EDGE OF STEAMBOAT

Common themes

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— As I move more into the arts and entertainment beat, I realize more and more the definition of art in Steamboat Springs. Some people, whether they know it or not, participate in art by listening to music and dancing at the bars. Others sing in a choral group, play in a band, create stained glass, paint, write, act, take photographs or participate in the seemingly endless list of other forms of art that are here in town. No matter what their creative outlet is, most people usually have an opinion about what art is, what it isn't and, most likely, what sort of public attention it should get.

For a guy in his late 20s who has seen a million bar bands, I must admit the stories covered in this issue of 4-Points were a little out of my realm. That's what made work fun for me this week. On Tuesday, I found myself in the middle of a cancan dance number shooting photos at Steamboat Ballet. Right before that, I was on the phone with conductor Teresa Steffen talking about orchestra music and the breathtaking ability of some of her young players in the Steamboat Springs Youth Orchestra. Then I spent the first part of Wednesday with Steffen, Christel Houston and Bruce Dean, performing as the Steamboat Piano Trio, for a story next week. And that afternoon, I talked with the dean of Colorado Mountain College, Robert Ritschel, who just happens to be the conductor of the new and improved Yampa Valley Choral Society.

All are different creative outlets in the community and are very foreign to my artistic experiences. I try to find common themes I personally can relate to that help me get a feel for new subjects. The same theme came up in all three stories this week, and coincidentally, it is the same theme that pops up in most stories I write about art in this community it's passion.

For the groups I previewed concerts for in this issue, about 180 community members are participating. Many practice multiple nights a week for months at a time, and many have full-time jobs or are in school all day.

Nearly everyone I interview for 4-Points has this sort of commitment to what they are doing. That's so respectable, and it's a clear example of passion. It's also big element of art in this community.

People's taste in art can be as different as night and day. However, it's hard to find someone involved with art in Steamboat Springs who isn't passionate about it.

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