Mark Robbins

Brian Paulette / Kansas City Actors Theatre

Playwright William Inge, the Independence, Kan. native who went on to win a Pulitzer and an Oscar, would have turned 100 this year. To honor that birthday, Kansas City Actors Theatre is staging Picnic, set in the 1950s in small town Kansas. The rehearsal process has revealed that it's a play much deeper and darker than the company originally believed.  

Julie Denesha / KCUR

In this scene from Picnic, 18-year-old Madge Owens (Emily Peterson), universally acclaimed as the "prettiest girl in town," and her 16-year-old sister, Millie (Alisa Lynn), discuss the upcoming Labor Day picnic.

Millie, a tomboy, is uncharacteristically wearing a dress. As Madge paints her toenails, Millie interrogates her sister about how to handle boys.

Economic struggles, loyalty to friends and endless hopes of coming out on top in America. Those are the central themes of the play Good People, a 2011 Tony Award nominee for best play.  It recently was presented in St Louis, and now has a debut in Kansas City at the Unicorn Theater


Julie Denesha / KCUR

Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol opens on a "cold, bleak, biting" Christmas Eve.

The Mystery Of Irma Vep

Nov 12, 2012
KC Rep

Mummies, ghosts, and werewolves - oh my!  The new production at the Kansas City Repertory Theatre is a real scream.


Julie Denesha / KCUR

The Kansas City Repertory Theatre's latest production, The Mystery of Irma Vep, features eight characters of both sexes, including the Lord and Lady Hillcrest, their maid and butler, and a couple of surprise visitors.

Brian Paulette

When Kansas City Actors Theatre started fishing for a theme for the launch of its eighth season, the founders first picked one play, then tailored a similar one around that.

Kansas City Actors Theatre, or KCAT, has built a reputation for designing its seasons around a specific theme or playwright. In past years, the company studied marriage by mounting four different plays about it, and spotlighted Missouri-native Lanford Wilson by staging his three "Talley" plays.

There are many theatre roles - say, Romeo and Juliet - that should probably be retired from an actor's repertoire by the time they're 30. But what happens when actors return to roles they played much earlier in their careers?

Kansas City, MO – KCUR's Steve Walker visited with two Kansas City actors who are re-teaming this month in a Sam Shepard play they first appeared in 26 years ago.