Hot Tickets for an Aspen/Snowmass Winter

’Tis the season for cold nights, great skiing, and some of the best cultural events of the year in Aspen. We spoke with Andrew Travers, arts editor of The Aspen Times, to get his picks for the most highly anticipated performances of the winter season, by the nation’s biggest talents. You’ll want to buy tickets now.

La La Land, Dec. 21, Wheeler Opera House
General admission tickets are sold out for this musical-style film starring Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone that critics are considering a front runner for Best Picture, but Aspen Film members at the Producer level and above are guaranteed admission. Preceded by an opening reception, the film kicks off Aspen Film’s much-loved Academy Screenings, which run through Jan. 1. Director Damien La La LandChazelle is no stranger to Aspen; in fact, Aspen Film’s Shortsfest could be considered the launchpad of his career, according to Travers. Chazelle’s short film Whiplash was a big hit at the 2013 festival, so much so that he turned it into a full-length feature that went on to garner many awards, including an Academy Award Best Picture nomination. Aspen Film membership info


Chris Cornell, Dec. 27, Belly Up
Chris CornellThe former Soundgarden and Audioslave front man sold out the Belly Up last year and will likely do so again, with tickets to the first of two Aspen shows already gone and only reserved seating available for the second (as of this writing). This “rock god of Gen X,” according to Travers, is fresh off a big arena tour with Temple of the Dog — his acoustic solo show will likely mix ’90s grunge classics with his more recent, mellower genre-transcending work. Tickets


LisaFischerLisa Fisher and Grand Baton, Dec. 29 & Dec. 30, JAS Café at Cooking School of Aspen
In her first Aspen appearance, the former backup singer for the Rolling Stones (among others), whose career was reenergized by the documentary Twenty Feet from Stardom, is sure to be a hot ticket. Grammy Award-winning Fisher and her band play four shows over two days, performing a powerful blend of rock, soul, R&B, jazz, and blues. The earlier shows include the option of a three-course prix-fixe meal from the Cooking School, which has proven to be a fantastic venue for a night of fine dining and intimate jazz. Tickets


Adam TrentAdam Trent, Dec. 29, Wheeler Opera House
A star of the hit Broadway show The Illusionists, Trent puts on performances that are part magic, part concert, and part stand-up comedy. It’s “hip magic,” says Travers. And with a matinee at 4:30 pm (in addition to a 7:30 pm show), this audience-interactive event is sure to appeal to the whole family. Tickets


Kevin Fedarko and Pete McBride, Feb. 7, Paepcke Auditorium
Fedarko & McBridePart of Aspen Words’ Winter Words series, this talk with the noted writer and photographer team behind a rare through-hike of the Grand Canyon is likely to be a locals’ favorite event. Fedarko, author of the award-winning book The Emerald Mile, and Aspen native McBride, whose photo and video work focuses on documenting natural places and the challenges they face, completed their epic 700-mile journey in October. While the story is being published on multiple platforms through National Geographic and PBS, this is their first talk they’ve given since the trek’s completion. Fedarko and McBride will also focus on the importance of protecting the Grand Canyon and the role that storytelling can play in it. Tickets


Aspen Santa Fe Ballet, Feb. 18 & April 1, Aspen District Theatre
JenelleFiggins_AnthonyTiedeman_Sleepless_RosalieOConnorThe hometown ballet company’s seasonal local performance is always popular, but this winter’s choice promises to be “a big one,” says Travers. ASFB commissioned a piece by Cherice Barton, a trained classical ballet dancer with a lot of buzz around her right now, whose accolades include choreographing Katy Perry’s performance at the 2015 Grammy Awards. On the program with Barton’s world premiere are Alejandro Cerrudo’s Little Mortal Jump and Jiří Kylián’s Sleepless. Link to tickets



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