary Dance Company out of New York City, a 35-year-old organization dedicated to promoting dance performance and education. The company has partnered on this show with the Chamber Orchestra of the Springs, which makes this a must-see event for lovers of dance and music alike.
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20 years in, Wunderkind now serves a different purpose

Posted By on Wed, Apr 3, 2019 at 1:00 AM

Wunderkind 20th Anniversary Exhibit, Opening reception, April 5, 5-8 p.m., on display through May 12, Manitou Art Center, 513 Manitou Ave., - - RODAN ARTESE MIERA
  • Rodan Artese Miera
  • Wunderkind 20th Anniversary Exhibit, Opening reception, April 5, 5-8 p.m., on display through May 12, Manitou Art Center, 513 Manitou Ave.,
Of all the changes that the Manitou Art Center has undergone over the decades — rotating directors, an evolving mission, a new name, an expanded location and purpose — Executive Director Natalie Johnson points out that the annual Wunderkind exhibit has adapted to those changes for 20 years. “The idea that this show has survived all of that I think says a lot, too, about the importance of it. Because it’s very easy right? To drop something? And this has not been dropped.” In fact, Wunderkind has thrived.

Though the goal of the show has always been to collect and display a juried selection of artwork by Pikes Peak region high school juniors and seniors, the way in which the center has met that goal has changed significantly with the changing landscape of arts education. Originally, Wunderkind was established to teach young, aspiring artists how to put together a portfolio, how to secure letters of recommendation and prepare for a gallery show and — most importantly — to give them a window into the life of a professional creator.
Now, the project’s head organizer Michael Howell, who has spearheaded Wunderkind for seven years, says only 10 to 15 percent of the kids who enter the show actually want to pursue a career in the arts, and usually they receive that professional development in school; Wunderkind now serves a different purpose. “I decided to try and turn it over to the students as much as possible,” Howell says. “They didn’t have to be in an art class anymore. They could be any students. Any student making art could enter, and that really changed the tone of the show.”

Those who enter the show use it more as a venue of expression than a platform for career development, and the sincerity of their work shows. Howell says that once they opened up applications to all students, the work became edgier, often more personal and diverse. He instructed jurors to focus on content rather than skill — though the pieces in these shows undoubtedly show skill.
  • Rodan Artese Miera
“We don’t treat this as a high school show,” he says. “It’s in our finest gallery in the center. All the work has to be matted and framed, or somehow professionally presented. ... At opening night, you will see all these kids from different high schools talking to each other about the work. And they’ve never met these kids before. And they’re starting to realize there are a whole bunch of different kids out here that make art.”

He says the show proves eye-opening for the parents, too, who may not know the internal struggles their child is facing until they see those struggles in art. Conversations between parents and their children, between diverse students, between community members and educators, spring up around Wunderkind, and no one walks away from this show unaffected.

Dustin Booth, manager of the MAC, says: “Even if there are kids that aren’t interested in going into the art field, maybe they, you know, add a tool in their arsenal of dealing with being a human being. Having the ability to create art and to be able to express themselves and feel comfortable doing that — that’s a valuable thing to have in life.”
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Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Illusionists are anything but run-of-the-mill magicians

Posted By on Wed, Mar 20, 2019 at 9:34 AM

The Illusionists, March 26-27, 7:30 p.m., Pikes Peak Center, 190 S. Cascade Ave., $49.25-$70, - MAGICSPACE ENTERTAINMENT
  • MagicSpace Entertainment
  • The Illusionists, March 26-27, 7:30 p.m., Pikes Peak Center, 190 S. Cascade Ave., $49.25-$70,
You aren’t just signing on for run-of-the-mill rabbits in hats when you check out an Illusionists magic show. Nor should you go in expecting the empty flair that defines show-before-skill magicians like certain Las Vegas “mindfreaks.” No, the Illusionists are one of the premier touring magician companies in the U.S. for a reason — they really are the best at what they do. See daring stunts and escapes, card tricks that bend the mind, illusions that clone and slice and sever and burn practitioners, only for them to emerge whole and hale at the end. With six magicians presenting vastly divergent styles, any magic lover would be lucky to attend.
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Two local artist come together for can't-miss exhibit

Posted By on Wed, Mar 20, 2019 at 9:32 AM

ESPÍRITOS DA SOLIDÃO, Opening reception, 5-8 p.m.; on display through April 19; Downtown Studio Gallery at PPCC, 100 W. Pikes Peak Ave.,
  • ESPÍRITOS DA SOLIDÃO, Opening reception, 5-8 p.m.; on display through April 19; Downtown Studio Gallery at PPCC, 100 W. Pikes Peak Ave.,
When two powerhouse local artists like Cottonwood Center for the Arts Founder Sparky LeBold and We-Us-Our gallery founder Maggie Quinn come together for an exhibition, it’s kind of obligatory to stop by and see it. LeBold, a painter, and Quinn, a ceramic sculptor, interpret the exhibition’s title (which translates to “Spirits of Solitude” from Portuguese) in their unique styles — LeBold painting the solitary landscapes where spirits may find themselves wandering, and Quinn giving form or vessel to these spirits through her ceramics.
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The Princess Bride is finally getting the cult classic treatment it deserves

Posted By on Wed, Mar 20, 2019 at 9:28 AM

The Princess Bride Shadowcast, March 22-24, 7:30 p.m., and March 24, 3:30 p.m., Local Relic at The Carter Payne, 320 S. Weber St., $18, $50 VIP, - THEANTICI-PATIONSCAST
  • TheAntici-pationsCast
  • The Princess Bride Shadowcast, March 22-24, 7:30 p.m., and March 24, 3:30 p.m., Local Relic at The Carter Payne, 320 S. Weber St., $18, $50 VIP,
While Rocky Horror Picture Show screenings with a live shadowcast have become traditional, especially around Halloween, few other cult classic movies have gotten such special treatment. The Antici-pations Cast, a group of seasoned Rocky Horror actors, have now decided to bring a different cult classic to life through stage, screen and vulgar audience callbacks: The Princess Bride. Enjoy the full film with a full shadowcast, plentiful audience participation and beer available from Local Relic. The cast, mindful of the film’s family appeal, will offer a family-friendly performance at the Sunday matinée.
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Enjoy a night back in time with the Pioneers Museum

Posted By on Wed, Mar 20, 2019 at 9:25 AM

Silent Film SoirEe: Miss Lulu Bett, 6:30-9:30 p.m., Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum, 215 S. Tejon St., $30-$35, - PARAMOUNT PICTURES
  • Paramount Pictures
  • Silent Film SoirEe: Miss Lulu Bett, 6:30-9:30 p.m., Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum, 215 S. Tejon St., $30-$35,
Though contemporary movies still make use of a musical score, music was once the sole auditory focus of filmmaking, which makes accompaniment paramount if you’re looking to see a silent film. You can enjoy the 1921 classic Miss Lulu Bett with the most authentic music you’re likely to find — performed live as it is meant to be by the Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra. Moreover, the Pioneers Museum uses these annual silent film screenings as an excuse to throw a full-on ‘20s-themed party. Dress up for the occasion, play in the photo booth, and enjoy a night back in time.
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Ormao explores how we interact with each other, and with the natural world around us

Posted By on Wed, Mar 20, 2019 at 9:20 AM

e l e m e n t s, March 22-23, 7:30 p.m., and March 23, 4 p.m., CC’s Cornerstone Arts Center, 825 N. Cascade Ave., $21-$26, - TMDEXTER PHOTOGRAPHY
  • TMDexter Photography
  • e l e m e n t s, March 22-23, 7:30 p.m., and March 23, 4 p.m., CC’s Cornerstone Arts Center, 825 N. Cascade Ave., $21-$26,
Environment plays a large role in the art of dance, where performers must not only interact with each other, but also with the environment of their stage — the platforms, props or audience perspectives at play. In its latest program, e l e m e n t s, Ormao Dance Company presents a series of contemporary dances that, thematically, deal with such interaction in a more figurative way: the way we as human beings interact with each other, and with the natural world around us.

One piece, commissioned by Ormao from David Dorfman Dance Company out of New York City, blends text and movement to explore human connection. Dorfman tasked the dancers with journaling responses to questions such as “what can you learn from a stranger?” Some answers to these questions have been incorporated into the final piece.

Ormao director Janet Johnson choreographed a brand new performance for this show as well, called Braided. Featuring a trio of dancers, Braided was inspired by a book called Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer, which seeks to help humanity reconnect to the natural world. “We don’t know how to be with nature,” Johnson says. “There can be reciprocity; we can have a really positive impact on nature and we actually do need to participate.”
The dancers in Braided use ropes to represent life experiences, the paths we take that form our identity and, ultimately, our relationships. “They have their three [ropes], then they have a whole thing where they have to braid their lives together. It’s like, ‘Here’s what I’m bringing; what have you got?’ So they use each of those groups of three to make one big, large bundle, and then their movement becomes very integrated,” Johnson says.

The e l e m e n t s program will also include choreographer Patrizia Herminjard’s On the Nature of Daylight, an exploration of natural life cycles that premiered at Ormao’s 2018 show Ovation!, and two pieces commissioned by the Colorado Springs Chorale, both set to Spanish-language poetry and music composed by Shawn Kirchner and Eric Whitacre.

“We called it e l e m e n t s because it does bring in a lot of environmental concepts,” Johnson says, “and also just that real human connection that we have with each other. There are elements of that in everything.”
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Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Peaks and Pasties celebrates 11 years the only way it knows how

Posted By on Wed, Mar 13, 2019 at 10:16 AM

Peaks and Pasties 11th Anniversary Spectacular Weekend, March 15, 9 p.m. at The Zodiac Venue and Bar, 230 Pueblo Ave.; March 16, 9 p.m. at The Gold Room, 18 S. Nevada Ave., $15/show, - GIDGET BARDOT
  • Gidget Bardot
  • Peaks and Pasties 11th Anniversary Spectacular Weekend, March 15, 9 p.m. at The Zodiac Venue and Bar, 230 Pueblo Ave.; March 16, 9 p.m. at The Gold Room, 18 S. Nevada Ave., $15/show,
For 11 years, the largest burlesque troupe in Colorado, Peaks and Pasties, has been delighting local audiences with their signature glamour, glitter and body-positive approach to performance. Help them celebrate another successful year by joining them for a two-night celebration that promises to be even more rowdy, even more bawdy, more provocative and more spectacular than their monthly shows at the Zodiac or their weekly Champagne Cabaret at The Gold Room — events which are already all of the above. Nashville burlesque dancer Freya West will headline, supported by burlesque stars from all over Colorado.
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