With another weekend just around the corner, many Denverites are understandably eager to seize upon the temperate climes and experience Denver's art and culture scene. Luckily, there are plenty of appealing events for Mile High gadabouts to be glad about over the next few days, particularly art, music and comedy lovers. While many locals feel the need to pinch every possible penny during the waning days of tax season, the following ten events all ring in at the budget-friendly price of ten dollars or less (fine print notwithstanding). Keep reading for the ten best free and cheap events in Denver this weekend.
Thursday, April 12, 8 p.m.
Mutiny Information Cafe
Just one of many fine events at Mutiny Information Cafe — South Broadway's most bustling bookstore — Stage Tales is the brainchild of Mutiny co-proprietor and music-scene veteran Jim Norris, a storytelling show focusing on the delightfully deranged or disillusioning tales of musicians, roadies and various other scenester characters. In the latest episode, the Reverend Jim welcomes tattooist Jef Kopp (Think Tank) and King Rat's J Luke Schmaltz to share their Faygo-soaked stories of drugs, debauchery and partying with the Blue Man Group. Admission is free, but donations for the performers are always gladly accepted. Visit Mutiny's Facebook events page for more details.
Sexpot Comedy Presents Brad Wenzel
Friday, April 13, 7 p.m.
Syntax Physic Opera
Sexpot Comedy's Friday night standup showcase returns to Syntax Physic Opera's velvety stage with another giggle gauntlet for Denver comedy nerds. Featuring a dream team of local standups, including Miriam Moreno, Elliot Woolsey and John Novosad, the show also welcomes New York's Danny Felts (Portlandia, High Maintenance) and the evening's headliner, Los Angeles's Brad Wenzel (Conan). If readers had any doubts that the city's best comedy shows are being produced by local comics and creators, events like this one ought to put them to rest. Visit Sexpot Comedy's Nightout page to buy tickets, $7, and learn more.
Midnight Madness: Deep Red
April 13 and 14, midnight
The influence of Giallo maestro Dario Argento on horror cinema looms larger than a gloved killer's shadow. Among the filmmaker's finest efforts, 1975's Deep Red is more artful than your average slasher, boasting signature Argento touches like otherworldly lighting and a psychedelic soundtrack, courtesy of his frequent collaborators in Goblin. Cinephiles with a penchant for elegant gore shouldn't miss these two screenings of the classic thriller, restored to its full glory in an Argento-approved director's cut. Visit the Landmark Esquire's box-office page for tickets, $9.50, and to learn more.
April HAHO Market
Saturday, April 14, noon to 5 p.m.
Attention, crafty Coloradans: the Handmade Homemade Market is descending on FORGE events space for a charming bazaar stocked with DIY treasures. Shoppers can stock up on goods from vendors such as Sheba Roastery, Bee Good Candle Co., Erin DeLargy Jewelry, Ruby Sisters Press and many more. Guests can also enjoy a late mobile brunch from the Basted Egg Food Truck and lightning-round appointments with licensed massage therapist Josh Erickson. Admission is free, and leashed pets are welcome. Visit HAHO's Facebook events page for more information.
Harry Potter, Star Wars, Lord of the Rings and Marvel Art Show
Saturday, April 14, noon to 6 p.m.
Incredible Art Gallery
Fanboys and fangirls, rejoice: Marvel Comics and Lucas Film artist Christopher Clark will be at Denver's Incredible Art Gallery for a live-painting demonstration. Clark, who studied in Italy and has a knack for rendering gorgeous fan art, will display his latest works, unveiling three new Harry Potter-inspired pieces and adding individual customizations to make each work unique for its buyer. Guests will also receive a free print and enjoy complimentary refreshments, including beer, wine and hot cheesesteak sandwiches. Find out more on Incredible Art Gallery's Facebook events page.
The Denver Pancakes & Booze Art Show
Saturday, April 14, 8 p.m.
Cervantes' Masterpiece Ballroom
Mingle with up-and-comers, boogie the night away and gorge on breakfast foods at the Denver Pancakes & Booze Art Show. Spotlighting more than eighty participating artists, the show connects underground creatives with artsy partiers in a multi-sensory fiesta. In addition to live-painting demonstrations (on canvases and bodies alike), the festivities include two DJ stages, libations and, of course, a free pancake bar. Admission is $10 via the Pancakes & Booze Art Show's Ticketfly page.
St. Martin's Chamber Choir Presents Mozart and Scarlatti: Fathers & Sons
April 13 and 14 at 7:30 p.m., and April 15 at 3 p.m.
Holy Cross Lutheran Church
St. Andrew's Episcopal Church
Saint Paul Lutheran and Roman Catholic Community of Faith
$10 to $35
Is musical genius a hereditary trait? That was certainly the case in the Scarlatti and Mozart families, where fine musicianship was passed from accomplished fathers to prodigious sons. St. Martin's Chamber Choir will pay tuneful homage to these talented clans at a series of concerts across the city. Replete with symphonic assistance from members of the Baroque Chamber Orchestra, the program traces musical influence from one generation to the next, beginning with Alessandro Scarlatti’s Salve Regina and Leopold Mozart’s Mass in C (which has historically been falsely attributed to his son) and followed by all ten parts of Domenico Scarlatti’s Stabat Mater and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's Venite Populi. Visit the St. Martin's Chamber Choir box-office page to buy tickets, $10 to $35, and learn more.
Colorado Vibes Closing Day Soiree
Sunday, April 15, 3 to 7:30 p.m.
Spectra Art Space
Though it sounds like the name of a stoner-friendly mixtape, Colorado Vibes Vol. 2 is the triumphant return of Spectra Art Space's "locally grown art experience." Enjoy music, art, fashion and cuisine from Colorado creators as each corner of Spectra's stages, galleries and even back yard burst with artsy activity. Say farewell to the installation in grand style at Colorado Vibes' closing-day reception, which includes live music from AAnchor, Mandlorian and Aural Elixir, as well as too many participating artists to name here. Admission is free; visit Spectra Art Space's Eventbrite page to register and learn more.
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Sphere Ensemble Spring Concert
Sunday, April 15, 6 to 8 p.m.
The Studios at Overland Crossing
$10 to $20
Colorado's own Sphere Ensemble returns for a new season brimming with purpose. United by a community-outreach mission statement, the Sphere Ensemble is equally dedicated to providing music-education opportunities for underserved audiences and hosting top-notch concerts. The group is currently working to raise $20,000 to take its programs to schools, shelters and hospitals, which could all benefit from a little beautiful music. You can help by purchasing tickets to the Sphere Ensemble Spring Concert ($10 to $20) at the group's events calendar.
One Night Stand in Heaven & Hell
Sunday, April 15, 7 p.m.
Take a theatrical glimpse into the great hereafter at Vintage Theatre's One Night Stand in Heaven & Hell. A collaboration with the One Night Stand Theater Company, the show comprises vignettes about the afterlife presented by One Night Stand's talented players. Neither saint nor sinner will want to miss this unique play; as the troupe name implies, this is a one-time-only production. Visit One Night Stand Theater's box-office page to buy tickets, $10, and learn more.
Interested in having your event included in this list? Send the details to firstname.lastname@example.org.