» Events


Whether you are looking for comedy improv, classical music concerts, Shakesperian theater, street art or refined museum collections, the Pikes Peak region has it all. Visit our arts and cultural event calendar powered by www.peakradar.com below and join your family, friends, and neighbors in fun events that are happening all across our community.


Epiphany Project Concert

Epiphany Project has a sound that seems to reach through time. Drawing on ancient language, culture, philosophies, the band creates new music that is both otherworldly and contemporary.

The ensemble features Bet Williams, a highly theatrical singer/songwriter with a stunning four-octave range voice and John Hodian, a New York Emmy Award winning composer and pianist, whose music combines his Armenian roots and classical training with free improvisation.


The Poetry Night

An Open Mic Night of Performance Poetry - free event!

This evening will be more than just a poetry reading. Beyond traditional expectations, The Poetry Night will feature non-traditional performance style readings which will invoke emotions even from those not normally moved by poetry.

If you are interested in reading at this event please register ahead of time by emailing media@cottonwoodcenterforthearts.com with your name and three interesting facts about yourself. Please keep reading times to 5 minutes or less.


An Evening of Handel

Featuring world renowned Colorado Springs Conservatory faculty, Jennifer DeDominici, Angelina Gadeliya, Amber Marek, Stephen Ochsner, Sarah Stone and Shauna Smith.


April Family Adventure Day

Spend the day with your family being creative and let us ignite your imagination with new adventures in art-making. Explore different themes with art materials and new techniques in the studios led by Bemis teaching artists. An opportunity for families to engage in hands-on art activities in a creative, community setting. All ages and skill levels welcomed.


Beginning Watercolor with Bob Gray

 Join Watercolor artist Bob Gray for his beginning watercolor class. Bring your own materials


Veronika String Quartet Rarity

One of the five best quartets in the state (according to the Denver Post) is back for their second season of concerts in our fabulously intimate Music Room, presenting three different concerts.

String Quartet No. 7, in F Sharp Minor, Op. 108 by D. Shostakovitch.
String Quartet No. 2, in D Flat Major, Op. 15 by E. Dohnanyi
Piano Quintet by A. Schnittke with Zakhary Metchkov, piano


Delectable Papers and Fabrics

Discover the delights of creating your own unique papers and fabrics with a combination of gelatin plate mono-printing and screen printing. Gelatin plate printing is a fun and easy method of mono-printing that results in surprises and delights. We will use both the traditional gelatin plate and the new Gelli Plate. Create unique textures and patterns using found objects (aka-junk), stamps, stencils and resists or masks.

Screen printing uses a fine mesh screen to create graphic images on fabric or paper. We will explore traditional screen printing as well as thermofax screen printing techniques. We use some of the same found objects, stencils and resists to create a one of a kind delectable cloth or to layer on top of our gelatin printed fabric.


Prologue Lecture: Dody DiSanto

Dody DiSanto

Renowned LeCoq trained clown will talk about the complexities of stage clowning, in addition to a day long workshop.


Six Women Playwriting Festival

This production showcases six original, ten-minute plays chosen for production from over 250 submissions to a national contest. You'll run the emotional gambit through tears, laughs, and incredible personal stories. Don't miss it!

Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays @ 7:30 pm

Sundays @ 2:00 pm


Iconic Portraits in Oil with Erin Gillespie

This workshop will be based on completing an oil painting of your favorite icon! Whether it be an influential artist, musician, writer, or your greatest mentor, this class will take you from start to finish through a painting of one of your favorite people. Using a photograph for inspiration, we will paint our iconic portraits. Experience in oil painting is preferred but beginners with strong drawing skills are welcome in a small class environment. Self-expressionism is key!


Crystal Bowersox Concert

Crystal Bowersox has made it her mission to live life to the fullest. It is this fortitude and courageous spirit that resonated with millions night after night when the 2010 American Idol runner-up took the stage. There is a sincerity and authenticity about her that just can't be manufactured. Her rich amalgam of blues, country, folk, and rock makes her one of the most dynamic young voices in music to come along in years. She has performed alongside everyone form Harry Connick Jr., Joe Cocker, and Alanis Morrisette. One of the most admirable attributes about Crystal Bowersox is her down-to-earth, no-nonsense, what-you-see- is-what you get vibe. She honestly loves the exchange with her audience and is thrilled to be hitting the road to support her latest CD. "All That For This."


Experimenting With Watercolor with Linda Szabo

This class offers differing methods of using watercolor. The first week will concentrate on color use and understanding the surface of the paper – 140 lb. Arches watercolor from France. The second week will be working on Nujabi 300 lb. handmade paper from Japan. The techniques used with this paper differs a good deal. The third week we’ll use very loose splashy approaches to paint to achieve an interesting surface on Yupo paper. Yupo is a manufactured surface made in the USA. On the last class, we will reconstitute a painting which has failed, using an assortment of techniques.


RIP Improv Comedy

The MAT's amazingly talented resident improv company, the RIP, continues their new season of improvisational comedy! Long form, short form, skits, songs, and the unexpected are sure to await you, not to mention some on-the-spot laughs.

February 28, March 1, April 4 & 5, May 2 & 3

7:30pm! Don't miss it!


Rough Writers

Audiences at our first annual play festival in the Spring of 2013 chose their favorites, and we are producing their world premiere productions along with developing more new work for the state. Be amongst the folks who will one day say, "I saw it when ..."

"Pieces of Him" by Marisa Herbert

"Disposing of Grandma" short by Sue Bachman


Tchaikovsky's No. 4

Join our top orchestra for its performance of Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 4. Also features the winner of the Young Artist Solo Competition, sponsored by the Colorado Springs Symphonic Guild, and our Vivace String Orchestra. 


Magic Music

A magical season-ending treat of music from Harry Potter, Les Miserables, and Lord of the Rings. Also bewitching pieces including "Abracadabra" and "Sparks."


Wunderkind 2014

In its 15th year, the Wunderkind show is a juried exhibition of art submitted by high school students across El Paso Country. The show opens on Friday, March 21 from 6-8 pm. Join us for light refreshments and a show of the freshest, newest art to come out of local high schools. There will also be an Artists' Talk on Sunday, March 23 at 4p.m.


Audition for CSYS

Open auditions for the 2014-15 season. Join the state's best instrumental music program for young musicians! All orchestral and band instruments are eligible to audition. Check out csysa.com for audition music and instructions, then call 719.633.3901 for an audition appointment.


Yes, You Can Draw! with Lizz Driscoll

A drawing program for all ages which emphasizes recognizing and utilizing shape, line, angle, mass, position in a visual field, and eliminating the habit of naming objects, thus tricking the brain into drawing what is actually seen rather than stored images connected with word definitions. Exercises are designed to engage the right brain and let the left side rest as we explore drawing what we see with a variety of materials. The principles can then be applied to actual “seen” objects as well as what is “seen” via the imagination. The awakening of the Right Mode of thinking and focus, which is realized through the drawing techniques, (Drawing provides a kind of language for the Right Brain) has been seen to develop creative thinking and development in other areas as well!


Servant of Two Masters

Servant of Two Masters
by Carlo Goldoni

It’s a tough gig satisfying even one demanding boss, let alone two— especially when neither master knows you’re doing double duty. On a perpetually empty stomach, Truffaldino pulls off the impossible in a sidesplitting classic from 18th century Venice.


Art Aloud

Art Aloud is an exhibition of artists and poets, a celebration of the written word held during the month of April, which is National Poetry Month. It is a large, juried exhibition held at multiple venues. This year's venues are Academy Art and Frame Company, Hooked on Books, Manitou Art Center, and The Bridge Gallery. 

Art Aloud is an opportunity for writers, poets and artists to share their work, as well as collaborate on new works. All art entries must connect to anything of the written word (poems, music, short stories, etc). The poem does not have to be included in the work. It can be displayed separately or not at all.

Each venue will have an individual reception night with a live poetry reading, snacks, drinks, etc. All ages are welcome to participate in both the art exhibition and poetry readings. Jurying of work will be Saturday March 22, 2014.   

The dates for the MAC are: 

Art Drop Off: Monday March 24, 8:00am- 8:00pm and Tuesday March 25, 11:00am-2:00pm. 

Reception: Friday, April 25, 6:00-8:30pm

Art Pick Up: Sunday May 11, 11:00am- 5:00pm and Monday May 12, 8:00am- 8:00pm


Candlelight Yoga

 Yoga. Wine. Chocolate. This month you owe yourself the gift of an hour.




Hand Carved Stamps with Cass Mullane

Wouldn’t you like to make your own hand carved stamps? Whether you’ve seen designs that you love but you cannot find in stores, or you want to create original designs, learn how in this fun two hour class. We’ll cover the tools and supplies and use very simple techniques to carve a few stamps of your own. Beginners welcome! If you have stamp carving tools and blades, please bring them.


Auditions for the 2014-2015 FAC Theatre Season

The FAC will hold a general call for Equity and non-equity actors for our 2014-2015 season on Saturday, May 17. Actors (16 and older) will be seen for all roles, with specific show callbacks held at a later date. Even if you have auditioned for the FAC in the past, we advise you signing up for an audition slot if you are interested in appearing in any of our planned 2014-2015 productions. Auditions for the children performers needed for MARY POPPINS will be held at a later date.
Please read all of the details below to determine if/when you should sign up for a slot.

The FAC is currently casting for roles in the following productions:
Love, Loss & What I Wore
Stuart Little
Mary Poppins
Reefer Madness
Tilly The Trickster
4000 Miles
Guys and Dolls
Rough Writers: New Play Festival

For those interested in both plays and musicals, audition slots will be available between 10AM and 4PM. Those who are only interested in plays can sign up for a slot between 4 and 6PM.

For musical and play auditions: Please prepare a 1 minute monologue and 32 bars of a musical theatre selection. Monologues must be memorized. You must provide sheet music, an accompanist will be provided. There will be no dance call at this general audition.

For play auditions only: Please prepare two 1-minute monologues. Monologues must be memorized.

For all auditions: Please come with a headshot and resume and be prepared to fill out our general form when you arrive.

To set up an audition time and for more information: email Nathan Halvorson, associate director of performing arts at nhalvorson@csfineartscenter.org

Auditions will be held at the FAC, 30 West Dale Street, Colorado Springs and are by appointment only.



Strange and Wonderful: American Folk Art from the Willem Volkersz Collection

Willem Volkersz first saw slides of Simon Rodia’s folk art icon, Watts Towers, while he was an art student in Seattle, Washington. Watts Towers in Los Angeles is a group of structures as high as 99 feet made from scrap metal and concrete, with pottery shards and broken bottle fragments set into wet cement made by an Italian immigrant with a vision.

Volkersz quickly developed an interest in equally exciting folk art environments and made pilgrimage to several of these sites, including Samuel P. Dinsmoor’s Garden of Eden, Jesse Howard’s Signs and Wonders and Hans Jorgensen’s house decorated with farm tools. It was on a 1977 trip to Howard Finster’s Paradise Garden that he and his wife, Diane, made a commitment to collecting and documenting the work by artists variously called contemporary folk artists, outsider artists, grassroots artists, or self-taught artists.

Their collection now includes hundreds of pieces by American self-taught artists. The exhibition at the Fine Arts Center will have three areas of focus. First, it will represent a general survey of work in the collection with pieces by artists Howard Finster, Eddie O. Martin (aka St. EOM), Nellie Mae Rowe, and more. The exhibition will also include in-depth looks at the work of three artists featured prominently in the collection—Alva Gene Dexhimer, Robert E. Smith, and Mark Negus.


The Abstract Show

Cottonwood Center for the Arts presents the second annual Abstract Show. Abstract art can be a painting or sculpture that does not depict a person, place or thing in the natural world – even in an extremely distorted or exaggerated way. Therefore, the subject of the work is based on what you see: color, shape, brushstrokes, size, scale and in some cases the process. This prestigious show is juried to the highest standard and features only the best of the best in abstract art in Colorado Springs.


Incredible Millibo Circus

We have a new stage, which means we have a lot more room to play! Join us for three weekends of acrobats, tight-rope walkers, clowns, stilt-dancers, jugglers, and daring aeriel acts. Fun for the whole family.


May Public Free Day

Public Free Days
On the third Tuesday of each month, the FAC offers the public free general admission. Join us for the next Public Free Day!

Bringing a group of 10 or more, but not scheduling a tour?
We would still appreciate advance notice of your visit! Please call ahead : 719.475.2444.


Writing and Publishing Your Memoir: An Introduction with Ken Guentert

This workshop will help you get started on writing and ultimately publishing your own memoir. This session will cover the types of memoirs, your publishing options (from copy/printing a do-it-yourself book to printing and distributing a professional book), planning the project, and visualizing exactly what it will look like before you write it.


Mixed Media Collage with Liz Kettle

Learn all the secrets of creating great mixed media collages in this one day workshop with Liz Kettle. Collage can be a bit mystifying and scary! In this class you will learn how to create a background, super simple image transfers, the secrets behind layers, and tips on how to use paper in a textile collage. Easy hand stitching and some simple embellishments along with some sassy or serious quotes personalize your masterpiece. You will finish a 10”x 10” collage ready to take home and hang.


Paint, Metal, Fabric with Cass Mullane

Over the course of four weeks, learn how to combine paint, metal and fabric into an intriguing small artwork. Texture, twist, weave, emboss, fold, crumple and crimp pieces of metal foil and wire, apply paint then apply to a fabric ground. Add a little heat and watch what happens! Appropriate for beginners as well as more experienced students.


Carley Warren: Any Contained Space

Golden artist Carley Warren creates wood sculptures inspired by the visceral qualities of the wood itself. She's been hailed by the Denver Post as one of the finest artists in the state.


Forever Plaid

This deliciously goofy revue centers on four young, eager male singers killed in a car crash in the 1950's on the way to their first big concert, and now miraculously revived for the posthumous chance to fulfill their dreams and perform the show that never was. Singing in the closest of harmony, squabbling boyishly over the smallest intonations and executing their charmingly outlandish choreography with over-zealous precision, the "Plaids" are a guaranteed smash, with a program of beloved songs and delightful patter that keeps audiences rolling in the aisles when they're not humming along to some of the great nostalgic pop hits of the 1950's.


Sculpture Class

Sculpting from live model learning technique, attention to structure, volume, and plane, capturing the essence of the human figure.

Sessions are Wednesdays 6-8:30 (June 11 - July 16). Register by June 6.





June Public Free Day

Public Free Days
On the third Tuesday of each month, the FAC offers the public free general admission. Join us for the next Public Free Day!

Bringing a group of 10 or more, but not scheduling a tour?
We would still appreciate advance notice of your visit! Please call ahead : 719.475.2444


Publishing Your Own Book with Ken Guentert

Have you been thinking about a book, a manual, or a catalog of your works? Ken Guentert of The Publishing Pro, LLC will walk you through the process that will help you design the publication that best suits your purpose and makes the most sense for your budget.



 Community leaders join the cast with Conservatory faculty, alumni and students for this annual musical extravaganza. 


Floyd and Clea Under the Western Sky

Burnt out, living out of his Studebaker, former country-western star Floyd Duffner’s best days seem to be behind him. But when a 20-year-old feral beauty with an electrifying voice enters the picture, an unlikely friendship and musical partnership begins to blossom. A freewheeling musical journey from Montana to Austin (with a side trip to Hollywood), Floyd and Clea is a tale of sweet heartbreak, a parable about finding the strength, against all odds, to keep on keepin’ on.


Raiding the Crates: Matt O'Neill

Since relocating to Colorado from Chicago in the 1980s, Matt O’Neill has remained one of our region's the most exciting artists. Naturalistic realism has defined his style for most of the time since and has earned his the high regard of many longtime regional artists, curators, and art critics. Whether portraits of his neighbors in the Five Points area of Denver or of spotty teenagers taken from yearbook photos, O’Neill’s subjects often derive from cultural nostalgia combined with surrealism and humor. In many of his paintings, such as the FAC's F.F.A. Sweetheart, the O'Neill takes a uniquely western subject and renders it through the prism of Picasso’s simultaneous reverence and bizarrely mocking abstraction. This kind of work set O’Neill on a path to some of the more purely abstract works he has focused on for the past decade.


Kids Are Dramatic Summer Theatre Camps

Elementary School Camps

Adventures in Seussville - In this childhood-book themed program, students will recreate stories that we all know and love, giving these imaginative tales new meaning and significance through drama. To assist students in their journey to create these fantastical stories, we will practice our acting skills with tableaux, storytelling, and a culminating performance for parents and friends to watch at the end of the week.

Funky Fairytales - Children will create their own “happily ever-after” stories. After exploring the basic components of typical fairytales, we will all delve deep into our imaginations to think of fun plot twists, unique characters, and “happy” endings. What IF…Little Red Riding Hood’s grandmother was on vacation the whole time and the wolf was housesitting? These things can happen.

Around the World in 80 Plays - Theatre is an art form that has roots in Greece, Italy, China and many other parts of the world. In this program, students will engage with different forms of theatre from different parts of the world. At the end of the week, we will select our favorite of all types of theatre and perform scenes for parents and friends. This camp is perfect for just about anyone!

Puppet Pals - Acting has so many parts to it, and through puppetry, kids can really hone their skills in using their voice and hand gestures to make an inanimate object come to life. With help from a guest artist, we will create short sketches to perform for an audience, and students will have their very own puppet to take home after the program. This camp is ideal for students interested in puppets or students who are on the shyer side and need some help breaking out of their shell.

Middle School Camps

Improv and Spontaneity - Improvisation is the art of acting without prior preparation or with the use of a script. In this camp, students will learn the necessary skills and techniques to be successful in acting given any circumstance. Recent research from arts advocates also suggests that improvisation is one of the most powerful tools in helping students attain higher self-esteem, improve social skills, and think outside the box. From Saturday Night Live to Second City in Chicago, improvisation is used across the world.

Masks and Theatre - Taking it back a few millennia, this program explores the different techniques used by Greeks and Romans in using masks to portray different characters. Students will create their own masks and act out a variety of existing comedies and tragedies with a few twists. At the end of the week, students will be able to take their masks home.

Environmental Theatre - As a part of the new theatre movement of the 1960s, environmental theatre emerged a type of theatre that seeks to dismantle the distance between the audience and actors. In exploring a variety of sceneries, students will learn ways to handle changes in the environment, interact with audience members and welcome audience participation. No play is ever the same with environmental theatre, and at the end of the week, parents and friends will join our environment and watch students adapt to different changes.

Commedia dell’Arte - Termed in 16th century Italy, Commedia dell’Arte comprises of improvisation and basic sketches that consist of stock characters. Students will learn about Commedia’s design, intent, skill-base, and characters. Through this unique topic, students and the instructors venture inside iSpace to perform different sketches that students write themselves.

High School Camps

Art of Comedy - Whether it be comedic acting, parodies, or plain stand-up comedy, comedy is an art expressed with great technicality and training. This camp teaches students the most common forms of comedic humor, how to use it, and how to write and perform comedic pieces. Students will begin with exploring regular play humor, move on to generating parodies of their favorite shows before finally crafting their own stand-up comedy routine.

Forum Theatre - Created by influential theatrical artist Augusto Boal, forum theatre seeks to empower people to change their world. In this type of theatre, the audience suggests different actions for characters to take during points of the performances in order to change the outcomes. As being recorded as the most useful tool to help new people into theatre, forum theatre provides every actor a voice, regardless of background.


Chihuly Rediscovered

This dazzling exhibit builds on the state’s largest permanent collection of Dale Chihuly’s luminescent glass sculptures. The exhibit will feature more than 40 works –  Chandeliers, Macchia Forest, Baskets, Seaforms, Persians, drawings, paintings and a lot more – some from the FAC’s permanent collection, others on loan from local collectors. The exhibit, configured in a way that visitors to the FAC have never seen, will display the full range of Chihuly’s work, including early glass pieces made by his own hand.

Chihuly Rediscovered will be the perfect companion to the outdoor Chihuly exhibit planned for Denver Botanic Gardens(June 13-Nov. 30). Combined, these two shows will capture the full delight, dazzle and deliciousness of the world’s per-eminent glass artist, making this Colorado’s Summer of Chihuly.