Denver Performing Arts Complex
The Denver Performing Arts Complex (sometimes referred to locally as "The Plex," "The DCPA" or simply, "Denver Center") located in Denver, Colorado, is the second largest performing arts center in the world after New York City's Lincoln Center. The DPAC is a four-block, 12-acre (49,000 m2) site containing ten performance spaces with over 10,000 seats connected by an 80 ft (24 m) tall glass roof. It is home to a theatre company, Broadway touring productions, contemporary dance and ballet, chorales, a symphony orchestra, opera and more.
The City and County of Denver’s Theatres and Arenas Division owns and operates the three largest theatres in DPAC, the Ellie Caulkins Opera House, the Buell Theatre and Boettcher Concert Hall. These and the other facilities of the Complex are managed and booked by the Denver Center for the Performing Arts (DCPA).
Performing arts organizations which regularly appear in one or other of the performance spaces include the Colorado Ballet, the Colorado Symphony Orchestra, Opera Colorado and the Denver Center for the Performing Arts’ theatrical divisions — Denver Center Broadway and Denver Center Theatre Company.
Performance and other facilities
The Denver Performing Arts Complex houses the following performance spaces:
- The Ellie Caulkins Opera House, colloquially known as “the Ellie,” is the main venue inside of the historic Quigg Newton Denver Municipal Auditorium. The Ellie, a hall designed in the lyric style. The Ellie is one of only three opera houses in the United States, one of nine worldwide, with seatback titling at every seat in the house. Its seating capacity is 2,225.
- The Buell Theatre is designed for amplified musicals, dramatic plays and comedy acts. Its seating capacity is 2,884.
- Boettcher Concert Hall is the nation’s first symphony hall in the round designed to place the audience close to the stage in a unique environment – 80% of the seats are within 65 feet (20 m) of the stage. The seats in Boettcher are custom-designed, made from steam-bent plywood with their backs varying in height from 42 inches (1,100 mm) to 48 inches (1,200 mm). Its seating capacity is 2,679.
The Stage, Space, Ricketson, Jones, Garner Galleria and Tramway Theatres, as well as the Seawell Grand Ballroom are managed by the Denver Center for the Performing Arts.
- The Stage Theatre features 778 seats and a thrust stage.
- The Space Theatre has 450 seats in-the-round.
- The Ricketson Theatre has 250 seats in a proscenium theatre.
- The Jones Theatre features 200 seats and a thrust stage.
- The Garner Galleria Theatre has 210-seats and features cabaret shows by Denver Center Broadway, which presented Denver’s longest-running show — I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change.
- The Donald R. Seawell Grand Ballroom is a pentagonal shaped room with panoramic views of the mountains. This 10,000-square-foot (930 m2) facility holds a maximum capacity of 1,029 people. It can accommodate a variety of functions and performances, featuring its own catering kitchen, freight elevator, tables, chairs, portable dance floor, moveable platform staging and a lighting, audio, video and projection systems.
- The Tramway Theatre is a state-of-the-art, 183-seat proscenium theatre located in the Historic Tramway building and the former home to the National Theatre Conservatory.
Sculpture Park is located at the southwest corner of the complex at N. Speers Blvd. and Champa St.
- Art Saturday – Public Art In Denver 2 – “Dancers”. Bill Egnor. myFDL - Firedoglake. March 6, 2010. Accessed 2012-12-09.
- Dumb and Dumber: Jonathan Borofsky's "The Dancers" waltz into Denver. Michael Paglia. Westword. June 26, 2003. Accessed 2012-12-09.