Denver Actors Fund in Action: Chris Casketta

Chris Cascketta

Chris Cascketta‘My appearance and speech are as vital to my profession as my singing’

Aid recipient: Glenwood Springs actor and baritone Chris Cascketta appeared as the opera singer Rafael Bellini in “The Last Romance” for Thunder River Theatre Company in Carbondale. He is also Choir Director at Saint Barnabas Episcopal Church in Glenwood Springs. He is originally from Chicago and studied at the Oberlin Conservatory. Chris represents our first DAF beneficiary from Garfield County!

Chris Cascketta, left, in ‘The Last Romance.’

His medical story: Last year, Chris lost one tooth and nearly another in a freak accident. He went to a local dentist in Glenwood Springs, was given a partial denture and told that another tooth would need to be extracted. He made an appointment with another Glenwood Springs dentist for the implant surgery and was quoted a treatment plan of just more than $10,000. That’s when Defiance Community Players Co-President Chip Winn Wells referred him to The Denver Actors Fund.

How we helped: The Denver Actors Fund has a partnering dentist in Dr. Brian Kelly DDS, who accepts a limited number of emergency cases each year as his personal, in-kind donation to The DAF through the Dental Center at Thornton Plaza. Although Chris lives 150 miles from Thornton, he made the trip to see Dr. Kelly, who saved one tooth with a root canal (which also saved Chris more than $2,000) and gave him a deep cleaning that restored his gums to health. But because Dr. Kelly does not do implant surgeries himself, he worked with Glenwood Springs dentist Dr. John Murray on a plan where Dr. Murray would perform the implant and next, when dental offices re-open, Dr. Kelly will place the crown for free. The Denver Actors Fund paid Dr. Murray $2,195 for the surgery; Chris $530 for his expenses related to a CT scan and preparatory periodontal work; and Dr. Kelly made all of his services, presently valued at $2,008 (with more to come in June) his latest, greatest donation to the DAF. To date, Dr. Kelly has donated more than $50,000 in free dental care through the DAF. That brings our total support for Chris to date to $4,733 (not counting his savings from not going through with the originating dentist’s treatment plan.)

A message from Chris: “Because I’m a singer and an actor, my appearance and speech are as vital to my profession as my singing. Getting this implant frees me from having to wear a partial denture, which impedes both my speech and singing. I am so grateful to The Denver Actors Fund and Dr. Kelly for this assistance. I never would have been able to afford it on my own.”

The Denver Actors Fund now has made more than $538,000 available to Colorado artists in need.

How you can help us help us help more Colorado theatre artists: If you would like to make a donation to The Denver Actors Fund, simply mail checks in any amount made out to Denver Actors Fund to P.O. Box 11182, Denver, CO 80211. Or use this donation link, with our humble thanks.

Read testimonials from other Denver Actors Fund beneficiaries here

Note: At The Denver Actors Fund, anonymity of aid recipients is presumed and fully protected, unless and until the recipient chooses to have their story told.



The Denver Actors Fund is a modest source of immediate, situational relief when members of the local theater community find themselves in medical need. In addition to $538,000 in financial relief, a team of more than 60 Denver Actors Fund volunteers have offered good neighborly assistance to more than 100 beneficiaries including meal prep and delivery, child care, transportation, errands, construction, pet-sitting and more. For more information, visit our web site at DenverActorsFund.Org.


To apply for Denver Actors Fund aid: Fill out this brief online form here

Hippo Health LogoGET INSTANT, FREE MEDICAL ADVICE: The Denver Actors Fund has launch of a major new FREE medical service for qualified Colorado theatre artists: We are partnering with Hippo Health to provide access to emergency medical evaluations via video conferencing with a Board-certified physician. Click to read more about this wonderful, innovative new partnership that will further improve the lives of artists!



Go to our online giving site at: ColoradoGives.Org


Send checks made out to The Denver Actors Fund to:
P.O. Box 11182
Denver, CO 80211


Ever thought about taking a more active role in The Denver Actors Fund? Click here for more information


Sign up for King Soopers’ Community Rewards Program and raise money for The DAF just by shopping for your groceries – and it doesn’t cost you an extra penny. It’s like the Amazon Smile Program. To sign up, simply go here and designate The DAF as your preferred non-profit. Each quarter, King Soopers sends us a donation based on how much our supporters have spent. Thanks to all of you who are shopping for The DAF.


Click here to see how you can buy DAF products such as T-shirts, key chains, puzzles and much more.

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