Laura Spencer http://kcur.org en Kansas And Missouri Artists Selected For 'State Of The Art' Exhibition At Crystal Bridges http://kcur.org/post/kansas-and-missouri-artists-selected-state-art-exhibition-crystal-bridges <p>In 2013, <a href="http://crystalbridges.org/">Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art</a> in Bentonville, Ark., embarked on a project to discover “the most compelling American art being created today.”</p><p>Over a period of about 10 months, museum president Don Bacigalupi and assistant curator, Chad Alligood, crisscrossed the country. They traveled more than 100,000 miles — by plane and car — and stopped in the homes and studios of nearly 1,000 artists.</p> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 13:44:13 +0000 Laura Spencer 59307 at http://kcur.org Kansas And Missouri Artists Selected For 'State Of The Art' Exhibition At Crystal Bridges KC Fringe Encourages Writers To Present New Work http://kcur.org/post/kc-fringe-encourages-writers-present-new-work <p>The KC Fringe Festival, an annual event featuring actors, dancers, poets, storytellers, filmmakers, and visual artists, turns 10 this year. The festival offers about 50 theater performances, from R-rated to puppet shows for kids. And, KC Fringe often provides an opportunity for performers to try out new material.</p><p>It seems appropriate that Jesse Ray Metcalf, the writer of a new production called "(Virgin.)," would say: "This is my first time doing Fringe."</p> Fri, 18 Jul 2014 16:13:51 +0000 Laura Spencer 59035 at http://kcur.org KC Fringe Encourages Writers To Present New Work Sneak Peek: Second Fridays In Kansas City http://kcur.org/post/sneak-peek-second-fridays-kansas-city <p>So — maybe First Fridays in the <a href="http://kccrossroads.org/">Crossroads Arts District</a> is a little too crowded for you. How about Second Fridays?</p><p>Some Kansas City metropolitan area galleries have started opening their doors on the second Fridays of the month to host new exhibitions or simply provide a less elbow-to-elbow opportunity to view the artwork.</p><p>Here's what's on tap:</p> Fri, 11 Jul 2014 20:31:42 +0000 Laura Spencer 58764 at http://kcur.org Sneak Peek: Second Fridays In Kansas City Your Guide To KC Fringe, By The Numbers http://kcur.org/post/your-guide-kc-fringe-numbers <p><span>In 2004, when Kansas City launched its first fringe festival</span><a href="http://www.kcfringe.org/"> </a>as a showcase for experimental work, the event hosted 30 performances over three days.</p><p><a href="http://www.kcfringe.org/">KC Fringe </a>is now an 11-day festival, and includes nearly 400 performances by more than 100 artists in venues from downtown Kansas City, Mo., to the Country Club Plaza.</p> Fri, 11 Jul 2014 14:22:16 +0000 Laura Spencer 58357 at http://kcur.org Your Guide To KC Fringe, By The Numbers Parting Questions For The Rep's Kyle Hatley http://kcur.org/post/parting-questions-reps-kyle-hatley <p>The Kansas City Repertory Theatre announced this month that Kyle Hatley,&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">associate artistic director,</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;plans to relocate to Chicago in August.</span></p><p>Hatley, a 33-year-old native of Memphis, started working at the Rep in 2008. During his time in Kansas City, Mo., he's earned a reputation as an energizing force in the theater community — as an actor and director, as well as the creator of innovative new works at the KC Fringe Festival and the Living Room.</p> Thu, 10 Jul 2014 13:30:00 +0000 Laura Spencer 58609 at http://kcur.org Parting Questions For The Rep's Kyle Hatley Public Art Commission Awarded To Iowa Artist Sparks Discussion http://kcur.org/post/public-art-commission-awarded-iowa-artist-sparks-discussion <p>More than 200 cities across the United States have a percent-for-art ordinance, calling for a portion of construction project budgets to be set aside for public art.</p><p>Kansas City's one percent for art ordinance has been in effect since 1986. The first installation: "Bull Wall" by Kansas City native Robert Morris in the West Bottoms in 1992.</p> Thu, 03 Jul 2014 13:00:41 +0000 Laura Spencer 58277 at http://kcur.org Public Art Commission Awarded To Iowa Artist Sparks Discussion 3 Challenges Of Transforming A Vacant Lot Into An Edible Landscape http://kcur.org/post/3-challenges-transforming-vacant-lot-edible-landscape <p>There are thousands of vacant lots in Kansas City, Mo.&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">In the </span>Ivanhoe<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> neighborhood, from </span>31st<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> Street to Emanuel Cleaver Boulevard and Prospect to </span>Paseo<span style="line-height: 1.5;">, the </span><a href="http://www.incthrives.org/" style="line-height: 1.5;">Ivanhoe Neighborhood Council</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> owns more than 150.</span></p> Wed, 02 Jul 2014 15:15:00 +0000 Laura Spencer 58145 at http://kcur.org 3 Challenges Of Transforming A Vacant Lot Into An Edible Landscape From Page To Park: Focus And Anticipation At A Tech Rehearsal http://kcur.org/post/page-park-focus-and-anticipation-tech-rehearsal <p>The Heart of America Shakespeare Festival’s production of "The Winter’s Tale" is well underway. But it takes a lot of time and effort – and people — to put the show together. For our series,&nbsp;From Page to Park, we’re taking a behind-the-scenes look at the process.</p><p>About two weeks ago in Southmoreland Park in Kansas City, Mo., actors, musicians, designers and directors were working through perhaps the most intricate part of staging a play, a rehearsal called tech.</p><p><strong>Breaking it down and putting it back together</strong></p> Fri, 27 Jun 2014 14:51:01 +0000 Laura Spencer 57779 at http://kcur.org From Page To Park: Focus And Anticipation At A Tech Rehearsal Local Listen: Greg Mackender http://kcur.org/post/local-listen-greg-mackender <p></p><p>The <a href="http://www.kcshakes.org/">Heart of America Shakespeare Festival</a> begins this weekend and while the play may be the thing, there’s live music too.</p><p>During performances of <em>The Winter's Tale</em>, there are three musicians on stage, including resident composer Greg Mackender on percussion and mallets, <span class="st">Sascha Groschang</span> on cello and Laura Parks on violin.</p><p>"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."</p> Fri, 20 Jun 2014 20:44:58 +0000 Danie Alexander & Laura Spencer 57671 at http://kcur.org Local Listen: Greg Mackender Artists Explore Possibilities Of Vacant Lots In Kansas City http://kcur.org/post/artists-explore-possibilities-vacant-lots-kansas-city <p>Artists have a reputation for moving into places others don’t – turning areas once full of empty buildings into thriving districts, such as the Crossroads Arts District in Kansas City, Mo. So, it’s not surprising they’d take a look at the thousands of vacant lots and vacant houses in the city, exploring everything from sculpture parks to art galleries on some of the least desirable lots.<strong> </strong></p><p><strong>Creating a new space with a purpose</strong></p> Fri, 20 Jun 2014 17:15:42 +0000 Laura Spencer 57420 at http://kcur.org Artists Explore Possibilities Of Vacant Lots In Kansas City Take A Look At The World Cup Stadium Designed In Kansas City http://kcur.org/post/take-look-world-cup-stadium-designed-kansas-city <p>While watching the FIFA World Cup match between the United States and Ghana on Monday night, perhaps you noticed the venue.</p> Wed, 18 Jun 2014 18:12:10 +0000 Laura Spencer 57519 at http://kcur.org Take A Look At The World Cup Stadium Designed In Kansas City A New President And CEO For The Kauffman Center http://kcur.org/post/new-president-and-ceo-kauffman-center <p>Paul J. Schofer was announced Tuesday as the new leader of the <a href="http://www.kauffmancenter.org/">Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts</a>. Since March 2012, Schofer has served as the Kauffman Center's vice president of operations and chief financial officer.</p><p>Schofer will replace outgoing president and CEO Jane Chu, who's leaving to take on a new post as chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts.</p> Tue, 17 Jun 2014 21:17:42 +0000 Laura Spencer 57489 at http://kcur.org A New President And CEO For The Kauffman Center LISTEN: Ben Folds Bridges Pop And Classical Music http://kcur.org/post/listen-ben-folds-bridges-pop-and-classical-music <p><span data-ft="{&quot;tn&quot;:&quot;K&quot;}">Singer-songwriter Ben Folds had a strongly worded message for an audience at a sold-out Kansas City Symphony concert at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts this week: "Cities without symphony orchestras are crap."</span></p> Fri, 13 Jun 2014 19:35:15 +0000 Laura Spencer 57175 at http://kcur.org LISTEN: Ben Folds Bridges Pop And Classical Music Senate Approves Jane Chu As NEA Chair http://kcur.org/post/senate-approves-jane-chu-nea-chair <p>The U.S. Senate on Thursday voted to confirm Jane Chu, president and CEO of the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts in Kansas City, Mo., as the next chair of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). The nomination was approved by a voice vote on the Senate floor.</p> Thu, 12 Jun 2014 17:54:16 +0000 Laura Spencer 57222 at http://kcur.org Senate Approves Jane Chu As NEA Chair 5 Things To Know About 'The Winter's Tale' http://kcur.org/post/5-things-know-about-winters-tale <p>This summer, <a href="http://www.kcshakes.org/">Heart of America Shakespeare Festival</a> presents the tragicomedy,<em> The Winter's Tale</em>, in Southmoreland Park in Kansas City, Mo.</p><p>It marks the first time the 22-year-old festival has staged the play, which explores the nature of jealousy.</p><p>Here's a quick summary: Leontes, the King of Sicily (played by Bruce Roach), suspects that his wife, Hermione (Cinnamon Schultz) has been unfaithful. She's pregnant and Leontes accuses her of having an affair with his childhood friend, Polixenes, the King of Bohemia (John Rensenhouse).</p> Thu, 12 Jun 2014 10:00:00 +0000 Laura Spencer 56786 at http://kcur.org 5 Things To Know About 'The Winter's Tale' 7 Questions For Doug Frost On Beer And The First-Ever Boulevardia http://kcur.org/post/7-questions-doug-frost-beer-and-first-ever-boulevardia <p>Music, food, and craft beer will jostle for center stage this weekend at Boulevardia, a three-day festival in the West Bottoms of Kansas City, Mo.</p><p>More than three dozen brewers from 11 states, from Oregon to Maine, as well as two Belgian breweries, will be on tap to provide samples. And – of course — there will be beer from local favorites in Kansas and Missouri (such as Boulevard Brewing Co., the organizer of the event).</p> Wed, 11 Jun 2014 14:27:30 +0000 Laura Spencer 57078 at http://kcur.org 7 Questions For Doug Frost On Beer And The First-Ever Boulevardia KC Rep Receives Lead Gift For Renovation Project http://kcur.org/post/kc-rep-receives-lead-gift-renovation-project <p>The <a href="http://www.kcrep.org/">Kansas City Repertory Theatre</a> on Wednesday announced&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">$3 million from the Hall Family Foundation,&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">the largest gift in the company's history. The funds will support the renovations of the Spencer </span>Theatre<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> and its lobby in James C. Olson Performing Arts Center on the </span>UMKC<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> campus.</span></p> Thu, 05 Jun 2014 12:58:12 +0000 Laura Spencer 56814 at http://kcur.org KC Rep Receives Lead Gift For Renovation Project Kansas City Theater Scene Celebrates 50 Years http://kcur.org/post/kansas-city-theater-scene-celebrates-50-years <p>The 1960s marked “the second golden age” in Kansas City’s theater history, according to historian Felicia Hardison Londré. It was a time of transition from touring companies providing entertainment to the city creating its own.</p><p>For Kansas City, this meant the creation of the first resident professional theater company since the 1930s: the Missouri Repertory Theatre, now known as the Kansas City Repertory Theatre. The “solid foundation” of the Rep, said Londré<em>, </em>led to the thriving theater scene across the Kansas City metro today.</p> Wed, 04 Jun 2014 18:54:50 +0000 Laura Spencer 56528 at http://kcur.org Kansas City Theater Scene Celebrates 50 Years Maya Angelou, On Trying To 'Do Better And To Be Better' http://kcur.org/post/maya-angelou-trying-do-better-and-be-better <p>Poet, memoirist and political activist Maya Angelou died Wednesday at the age of 86, reportedly after a long illness.&nbsp;</p><p>“Hello, good morning ..." is how Angelou opened the conversation when we talked by phone last week. At home in Winston-Salem, N.C., she joked about the weather in the Midwest.</p><p>"Because I think you people change weather in the way that other people change clothes," she said with a laugh.</p> Thu, 29 May 2014 13:13:49 +0000 Laura Spencer 56463 at http://kcur.org Maya Angelou, On Trying To 'Do Better And To Be Better' Museum Plays Pivotal Role In New Novel From Nelson-Atkins Docent http://kcur.org/post/museum-plays-pivotal-role-new-novel-nelson-atkins-docent <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Barbara Stuber has shown generations of schoolchildren and adults through the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. She’s worked as a docent there for 25 years. Stuber’s new novel, </span><em style="line-height: 1.5;">Girl In Reverse</em><span style="line-height: 1.5;">, highlights the museum’s collection - including its Asian art.</span></p><p>The book’s set in the early 1950s, the Korean War is underway, and teenager, Lily Firestone, who’s adopted and Chinese, faces discrimination. But, at the museum, she finds a link to her culture and her past.</p> Wed, 21 May 2014 16:37:54 +0000 Laura Spencer 56038 at http://kcur.org Museum Plays Pivotal Role In New Novel From Nelson-Atkins Docent Kauffman Center CEO Close To Confirmation For National Endowment For The Arts http://kcur.org/post/kauffman-center-ceo-close-confirmation-national-endowment-arts <p>Jane Chu, president and CEO of the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts in Kansas City, was nominated in February as the next chairperson of the National Endowment for the Arts.</p><p>According to Kauffman officials, the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee on Wednesday moved Chu's nomination forward to the full Senate.</p><p>The timing of the vote has not yet been released. Chu isn't expected to comment until the confirmation process is complete.</p> Thu, 15 May 2014 17:25:47 +0000 Laura Spencer 55774 at http://kcur.org Kauffman Center CEO Close To Confirmation For National Endowment For The Arts Looking At Kansas City's Vacant Land As Opportunity http://kcur.org/post/looking-kansas-citys-vacant-land-opportunity <p>Vacant lots are a problem for cities across the country. They’re costly for city budgets, as the lots have to be mowed and cleared of trash. For neighborhood residents, they can affect quality of life, and decrease property values.</p><p>There are thousands of vacant lots in Kansas City, Mo., including at least 3,000 parcels in the city’s <a href="http://www.kcmolandbank.org/">Land Bank, </a>and most of them are located east of Troost Avenue. A team of University of Missouri-Kansas City students spent the semester investigating vacancy and mapping out creative solutions.</p> Tue, 13 May 2014 10:30:00 +0000 Laura Spencer 55377 at http://kcur.org Looking At Kansas City's Vacant Land As Opportunity 3 Questions For Prairiefire Museum Director Uli Sailer Das http://kcur.org/post/3-questions-prairiefire-museum-director-uli-sailer-das <p>A new museum linked to the American Museum of Natural History in New York City, opens Monday in Overland Park, Kan. The <a href="http://Tyrannosaurus rex">Museum at Prairiefire</a>, at 135th and Nall, will feature two traveling exhibitions a year from the New York-based museum, as well as permanent displays, a hands-on children's discovery room, classrooms and a cafe.</p> Mon, 12 May 2014 13:33:13 +0000 Laura Spencer 55504 at http://kcur.org 3 Questions For Prairiefire Museum Director Uli Sailer Das Two Maps That Show The Concentration Of Lot Vacancies In Kansas City http://kcur.org/post/two-maps-show-concentration-lot-vacancies-kansas-city <p>It's estimated Kansas City, Mo., has at least 4,000 to 5,000 vacant lots. These sites, sometimes weedy and filled with trash, contribute to neighborhood blight and lower property taxes.</p><p>This semester, 11 seniors in the Architecture, Urban Planning and Design department at UMKC documented the parcels of vacant land scattered across Kansas City, Mo. They zeroed in on an area with the highest rate of vacancies, predominantly in the urban core and east of Troost Avenue.</p> Fri, 09 May 2014 16:20:42 +0000 Laura Spencer 55379 at http://kcur.org Two Maps That Show The Concentration Of Lot Vacancies In Kansas City Male Dancers Take On Stepsister Roles In 'Cinderella' http://kcur.org/post/male-dancers-take-stepsister-roles-cinderella <p>Choreographer <a href="https://www.cballet.org/about/ceo">Victoria Morgan</a>, artistic director and CEO of the Cincinnati Ballet, based her narrative ballet, <em>Cinderella</em>, on the classic story by Charles Perrault, as well as drawing on her own experience dancing the title role in previous productions. The Kansas City Ballet presents the work, which opens this weekend.</p> Fri, 09 May 2014 16:01:34 +0000 Laura Spencer 55416 at http://kcur.org Male Dancers Take On Stepsister Roles In 'Cinderella' Conservative Advocacy Group Draws Protesters To Downtown Kansas City http://kcur.org/post/conservative-advocacy-group-draws-protesters-downtown-kansas-city <p><a href="http://www.alec.org/">American Legislative Exchange Council</a>, also known as ALEC, hosted two days of meetings on May 1 - 2, with about 600 legislative leaders at the Downtown Marriott in Kansas City, Mo. The council is a conservative advocacy group.</p><p>On Friday, protesters gathered across the street for a <a href="http://standuptoalec.org/">Stand Up to ALEC</a> event.</p> Fri, 02 May 2014 22:57:23 +0000 Laura Spencer 55142 at http://kcur.org Conservative Advocacy Group Draws Protesters To Downtown Kansas City 5 Questions For The Guys Reimagining Disney's Laugh-O-Gram Studio http://kcur.org/post/5-questions-guys-reimagining-disneys-laugh-o-gram-studio <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Walt Disney opened his first animation studio, Laugh-O-Gram, on the second floor of a red-brick building near </span>31<sup>st</sup><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> and </span>Troost in Kansas City, Mo<span style="line-height: 1.5;">. The business folded in 1923, and the building, due to deteriorating conditions, was almost torn down about a decade ago. </span></p> Fri, 02 May 2014 20:07:53 +0000 Laura Spencer 55119 at http://kcur.org 5 Questions For The Guys Reimagining Disney's Laugh-O-Gram Studio Walt Disney's Role In Transforming Troost http://kcur.org/post/walt-disneys-role-transforming-troost <p>An attempt to breathe life into a building near Troost Avenue with ties to Walt Disney could help erase the corridor’s stigma as a key dividing line in Kansas City, says Butch Rigby.</p><p>Rigby, chairman of the non-profit Thank you Walt Disney, is behind <a href="http://kcur.org/post/5-questions-guys-reimagining-disneys-laugh-o-gram-studio">an effort to revitalize Laugh-O-Gram Studio</a>, which is just east of 31<sup>st</sup> Street and Troost.</p> Fri, 02 May 2014 11:06:05 +0000 Laura Spencer 55077 at http://kcur.org Walt Disney's Role In Transforming Troost A New Era For The Kansas City Museum http://kcur.org/post/new-era-kansas-city-museum <p>Thursday marks a new chapter for the Kansas City Museum. The city’s parks and recreation department takes over management – and a new executive director is on board.&nbsp;</p><p>Since 2012, Anna Marie Tutera has served as executive director of the Wornall/Majors House Museums. Now, she’s taking over leadership of another historic home: Corinthian Hall.</p><p>The former residence of lumber baron R. A. Long and his family, Corinthian Hall is located in the city's historic northeast. It's housed the Kansas City Museum since 1940.</p> Thu, 01 May 2014 14:25:34 +0000 Laura Spencer 55043 at http://kcur.org A New Era For The Kansas City Museum Kansas City Art Institute Students Interpret Lyric Opera's 'Die Fledermaus' http://kcur.org/post/kansas-city-art-institute-students-interpret-lyric-operas-die-fledermaus <p>It's a Thursday morning in the rehearsal space at the Lyric Opera Center in the Crossroads Arts District. About 20 students from the Kansas City Art Institute stand on either side of a long table covered with sketches, floor and building plans and colorful set drawings. They reach into pockets to snap photos with cell phones, or focus in with larger cameras.</p> Wed, 30 Apr 2014 15:58:43 +0000 Laura Spencer 54947 at http://kcur.org Kansas City Art Institute Students Interpret Lyric Opera's 'Die Fledermaus'