The end of this year finds us reminiscing more than usual, probably because this year has been so eventful for all of us in so many ways. The University of Denver hosted the first Presidential debate. Tragedies throughout our state and country saw communities come together to support one another. More personally, the two of us were married in the very theater where we met a few years ago. For us, perhaps like all theatre fans, it is impossible to reflect on the past year without considering the theatre related moments that have affected us most. We started the year by losing one of our favorite companies – Paragon Theatre Ensemble. We have expanded our list companies we have had the pleasure of visiting including Creede Rep, Midtown Arts Center, the Byers-Evans House, and more. Old classics, new works, and newly formed companies have created exciting moments for us to recall as of late. Several writers share these thought by way of announcing their respective Awards, but we just want to share with you the theatre that has made lasting impressions on the both of us.
Before reading our list, a few things need to be made clear:
First, we did not make it to see many commendable productions this year because, aside from planning our wedding, it would be impossible to see everything. So please understand that this list is nowhere reflective of comprehensive coverage.
Second, we use the word “favorite” because we are by no means proclaiming that these are the most accomplished or best productions of the year, but rather the ones that resonated especially well with one or both of us.
To develop our final ten, we made a list of all of the shows we have seen since the beginning of the calendar year, whether we reviewed them or not. We then removed Broadway/Touring shows (including big shows like Addams Family or Bring It On and smaller yet still marvelous shows like one of our favorite’s – Dixie’s Tupperware Party). Additionally removed were shows that we saw individually, shows we saw outside of the state, and shows that either of us were a part of as cast members.
As hard as it is taking that stripped down list and whittling it down even further to a simple ten, in the past, the hardest part has always been ordering our top ten. Different shows stand out for different reasons. Usually, we take the ten, score it independently, and then average our scores, but that still is not enough. The final version of our top ten has always been ironed out over a long conversation.
But not this year.
This year, our lists were almost entirely identical. There was only one situation where we had neighboring positions flipped. When we saw that, it gave us an even greater appreciation for the theatre that has touched our lives this year.
So here are our favorite shows that we saw in 2012. We hope you enjoy reflecting on them as much as we have, and are as inspired as we are for the coming 2013 season!