CultureWest turns 1: A look back at a wild year in Colorado theater


From CultureWest’s ongoing “It’s Opening Night in Colorado Theater” photo series: Backstage at the opening of Magic Moments’ “Spirit & Soul.”

By John Moore
Aug. 2, 2013

One year ago, a local foundation created www.CultureWest.Org on my behalf as a beta blog for what we all hoped would become a new, fully staffed and fully funded, web-based media outlet exclusively covering arts and culture in Colorado. Well, when life hands you lemons …

That particular dream may have died, but one  year later, be it ever so humble, that beta blog is still here, celebrating its one-year anniversary of covering mostly the local theater community in fun, innovative and, in some cases, groundbreaking ways, telling stories using words, photos and video.

When I was a staff writer for the Denver Post, I averaged about 250 bylines a year — and I was paid for it. I am proud as a peacock to note that CultureWest has launched 234 pieces of new content in its first year — without my getting paid for it.

This web project has been a labor of love. And so today, if you will allow me, I want to take a moment to look back at just some of the highlights in taking on this journalistic experiment. And to offer those of you who may be new to the website the chance to explore some of the projects we have undertaken. Enjoy!


Ongoing photo and story projects:

It’s Opening Night in Colorado Theatre: For this ongoing photo series, we  have visited backstage before 99 theater openings in 2013 — so far.

Beautiful Women Wearing My Sunglasses: A daily profile of a woman (and a few token dudes) as a cheeky way of promoting the people and plays being staged in the area. Today was daily entry No. 104.

Anatomy of a director: We interviewed 40 local directors for 40 days asking them about this seldom-discussed aspect of the creative process.


Video projects:

The Shelly Bordas Story: A beloved local actor is given a terminal diagnosis. Part 3 is in the works.

Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson: Following the story of a self-started local musical takes a turn when the director (and star) is seriously injured on opening night.

Equinox, Sugar honor Adam Perkes by resuming “Bat Boy” performances

My memorial film for the 2013 Henry Awards


Interesting interviews: 

Eden Lane: The first transgender journalist on mainstream TV opens up about her life and challenges

Video: Quincy Jones on Michael Jackson as “Thriller” turns 30

Video: Oskar Eustis on the American theater: ‘The worst of both worlds is happening’

Iddo Netanyahu

Video: Three minutes with … Pam Grier

Video: The Skype Sessions: Constantine Maroulis of ‘Jekyll and Hyde’

Phil Sneed’s exit/entrance interview

Denver Center actor John Hutton on Spielberg, “Lincoln” and on being invited to the party

Mark Collins turns actor: Two ex-theater critics, sitting around having coffee


Breaking news:
Shows go on, theaters safe as fires rage near Creede

Convicted UNC theater professor Vance Fulkerson released from prison one year early

Germinal Stage’s theater to close, but company will play on

Heritage Square Music Hall will close at end of year


Long-form stories and personal essays:

Moore on Moore: You can’t say ‘director’ without ‘dire’ (on directing “Always, Patsy Cline”)

What companies can learn from the reinvention of Curious Theatre Company

10 years later, the first openly gay athlete in team sports history

Don’t be frightened, Regis High School students, but … We are your future


Greater good:
The creation of the new Denver Actors Fund: This new nonprofit will help members of the local theater community during medical emergencies.

Launch of the 2012 True West Theater Awards

Fund to aid actor Robert Michael Sanders launches like a rocket


Local music:
Our coverage of the 2013 Underground Music Showcase (The UMS)

By John Moore

Award-winning arts journalist John Moore was named one of the 12 most influential theater critics in the United States by American Theatre Magazine during has 12 years at The Denver Post. Hen then created a groundbreaking new media outlet covering Colorado arts an culture as an in-house, multimedia journalist for the Denver Center for the Performing Arts. He also founded The Denver Actors Fund, a nonprofit that has raised more than $600,000 for theatre artists in medical need. He is now a journalist for hire as the founder of Moore Media Colorado. You can find samples of his work at MooreJohn.Com. Contact him at