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Luncheon Discussion | Denver Event Photography

One of my favorite things about Denver event photography is that I get to learn. I get to be a bystander and ease drop of fascinating lectures, panel discussions, speeches, and presentations. While I work, I get to absorb information on all sorts of topics from urban planning to the future or battery storage. Sometimes, I’m introduced to a whole new industry and sometimes I get to learn more about something I’m already involved with.

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When I started my internship at the Glimmerglass Festival in 2013, I knew nothing about opera. I still thought it was only for old people and I thought it must be so boring. After photographing numerous events surrounding and leading up to the opening nights of each show that season, I learned to love opera. It turned out I was just watching it wrong! I even wrote a whole blog post about how to watch opera so that you’ll enjoy it. What I learned is that the key to loving opera is learning about it. The more I know about the story and the production, before I watched it, the more I enjoyed it.

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It’s the same way with Opera Colorado. They have so many events leading up to each show so that audiences can learn more about the piece before seeing it. When I photograph these events, I get to learn along with the audience and it gets me even more excited to see the shows! I love that this company has so many events around each production. I think it really increases audience engagement and creates a better experience for all audience members.

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This event was a luncheon discussion hosted by the Lamont School of Music at the Newman Center. Cast and crew members from Opera Colorado’s production of La Boheme were there to discuss the production and answer questions. There were even a couple of Lamont opera students there to perform before the talk. I love all the collaboration that went into this event.

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Want engaging event photos to reach new audiences and sell more tickets? I would love to help tell your story through photos. Contact me here or message me at jamie@jamiekraus.com.

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Sip and Sing | Denver Performing Arts Photography

I love Denver performing arts photography. It takes me to new places and gives me an insider look into really cool events and experiences. I love going all over the city for my job and discovering new things. When I photographed Opera Colorado‘s Sip and Sing last year, I got to go to the Preservery for the first time. It is such a cool space and it was a great location for this event. They also provided a three course meal that looked so good, each course paired with wine.

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I’m not going to lie. This event was not easy to photograph. With Denver performing arts photography, I never use flash during a live performance. This can often mean I face difficult lighting situations that are completely outside of my control. I have to rely on the light available and outside of the traditional theater, it can be very hit or miss. The lighting at the Preservery is really cool. The space is filled with mismatched fixtures, Edison bulbs, and a wall of painted traffic signs. While the lighting looked really great, there was not a lot of it. It gave a wonderful, soft ambiance to the space but made photography difficult.

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I can deal with low light though, I can thrive in these situations. The one thing I had never encountered before was the wall of signs. I collect signed like this and I think they’re really cool. Their job is to alert drivers of necessary information, day or night, and they do this by reflecting light. They are really good at this. That means that no matter what I did, the signs would hog all the light and reflect it on the backs of the singers’ heads. But through experimenting with my exposure and editing, I made it work and highlighted the singers as best I could.

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Want engaging production photos to reach new audiences and sell more tickets? I would love to help tell your story through photos. Contact me here or message me at jamie@jamiekraus.com.

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Season Preview Concert | Denver Performing Arts Events

Capturing Denver performing arts events is such a fun way to gain insight into what’s happening around Denver. I love these opportunities to participate and contribute to the local art scene. Most of all, I love sharing the photos from events like these. Some Denver arts events are only open to a small group of people and even with events that are available to all, no one can make it to everything awesome that’s happening around town. Having photos of these events give people who couldn’t make it a chance to see it anyway. And I love that!

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Opera Colorado’s season preview concert was really cool because it gave attendees a sneak peek at the events for the rest of the year. This event gave season ticket holders a glimpse at the upcoming season so they could decide what shows they wanted to see. I think it really helped everyone get excited about what was in store!

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At the event, Greg Carpenter, the Artistic Director, announced the new season and gave some background about each show. But just having someone speak would be boring, right? I mean all that information was online anyway. Not only did he talk about the shows, the singers, and show the sets, and the costume designs, but there was singing! What Denver performing arts event would be complete without some performing arts? The Opera Colorado Young Artists gave viewers a preview of each show by performing a few songs from the shows they would be in throughout the year. It was a great evening and got everyone revved up for the upcoming season.

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By the way, Opera Colorado announced their 2018-2019 season recently. Check it out!

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Opera Colorado duet performed at Denver concert

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three Denver opera singers perform at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House

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Want engaging production photos to reach new audiences and sell more tickets? I would love to help tell your story through photos. Contact me here or message me at jamie@jamiekraus.com.

Local Lab 2017 | Boulder Theater Photography

Local Theater Company, in Boulder, puts on an incredible new-works festival each year called Local Lab. On Saturday of this year’s festival, they had a mainstage reading of Shostakovich, or Silence by Jason Grote and directed by Pesha Rudnick at the Dairy Arts Center. After the reading, the writer and director had a talk back with the audience, followed by an after party with food and an awesome DJ. The talk back was really constructive and Jason and Pesha revealed how the show all came together at the last minute.

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The party was a lot of fun, with great food and amazing music by DJ Savior Breath. Everyone was in chatting and laughing and discussing the reading. The party spilled out into the lobby and gallery of the Dairy Arts Center. Right as I was leaving, the lights went low and everyone started dancing!

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I loved that Local Lab had me come in for the talk back and after party. Since there was no rehearsal for the reading, I would have had to photograph it live, with the audience, which could have been disruptive. This way, I still got photos of the production team speaking on stage and of the ambiance in the room. Plus since the lights were on in the audience, I was able to get photos of the patron engaged and happy.

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It’s always good to have a photographer at events like after parties too. These photos are great for drawing crowds to future events, sharing with attendees, and posting on social media sites like facebook. They can also be used in future marketing materials to show happy patrons, crowds, and ambiance.

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Want engaging production photos to reach new audiences and sell more tickets? I would love to help tell your story through photos. Contact me here or message me at jamie@jamiekraus.com

9/11 Stair Climb | Denver Event Photographer

We all remember where we were on September 11th, 2001. I was still young and I remember my 4th grade teacher telling us to sit on the carpet as one by one, my classmates got picked up by their parents. When my mom picked me up, she told me what happened. I could see the Sears Tower from my house and I was convinced that it would be the next target. I was also convinced that it would fall, from 2 miles away, onto our house. I made an emergency plan to hide under the coffee table in the basement. For years, I was scared every time a plane flew by the building. At that age, I wasn’t quite able to process the loss of life or the sacrifices the first responders and others made that day.

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In college, my partner was a volunteer firefighter. Every Friday night, he would be on duty crew, waiting at the station for calls to come in. Even though most of his district was a college campus where the biggest calls were for dumpster fires or alarms because students forgot to put water in their Easy Mac, there was always the slight fear that something worse might happen. That he might not come home that night. That is the reality for so many family members of first responders, especially those in New York City in 2001.

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Each year, around the county, firefighters come together on September 11th and converge on the tallest building in their city. In teams, they climb stairs equal to the number of floors in the World Trade Centers. In Denver, they climb 1801 California St, twice, in order to equal the height of the twin towers. Stations from all over the state were represented. Each one wears the name tag of a firefighter who lost their lives at Ground Zero. Some of them represent the same firefighter each year and maintain a relationship with their families.

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I photographed the ceremony before the climb and then waited on the stairs for teams to come up. Once some of the teams had finished, I went out to the roof, which has some incredible views of the city. My favorite part of the day was when the news crews on the roof interviewed the first woman to finish the climb. I was so moved by how many women were participating. The 9/11 Memorial Stair Climb is such an important event and I’m so honored I could be a part of it.

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If you have an Denver event coming up, let me know. I would love to be a part of it and document all the most important moments. Send me an email at jamie@jamiekraus.com.

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Two Roads | Colorado Arts Photographer

Some of the coolest parts of last summer’s Breckenridge International Art Festival were the trail performances. Along a few trails were art installation, often made out of the woods themselves. Throughout the festival, musicians would come and perform in the woods near the art installations. The Breckenridge International Art Festival is hosted in Breckenridge each August. They did such an incredible job combining various artforms together and with the stunning nature the town is known for. From acrobatic dance pieces to giant dinosaurs in the streets, there was an incredible variety of art at this festival.

We hiked up a mountain just outside of town to get to this spot, just in time for a live show. On the way up, we passed bikers and got some great views of the town below. We know we had made it because we could see the bright red of Konstantin Dimopoulos’s outdoor installation, “Two Roads,” through the trees.

From the festival’s website, Dimopoulos’s piece “is composed of branches collected from the forest floor, repurposed into chair-like structures. The skeletal quality of the frames provokes contemplation of negative space, or what is seemingly missing, while the branches, colored red, produce a vibrant contrast to the natural forest. The installation is both playful and thought provoking.”

We were then treated to a guitar performance by a local musician before hiking back down into town for some beignets, the perfect post hike food, at The Lost Cajun. Being serenaded in the woods, surrounded by nature and art is pretty incredible. I think if this were part of every hike, I would probably get way more exercise!

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Want engaging production photos to reach new audiences and sell more tickets?  Send me a message at jamie@jamiekraus.com. I would love to help tell your story through photos.

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Family Day Part 2 | Colorado Performing Arts Photographer

Opera Colorado puts on a ton of awesome events to get kids excited about the opera. One of the biggest events they host is Family Day. On Family Day, kids and their parents come to the Ellie Caulkins Opera House to watch a show and do crafts relating to the story. The shows are all abridged, kid-friendly, English language versions of classic operas and there is a Q&A session after each show.

Family Day is a big event so I split it into two blogs. This show was the Elixir of Love. It a great show about love potions and conniving salesman and it has the perfect mix of humor and drama. The kids made their own elixirs of love and colored some root beer kegs. Part of this opera takes place in a bar so to make it kid friendly, the bar in this version only served root beer! The show was followed by a question and answer session and then the kids got to come up to look at the set and take pictures with the Young Artists. They loved playing with the costumes and props.

Opera Colorado’s season is officially over. That means the Young Artists are off on their own again, and the halls of the Ellie won’t be filled with singing voices for a while. I get to meet the new Young Artists in September and then the first opera of the season is in November. Next season brings another exciting line up of three unique operas! The season opens with La Bohème, the opera that inspired the Broadway musical and then movie, Rent. Then in January, there will be a world premier of Steal A Pencil for Me, a true story about two people who fall in love in a concentration camp during the Holocaust. The season will end with Falstaff, a tale of greed, seduction, and buffoonery

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Want engaging production photos to reach new audiences and sell more tickets? I would love to help tell your story through photos. Contact me here or message me at jamie@jamiekraus.com