‘Rock of Ages’ latest national tour to stop in Colorado Springs

From symphony to comedy to musical theater, the Pikes Peak Center in Colorado Springs hosts high-caliber live entertainment that attracts a loyal following.

“Rock of Ages” now on its tenth anniversary tour, was no exception.  The off-Broadway touring company of American Theatre League actors made a January 22 stop at the PPC to a near sold-out, one-night performance. (It continued on for a short run at the Denver Center.)  More rock concert than musical theater — minus the deafening sound levels and stench of spilled beer —the popular musical is a fusion of well-replicated ’80s-era hair band ballads against a predictable saga of dreams and decadence on LA’s Sunset Strip.

The Broadmoor-owned Pikes Peak Center is adept at diverse offerings, regularly filling its 2,000+ seats.

“It’s Broadway, right here in Colorado Springs,” says Dot Lischick, General Manager of the Pikes Peak Center and Broadmoor World Arena.

Most shows, from the season-ticket option symphony series to the Broadway four-show package, offer a pre-show sit-down dining experience in the center’s lobby.

“It’s a one-stop total performance experience,” says Lischick, “with high-quality talent, convenience and affordability.  We’re always looking for engaging shows to keep the center vital, active and top-of-mind when people think of live performance venues.”

“Rock of Ages” hinges on familiar coming-of-age themes —I ndulgence, defiance and idealism — resonating especially well with ’80s-era coming-of-agers warm to the earworms of Journey, Whitesnake, Poison and Foreigner. Male lead Anthony Muccio was a stronger singer than dancer or actor, holding his notes long and loud to the roars of the crowd. He harmonized well with tiny powerhouse Katie LaMark, who played wide-eyed Sherry to his street-savvy Drew.  LaMark seduced the audience with the grace and ease of a seasoned veteran, bolstered by a finely tuned and talented ensemble often playing multiple roles.

As Act one closes, the two lovers are sideways, crisscrossing harmonies between a snarky Pat Benatar’s “Hit Me with your Best Shot” to Joan Jett’s defiant “I Hate Myself for Loving You.”  The classic rock genre provides a musical backdrop for the hardships and hook-ups that pan out as the story unfolds — from REO’s “Can’t Fight this Feeling” to Slade’s “Cum on Feel the Noise” and “Just Like Paradise” from David Lee Roth.  By show’s end, predictably, the lovers are reunited and the entire troupe unites in Steve Perry’s “Oh Sherrie” completing the marriage of song to storyline with the small town girl and boy raised in South Detroit.  In the end, the house is brought to its feet with Journey’s ”Don’t Stop Believin’.”

In addition to touring theatrical productions, the PPC also hosts symphonic music, concerts and more. Learn more at Pikespeakcenter.com