Colorado Springs Is a Beautiful City (For Off-Broadway Theater)

February 24 2009, 9:38 AM

"This Beautiful City," a cowboy "ditty extolling" Colorado as the promised land, is getting good reviews off Broadway, in New York City's Vineyard Theater. The laughter, writes Variety, "turns to slack-jawed astonishment once this wicked-smart documentary theater troupe gets to Colorado Springs and allows the residents of this 'Christian El Dorado' to demonstrate the evangelical fervor that transformed it into the mecca of the megachurch movement." The players did their research in person, under Pikes Peak, where Focus on the Family, the now-defunct alternative rag The Toilet Paper, and an interesting cast of other characters (Ted Haggard anyone?) are mired in an odd cultural war. "You might assume that members of a hip New York theater company would descend on the country's epicenter of evangelism like a swarm of junior Michael Moores, wielding tape recorders like rapiers, backpacks stuffed full of snark," writes The New York Times. But that's not the case for Steven Cosson and Jim Lewis' play, in which America's fascination with the iconic Springs is the driving force. Short video clips are available via the Center Theatre Group.