Film Festival, Plays Aplenty, and Aurora’s Own Dan Soder!

March 5, 2020

For everyone who loves cutting-edge film, you can’t beat the Boulder International Film Festival—well worth the drive over to Boulder! In addition to a variety of films by award-winning local, national, and international filmmakers, there are also galas and a music festival! Plus, Aurora-native Dan Soder fresh off his HBO comedy special appears for a night of stand-up, and Colorado Ballet’s Tour de Force program features a world premiere!

Thursday – Friday, March 5-6

Shows are selling out fast! Dan Soder is a New York City-based comedian and actor, who hails from Aurora! He’s made a name for himself on Showtime’s hit series Billions in his role as Mafee. Soder also just released a brand-new HBO comedy special, Son of A Gary, which premiered in December 2019 and is streaming now. 

His previous special, The Standups premiered on Netflix in 2017 and his first hour-long stand-up special, Not Special, premiered on Comedy Central in 2016. Soder has also made memorable appearances on Comedy Central’s Half Hour, Conan, Inside Amy Schumer, and @midnight.

Comedy Works-Downtown, 1226 15th St., Denver
Thurs., 8:00 p.m.; Fri. 9:45 p.m.
Tickets: $20-$25
Phone: 303-595-3637

Thursday – Sunday, March 5-8

Indie film buffs know this is one film festival that’s worth the drive over to Boulder! The 16th Boulder International Film Festival is back this weekend with a wide variety of cutting-edge films from around the world! As one of the preeminent independent film festivals in the country, the four-day celebration of cinema has introduced films in previous years that have gone on to significant box-office success and multiple Oscar nominations.

There’s something for everyone at BIFF! Renowned for the best parties in town and a chance to hear compelling interviews with filmmakers, astronauts, and living legends, BIFF also presents a live music showcase! That’s in addition to the stellar lineup of films from local, national, and international filmmakers. New this year is the Adventure Film Pavilion at eTown Hall. You can buy tickets for individual events on the website, or splurge for one of the all-inclusive passes! Check out the entire schedule and start planning your weekend!

Boulder Theater, 2032 14th St., Boulder
10:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Tickets: $15-$395
Phone: 303-746-7268

Ever wondered what life aboard a massive aircraft carrier would be like? This exciting and informative new documentary film takes you along for a day in the life a U.S. nuclear carrier, one of the greatest engineering feats in history! Denver’s Air and Space Museum has just started screening Aircraft Carrier—be among the first to check it out!

The scope and scale of this masterpiece of technology will take your breath away. You’ll see how the 5,000 highly skilled sea and air personnel conduct flight operations in the midst of simulated war exercises in order to help protect and defend the world’s oceans.  The 25-minute documentary screens every hour on the half hour and is included with the price of admission to the museum.

Wings Over the Rockies Air & Space Museum, 7711 E. Academy Blvd., Denver
Thurs./Fri./Sat., 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.; Sun., 12:00 – 5:00 p.m.
Tickets: Included in Admission Price ($9.95 –  $16.95)
Phone: 303-360-5360

Shakespeare has never been funnier! With a brilliant strategy that makes 400-year-old plays absolutely relevant, The Improvised Shakespeare Company takes many of the elements of the Bard’s works and improvises a new show on stage right before your eyes! This talented troupe of comedians and Shakespeare actors take a mere suggestion from an audience member and create an improvised Shakespearean masterpiece on the spot!

Some recent show titles suggest the limitless range of where the show can go: Much Ado About What the F, Okay Boomer, The Grinch Meets Hamlet, and Twelfth Night Stand were some recent creations. Of course, you won’t know the title of upcoming shows—because they haven’t been invented yet!

Garner Galleria Theatre, 1101 13th St., Denver
Thurs./Fri./Sat./Sun., 7:30 p.m.; Sat./Sun., 2:00 p.m.
Tickets: $42
Phone: 303-893-4100

Friday, March 6

The award-winning animated film about kids getting comfortable with all those messy inner emotions is screening at this week’s Kids Night Out from the Southshore YMCA. But no matter how much parents love this movie, tonight’s showing is for kids only! 

Kids will have a great time watching Inside Out, enjoying a kid-friendly dinner, playing games, making some crafts, and meeting other kids ages 12 and under. Children must be potty-trained in order to attend, and registration for the event is required.

The Lakehouse, YMCA Southshore, 27151 E. Lakeview Dr., Aurora
6:00 – 10:00 p.m.
Registration: $15-$17
Phone: 720-870-2221

Friday – Sunday, March 6-8

The driving force of this energetic program by the Colorado Symphony is percussion. Ravel’s rhythmic Boléro, the seductive soundtrack to Blake Edwards’ iconic movie Ten, is propelled by the ever-present snare drum as the song builds in sound to its euphoric conclusion. Christoper Theofanidis’ Drum Circles also creates an engaging rhythmic experience as seven percussionists dialogue with the rest of the orchestra.

The powerful Ein Heldenleben is an unapologetic autobiography by Strauss, where he casts himself as the virtuous hero of his own courageous story. The six beautifully interconnected sections are each clearly defined in sound and crescendo to a bombastic and thrilling finale.

Boettcher Concert Hall/DCPA, Speer Blvd. and Arapahoe St., Denver
Fri./Sat., 7:30 p.m.; Sun., 1:00 p.m.
Tickets: $15-$89
Phone: 303-623-7876

With spring on the horizon, this is the perfect time to witness fresh, innovative contemporary dance! Colorado Ballet presents an exhilarating Tour de Force with dynamic and acclaimed contemporary works. The program opens with Feast of the Gods by choreographer Edwaard Liang, who won the Prince Prize for Choreography and was nominated for the Golden Mask Award in Russia for Best Production.

The program will also include the world premiere of a brand-new work and closes with Celts, by choreographer Lila York, “an astonishing array of dance images of Ireland, a piece that is both profound and thrilling” (The Boston Globe).

Ellie Caulkins Opera House
Fri./Sat., 7:30 p.m.; Sat./Sun., 2:00 p.m.
Tickets: $30-$120

This drama is based on the true story of what actually happened when Albert Einstein stepped in to address racial inequality in 1937—he was teaching at Princeton when world-famous classical singer Marian Anderson was scheduled to appear in concert at the university. However, because she was African-American, she was unable to get a hotel room in town, so Einstein invited her to stay in his home.

Secrets of the Universe is the imagined conversation between these two iconic figures, dramatized and brought to life on stage!

Aurora Fox Arts Center, 9900 E. Colfax Ave., Aurora
Fri./Sat., 7:30 p.m.; Sun., 2:00 p.m.
Tickets: $12-$37
Phone: 303-873-6622

From the songwriting team that created Chicago and Cabaret comes a different sort of musical—one based on the infamous 1930s Scottsboro Case, where a group of young African-American men are falsely accused of a terrible crime. While the topic is grim, the resulting drama is a modern masterpiece that’s both humorous and haunting.

Vintage Theatre, 1468 Dayton St., Aurora 
Fri./Sat., 7:30 p.m.; Sun., 2:30 p.m.
Tickets: $32
Phone: 303-856-7830

You might remember the movie Marvin’s Room with Diane Keaton and Meryl Streep. When you watch it live, this family drama at the Vintage Theater is equally warm, funny, and touching—about two adult sisters who have grown apart over the decades, only to be reunited when one gets a dire diagnosis. Lee and Bessie are complete opposites—Lee has gone out in the world, leaving Bessie at home to care for their elderly father and his soap opera-obsessed sister. The sisters come together to face the family difficulties.

Vintage Theatre, 1468 Dayton St., Aurora 
Fri./Sat., 7:30 p.m.; Sun., 2:30 p.m.
Tickets: $32
Phone: 303-856-7830Saturday, March 7

Take in some culture for FREE! The Denver Art Museum opens its doors for you to see a delightful array of art collections and non-ticketed exhibitions. On display for free are renowned exhibits including, The Light Show, Treasures of British Art: The Berger Collection, Shantell Martin: Words and Lines, Phantom Canyon: A Digital Circuit and Eyes On: Anthony McCall.

While you’re there, stop by the Paint Studio to explore how painters use color and light to capture the world around them. You can even try your hand at creating your own masterpiece!

Denver Art Museum, 100 W. 14th Ave., Denver
10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Tickets: FREE
Phone: 720-865-5000

Another Aurora-Native:  Southshore!

There’s no shortage of things to do near the amazing master-planned community of Southshore! You get the tranquility of lakeside living with easy access to your favorite urban activities. Stop by and see for yourself how great Life at the Lake can be! With beautiful model homes from Toll Brothers, Taylor Morrison, and Richmond American Homes, it’s easy to picture yourself in your own new home, priced from the upper $400s to the $700s.