Sands Theatre in Brush makes the leap into the digital age with a new film projector

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Anthony Camera.
Joe Machetta, owner and operator of the Sands Theatre since the late 1950s.
The new projector that Joe Machetta has been waiting for has finally arrived. The owner of the Sands -- focus of the cover story "Can the Sands Theatre survive digital conversion?" -- was looking at a questionable future for the movie house he's been running in Brush since 1958. But with the helping hand of local nonprofit Downtown Colorado Inc. and its Save Our Screens campaign and the robust support of the Brush community, the Sands recently made the pricey conversion to a digital cinema projection system. And now the lights will stay on.

See also: Save Our Screens wants the show to go on at rural cinemas, like the Sands in Brush

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Dancer Damien Woetzel on how to make art a relevant, productive part of any place

Categories: Dance

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Damian Woetzel.
In the ballet world, Damian Woetzel is a rock star. A one-time New York City Ballet principal, he retired in 2008, his last performance marked by a burst of critical praise, a shower of blooms and an ovation that lasted ten minutes. Since then, he's been busy. It's impossible to list all his projects, awards and enthusiasms, but here's a sample: Woetzel serves on the President's Committee on the Arts and Humanities, is director of Arts Programs for the Aspen Institute, co-founded the Jerome Robbins Essential Works Program, worked with Yo-Yo Ma on Silk Road Connect, a program in New York City schools that focuses on "passion driven education"; directed an arts salute to Stephen Hawking at Lincoln Center for the World Science Festival; and helps bring music to wounded veterans through Arthur Bloom's MusiCorps program at Walter Reed Army Medical Center -- not by bringing in artists to perform, but by getting the vets themselves involved in the intense work of music making.

"Arthur is incredibly perceptive," Woetzel says. "He went to visit the vets and noticed that in the afternoons they didn't have much to do; their tests were all in the morning. He thought some of these guys might like to play music. It's a great tool for rehabilitation even of injuries to digits or brain injuries. Most important to the guys was the work. They didn't want this to be an enlightening thing. It was about rehearsal, and it re-energized them. When I brought Yo-Yo Ma to play with them, they wanted to know, How long will he play with us? How long will we get to work?"

See also:
Henry Awards have yet to come up with a winning system


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Think you're the best at air hockey? Prove it at the Denver County Fair.

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Justin Lee
There's no crying in air hockey.
There's no crying in air hockey.Do you consider yourself a gladiator in the arcade?

When the Denver County Fair hosts the 2014 Air Hockey World Championships next weekend, all of Colorado's rec-room warriors are free to join -- but the competition sounds stiff.

See also: "Beer pavilion out, super-sized pot pavilion in at Denver County Fair"

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Can't make the Louvre this summer? Take a quick trip to DIA!

Categories: Art

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"America, Why I Love Her," by Gary Sweeney
When people travel through Denver International Airport, they're rarely thinking about the art there. Typically, a travelers are more concerned with cramming McDonald's hash browns into their kids' mouths and getting to the gate without a mental breakdown than they are with marveling at the artwork in the terminal. But DIA boasts a lot more than Dunkin' Donuts and Mayor Michael Hancock greeting you over the train intercom (that, by the way, is considered art, too). And so last week we joined the DIA Art and Culture Program on a walking tour of the art at DIA.(All photos by Caleb Williams, art most certainly not by Caleb Williams)

See also: Does DIA have the best art of any airport? Or just the freakiest?


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Playbill: This week's Denver-area dance and drama picks

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Gemma Wilcox takes a Magical Mystery Detour at Wesley Chapel in Boulder.
Summer is a mixed bag at metro-area stages, where the local companies entertain with audience-friendly fare, new play festivals and Shakespeare under the stars. And there's more, so what will you see this weekend? Here are a few ideas.

See also: Dance Fever: The Vail International Dance Festival


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Celebrate the save of the Mayan Theatre at a free program Friday

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With Broadway now the center of the hipster universe, it's hard to remember that time thirty years ago when Denver's once gleaming "Miracle Mile" -- a stretch of streamlined stores and car dealerships -- had devolved into a malevolent mile of boarded-up storefronts, decrepit hotels and vacant lots. The area was so bad that the Mayan Theatre, an art-deco masterpiece that was one of Denver's premier movie palaces when it opened in 1930, was in danger of demolition.

And then the Friends of the Mayan stepped in.

See also: Photos of the Landmark Mayan Theatre's eightieth birthday party


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Review: Outside in 303 tells a real west side story

Categories: Art review

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Installation by Jack Avila, mixed materials.
Outside in 303, the main summer feature at the Museo de las Americas, is absolutely spectacular, and makes a real contribution to local art literacy by revealing a scene of Latino taggers that has been more or less hidden from the rest of the art world -- though their efforts have been visible on the streets and in the railyards.

See also: Over-the-top Tom Wesselman show is a rare treat at the DAM

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Paper Work a cut above at Center for Visual Art

Categories: Art review

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Paper Work at Center for Visual Art.
For Paper Work, Cecily Cullen, the creative director at Metropolitan State University's Center for Visual Art, has put together an exhibit that surveys artists from Colorado and around the country who are using paper to create 3-D compositions. Paper is a familiar art material, but it's typically used as a base for drawings or watercolors. For these artists, though, paper is something with which to create sculptures or even pull off an all-encompassing environment.

See also: Arvada Center takes a leap outside with Unbound: Sculpture in the Field

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Artist Jon Zahourek's anatomy lessons find a home in south Denver

Categories: Art, Classes

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Emerald O'Brien
One of Zahourek's hand models for the Anatomy in Clay Center workshop.
Artist Jon Zahourek teaches anatomy from the inside out, creating model skeletons from clay. And with the Studios at Overland Crossing, just off Santa Fe and Evans, he's also built a community center from the inside out, taking a former pottery factory and turning it into a space for art classes, events and his own studio.

See also: Urban Campfire connects women from all walks of life by sharing a meal and stories

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Over-the-top Tom Wesselman show is a rare treat at the DAM

Categories: Art review

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"Secondary Smoker," Tom Wesselman.
Beyond Pop: A Tom Wesselmann Retrospective is the Denver Art Museum's summer blockbuster. Though Wesselmann was part of the initial group of artists who launched pop art in the '60s, his accomplishments are not as well remembered as are those of his fellow-traveling contemporaries. Maybe it's because his chosen topics -- naked women in pin-up poses and smokers -- are more outré now than they were when he made them.

See also:
Goldfish and a life-sized nude highlight Articulated Perspectives at the Habu Gallery

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