Performing arts in all its forms
Sopris Theatre Company offers in-person and online performances for the 2021-22 season
By Carrie Click
Last year, figuring out how to present college and community theater during a pandemic was a new adventure. This year, Sopris Theatre Company at Colorado Mountain College, with a season of innovative performances to its credit, is planning for in-person theatrical experiences, as well as streamed online performances, too. In other words, flexibility is the name of the game for the 2021-22 season.
Sopris Theatre Company will invite audiences, dependent on public health mandates, to the New Space Theatre, the 100-seat auditorium in the Calaway Academic Building at CMC Spring Valley. The company will also stream performances during the week of each play, making the productions available to anyone, anywhere with internet access.
From FastHorse to Steve Martin
Three remarkable playwrights are at the center of Sopris Theatre’s offerings. Leading off the season from Nov. 12 to 21 is the satire, “The Thanksgiving Play” by Larissa FastHorse, a member of the Sicangu Lakota Nation and a 2020 MacArthur Fellow. The play is about a group of white teachers and actors writing and producing a socially and racially aware Thanksgiving production – without one Indigenous person consulted or involved. Since FastHorse wrote it in 2018, “The Thanksgiving Play” has been one of the top 10 plays produced in the United States.
Lauren Gunderson’s “Silent Sky” is next up on Feb. 11-27. Like FastHorse, Gunderson’s work is widely produced; in 2018 and 2019, American Theatre magazine named her the most produced playwright in the country. This play is historical fiction, and is a dramatic account of astronomer Henrietta Leavitt, whose scientific discoveries during the early 1900s were dismissed by her male counterparts, and often attributed as their own.
Steve Martin is a comedian, banjo player, actor, author, screenwriter and playwright. “Picasso at the Lapin Agile,” is the third offering in Sopris Theatre’s season, April 8-24. Martin’s play has enjoyed a long Off-Broadway run and is set in 1904 at the Lapin Agile (Nimble Rabbit), a bar still in existence in the Montmartre section of Paris. Here, two 20-somethings named Albert Einstein and Pablo Picasso wax enthusiastically about physics, art and everything in between with the bar’s other characters and patrons.
The season will wind down on April 28 with the CMC theatre program’s student workshop productions. Additionally, the company will tour a production to the Wheeler Opera House in Aspen early winter of 2022 and will perform at the Ute Theater in Rifle, at The Grand Mesa Center for the Arts in Cedaredge and at the Colorado Theatre Festival this year.
All live in-person performances, COVID-19 precautions dependent, will be held at the New Space Theatre, Calaway Academic Building, Colorado Mountain College Spring Valley, 3000 County Road 114, Glenwood Springs. Tickets are $20 for adults, and $15 for seniors, students, CMC employees and graduates. To purchase tickets visit https://coloradomtn.edu/theatre or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
2021-22 Sopris Theatre Company at Colorado Mountain College season schedule
The 2021-22 season is presented by US Bank.
“The Thanksgiving Play” by Larissa FastHorse is an ironically funny satire about a pageant attempting to both reconcile and celebrate Thanksgiving and Native American Heritage Month.
7 p.m. on Nov. 12, 13, 19 and 20
2 p.m. on Nov. 14 and 21
“Silent Sky” by Lauren Gunderson explores the true story of 19th century astronomer Henrietta Leavitt and her work to elevate women’s participation in science, and specifically, the study of the skies.
7 p.m. on Feb. 11, 12, 18, 19, 25 and 26
2 p.m. on Feb. 13, 20 and 27
“Picasso at the Lapin Agile” by Steve Martin puts 20-somethings Albert Einstein and Pablo Picasso together in a 1904 Parisian bar with other characters as they passionately debate physics and art, among other worldly ideas.
7 p.m. on April 8, 9, 15, 16, 22 and 23
2 p.m. on April 10, 17 and 24
Student Workshop Productions
Original works by CMC theatre students
April 28 at 7 p.m.