It’s a good problem to have when a small theater has grown over the years to the point that it needs a bigger venue to accommodate its audience. And it’s particularly rewarding for the Developmental Disabilities Resource Center’s DDRC Players, which have a new place to call home thanks to a partnership with Colorado Actor’s Company and Theatre School (ACTS).
“The DDRC Players started in April 2004, with about six individuals,” said Leah Nixon, founding director of the Players and co-founder of Colorado ACTS. “We just performed at the DDRC for several years but kept getting bigger and bigger. We had to look for theaters outside of the DDRC, because our space there is too small.”
The Players recently wrapped up their run of “A Christmas Carol” at Colorado ACTS’ 120-seat black box theater, located at 11455 W I-70 Frontage Road North, and is looking forward to making the space their new home.
Colorado ACTS started offering theater classes for children at Colorado Christian University in 1996 and has grown over the years to expand their offerings to adults as well as children from all over the metro area, ages 4 to 18. Classes usually last between 8 to 12 weeks and feature a performance at the end. Nixon said the company has been able to stick around so long because of staff’s energy and commitment, and because it strives to keep costs low.
There are about 26 members in the DDRC Players this year, and they create shows specifically crafted to their talents and abilities.
“Our actors are able to take on all the role, because we have volunteers on stage to support them,” Nixon explained. “It gives them a chance to shine, stand out, and be challenged. Plus, they get to wear costumes and be in the limelight.”
In recent years the group has performed at places like the old Golden High School and Green Mountain High School for the last five years. But partnering with Colorado ACTS offers the opportunity to create more learning experiences for DDRC members, as well as the chance to perform more - all to cater to their devoted audience.
“The audiences are the best audiences in Denver,” Nixon said.
“They give back as much as the actors give them. They’re very supportive and very enthusiastic.”
Visit www.coloradoacts.org for information on shows and how to support the company, and www.ddrcco.com to learn about their services.
Celebrate the season at The Mile High Tree
This year there is a new holiday feature that’s adding some color and verticality to downtown Denver’s holiday light show - The Mile High Tree.
According to information provided by Visit Denver, the 110-foot tall and 39-foot diameter tree will be the tallest digital tree in North America, as well as the tallest art installation in the history in Denver. The tree will feature pre-programmed light shows every 30 minutes throughout the evening using pixel LED technology choreographed to multicultural holiday music.
The tree’s home is at the Sculpture Park at the Denver Performing Arts Complex, and will feature decorations, entertainment and food and drinks surrounding it, as well as special events through Jan. 31.
For details and schedule, visit www.denver.org/milehighholidays/tree/.
A holiday tradition continues at LCC
For some people, seeing “The Nutcracker” around the holidays is a crucial part of the season’s celebrations. Those people are in luck with Ballet Ariel’s production of the classic ballet, which kicks off at the Lakewood Cultural Center.
The ballet will be performed at the cultural center, 470 S. Allison Parkway in Lakewood, at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 14 and 21, Sunday Dec. 15 and 22 and Monday, Dec. 23. There will be evening performances at 7 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 20 and Saturday, Dec. 21.
Tickets can be purchased at the center’s box office, by calling 303-987-7845 or by visiting www.Lakewood.org/Tickets.
Clarke’s Concert of the Week - Angel Olsen at the Gothic Theatre
Alt-rocker Angel Olsen doesn’t just have a voice — she has an elemental force of nature that can be as quiet and intimate as a whisper or blow the walls off any building she wants. Her last two albums have had Roy Orbison-esque theatrics and lyrics that can just flatten you, like “A million moments landin’/On your smile, buried alive, I could have/Died to stay there, never have to leave there.”
In support of October’s “All Mirrors,” Olsen will be spending two evenings at the Gothic Theatre, 3263 S. Broadway in Englewood - 9 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 14 and 8 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 15.
Olsen will be joined both nights by Vagabon, one of the most gifted indie rockers around. Get tickets for this pair of special shows at www.gothictheatre.com.
Clarke Reader’s column on culture appears on a weekly basis. He can be reached at Clarke.Reader@hotmail.com.
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