The seventeen-year- old Frequent Flyers aerial dance troupe will go bottoms-up tonight in Dairy Air, its spring production. "Everyone has some sort of desire to experience flight," says the company's artistic director, Nancy E. Smith. "This show continues the tradition, giving these amazing dancers a chance to flex their wings -- literally!"
Soprano Karen Tucker Patterson will join the sky dancers on stage as they swing through trapeze, bungee and hoop choreography designed by Frequent Flyer alums. "Every piece has at least one thing that will make you gasp," promises Smith.
The term "highlife" was coined in the 1920s by natives living in the coastal towns of Ghana to describe the British colonial swells and their tuxedoed socials. The party will be much less formal tonight when ethnomusicology professor Kwasi Ampene leads the University of Colorado Highlife Ensemblein a performance of this West African blend, which combines pop, brass-band tunes, traditional songs and even electric guitars (a '50s addition) in a bouncy mix.
For its fifth annual celebration, CU percussionist Okyerema Asante, who has performed with Paul Simon and Fleetwood Mac, will join the thirty-member group. The concert begins at 7:30 p.m. in Macky Auditorium; tickets, $10 to $20, are available at the door, by phone at 303-492-8008 or online at www.cuconcerts.org. -- Ernie Tucker
Box of Laughs A new comedy night stands up at the Denver Civic. FRI, 4/15
Like zits on a nervous teenager's forehead, comedy nights seem to be popping up all over town. Ably throwing its hat into that ever-growing ring is the New Denver Civic Theatre, 721 Santa Fe Drive, with Comedy in the Box. Every Friday night at 9 p.m., jokesmiths take to the intimate cabaret stage to drop witticisms on crowds that have been few but mighty.
"We're just starting out," says talent booker and comedian Lori Callahan. "But this night is going to be great. It's a must-see, beautiful theater, and you can't beat the talent we're bringing in, both local comics and people from other states." And while Callahan is excited to provide audiences with nationally touring comedians, she's quick to point out the abilities of the homegrown crop. "Denver breeds funny freakin' people," she declares. "There's something in the water here." So plunk down $8.50 tonight and drink up, everyone: There's plenty to go around. For information, call the DCT box office at 303-309-3773 or visit www.denvercivic.com. -- Adam Cayton-Holland