First Take

Theatre Review
3:16 pm
Thu April 24, 2014

Denver Center Theatre: Animal Crackers

Jim Ferris as Captain Jeffrey T. Spaulding (Groucho)
Credit Jennifer M. Koskinen / www.ColoradoDrama.com

Let's go back to the public stage in the late '20's and early '30's, during the transition between Vaudeville and musical theatre, when a variety of great acts were woven together with a comedic premise, providing evenings of great hilarity, virtuosity, and social commentary.  No one had more fun with this form than the Marx brothers—Groucho, Harpo, Chico, and Zeppo—on stage and then on film.  In the Denver Center Theatre Company's current production of Animal Crackers—a 1928 stage musical and 1930 film—we have the pleasure of experiencing the charm and zaniness that made this bunch of goof

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Arts and Culture
3:00 pm
Thu April 24, 2014

Message of Harmony: chorale's singing overcomes bullying

Harmony: A Colorado Chorale’s spring concerts ("Imagine - Songs of Hope and Change") in Fort Collins and Denver this May offer  a fresh and fun musical perspective on bullying from the all-inclusive choir, offering some hope, especially for LGBTQ youth.

Chorale director Bill Loper visited First Take to tell the story of the chorale and how their singing lifts audiences from the burden of hate.

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Arts and Culture
2:39 pm
Thu April 24, 2014

Denver's new public art campaign: P.S. You Are Here

Denver Arts & Venues has a new project to revitalize neighborhoods through the arts.  It’s called “P.S. You Are Here.” Lisa Gedgaudas tells First Take the City of Denver hopes the pilot initiative will cultivate collaborative, community-driven, outdoor projects in Denver’s public spaces.

The proposal submission deadline is May 30, 2014.

official P.S. You Are Here website

Music on this feature by Plas Johnson with Ray Brown and Herb Ellis, "Parking Lot Blues," from the CD The Blues.

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Eats & Beats
3:33 pm
Wed April 16, 2014

From Cuba to Panama to Denver: Yolo Rum

"Don Pancho" Fernandez makes his rum in Panama for the Denver-based Yolo label.

A love story.  A passion story.  How could a story about premium sipping rum be about anything else?  Phillip Guerin, president of the Denver distributing company that sells Yolo Rum in the U.S., tells that story.

The idea, the philosophy came first, says Guerin.   The brand's name is the acronym for the popular credo  "you only live once."  Next, he and his wife went on a search for a fine rum and discovered Francisco "Don Pancho" Fernandez, a Cuban master rum blender (ronero), who lives in Panama and now distributes two of his formulas exclusively through Yolo .

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Eats & Beats
3:10 pm
Wed April 16, 2014

NY style pizza on parade: Anthony's

Foldable and sold by the slice.  That's the signature of the New York style pizza pie.  But it's more than that, says John LeBel, president of Anthony's Pizza and Pasta.

"Thin styled crust.  It's large, 22 to 24 inches across, and good cheese, freshly grated," said LeBel, a native New Yorker.  Former NY resident Carlos Lando and LeBel compared notes on pizza parlors in NYC on this interview.

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