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The Denver Center's much-anticipated launch of the Broadway darling "The Book of Mormon" will happen Aug. 14-Sept. 2, 2012, it was announced Tuesday. That's four months earlier than previously announced. But Denver fans will be disappointed to learn the winner of nine 2011 Tony Awards, including best musical, will be stopping here for only three weeks. And unless you are a subscriber to the Denver Center's entire 2012 Broadway series, good luck getting in.

Because the controversial musical would be a tough sell on a full subscription package, despite all its many honors, "The Book of Mormon" is designated as an "add-on" to the 2012 season — meaning it will be sold entirely through single-ticket sales. But subscribers get first shot at tickets.

And there aren't that many to be had. Very few, if any, tickets will be made available to the general public.

Subscribers will have first access to purchase tickets before anyone else, starting at 10 a.m. Wednesday. Then a limited number of tickets will be made available for group sales and single-ticket buyers.

"Subscribers remain the only patrons with guaranteed access and first availability to purchase tickets," Denver Center Attractions said in an announcement.

Making things better — and worse — for fans is news that the musical, which is currently sold out in New York into January in a modestly sized Broadway house, will play here at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House. That's a much more intimate venue, with superior acoustics to the Buell Theatre, which hosts most visiting national tours. But the Ellie's capacity of 2,225 is nearly 600 fewer than the Buell — meaning there will be that many fewer seats available to Denver consumers.

What single tickets are available will go on-sale to the general public at a date not yet announced.

The last major national tour to debut in Denver was "The Lion King," which played for 10 nearly sold-out weeks, which allowed most anyone who wanted a ticket a decent shot at getting one.

"We are thrilled that Denver audiences will be able to experience the 'The Book of Mormon' sooner than we originally anticipated in the beautiful Ellie Caulkins Opera House," Denver Center for the Performing Arts president Randy Weeks said in a statement.

"The Book of Mormon" is written by the University of Colorado's Matt Stone and Trey Parker ("South Park") along with Robert Lopez ("Avenue Q") and is directed by Nicholaw and Parker. The musical follows a pair of mismatched Mormon boys sent on a mission to a place that's about as far from Salt Lake City as you can get. Through insightful and often cutting and profane comedy, the musical both celebrates and challenges unquestioned faith. It won Tony Awards for best musical, score, book, direction, supporting actress (Nikki M. James), scenic design (Scott Pask), lighting design (Brian MacDevitt), sound design (Brian Ronan) and orchestrations (Larry Hochman, Stephen Oremus).

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