Playbill: New Plays and Performances in Denver for September 18-21

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Denver's Dangerous Theatre presents Bite, a a choose-your-own-adventure sex farce.
In a week marked by openings both splashy and diverse, from the heartbreakingly beautiful equestrian cirque Odysseo to the marathon Boulder International Fringe Festival, which brings indie performances from around the world, you can also catch an evening of colorful East Indian dance, a naughty night with a choose-your-own-adventure sex farce or an onslaught of pure comedy in debate form. Keep reading for more details.

See also: Five Must-See Boulder Fringe Fest Performances


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Five Must-See Boulder Fringe Fest Performances

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Gemma Wilcox
The Boulder International Fringe Festival is one of many fringe fests around the world where cultural gatekeepers have opened the dam and flooded audiences with playwrights, filmmakers, dancers, artists and curators showing off their works without censorship. Nobody gets turned away. Anything goes.

The joy and trouble for audiences is that we have to figure out how to navigate so much creativity. The festival opens tonight with an All-You-Can-Artist buffet, at the Dairy Center, where presenters will show off snippets of their work to the crowd. But what if you miss opening night? What's a festival-goer to do?

See also: Davey B. Gravey's Little Movies on a Little Screen

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On Trend: Cats and Wolves at The Church

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All photos by Mauricio O. Rocha
On Sunday night, the Church hosted a dance party focused on anime, hentai and cosplay. We spotted a variety of costumes there, but a common theme was prevalent: stylish, furry felines and wolves. Keep reading to learn what subcultures inspired these looks.

See also: On Trend: Neon Colors Our World at DISH and Dateline

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Playbill: Three Plays and Performances to See in Denver This Week

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Animal Farm opens Friday at Germinal Stage.
Performances traditional -- and untraditional -- set the stage this week, from an impromptu dance in an art gallery to the revival of a chilling, tried-and-true tale. Here's what you'll find this week on late-summer stages.

See also: Five 5ths of the Wizard of Oz: A Fringe Benefit!

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Five People to Watch at the International Aerial Dance Festival 2014

Categories: Dance, Festivals

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Photo Courtesy of Frequent Flyers® Aerial Dance Festival
Cyr wheel master Sam Tribble, running circles around the stage.
You see aerial dance in circuses and burlesque shows, at gymnastics meets and even on the formal dance stage -- but it wasn't always so. And as Nancy Smith of Boulder's Frequent Flyers Aerial Dance will attest, aerial dance has not only grown in stature in this country, but it's part of an international community that could become the next big thing in performance.

Each year, Smith invites the best of the best in the field to Colorado for the Aerial Dance Festival, two weeks of instruction, networking and public shows. "You won't be able to see these performances anywhere else," she says. "This group of artists might be blocked together in performances only one time."

We asked Smith for her list of the fest's heaviest hitters; following is a rundown of the top five.

See also: 100 Colorado Creatives: Nancy Smith of Frequent Flyers Aerial Dance


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

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James O'Hagan-Murphy and Len Matheo are Felix and Oscar in Miners Alley's The Odd Couple.
From a special storytelling spectacular with The Narrators at Buntport to a summer new-play festival at Edge Theatre, this week's performing arts calendar has the proverbial something for everyone. Here are three more ways to stay busy with hot-weather diversions.

See also: On the Hot Seat: Who Will Sing For Lena?

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Playbill: This week's performing arts picks

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Gruesome Playground Injuries, Dairy Center for the Arts.
From participatory performance art on a stage in a picture window to an improvised gag-fest about the pitfalls of speed dating, there are many ways to find relief from the summer heat, whether it's in a gallery environment or a dark theater. Here are a few of the coolest performing-arts options this week.

See also: The Right Note: Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat

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Playbill: Three ways to enjoy the performing arts in Denver this week

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Photo by Lauren Harper
Daughter Cells Dance and artist Sabin Aell, Ubuntu, BMoCA.
Perhaps it's the pull of longer days and glorious nights that shuts down local stages in the summertime. But there are still places where you can catch a great musical or a dance performance when the heat of the day begins to subside. Here are our picks for this week.

See also: Artistes Nouveaux at the Aurora Fox


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