Now that the epic Tantalus has moved on to its tour of Britain, the Denver Center Theatre Company has opened its winter season with 1933, a coming of age slice-of-life story based on a novel by Boulder native John Fante. Fante's writing career began in earnest in the late '30's and included such novels as Ask the Dust and Brotherhood of the Grape, stories in Atlantic Monthly, Saturday Evening Post, Collier's, Esquire, Harper's Bazaar, and such screenplays as Full of Life, The Reluctant Saint, and Walk on the Wild Side.

1933 is a largely autobiographical tale of a depression era youth who dreams of escaping the life of a bricklayer, as his Italian immigrant father would wish, and pitching for the Chicago Cubs. Denver Center stalwarts Brockman Seawell and Randal Myler have mined Fante's engaging dialogue and descriptive narrative to create an engaging tale laden with poignant family drama and charming youthful insights. Aside from a few set pieces, all the scenery consists of projected retouched slides of historic Boulder, including various homes and buildings, a cemetery, the Flatirons, etc.

Yusef Bulos and Bryant Richards as the old and young Dom (the author) are superb. As always, Kathy Brady treats us to a great comedic turn as a local prostitute. Other performances include a touching dramatic portrait of Dom's long-suffering Italian mother by returning favorite Jacqueline Antaramian. Strong supporting work by Mike Genovese, Mark Rubald, and Irma St. Paule.

The Denver Center Theatre Company's production of 1933 runs through March 3rd at the Ricketson Theatre. The box office number is 303-893-4100.


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