Denver Sonnets Project, No. 1: Cult Following

By John Moore

CultureWest.Org is endeavoring to make short films out of all 154 of Shakespeare’s sonnets, each featuring actors with Colorado connections. The artistic intent is primarily to further CultureWest’s mission to spotlight the local theatre community and their current or upcoming productions. It’s also an attempt to promote Shakespeare education in a fun way. This is an entirely volunteer project with a proud budget of … zero dollars.

We intend to roll out one Sonnet video a week for … zoinks! … 154 weeks. Here’s a link to the YouTube playlist that hosts all the series.

For our sixth episode (Sonnet No. 1!), the young improv comics  from Off-Center @ The Jones’ “Cult Following” make comic hay of Shakespeare’s very first sonnet, which you’ll have to take our word for it, is about how we want the most beautiful among us to have children, thereby extending her gene pool for another generation.

“Cult Following” is a monthly comedy show that’s a completely unscripted, live B-movie. A team of six improvisers — Jessica Austgen (read our fun profile here), Asa Erlendson, Sarah Kirwin, Brian McManus, Nanna Sachiko Thompson and Chris Woolf — are assigned a movie genre, and they present a new, totally made-up movie in that genre on show night, using audience suggestions to keep it fresh and improvised. The season ends with an 8 p.m. performance on Thursday, May 8 in the Jones. There’s a bar and popcorn, free swag and lots of audience participation. Video by John Moore. Thank you Charlie I. Miller, Emily Tarquin, Lauren Driscoll, Jane McDonald and Stuart Barr. Please support the Denver Actors Fund at www.DenverActorsFund.Org.

The Denver Sonnets Project is a volunteer collaboration, with limited eligibility requirements for participation. For information on how to register, email your interest to

Completed episodes to date (in numeric order):

Sonnet 1: Cast of “Cult Following”: “From fairest creatures we desire increase …”
Sonnet 2: Josh Robinson, “See thy blood warm …”
Sonnet 23: Gabra Zackman, “As an unperfect actor on a stage …”
Sonnet 36: Rachel Fowler, “I may not evermore acknowledge thee …”
Sonnet 94: James O’Hagan-Murphy: Sweetest things turn sourest by their deeds …”
Sonnet 136: Lyndsay and Jeremy Palmer, “Make but my name thy love …”

Look here for a new sonnet every Monday. For more information on The Denver Sonnets Project, please email

Please consider supporting the Denver Actors Fund at www.DenverActorsFund.Org



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