Arvada Center Blog

Congratulations to Keith Ewer, winner of a 2015 True West Award

true-west-2015-day-14-600If you’ve taken in a musical production at the Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities in the past 28 years, you’ve enjoyed the work of Keith Ewer. Keith has been the House Percussionist for every musical staged at the center since 1987. That’s more than 100 musical productions under his belt. He’s also served as Musical Director for 27 children’s theatre productions and has run the Front Range Youth Symphony for 25 years.

Keith was honored for his contribution to the Denver arts scene on Monday with a 2015 True West Award.  The True West Awards, presented by the Denver Center for the Performing Arts , celebrate the Colorado theatre community by recognizing 30 achievements from around the state over 30 days.IMG_3944

“I swear the Arvada Center would be a pile of rubble without Keith,” Arvada Center Resident Musical Director and orchestra conductor David Nehls told the Denver Center. “He is truly the most supportive person I have ever met in my career.”

You can catch Keith on the drums for the center’s production of White Christmas, which runs through December 23, 2015. Get tickets and more information here.








Fine Art Market and ACES Sale now open at the Arvada Center

Fine Art Market

The Arvada Center’s Fine Art Market Show and Sale is back for its 29th year and it’s been extended an extra week.

The show gives you the opportunity to take home artwork created by more than 100 prominent Colorado artists. You’ll have the chance to purchase hand-made jewelry, ceramics, hand-woven pieces, woodworking, metalsmithing, and handmade notebooks and cards to paintings, photography, printmaking, drawing, mosaic, and mixed media assemblages.

PHOTOS: Inside the 29th Annual Fine Art Market Show and Sale

For more on the 29th Annual Fine Art Market Show and Sale, click here.

In addition to the work of hundreds of Colorado artists, the Arvada Center is also offering you the chance to buy pieces created by more than 50 students and teachers of the center’s studio art classes. This is the eight year for the Arvada Center Educational Studios Show and Sale, which also runs through December 20.IMG_3928

Such well-known artists/instructors as Bebe Alexander, Steve Bober, John Hamilton, Lynn Hull, Sabrina Willis-Haywood, David Hoth, Heidi Meissner, Judi Mitchell, Candi Rasko, Megan Ratchford, Lynne Schreiber, Bob Smith, Steven Wood and Renee Ziccardi, are among the talents featured.

PHOTOS: Inside the 8th Annual ACES Show and Sale

For more information on the 8th Annual ACES Show and Sale, click here.

The Fine Art Market Show and Sale, along with the ACES Show and Sale, will be open seven days a week through December 20. Both sales are open Sundays and Mondays from 1 to 5 p.m., Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from noon to 7:30 p.m. and Fridays and Saturdays 10 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Charlotte is back!


The Arvada Center’s production of Charlotte’s Web took a short break to move from the Main Stage Theatre to the Black Box Theatre, making room for White Christmas. Still, it’s not too late to catch the kid-friendly show!

The beloved children’s classic spins the tale of a clever spider and her pig friend Wilbur. The play brings to life the friendships of Charlotte — the wise spider, her animal friends, and the young girl Fern. Using teamwork, the animals come together to save Wilbur and make him “some pig” indeed.

Charlotte’s Web stars Melissa Morris as Wilbur, Sean Scrutchins as Templeton, Ben Hilzer as Arable & Lurvy, Rachel Graham as Fern, Maggie Tisdale as Charlotte, Damon Guerrasio as the Narrator, Gander and in other supporting roles, Jack Wefso as Homer & Avery, Jonathan Hallowell as Uncle & Sheep and Missy Moore as Mrs. Arable, Goose & President.

Performances of Charlotte’s Web will continue through December 30 in the Arvada Center’s Black Box Theatre. Click here for show times and tickets.


White Christmas opens to a packed house at the Arvada Center

Tuesday evening a packed Arvada Center Main Stage Theatre crowd was treated to a dose of holiday cheer before they even sat down to enjoy their Thanksgiving turkey. Hundreds flocked to the center to take in opening night of Irving Berlin’s White Christmas.

The holiday classic follows the tale of former Army buddies turned Broadway superstars Bob Wallace and Phil Davis as they spread Christmas cheer to an old friend, and find a little love of their own.

Wallace and Davis, portrayed by Ben Michael and Cody Williams respectively, are joined on their Vermont Christmas adventure by Judy and Betty Haynes, played by Erica Sweany and Lauren Shealy.

The sentimental musical is filled with Christmas cheer, wonderful dance numbers and some of the greatest songs ever written, including “Blue Skies”, “Happy Holiday”, “Sisters”, “I’ve Got My Love to Keep Me Warm” and the unforgettable title song, “White  Christmas.”

Whether you’re looking to get in the holiday spirit yourself or spread some Christmas cheer to friends and family, White Christmas at the Arvada Center is sure to do the trick.

White Christmas runs through December 23 at the Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities, but tickets are moving quickly. Click here to see show times and buy tickets.

Renowned Cartoonist Guest Teaches at Arvada Center



Award-winning cartoonist Drew Litton made a guest teacher appearance on July 29th as part of our kids illustration summer camp class series. Best known for his 25+ years of work as the creator of the popular Rocky Mountain News “Win, Lose & Drew” sports cartoons, Drew Litton is currently nationally syndicated and draws for 9NEWS, Rockies Magazine, Mile High Sports Magazine, The Boulder Daily Camera and the Denver Broncos among others.

Litton has been drawing cartoons since he was a young child. Litton explained that as a child, he had asthma which inhibited his ability to play sports, so he drew them instead.  In high school, Litton knew he wanted to draw cartoons as a profession and in college he had his own weekly comic. Now, he draws for some of the biggest publications in the country and is thinking about starting an online comic series.

At the Arvada Center, he taught our summer campers about building characters on the page. Litton started with a basic image and then expanded the sketch by giving the character certain traits, a “job”, and a personality by illustrating elements about how the character would interact with others.

Tips from a Pro

Litton also discussed illustrating action scenes.  Litton explained, “to get yourself ready to draw action, give yourself a “warm up time”.” He suggested drawing a static figure during a set time limit and focus on the fluidity of the drawing.  Litton also stated that when drawing action, an illustrator should exaggerate the gestural positions of the character. Litton also demonstrated a favorite trick in his illustrations  – using arcs to create a sense of motion.

Melanie Mayner, Public Relations Manager at the Arvada Center, said, “It was very cool to have Drew Litton teaching a cartooning class here at the Center. Maybe it will just be the beginning!” She was lucky enough to get a peronsalized autograph in her very own “Win, Lose & Drew” book.

Litton’s website can be found at