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, pikespeakgamers.com. - 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, pikespeakgamers.com.
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, uccspresents.org. - LEV RADIN / SHUTTERSTOCK.COM
  • lev radin / Shutterstock.com
  • 7 p.m., UCCS Gallogly Event Center, 1420 Austin Bluffs Pkwy., $4, uccspresents.org.
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, facebook.com/tvunscriptedimprov. - 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, facebook.com/tvunscriptedimprov.
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., cottonwoodcenterforthearts.com. - 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., cottonwoodcenterforthearts.com.
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, csdance.org. - ANJOLA TORO
  • Anjola Toro
  • Peridance Contemporary Dance Company, 7:30-9 p.m., Ent Center for the Arts, 5225 N. Nevada Ave., $30-$50, csdance.org.
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., - manitouartcenter.org. - 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.,manitouartcenter.org.
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
  • 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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Thursday, March 28, 2019

Your one and only chance to see The Surprise Tour has arrived

Posted By on Thu, Mar 28, 2019 at 9:34 AM

The Surprise Tour Film Screening, 6-8 p.m., The Gallery Below, 718B N. Weber St., facebook.com/thegallerybelow. - COURTESY THE BEST THING EVER
  • Courtesy The Best Thing Ever
  • The Surprise Tour Film Screening, 6-8 p.m., The Gallery Below, 718B N. Weber St., facebook.com/thegallerybelow.
This is going to sound like an April Fool’s joke, but bear with us: Monday’s screening will be your only opportunity to catch this film in Colorado ever, and your last opportunity to catch it at all until April 1, 2020, when it will be screened in another state. That is the point of The Surprise Tour, a documentary about erstwhile art-punk band The Best Thing Ever. Known for their creative performances (such as a bathroom tour, where they played concerts in bathrooms across New England), The Best Thing Ever embarked upon a surprise tour in 2007, playing unannounced concerts in weird locations. The documentary about that tour is itself a surprise every year, and we’re looking forward to seeing what it has in store. We’ve never seen it before, and odds are we’re never going to see it again.
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My Name is Harriett and Swelter and Burn join for a rare dual act

Posted By on Thu, Mar 28, 2019 at 9:29 AM

My Name is Harriett with Swelter and Burn, 8 p.m., The Modbo, 17C E. Bijou St., $7, themodbo.com. - COURTESY THE MODBO
  • Courtesy The Modbo
  • My Name is Harriett with Swelter and Burn, 8 p.m., The Modbo, 17C E. Bijou St., $7, themodbo.com.
It is perhaps the contrast between violinist Harriett Landrum (who performs under the name My Name Is Harriett) and R-rated piano duo Swelter and Burn that makes a joint concert by these two divergent acts so enticing. Swelter and Burn, composed of pianists Willow Welter and Lauren Ciborowski, are known for their oft-raunchy and always hilarious tunes about such topics as, in Ciborowski’s words, “sanctimonious yogis and sexting.” My Name Is Harriett, on the opposite hand, crafts deep and affective lyrics with accompanying violin, performing original songs that bring tears to audience’s eyes. Enjoy Friday’s roller coaster — it’s a rare dual act that should be a blast.
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The Short Circuit Film Fest is back!

Posted By on Thu, Mar 28, 2019 at 9:26 AM

2019 Colorado Short Circuit Film Festival, March 29, 6:30-10 p.m. and March 30, 9 a.m. to 9:15 p.m., Ivywild School, 1604 S. Cascade Ave., $8-$70, csc.eventive.org. - COURTESY SHORT CIRCUIT FILM FESTIVAL
  • Courtesy Short Circuit Film Festival
  • 2019 Colorado Short Circuit Film Festival, March 29, 6:30-10 p.m. and March 30, 9 a.m. to 9:15 p.m., Ivywild School, 1604 S. Cascade Ave., $8-$70, csc.eventive.org.
Local film enthusiasts rejoice, because the Short Circuit Film Festival is back. Presenting more than 50 short films from filmmakers all over the state of Colorado, this annual showcase has it all: drama, comedy, sci-fi, documentary, music videos and more projected on the Ivywild School gym’s screen. Not to mention, since the festival sticks to statewide filmmakers, plenty of the folks behind the camera will be around for Q&As. Purchase tickets for the film blocks you’re most interested in seeing, or get a pass for the full fest.
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Laugh your ass off at Tainted Cabaret

Posted By on Thu, Mar 28, 2019 at 9:07 AM

Tainted Cabaret, 8 p.m., Zodiac Venue and Bar, 230 Pueblo Ave., $12-$25, facebook.com/TaintedCabaret. - MATTHEW SCHECHTMAN AND FUBARFOTO
  • Matthew Schechtman and FubarFoto
  • Tainted Cabaret, 8 p.m., Zodiac Venue and Bar, 230 Pueblo Ave., $12-$25, facebook.com/TaintedCabaret.
The three burlesque artists who make up the cast of Tainted Cabaret take their art seriously — but that doesn’t mean you aren’t going to laugh your ass off at tonight’s show. Comprised of performers Ula Uberbusen, James & The Giant Pasty, and Shirley Gnome, Tainted Cabaret aims to present a fun and accessible burlesque variety show, a little different from your usual fare. “This show has the same 
history that all modern burlesque shows have,” says Ula, “but we bring the weird.”

Building off an empowering, body-positive, feminist philosophy, Tainted Cabaret is at times poignant, at times political, and frequently hilarious. Mostly, you’ll find it’s all three.

“My feeling,” Ula says, “is that one of the best ways to move people is to get them laughing first. And then you hit them with the harder stuff.” In this case, the harder stuff may come in the form of Ula’s vulnerable solo piece about body image, or Shirley’s feminist lyrics, or the mere fact that by putting themselves out there onstage and twisting the idea of beauty or 
gender, they are making a hell of a statement.
Fans of local burlesque need not feel as though they’re betraying their brethren by attending, either. Tainted Cabaret has recruited local Peaks and Pasties all-star Bunny Bee to perform with them tonight. “One of the things we really like about touring is connecting with local acts and getting to see what people are doing around the country,” Shirley says.

And they are certainly making their way around the country. With 29 shows in this tour, Tainted Cabaret is poised to perform five shows a week on average, across the U.S. and Canada. It’s a great opportunity for them to share a unique and accessible performance with a huge audience. In many cases, a new audience. “If you’ve never seen a burlesque show, this would be a great opportunity to give it a try,” Shirley says. “Because we’re trying to bring the best of the best from the places that we’re from.”
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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, pikespeakcenter.com. - MAGICSPACE ENTERTAINMENT
  • MagicSpace Entertainment
  • The Illusionists, March 26-27, 7:30 p.m., Pikes Peak Center, 190 S. Cascade Ave., $49.25-$70, pikespeakcenter.com.
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., ppcc.edu.
  • ESPÍRITOS DA SOLIDÃO, Opening reception, 5-8 p.m.; on display through April 19; Downtown Studio Gallery at PPCC, 100 W. Pikes Peak Ave., ppcc.edu.
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, facebook.com/TheAnticipationsCast. - 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, facebook.com/TheAnticipationsCast.
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, cspm.org. - 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, cspm.org.
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, ormaodance.org. - 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, ormaodance.org.
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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