Backstage Theatre hosts film screening, lecture and wine tasting |

Backstage Theatre hosts film screening, lecture and wine tasting

Lalou Bize-Leroy now presides over what is regarded as one of the great estates in the Burgundy region.
Special to the Daily |

If you go

What: “A Year in Burgundy,” plus lecture and wine tasting (film is in French with English subtitles)

Where: Breckenridge Backstage Theatre, 121 Ridge St., Breckenridge

When: Thursday, Nov. 6, and Friday, Nov. 7; wine tasting at 7 p.m., film at 7:30

Cost: $10 for the film, $12 for a tasting of two Burgundies (one white, one red)

More information: Must be 21 or older to participate in the wine tasting. This is a fundraiser to help remodel the Breckenridge Backstage Theatre. For more information and tickets, visit or call (970) 453-0199

The Breckenridge Backstage Theatre will present the documentary film “A Year in Burgundy,” plus a short lecture and a wine tasting, on Thursday, Nov. 6, and Friday, Nov. 7.

“The idea is to have an interactive night out,” said Laurie Rambaud, Backstage Theatre film coordinator. “Learn a little about wine, taste it, then understand the story behind the bottle. It’s a quick trip to France watching the film while you sip on the tastings.”

Bob Fowles, who will be introducing the wines and guiding the tasting, is the wine buyer at Dillon Ridge Liquors and is a partner in a wine-importing company called Table 31 Imports, in addition to teaching wine education at Colorado Mountain College in Breckenridge. He has traveled to many wine-growing regions in the world.


The film is in four season sections and plays out against that backdrop: spring showers, drought, heat wave, hail and storms, harvest moons and the damp cold of winter. Each vintage is a time capsule, a bottled piece of history of a very specific year, with its particular weather pattern, its crises and its triumphs. It all goes in, whether you want it to or not, and 2011 was full of drama.

In the film, half a dozen wine-makers are introduced. They are artists, whose personalities shape the flavor and style of the wines they lovingly craft. There is joy, fear, anxiety, triumph and laughter in their experiences. With the Morey-Coffinets, meet three generations of wine-makers, and little 2-year-old Celeste, the first of the fourth generation. In Lalou Bize-Leroy, meet the uncrowned Queen of Burgundy, now in her 80s and still involved in every detail of her winemaking, creator of some of the best-renowned and most famous wines on earth.

Get a sense of the deep history involved. Though they use many of the latest equipment and techniques, the secrets of winemaking in Burgundy and the discovery of the best terroirs (and how to exploit them) have been developed since Roman times. Indeed, the Cistercian monks kept the art alive during the Dark Ages (500-1000) and developed a whole industry in the Middle Ages: Their central wine-making headquarters, Clos de Vougeot, still exists, and is the location for one of the central scenes of the film, a great mid-summer banquet.

Burgundy’s ancient villages, gentle hillsides, valleys and streams give the impression of a fairytale land. Yet it’s here that we find what is arguably the most valuable agricultural land on earth: tiny vineyards no bigger than many people’s backyards produce wine that sells for thousands of dollars a bottle.


The Backstage Theatre’s annual holiday musical runs Tuesday, Nov. 25, through Saturday, Jan. 3. This year’s selection is “Dog Park: the Musical,” featuring speed mating, yappy hour and lovers with Leashes. Get in on the dog park scene with Champ, the show dog; Bogie, the territorial rebel without a collar; Itchy, the sad sack terrier with ADD; and Daisy, the lone Westie female, who must choose a mate from one of the three.

Featuring songs inspired by hot jazz, torchy ballads and catchy doo-wop, “Dog Park: The Musical” will leave you wanting to capture your inner canine and howl along with these irrepressible stage dogs. The holiday shows always sell out, so get your tickets early.

For more information, visit or call (970) 453-0199.

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