Award-winning play coming to Miner’s Alley

Column by John Akal
Posted 1/16/19

Remember that feeling of your heart racing when you were in school and your teacher said “today we’re going to have a pop quiz”? Well, here at Avenue Flashes I’m going to hit you with a bit …

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Award-winning play coming to Miner’s Alley


Remember that feeling of your heart racing when you were in school and your teacher said “today we’re going to have a pop quiz”? Well, here at Avenue Flashes I’m going to hit you with a bit of a pop quiz that has to do with something happening in Golden this month. Hopefully your all excited now.

So, here’s the question. Who passed away last August that went to school for a while at the University of Denver, wrote more than 30 stage plays and nearly the same number of screen plays, has received more combined Oscars and Tony nominations than any other playwright, won a Pulitzer Prize, a Golden Globe, held three honorary Doctorate degrees, wrote for numerous television shows and ultimately had one of his plays turned into a television series and in 1983 became the only living playwright to have a New York theater named after him?

Here’s a few clues: Brighton Beach Memoirs, Barefoot in the Park, Sweet Charity, The Sunshine Boys, Biloxi Blues, The Goodbye Girl, California Suite, The Out-of-Towners, Plaza Suite, Murder by Death, Max Dugan Returns, Lost in Yonkers and the Odd Couple.

I know, the answer is right on the tip of your tongue. That guy, what’s his name…Oh yeah! Neil Simon!

Yes, the famous Neil Simon. He was probably the most recognized writer for stage, screen and television to ever live and unfortunately we lost a few months ago him at age 91. But, his works will live on and we can still enjoy them.

In fact, you can check out one of his most famous plays starting this month at Golden’s own Miners Alley Playhouse. They will be presenting a new production of Lost in Yonkers starting January 25 and running through March 3.

It may not be as familiar to you as The Odd Couple, but it was the play that won Simon his Pulitzer Prize as well as one of his Tony awards for Best Play. It was pretty much his crowning achievement and considered by many to be his best work.

Lost in Yonkers has been described as a coming-of-age story set in Yonkers, New York that centers around two brothers, Arty and Jay, who live with their grandmother and their mentally challenged Aunt Bella, while their father travels, desperately trying to scrape enough money together working as a salesman to pay off his debts to a loan shark, and their mother has died of cancer. Over the course of the play, the young boys learn lessons about love, responsibility and the importance of family that will carry them into adulthood.

Performances will be on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights at 7:30 p.m. as well as Sunday afternoons at 2 p.m.. With the exception of opening night, which is already almost sold out, tickets run different prices for different days of the week. Thursdays are the least expensive at $17 for Students, $22 for Seniors and $25 for Adults. Friday and Saturday night’s tickets are $22 for Students, $31 for Seniors and $34 for Adults. Sundays fall somewhere in between at $22 for Students, $25 for Seniors and $28 for Adults. You can order tickets at or by calling the box office at (303) 935-3044.

This season they are also offering a dining special with 15 percent off your food bill at either the Old Capitol Grill & Smokehouse or Miners Saloon when you show them your ticket for that day’s/night’s performance. Both those places are just a block or so from the theater.

Miner’s Alley Playhouse is located at 1224 Washington Avenue in Golden. It’s in the back of the building right on Miners Alley. I always mention that because one night I ran into one poor lost guy who asked me where it was and he was standing 10 feet from the door to the place. He’d parked on Washington Avenue and hadn’t quite walked far enough to see it.

John Akal is a well-known jazz artist/drummer and leader of the 20-piece Ultraphonic Jazz Orchestra. He also is president of John Akal Imaging, professional commercial photography and multi-media production. He can be reached at


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