(credit: Millibo Art Theatre)
You may think that the arts and culture scene in Colorado lives strictly in the Denver metro area, however you’d be surprised to know just how much impressive theater is being performed in the Colorado Springs area. Southern Colorado is quickly growing, and Colorado Springs is home to many impressive companies, all presenting a variety of work. From classics to world premieres and lots of classes for kids, the Colorado Springs theater community is actually very large and quite vibrant. Denverites should not hesitate to take the trip down to the Springs to check out all of this wonderful work. You’ll be amazed at the high quality and all of the bold new productions.
Fine Arts Center Theatre Company
30 West Dale St.
Colorado Springs, CO 80903
For large-scale musicals, Broadway-quality performances and a beautiful venue, check out the Fine Arts Center and its own Fine Arts Center Theatre Company. The beautiful 400-seat theater is always comfortable and the company regularly performs hit musicals like “Mary Poppins,” “The Wizard of Oz,” “Guys and Dolls” and even hosts big-name standup comics like Ralphie May and Paula Poundstone. There is also a summer youth program that offers professional training for children ages six through 18, offering them the opportunity to perform in a professional setting, covering everything from Shakespeare to musical theatre.
3955 Regent Circle
Colorado Springs, CO 80918
What originally started as an outreach program for the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs has transformed into an extremely high-quality theatre company offering both classic and contemporary works in a professional environment. Theatreworks performs in the Dusty Loo Bon Vivant Theater, which is constantly transformed to fit the production, offering seating for about 200 patrons. Shows include classics like “Happy Days” by Samuel Beckett and Shakespeare’s “As You Like It” to more contemporary pieces like “Psycho Beach Party” by Charles Busch or David Ives’ “The Liar.”
Springs Ensemble Theatre
1903 E. Cache La Poudre St.
Colorado Springs, CO 80909
This smaller theatre has been making a big name for itself for the past five seasons. Springs Ensemble Theatre (also known as SET) performs contemporary, challenging works like Yasmina Reza’s “Art” or Edward Albee’s “The Goat, or Who is Sylvia.” Its exciting 2015 season includes similar works such as “Dead Man’s Cell Phone” by Sarah Ruhl and Annie Baker’s “Circle Mirror Transformation” among many others. This ensemble-based company brings excellent work featuring edgier, more contemporary pieces that audiences have been loving. Plus the intimate space allows for smaller audiences who can truly feel like part of the action.
Cottonwood Center for the Arts
427 E. Colorado Ave.
Colorado Springs, CO 80903
If you are looking for something even more challenging and bold, then you’ll definitely want to check out THEATREdART. Now in its eighth season, this impressive company brings the obscure, dark, intimate and edgy works to its stage. From drama to comedy, everything is represented and many of Theatre dArt’s shows are among the most provocative and ambitious productions in the Pikes Peak region. This great company has upcoming shows like “A Night of H.P. Lovecraft,” an adaptation of Ed Wood’s classic “Plan 9 from Outer Space,” and an adaptation of Dostoyevsky’s famous “Crime and Punishment.”
Millibo Art Theatre
1626 S. Tejon St.
Colorado Springs, CO 80905
The Millibo Art Theatre just opened its new home on Tejon Street in Colorado Springs, offering its family-friendly fare to a larger audience. The Millibo Art Theatre offers classes and workshops for kids year-round (not just in the summer) and has great live theater for kids of all ages. However, not everything is for the kids here, as the adults will love the variety of contemporary live plays offered as well. With upcoming shows like “K2,” “The Santaland Diaries” and “Babette’s Red Hot Ticket,” Millibo proves that it offers great entertainment for everyone in the family.
Deborah Flomberg is a theater professional, freelance writer and Denver native. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.