This heavily hyped Popejoy extravaganza wasn’t exactly local. But readers sure loved this traveling tour of Disney’s Broadway smash. It was the giraffe costumes, wasn’t it? Clearly if Blackout Theatre wants to hit the top spot next year, it needs more giraffe costumes.
2) Roots Revival
3) F8: A Rock Musical
Best Art Exhibition
For a city its size, Albuquerque has an impressive number of interesting art shows, including lots of indie art galleries, underground/student shows and blockbuster-style traveling exhibits. Surprising, perhaps, that our winner this year then comes from an adhocracy coalition of racy photographers teaming up with the best known LGBT night spot. It’s followed by an international exhibition and a curated show at the Albuquerque Museum.
3) Deco Japan
Best Art Gallery
Galleries showcase the Duke City's artists in a variety of settings, and our winners this year reflect the diversity of spaces where art gets shown. Our winner is perhaps the pride and joy of the city's contemporary scene, while the second place spot is held by a relative newcomer to the city, but whose shows have graced the pages of the Alibi on more than one occasion with their offbeat and eclectic pop-style exhibitions. Finally, a long-time Central Avenue stalwart rounds up the pack.
2) Stranger Factory
3) Sumner & Dene
The New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science
The museum currently giving you a glimpse of authentic Titanic artifacts is the place that makes you want to linger and learn. Before Titanic, it was audio-animatronic dinosaurs—which were pretty cool, too. Add in popular attraction like Fractal Fridays, dazzling DynaTheater movies and a really neat exhibit on Albuquerque’s role in the personal computer revolution and you’ve got a museum Albuquerque’s proud to call its own.
2) Albuquerque Museum of Art and History
3) ¡Explora! Science Center and Children’s Museum
Best Theater Space
For a city its size and distance from the national theater scene, Albuquerque has a surprisingly large number of theater spaces and a kickin' theater scene year-round. I personally have been to more plays here than any other city I've lived in, save Providence, R.I., and our venues range from tiny black box spaces to enormous halls. Our first and third place winners are no surprise, but our second place winner shows that even little spaces can steal the show.
2) The Box
3) The KiMo
Albuquerque has such a diverse a range of artists—ranging from traditional Navajo potters and smiths to cutting-edge sculptors in bronze and steel—it's hard to imagine finding a favorite. Best of Burque is sometimes an indicator of popularity rather than an endorsement of merit, but in the case of our current winner, the artistry speaks for itself.
2) Three-way Tie: Catherine McGill, Nikki Zabicki, Brandon Scott Jensen
Best Local Comedian Sarah Kennedy
While Rudolfo Anaya and Tony Hillerman are undisputed New Mexico heavyweights, both with viable street cred honed from years of writing and publishing (and teaching: Both taught at UNM, at least for a bit), we decided to determine winners from the "other votes" for newer writers whose voices may be unfamiliar to you—but who may be up-and-comers that we need to watch in the coming years.
2) James Nathan Post
3) Michael McGarrity
Hakim Bellamy's poetry speaks of man, of man's struggle, of the conclusive characteristics that define humanity. As Burque's first poet laureate, it's only appropriate that Bellamy won the title of our city's best poet. May he shine on!
2) Levi The Poet
3) Zachary Kluckman
Located in the heart of Barelas, Rip Williams Photography has produced work for big-name national clients, but it’s probably the artist’s workshops, seminars, lectures and regular charity work (UNM Children’s Hospital, Warehouse 508) that has garnered such a loyal local fanbase. Plus he takes a mean portrait.
2) Wes Naman
3) Courtney Marie Miller
Best Dance Troupe
If Keshet wasn’t already the highest profile dance company in town, it certainly will be after completion of the 30,000-square-foot Keshet Center for the Arts. Renovations on the new facility—which will soon boast a black-box theatre, an arts education library and an 8,100-square foot soundstage with green screen—take place throughout 2013. Till then audiences will just have to make due with cutting-edge work by visiting artists like Romania’s Vava Stefanescu and Israel’s Tamir Ginz.
2) Burlesque Noir
3) DXS Dance Company
Best Comedy Troupe
One Night Stanleys
What if the cast of “Breaking Bad” performed the Wizard of Oz? What if people could only communicate using Britney Spears lyrics? If these are the kind of questions that keep you up, check out the One Night Stanleys. With an act based on improvised riffing and audience suggestions, if anybody can provide an answer to your most insane imponderables, it’s them.
2) The Show
3) Blackout Theatre Company
Best Local Comedian
Sarah K has tirelessly worked the Albuquerque comedy stages for several years now to become one of the city’s funniest—and most ubiquitous—performers. Now, for the second year in a row, Kennedy has won our readers over with her wry observational wit and playful delivery. And who could resist those suspenders? Check her out ... all over town.
2) Steven Michael Quezada
3) Lauren Poole
Best Theater Troupe
The Blackout folks are all about volume: producing the month-long Poe Project, teaming up with Albuquerque Public Schools for the Wrinkle Writing program, hosting endless improv classes. It probably doesn’t hurt that company member Lauren Poole scored a major breakout last year with her “Lynette” character, landing on everything from State Fair commercials to Alibi covers.
3) Mother Road
Okay, okay … We all knew that Bryan Cranston was going to win for best actor, what with “Breaking Bad,” and its well-earned success bringing more attention and fascination to the Duke City. Lest we forget that the city is home to other prominent actors as well …
2) Steven Michael Quezada
3) Alex Knight
Best Arts Event
Guerilla Photo Group
There's a strange little party that's been occurring every Wednesday night continuously for seven years now—and that's our first place winner this year. The group has taught hundreds of people new ways to use cameras ranging from the absolute latest in cutting-edge tech to the dinkiest little snapshot cam. It makes sense that a participatory event like this would reach the top of our charts, but it's also no surprise that an event that attracts thousands like our second place winner, or one that brings in music from around the globe would be our third. Hats off to everyone in this great category!