Aside from the worldwide fame of Vajra and Cysko Rokwel, DJ Chonz is probably the most famous of his brethren in Denver. He's on KS-107.5 every day, offering live mixes to listeners as they drive home from work; he's rocked a party at almost every club in town; and the ladies absolutely love the guy. But he barely gets to share his love of music through those avenues. So in February, Chonz set up his own channel on Ustream.TV and began spinning live Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to noon. The playlist includes everything from NWA and Black Moon to MC Shy D and Nemesis — basically, all the songs that radio doesn't play nowadays. And in case you miss a show, they're all archived on Chonz's channel.
Meadowlark
Prior to its makeover sometime last spring, the back lot of the Meadowlark looked like a much-neglected community garden, sunflowers and all. But somehow, someone at the 'Lark turned the area into the outside equivalent of the bar's interior — intimate, even classy, but with more room and a calming ambience that you rarely find outside of certain jazz clubs in Denver. More often than not, live music performed outdoors suffers from the sound bleeding off into open space, but that doesn't seem to happen as much here. A refreshingly unique setting for live music, the Meadowlark's outdoor stage is a sure bet to catch some remarkable performances.
The Clocktower Cabaret
Eric Gruneisen
The best thing about Lannie's "A Night In..." food, music and wine series, is that, for around $45, you'll be transported to another country for an evening, immersed in the tastes, smells and sounds of a land far, far away. So far, the series has been to Spain, France and Italy, and this month, Lannie's will take lucky participants to Ireland. Bonus: No jet-lag or thin hostel mattresses involved. Just a trip to downtown Denver's favorite clocktower, where you can get away from it all — at least for a few hours.
It's been a rapid rise for Amy Adams, who spent many of her formative years in Castle Rock. Since her breakthrough performance in the 2005 indie Junebug, she's co-starred in goofy comedies (Tenacious D in: The Pick of Destiny, Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby), headlined a musical-fantasy blockbuster (Enchanted) and appeared with Academy Award winner Tom Hanks (Charlie Wilson's War). In 2008's Doubt, she held her own alongside Meryl Streep and Philip Seymour Hoffman as the person for whose soul these two are fighting. And for this, she garnered her second Oscar nomination. It's a good time to be part of the Adams family.

Best Performance by Colorado in a Film

Ink

The independent flick Ink, which concerns so-called dream people fighting for souls, turned out to be a dream come true for the local film community. The movie was shot entirely within the state, at locations ranging from the plains of Brighton and the peaks of Crested Butte to the Evergreen foothills and downtown Denver — and as a bonus, the crew was entirely local as well. Clearly, Colorado was ready for its close-up.

Best Performance by Colorado in a Hollywood Film the Rest of the Country Will Be Seeing Soon

Imagine That

The last time a big Hollywood production descended on Denver was in late 2007, when Eddie Murphy's Nowhereland spent two weeks showcasing downtown and LoDo. The film was originally slated to hit screens in the fall of 2008, but it was delayed — seldom a good sign. It's currently expected to reach theaters in June, complete with a new title: Imagine That. We'd like to imagine that Denver will still get its due...but we have our doubts.

Best Performance by Colorado in a Homegrown Film the Rest of the Country Will Be Seeing Soon

Skills Like This

Directed by Colorado's Monty Miranda and produced by Donna Dewey, the state's latest Academy Award winner, Skills Like This, has been a darling on the festival circuit since 2007, when it won its first Best of Denver award. Unfortunately, only a handful of viewers have gotten a chance to see the flick, which features scenes shot at Union Station and Arvada's 12 Volt Tavern, among other area locales. But beginning in April, the movie will get a wide national release, including a return engagement in its home town. The aptly named Skills Like This is finally earning some long-deserved recognition for its very skillful filmmakers.
Slumdog Millionaire was a great film. But did you wonder what was up with all the spontaneous choreographed dancing? Welcome to the wonderful world of Bollywood, where popular Indian films and Top 40 songs are married into fast-paced, colorful dance productions reminiscent of Michael Jackson's "Thriller" (but with less groaning). And along with providing an excellent workout, the East Indian dance styles are wildly campy and just plain fun. More than a few Denver gals have become addicted ever since Bollywood West's Renu Kansal came to town from New York. Along with a regular slate of classes for all levels in Denver and Boulder, Kansal also leads the Bollywood West dance troupe, which made a splash last fall at the Denver Film Festival party for Slumdog Millionaire, co-hosts the occasional Passport to Bollywood dance party at Zen Ultra Lounge and helps promote Bollywood Movie Night screenings at the Regency Tamarac Square Cinemas. And, yes, that is our final answer.
Bud Shark opened Shark's Lithography in Boulder back in 1976. Twenty-some years later, he moved to Lyons, changed the name to Shark's Ink and has been there ever since. Shark is a master printer who has worked with many internationally known artists, some of them over and over again. In putting together this stunning show, outgoing curator Cydney Payton chose works that expressed those long-term relationships. On view are pieces by Betty Woodman, Enrique Chagoya, Don Ed Hardy and Bernard Cohen. Of particular interest are the three-dimensional works by Red Grooms, in which the prints are cut up to make sculptures.
Singer Gallery
Back in the 1980s, the late Fred Mayer and his wife, Jan, began putting together a collection of prints dating to the first half of the twentieth century, a golden age for the medium. Then, as now, the prints were relatively inexpensive, and that fact, combined with the Mayer family's great wealth and good taste, allowed them to assemble a world-class collection ranging from Ashcan School examples, works of social realism, and pieces that were part of the then-nascent modern movement. The couple acquired many big names, including Thomas Hart Benton, Grant Wood, Rockwell Kent, Paul Cadmus and Denver's own Vance Kirkland. Singer Gallery curator Simon Zalkind selected some of the best for Good Impressions, and his choices left a good impression on us.

Best Of Denver®

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