Beatbox Thespians

To all who suffered through the 88 minutes of torture that was Beyoncé's 2001 flop, Carmen: A Hip Hopera, and to all who endured — chapter by merciless chapter — all twelve segments of R. Kelly's Trapped in the Closet, I offer this solace: Your hunger for hip-hop theater that is not utterly pathetic will soon be sated.

Tonight, the Center for Judaic Studies at the University of Denver hosts the award-winning From Tel Aviv to Ramallah: A Beatbox Journey, a sixty-minute hip-hop production that presents an intimate view of life in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through the lens of beatbox artist Yuri Lane and his wife, Rachel Havrelock. The play features a cast of fifteen characters — each with an individual soundtrack — whose interactions are framed by live video projections set to shift in synch with Lane's beats. The story revolves around two young men: Amir, an Israeli delivery boy who dreams of becoming a successful disc jockey, and Khalid, a Palestinian Internet cafe owner with aspirations of helping his city's residents educate themselves. As it unfolds, the characters come to understand the complex forces at work in the region's political conflict — and the consequences they have on the dreams of youth. It's real drama. Real beatboxing. Real hip-hopera.

Tel Aviv starts at 7:30 p.m. at the Newman Center for the Performing Arts, 2344 East Iliff Avenue; tickets are $12 and can be purchased at 303-357-2787 or www.ticketmaster.com. For more information, call 303-871-7720.
Thu., March 8, 7:30 p.m.

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Rick White