Arts & Culture

Up To Date
4:25 pm
Thu August 21, 2014

The Weekend To-Do List: August 22-24

Kansas City BaconFest 2009
Credit bacontoday.com

Everything's better with bacon, especially the weekend!  Check out Brian McTavish's Weekend To-Do List where there's something for every taste.

Bacon Fest 2014
Massive appreciation and ingestion
2 to 5 p.m. Saturday
Union Station, 30 W. Pershing
Admission: $50 (GA), $100 (VIP)

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Up To Date
4:56 pm
Wed August 20, 2014

Local Listen: The Phantastics

Credit The Phantastics

The Phantastics, one of this area’s most formidable party bands, send audiences into frenzies with a heated blend of funk, jazz and hip-hop.

The ensemble includes the noted rapper The Phantom and several of the region's most versatile musicians.

This week's edition of Local Listen features a dance-oriented track, "Phire," from the Phantastics 2013 EP "Closer."

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Up To Date
3:54 pm
Thu August 14, 2014

Kansas City's Piano Duelers

(L-R) Brian Babcock, Elijah Hubbard
erniebiggs.com

Imagine a piano bar with not one, but two, pianists, often playing simultaneously and you'll have an idea of dueling pianos. On this edition of Up to Date Steve Kraske learns that "dueling" is actually the pair working with each other to entertain the patrons. Not only do they demonstrate for Steve, but they also take listeners' requests live in the studio.

Guests:

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Up To Date
9:00 am
Wed August 13, 2014

Local Listen: The Kansas City Jazz Orchestra

Credit kcjazzorchestra.org

Patrons of the Kansas City Jazz Orchestra may rethink their usual wardrobe choices before attending the big band's next concert.  Instead of appearing at the its regular home at Helzberg Hall in the Kauffman Center, the orchestra will perform at Knuckleheads this Saturday.   On this edition of Local Listen, we'll hear the orchestra's rendition of Freddie Green’s classic "Corner Pocket."

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Up To Date
11:22 am
Tue August 12, 2014

Small-Town Midwestern Boys With Big Legacies

Credit Scott Ross

Walt Disney, Johnny Carson, Carl Sandburg, Ronald Reagan, Henry Ford . . .  small Midwestern towns aren't typically the stuff of sensational headlines - more sunset strolls than Sunset Boulevard. But growing up, these and other great men called such communities home.

On Tuesday's Up to Date, Steve Kraske talks with author John Miller about the enduring importance of the small town, and the role of "flyover country" in producing some of the 20th Century's most influential men.

Guest:

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Up To Date
6:14 pm
Fri August 8, 2014

Local Listen: Nuthatch-47

Credit nuthatch47.com

Maksim Kunakhovich of Nuthatch-47 has said that "Russia is my mother and America is my wife."  His distinctive contributions make Nutchatch-47 one of the funniest and most musically unique bands in the Kansas City area.  This week's edition of Local Listen features "I Reckon" from Nuthatch-47's 2013 album "Babushka Bandita."  The song's narrator muses about his affection for unsavory aspects of American culture as his comrades riff on a familiar spaghetti western theme. 

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Up To Date
1:29 pm
Fri August 8, 2014

Missouri Documentary Focuses On Three Small-Town Boys

Credit Rich Hill

Seventy miles south of Kansas City, there was a documentary filmed that critic Bob Butler says will break your heart. Rich Hill tells the story of three boys coming of age with at least one hand tied behind their back. They deal with crushing poverty, incarcerated parents, and lots of moving around. Juxtaposed with the external hardships, these adolescents must also confront ADHD and bi-polar disorder. On Friday's Up to Date, Steve Kraske visits with one of the film's directors.

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Up To Date
1:45 pm
Thu August 7, 2014

The Weekend To-Do List: August 8-10

The Great Midwest Balloon Fest at The Kansas Speedway
Credit Josh Grimes / NightLifeKC.com

For the competitor, the spectator, or the music fanatic- Brian McTavish's Weekend To-Do List surely has the Kansas City area event to rock your weekend!

U.S. Air Guitar National Finals
Fake strumming elevated to an art form
Saturday 8 p.m.
Midland Theatre, 1228 Main
Tickets: $20

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Up To Date
2:03 pm
Fri August 1, 2014

Local Listen: People's Liberation Big Band

Credit http://peoplesliberationbigband.bandcamp.com

Anyone who clings to the mistaken notion that all of the jazz performed by Kansas City musicians is bound to fusty tradition has yet to hear the People's Liberation Big Band.  The maverick ensemble led by Brad Cox plays a wild and wooly form of jazz.  This week's Local Listen features "Mr. Blister's Naughty Sister," a playful track from the large ensemble's 2010 debut album.

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Up To Date
3:57 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

The Weekend To-Do List: August 1-3

Credit www.hoahotdogfestival.com

It's a music-packed weekend in the Kansas City area.  Whether enjoying a hotdog or indulging a guitar-shredding fantasy, Brian McTavish has the event for you in the Weekend To-Do List!

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Central Standard
2:06 pm
Mon July 28, 2014

Kyle Hatley Looks Back On Eight Years In Kansas City's Theater Scene

Kyle Hatley has become a familiar face in Kansas City; after eight years, he's preparing to move back to Chicago.
Credit Kansas City Repertory Theatre

Kyle Hatley arrived in Kansas City to serve as Assistant Artistic Director for the Kansas City Repertory Theatre in April 2008. He drove into town in the midst of a tornado, and he hasn't stopped moving since.

After eight years of tireless immersion in both the Kansas City Repertory Theatre and the grassroots theater scene, Hatley has decided it's time to return to Chicago. There, he will join his fiance, actress Emily Peterson. 

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Central Standard
10:23 am
Mon July 28, 2014

A Kansas City Graffiti Writer's Work

This work by graffiti writer and street artist Gear is at The Mercy Seat Tattoo and Art Gallery at 210 E. 16th St., Kansas City, Mo.
Gina Kaufmann KCUR

If you've ever seen the large murals or spray paint writing on the sides of buildings along Southwest Boulevard, you've probably seen some of Kansas City based graffiti writer Gear's work.

On Monday's Central Standard, Gina Kaufmann sat down with Gear in studio to discuss the nuances of graffiti and street art. 

Gina also went out into the field and took photos of just a few of Gear's writings that can be found around Kansas City. 

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Up To Date
11:47 am
Fri July 25, 2014

Lawrence Man Attempts To Shatter A Television World Record

Credit 6Lawrence.com

Have you ever stayed up all night talking? Try doing it for 66 hours straight. A Lawrence TV host is about to try in an attempt to shatter the world record for longest television marathon talk show. On Friday's Up to Date, Steve Kraske talks with host of The Not So Late Show about his strategies for staying awake, and keeping a live audience engaged for over two and a half days.

Guest: 

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Up To Date
2:02 pm
Thu July 24, 2014

The Weekend To-Do List: July 25-27

Credit Starlight Theatre

 The hills are alive with the sound of...hip hop, comedy, and rock & roll. No matter your taste in entertainment, Brian McTavish's Weekend To-Do list is sure to have you covered!

The Sound of Music
Classic family musical
Opens at 8 p.m. Friday with performances through July 31
Starlight Theatre in Swope Park
Tickets: Start at $12

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Up To Date
12:56 pm
Thu July 24, 2014

Two Hundred Years Of U.S. Presidents And Pop Culture

Credit Regnery History

Presidents have been forced to calculate whether they want to be men of the people...or men of somewhat higher understanding.

On this edition of Up to Date Steve Kraske sits down with author Tevi Troy for a look at how popular culture has shaped the presidency. From Jefferson’s grounding in philosophy to Obama’s mastery of Internet culture, they examine who was best, or worst, at navigating a president's need to connect with the average citizen through the culture of the day.

Guest:

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Up To Date
1:55 pm
Tue July 22, 2014

Local Listen: Jason Vivone & the Billy Bats

Credit billybats.com

The Phoenix, one of Kansas City's most popular live music venues, hosts its fifth annual Phoenix Fest this Saturday.  Jason Vivone and the Billy Bats are among the eight area-based acts performing at the event.  This week's edition of Local Listen features "Eddie Ate Dynamite," the humorous title track from the band's 2013 album.

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Up To Date
10:28 am
Fri July 18, 2014

The Weekend To-Do List: July 18-20

Credit ifckc.com

Brian McTavish's Weekend To-Do List packs entertainment for every taste, from one big picnic to a funky art festival. Have a fantastic weekend!

Steely Dan
Classic rock under the stars
8 p.m. Saturday
Starlight Theatre, Swope Park
Tickets: $40 to$150

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Arts & Culture
2:57 pm
Thu July 17, 2014

Where To Fringe - From Traditional To Unexpected Kansas City Venues

The Fishtank, 1715 Wyandotte, Kansas City, Mo.
Cara McClain KCUR

For its 10th season, the KC Fringe Festival will take over spaces in Kansas City, Mo., for theater, music, comedy, spoken word, burlesque and more.

KC Fringe is an 11-day festival that provides a platform for often lesser-known performing and visual artists. 

This year's Fringe will have 19 different venues. Most are scattered around the Crossroads Arts District, but some spread out into Westport and the Country Club Plaza.

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Arts & Culture
6:01 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

Local Listen: Ensemble Ibérica

Ensemble Ibérica
Credit Jeff Evrard / ensembleiberica.org

Often characterized by Americans as the blues of Portugal, fado is a melancholy music.  Vocalist Rodrigo Costa Félix is one of three Portuguese fado artists that will headline a concert Saturday, July 12, at Polsky Theatre on the campus of Johnson County Community College.  Kansas City's Ensemble Ibérica, a group led by event organizer Beau Bledsoe, will open the show.  This week's Local Listen features Ensemble Ibérica's "Fado Pechincha."

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Up To Date
5:26 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

Michael Feinstein: Ambassador Of The Great American Songbook

Michael Feinstein in studio at KCUR.
Credit Beth Lipoff / Up to Date

His career includes multi-platinum recordings, 200-plus live performances per year, two Emmy and five Grammy nominations, conductor of the Pasadena Pops, nightclub owner, and that’s just the half of it. Perhaps his greatest recognition, though, is as “Ambassador of the Great American Songbook”. On Friday's Up to Date, Michael Feinstein talks with Steve Kraske about his love of classic American popular music and his efforts to preserve it for future generations.

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Up To Date
1:42 pm
Thu July 10, 2014

The Weekend To-Do List: July 11-13

Check out "Spamalot" at The Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City this weekend!
Credit Monty Python's Spamalot

Whether it's live music, comedy theatre, or the largest water slide on earth, Brian McTavish's Weekend To-Do List has got you covered for summertime entertainment!

Verruckt Water Slide
Opening of the world's largest water slide
Opens Thursday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily
Schlitterbahn Water Park, 9400 State Ave., Kansas City, Kan.
Admission: $36.99; $28.99 for ages 3 to 11/55 and older

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Beyond Our Borders
12:52 pm
Wed July 9, 2014

The Story Behind Kansas City's House Of Cards

As a part of a community effort to eliminate neighborhood eyesores, artists transformed this abandoned apartment building into a house of cards in 2012.
Cara McClain KCUR

Have you ever driven through the Historic Northeast neighborhood in Kansas City, Mo., and seen a building with playing cards instead of windows? 

That's the house of cards, an abandoned apartment building at 7th and Indiana streets, that community members used to create public art. After a couple of years of dormancy, there's now some renewed interest to continue the effort.

Here's the story of how that project began: 

A couple years back, the Historic Northeast neighborhood in Kansas City, Mo., had a problem.

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Up To Date
10:22 am
Wed July 2, 2014

Journalist Examines 'What Wars Leave Behind'

While armed conflicts are ongoing, media coverage brings images and sounds from the center of war zones to the world. But what happens when the guns go silent and the combatants and media go home?

J. Malcolm Garcia looks at the people left to survive in the aftermath in his book, What Wars Leave Behind: The Faceless and the Forgotten. On Wednesday's Up to Date, the author talks with Steve Kraske about "the endless messiness of war and the failings of good intentions."

Guest:

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Up To Date
3:44 pm
Fri June 20, 2014

Local Listen: Greg Mackender

"The Winter's Tale" at the Heart of America Shakespeare Festival.
Credit Roger Ridpath / Heart of America Shakespeare Festival

The Heart of America Shakespeare Festival begins this weekend and while the play may be the thing, there’s live music too.

During performances of The Winter's Tale, there are three musicians on stage, including resident composer Greg Mackender on percussion and mallets, Sascha Groschang on cello and Laura Parks on violin.

"I left a lot of openings for impromptu types of things," says Mackender. "There are other spots where they can get a little livelier, we can play around a little bit."

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Up To Date
9:00 am
Fri June 20, 2014

The Weekend To-Do List: June 20-22

Credit We Will Rock You

Brian McTavish's Weekend To-Do List for June 20-22 will keep you rolling from one exciting event to the next all weekend long.

Big Slick Celebrity Weekend
Paul Rudd, Jason Sudeikis, and Rob Riggle
5:30 p.m. Friday
The Little KC at Kauffman Stadium
Admission: Free with a ticket to the Royals/Mariner game

We Will Rock You
8:30 p.m. Thursday through Sunday
Starlight Theatre
Tickets: $10 and up

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Up to Date
9:00 am
Tue June 17, 2014

Jeff Shaara Is Back With Third Civil War Novel

Credit www.randomhouse.com

Bestselling author Jeff Shaara is renowned for his gritty depiction of Civil War battles. His fictionalized accounts of the historical events have appeared in previous works and he returns with his latest offering, The Smoke at Dawn. On Tuesday's Up to Date Steve Kraske talks with the author about how he fleshes out the known facts and in doing so creates a detailed account of the War Between the States.

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Up To Date
1:12 pm
Thu June 12, 2014

The Weekend To-Do List: June 13-15

Boulevardia is a new beer, food, and music festival June 13-15 in the Kansas City West Bottoms district.
Credit Boulevardia.com

If you're looking for a variety of entertainment this weekend, look no further than Brian McTavish's Weekend To-Do List for June 13-15.

Don McLean and Judy Collins
8:30 p.m. Friday
Knuckleheads, 2715 Rochester
Tickets: $68.50

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Up To Date
10:40 am
Fri June 6, 2014

Local Listen: 77 Jefferson

The summer months are reggae season in Kansas City.  Known for sweet vocals and loping rhythms, Kansas City's 77 Jefferson has been one of the region's most popular purveyors of the Jamaican sound since its inception in 2006.  From the band's most recent album “Rarities Vol. 2” comes the breezy track,"Call On Me".

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Up To Date
5:30 pm
Fri May 30, 2014

Up To Date's Indie, Foreign & Doc Critics' 'Three To See,' May 30-June 1

Credit thehornetsnestmovie.com

Looking for a great film to see during the weekend of May 30-June 1? Up to Date's independent, foreign, and documentary film critics share their favorites showing on area screens:

Cynthia Haines:

  • Fed Up
  • The Hornet's Nest
  • The Lunchbox

Steve Walker:

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Up To Date
3:58 pm
Fri May 30, 2014

Board Games In The Digital Age

Credit Patrick Q / Flickr Creative Commons

You’d think that the popularity of digital games like Angry Birds and Minecraft spells the end for the more traditional Monopoly and Risk but not so fast says one man. In this segment of Up to Date, Steve Kraske talks with Eric Martin of BoardGameGeek for a look at how board games are faring in this digital age.

Guest:

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