I was very sad to hear that we might be losing last year's Best of Denver winner for Best Non-Conventional Venue. Laura Goldhamer, hyper-creative mastermind behind the diverse programming that happens in the basement of Brooks Center for Spirituality, sent an e-mail last week to her mailing list, explaining that, due to funding and liability concerns, the Board has decided to decommission the Underground Tea House, an art gallery and performance venue. If things move forward as planned, the Tea House will close (and Goldhamer will be out of a place to live) next month.
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For the past two years, under Goldhamer's watchful and innovative eye, the venue has hosted live music - both local and touring -- as well as art shows, fundraisers for worthy causes, classes and a hodgepodge of other spiritually- and artistically-charged events and people. It is a unique, exciting and proudly weird space that says a lot about the vitality and viability of Denver's arts community. Though beneath the mainstream radar, this basement haven will be sadly missed.