The Denver Center Theatre Company is beginning its first season under new artistic director Kent Thompson, former director of the Alabama Shakespeare Festival. Thompson, 51, took the reins from Donovan Marley, who announced his retirement in January 2004, after 22 years. Theater buffs are wondering what to expect from the new leader, whose three-year contract was finalized last December. It's known that he is retaining many of the company's most popular actors for the first couple plays of the season, though some of the losses -- particularly that of the brilliant and lionhearted Annette Helde -- are distressing. It has also been widely publicized that he intends to work more with the community than did his predecessor, to revive the DCTC's support for new plays, and to produce more scripts by women and people of color. But what is Thompson's overall philosophy? How does he see the role of theater in general, and of the Denver Center in particular? Will he bring us vapid crowd-pleasers or demanding works, classic or contemporary pieces, plays that moralize or... More >>>