For Daniel Ritchie, it's girl's night out

Column by Penny Parker


For a suit-and-tie CEO of the Denver Center for the Performing Arts, Daniel Ritchie makes a handsome woman.

And he proved just how fetching he can be in a blingy ball gown during “Theatre Threads,” a costume department fashion show featuring models from the DCPA's financial and emotional support group.

As an unadvertised final entry in the fashion show, Ritchie shuffled to the microphone where 9News entertainment editor Kirk Montgomery was lending emcee duties. Much to the delight of the lunching crowd, Ritchie sported a Texas-sized blond wig, full makeup, false eyelashes, figure-hugging bedazzled gown, feather stole, full-length black gloves and black patent open-toe heels.

In a twisted way, he looked hot!

Ritchie was promoting “The Legend of Georgia McBride,” which plays in the Ricketson Theatre from Jan. 10 to Feb. 23.

“We didn't have costumes yet so we hired a professional drag queen, and he worked with Dan on the outfit,” said Alexandra Griesmer, public relations and promotions manager for the Denver Center Theatre Company. “(Ritchie) was such a great sport — didn't take much convincing!”

Ritchie said his gender-bender experience lent him more empathy toward females.

“I learned that high heels are risky,” Ritchie said while Montgomery, dressed as one of the Three Musketeers, doubled over in laughter. “I was surprised to learn what you do every day. My respect is even higher (for women).”

The play is about a straight young man who unexpectedly takes a dip into the world of drag, Ritchie said. “I didn't know much about being a woman, so I thought I should learn firsthand.”

Denver Center Alliance's Theatre Threads is a tribute to the talent and passion of the models and backstage stars, Denver Center Theatre Company's costume department. Proceeds support the Arts in Education program, which allows more than 50,000 students the opportunity to experience live theater this academic year.

The incredible shrinking anchor

Have you seen 9News entertainment anchor Kirk Montgomery lately? Rather, have you seen what's left of him? His cheeks are no longer “cherubbed,” and his torso is oh so trim.

I caught his act last week, and couldn't help asking Montgomery the secret to his slimmed-down success.

“I downloaded a free app (My Plate from and I've been counting calories,” he told me. “I input the good the bad and the ugly — and just getting into the habit of doing that was an eye-opener. I've tried to stay around 1,500 (calories consumed) a day. Some days are lower, some higher, but I've lost weight before — the goal this time is to keep it off.”

Lakewood gets new nod named Lakewood as one of the Top 100 Best Places to Live in its inaugural ranking released Oct. 25, according to the City of Lakewood's weekly e-newsletter.

“The list was created in partnership with the Martin Prosperity Institute, the world's leading think tank on the role of location, place and city-regions in global economic prosperity. The list was produced after studying U.S. cities and factors that make them the best places to live, work and play.”

Factors included in the Top 100 ranking included good schools, hospitals, amenities, affordability and the local economy. Read more at

Boffo boutiques

A Line Boutique in Greenwood Village's Landmark development, Perch in Vail and Max in Cherry Creek North were named Lucky Magazine's favorite stores in Colorado in the current issue.

Lucky Magazine's Ultimate Guide to Personal Style is on newsstands now. All three boutiques were chosen for exceptional customer service, fashion forward clothing and accessories and for creating an intimate shopping experience.

The seen

Rocker Joe Cocker (who's lived in Colorado for 20 years) dining at The Oceanaire Seafood Room on Oct. 23. My spy tells me that Cocker, who recently returned from a summer-long 46-city European tour, enjoyed fish and chips English style.


Eavesdropping on a man talking to a woman about “The Book of Mormon” at “Theatre Threads”: “The first time through, it's crazy. It's like signing up for Obamacare.”

Penny Parker's “Mile High Life” column gives insights into the best events, restaurants, businesses, parties and people throughout the metro area. Parker also writes for You can subscribe and read her columns (Monday, Wednesday and Friday) at She can be reached at or at 303-619-5209.


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