Denver theater shows all

Oct 272003
Authors: James Baetke

Denver – Sexual art lined the walls of the new Denver Civic

Theatre, 721 Santa Fe Dr., and one piece in particular was a

sculpture of a rather large penis. Women were the majority, dressed

in their theater attire as they laughed and sipped their cocktails

in nervousness of what was to be the main event of the night.

The stage show is called Puppetry of the Penis, a unique two man

show that center’s around the “ancient art of genital origami,”

including manipulation of their penises and testicles. Their act

involves tricks, folds, stretches, shapes, twists and disfigurement

of their members, which has been a hit in Australia where the show

originates. The show is in full frontal nudity.

Katherine Rosin is the Director of Media Relations and is

slightly nervous at the show’s Oct. 21 performance. The show has

been at the theater since Sept. 1, and runs through Sunday. The two

nude performers are new, replacing their penis predecessors for the

time being. In fact, so new it was Daniel Speed’s first night on

stage and Jef Benjamin’s fourth week.

“Hopefully, the dick tricks will come out,” Rosin said, just

prior to the performance.

What type of person comes to something like this where two men

wiggle their willies?

Well, the crowd is mostly women, but audience members said they

were conveyed to come because they wanted something new and

non-mainstream. There were bachelorete parties, female birthday

parties and some men there who said they were dragged in by friends

or dates.

“I really was not that shocked, but I was impressed by their

bravado,” said Nick Chavez, a Denver resident.

After turning hundreds of audience members into hysterical

laughing boxes, the two novice performers said after the show they

were born to perform and find that making people laugh at their

penises does involve acting.

Speed was still obviously shaken by the whole experience. After

the show he signed autographs, his hand still trembling and his

forehead moist in sweat. Speed has been involved with the show

before, but as a behind-the-scenes kind of guy.

“I was a virgin until just now,” Speed said after her first

penis performance in an Australian accent. “I consider myself an


Benjamin, the more experienced of the two, said he was recruited

for the show in Seattle and had to complete an audition in order to

be taken on. At first he was an understudy electrician of the show

but soon became the only American cast member on stage.

“I consider myself an artist,” Benjamin said, who is also

involved in a band and loves the music and venues of Fort


Puppetry of the Penis took off in 1998 at the Melbourne

International Comedy Festival thanks to founders Simon Morley and

David Friend. The show has swept the nation in major cities like

Philadelphia and New York City.

The city of Denver initially had doubts the show would take

place in Denver due to issues surrounding liquor laws and

obscenity. Fortunately for the show’s producers the liquor license

ordeal was worked out and it was concluded the show does fall under

First Amendment rights, despite the fact the duo performs tricks

like “the hairy tongue,” “the pelican” and the signature



Where: The New Denver Civic Theatre, 721 Santa Fe Drive.

When: Now playing until Sunday on Tuesdays -Sundays.

Tuesday-Thursday 8 p.m.; Friday & Saturday 7 p.m. & 9:30

p.m.; Sun 7 p.m.

Ticket Cost: $39.50-$43.50 and 6+ group discounts.

Contact: or by calling the box office @








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