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 February 1, 1998

Romantic opportunities abound for Valentine’s

Yes, the most romantic month of the year is upon us. And while a typical celebration of Cupid˜s favorite day includes an expensive dinner out, a box of chocolates or a bouquet of roses, options do exist.
For example, those with a taste for the arts can choose from several romance-themed performances happening on and around Valentine˜s Day. Some of the region˜s most accomplished performing groups have planned music, dance and spoken-word productions sure to get to the heart of the holiday.
This year, Valentine˜s Day falls on a Saturday, and on that evening, the Fort Collins Symphony will present "From Russia with Love" at the Lincoln Center in Fort Collins. The program will include Tchaikovsky˜s "Variations on a Rococo Theme" and "Romeo & Juliet Overture-Fantasy," the March and Scherzo from Prokofiev˜s "Love for Three Oranges" and Shostakovich˜s "Symphony Number 5."
Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky and Sergei Prokofiev both wrote scores for William Shakespeare˜s tragic story, "Romeo & Juliet," and ballets were choreographed to both. Fort Collins˜ own Canyon Concert Ballet will perform the full, three-act ballet to Prokofiev˜s score Feb. 20 and 21.
Guest choreographer Pavel Rotaru, artistic director of International Ballet Rotaru, has traveled from Atlanta to set his version of the classical ballet on the local dance company.
Three guest dancers from the Colorado Ballet will perform the roles of Romeo, Mercutio and Tybalt.
Audiences will be wowed not only by the dancers˜ performance but by the "intriguing and elaborate" sets and costumes Rotaru brought in for the company˜s use, Espinoza said.
"This is the epitome of ballet drama," he said. "I can˜t promise a happy ending, but it is a wonderful rendition of a classic love story — a great date."
If sad endings aren˜t your bag, try the Larimer Chorale˜s love-laced program scheduled for Feb. 15 at the Lincoln Center.
"Let˜s Fall in Love" is a compilation of songs written by Franz Schubert and Robert Schumann and several love poems by Robert Burns. Fort Collins resident Tom Sutherland will read four Burns poems, and the Larimer Chorale will then sing them.
Burns is recognized as one of Scotland˜s greatest poets, and Sutherland is one of his biggest fans. He even plans to don his kilt for the occasion.
The Chorale will also be joined by the Choice City Singers, a community chorus offering a more contemporary array of jazz and pop tunes.
Do the terms "multicultural" and "multimedia" intrigue you? Then perhaps you and your loved one should check out Jafrika at Bas Bleu Theatre Feb. 12-14. The show doesn˜t promise a romantic theme in particular, but this performance group from Denver features three artists of reportedly extraordinary talent: TingZen, a veritable one-man band, offers original acoustic compositions on guitar, drums and keyboard; Ricki Harada, a Japan-born dancer blends traditional Japanese dance with hip hop, jazz, modern, ballet and mime; and SETH, an African American actor and poet, interjects his works amid the music and dance.
The show was characterized by Denver media as one of the finest cultural performances the area has to offer, SETH said — a great way to impress a date.
On a grander scale, 400 students from the University of Northern Colorado School of Music will present "Songs to My Love" the evening of the 14th, at the Union Colony Civic Center in Greeley.
Concert Choir, Et Cetera, Jazz Band I, Trumpet Choir, University Symphony Orchestra and the University Wind Ensemble are among the university˜s numerous musical groups that will perform.
Apparently, it was just a fluke that the performance date for UNC˜s 15th annual gala performance coincided with Valentine˜s Day, but they˜re taking full advantage, said Susan Nelson, UNC arts information director. Classical tunes, movie themes, big-band torch songs and other works culled from decades of romantic music should soften even the most curmudgeonly heart.
The university˜s music program enjoys an international reputation, and its annual gala performances typically are near sell-outs. All proceeds go to benefit the UNC Performing and Visual Arts Scholarship Fund.
So there you have it, a bevy of choices close at hand. And any one of them could give your romantic weekend the sizzle it deserves.Lincoln Center 221-6730
Bas Bleu Theatre 498-8449
Union Colony Civic Center (970) 356-5000

Yes, the most romantic month of the year is upon us. And while a typical celebration of Cupid˜s favorite day includes an expensive dinner out, a box of chocolates or a bouquet of roses, options do exist.
For example, those with a taste for the arts can choose from several romance-themed performances happening on and around Valentine˜s Day. Some of the region˜s most accomplished performing groups have planned music, dance and spoken-word productions sure to get to the heart of the holiday.
This year, Valentine˜s Day falls on a Saturday, and on that evening, the Fort Collins Symphony will…

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