Arts & Culture

KCUR’s Arts & Culture Desk covers arts news from music to visual art to dance and theater, with a focus on Kansas and Missouri.

Our reporters explore the behind-the-scene stories about newsmakers and emerging artists. We also take a look at the intersections of arts and technology, science and creativity, and present profiles of creative people. 

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Dance
10:02 am
Fri May 3, 2013

Rock, Jazz, And William Shatner Conclude Kansas City Ballet's Season

Sarah Walborn, Arielle Espie, and Jill Marlow hold a pose.
Julie Denesha KCUR

The Kansas City Ballet tops off its 55th season with a playful mix of dance.

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Visual Arts
8:51 am
Fri May 3, 2013

Dolphin Closes In The West Bottoms, 'Body Blow' To Art World

Dolphin Gallery in the West Bottoms.
courtesy: David Hughes Charlotte Street Foundation

Dolphin Gallery's John O'Brien had hinted about a change for months. But, now, it's official. Dolphin, the exhibition space and framing business in the West Bottoms, will close after its last show (slated to open May 17).

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Dance
5:00 am
Fri May 3, 2013

Unexpected Combinations In Karole Armitage's 'Energy Made Visible'

At the dress rehearsal for 'Energy Made Visible,' Anthony Krutzkamp and Rachel Coats create layers of dance.
Julie Denesha KCUR

Choreographer Karole Armitage, a native of Lawrence, Kan. says artist Jackson Pollock can be viewed as "a metaphor for the creative process"; his lines of dripped and poured paint are like a dance. Kansas City Ballet concludes its season with a world premiere by Armitage, exploring the intersection between art, jazz, and dance.

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Visual Arts
5:27 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Kemper Founders Step Down From Museum Board

Crosby and Bebe Kemper in front of the artwork, 'Prince Patutszky Pleasures' (1962) by Jules Olitski.
Photo: Dan Wayne Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art

The founders of the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art are stepping down from museum leadership.

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Books
12:21 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

A New Poet Laureate For Kansas

Poet Wyatt Townley
Terry Weckbaugh

Wyatt Townley, a fourth-generation Kansan, has been named the new Poet Laureate of Kansas for 2013-2015.

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Performance
4:32 pm
Tue April 30, 2013

'A Christmas Story, The Musical' Gets Tony Nod

Actor John Bolton originated the role of The Old Man in the Rep's 2009 production and also appears on Broadway.
Don Ipock Kansas City Repertory Theatre

"A Christmas Story, the Musical" received three Tony nominations, including one for Best Musical. The work had its world premiere at the Kansas City Repertory Theatre in 2009.

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Up to Date
1:58 pm
Fri April 26, 2013

Up To Date's Indie, Foreign & Doc Critics' 'Three To See,' April 26-28, 2013

"The Gatekeepers" remains on critic Cynthia Haines "Three to See" list.

Looking for a great film to see the weekend of April 26-28, 2013?

Up to Date's indie, documentary and foreign film critics share their three favorites showing on area screens.

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Film
8:05 am
Fri April 26, 2013

Tip A Tumbler Of Fine Scotch To 'The Angels' Share'

The cast of 'The Angels' Share'
Courtesy Sixteen Films/EPA

It takes great skill to make a movie that balances potentially incongruous tones of brutality, comedy and hope. With the marvelous new movie The Angels’ Share, director Ken Loach demonstrates that he is gifted enough to do that.

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Film
5:48 am
Fri April 26, 2013

From A Mucked Up Life, 'Mud' Barrels Through

Matthew McConaughey and Tye Sheridan make unlikely comrades in 'Mud'
Courtesy Roadside Attractions

A 14-year-old Arkansas kid gets mixed up with a murderer while pondering romantic notions about the meaning of love in Jeff Nichols’ assured and beautifully written Southern melodrama Mud.

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Performance
5:00 am
Fri April 26, 2013

[VIDEO] New Directions For Ingrid Stölzel

Composer and teacher Ingrid Stölzel in her new home at Graham Tyler Memorial Chapel.
Julie Denesha KCUR

The new director of the International Center for Music at Park University says the young musicians who study in the program often arrive with the same dream. 

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Books
3:33 pm
Wed April 24, 2013

Two Area Libraries Receive National Recognition

"Slaughterhouse Five" by Kurt Vonnegut (Banned Books Trading Card Project )
Kent Smith courtesy of the Lawrence Public Library

The John Cotton Dana Award is considered one of the most prestigious in the library marketing and public relations field.  Out of eight winners this year, two area libraries - Lawrence Public Library and Mid-Continent Public Library - were recognized.

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Music Stories
9:17 am
Wed April 24, 2013

A New CD For The Grisly Hand

The Grisly Hand
Paul Andrews Photography (http://www.paulandrewsphotography.com/)

This weekend marks the release of Country Singles, the first full-length album for The Grisly Hand. The band played their first shows in Kansas City about four years ago and mixes country, soul, blues, folk, rock and pop.

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Performance
3:03 pm
Fri April 19, 2013

Lyric Opera Presents Classic Comedic Opera

Chris Carr as Pish-Tush, center, leads the village men in song.
Julie Denesha KCUR

Love conquers all in "The Mikado," a comic opera by Arthur Sullivan and W. S. Gilbert introduced in London in 1885. The Lyric Opera of Kansas City presents the satirical comedy in five performances through April 28.

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Up to Date
11:06 am
Fri April 19, 2013

Up To Date's Indie, Foreign & Doc Critics' 'Three To See,' April 19-21, 2013

No

Looking for a great film to see the weekend of April 19-21, 2013?

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Music Stories
11:18 am
Thu April 18, 2013

Public Enemy 'Bomb Squad' Producer Studies Music At UMKC

Musician, composer and producer Kerwin Young.

The induction ceremony for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame took place Thursday, April 18, in Los Angeles. Some of this year’s inductees included Heart, Randy Newman, Rush and Public Enemy.

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Performance
4:06 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

[VIDEO] In This Scene...A Storm Is Brewing In Baseball

Rob Karma Robinson, as Satchel Paige.
Julie Denesha KCUR

The play Kansas City Swing is set in Kansas City in 1947 when the nation was on the cusp of great change.

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KC Currents
10:59 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Photography Exhibit Portrays 100 Years Of Missouri Immigrants

Chico Bakery--Cherokee St., St. Louis
Juan Montana
  • An interview with Daniel Gonzales and Oscar Pedroza.

The cultures of Kansas and Missouri was shaped by wave after wave of immigrants: from Germany, Ireland, Italy and Eastern Europe. A new exhibit called, The Missouri Immigrant Experience: Faces and Places portrays vivid images of the state’s diverse immigrants from the early nineteenth century to today.  The exhibit was sponsored by the Missouri Immigrant and Refugee Advocates (MIRA), a coalition of organizations that advocates for immigrants.

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KC Currents
3:04 pm
Tue April 16, 2013

Wrangling 150 Kansas Poets In One Poem

Kansas Poet Laureate Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg
Credit Courtesy of Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg

It’s been a challenging term for outgoing Kansas poet laureate Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg, who lost her home in 2011, metaphorically speaking.  That was when Governor Sam Brownback dissolved the Kansas Arts Commission, which housed the program.

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Up to Date
9:59 am
Tue April 16, 2013

Laughs For A Good Cause

Jason and Kathy Sudeikis

There’s no shortage of entertainment talent in Kansas City, and SNL funnyman Jason Sudeikis is putting his to good use.

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Food & Drink
9:24 am
Tue April 16, 2013

Craft Distilling: Dark Horse Distillery

Dark Horse Spirits
Julie Denesha KCUR
  • On Tuesday, April 16, Central Standard highlighted three distilleries: Dark Horse, Pinckney Bend, and High Plains.

In Lenexa, Kansas, a local, family-owned distillery is producing craft spirits in a micro-distillery. Dark Horse Distillery was established in 2010, and since 2011, the Garcia clan has been producing bourbon, whiskey, and vodka hand-crafted in small batches. 

A recent edition of Central Standard featured guests from three distilleries, including Dark Horse Distillery.

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Performance
5:00 am
Tue April 16, 2013

'Bud, Not Buddy' Explores Racism And The Depression With Young Audiences

Eboni Fondren (as Miss Thomas), Granvile T. O’Neal (as Mr. Jimmy), Elijah E. Murray (as Steady Eddie), and Aaron Branch (as Bud "not Buddy" Caldwell ) in 'Bud, Not Buddy.'
J. Robert Schraeder courtesy of Coterie Theatre

Traditional ideas about theater for young audiences can get stuck in a library full of mischievous animals and recycled fairy tales. But the Coterie Theatre -  named by Time magazine as one of the top five theaters for young audiences in the United States - strives to be more adventurous, as in its new show for elementary school students that discusses jazz, the Depression, and racism.

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Film
9:27 am
Mon April 15, 2013

Red Carpet Conversations About '42'

Kansas City Mayor Sly James, David Robinson (son of Jackie Robinson), actor Chadwick Boseman, actor Harrison Ford and NLBM's Bob Kendrick.
courtesy Kansas City Sports Commission

The movie “42” tells a story of baseball Hall of Famer Jackie Robinson, who once played for the Kansas City Monarchs.  He broke the color barrier with his entry into Major League Baseball.  A recent sneak preview of the movie in Kansas City featured an appearance by iconic actor Harrison Ford and a handful of his co-stars.

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KC Currents
1:45 pm
Fri April 12, 2013

UMKC Alumnus Wins Guggenheim Fellowship

Narong Prangcharoen with his mentor, Chen Yi, professor of music composition at UMKC
Laura Spencer KCUR

Each year, the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation awards mid-career fellowships to 200 applicants in fields ranging from choreography to plant sciences. Two of the 2013 fellows are Kansas City locals: Mike Sinclair, architectural and fine art photographer; and Narong Prangcharoen, UMKC alumnus and teaching assistant of composition and piano, and freelance composer. Prangcharoen's fellowship is in music composition.

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Up to Date
11:27 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Up To Date's Indie, Foreign & Doc Critics' 'Three To See,' April 12-14, 2013

Ryan Gosling in 'The Place Beyond The Pines.'

Looking for a great film to see the weekend of April 12-14, 2013?

Up to Date's indie, documentary and foreign film critics share their three favorites showing on area screens.

Cynthia Haines: The Gatekeepers; No; Quartet

Steve Walker: ​The Place Beyond The Pines; The Gatekeepers; No

Up to Date
10:32 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Two KC Artists Earn Prestigious Guggenheim Fellowships

Lemon shake-up in Strong City, Kan.
Mike Sinclair

Two Kansas Citians were announced yesterday as winners of this year's very prestigious Guggenheim Fellowships.

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Film
9:03 am
Fri April 12, 2013

'42' Screened In Kansas City

Greg Echlin KCUR

As a benefit for the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum and the Kansas City Sports Commission, the movie "42" was shown on Thursday night at the AMC theaters on Barry Road.  The chilly temperatures didn't stop those who gathered near the red carpet to get a glimpse of an A-list actor.

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Film
8:00 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Sins Of The Fathers Echo Throughout 'The Place Beyond The Pines'

Ryan Gosling and Eva Mendes struggle to define a family in "The Place Beyond the Pines"
Courtesy Focus Features

As stories about sons and fathers go, they can range from the Biblical to mythological - where patricide was the norm - to the searing contemporary take on fatherhood  in the new movie The Place Beyond the Pines by Blue Valentine director Derek Cianfrance.

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Performance
12:01 am
Fri April 12, 2013

After 26 Years, American Heartland Theatre Goes Dark In August

The American Heartland Theatre's executive director, Lilli Zarda, and director of production, Paul Hough. The theatre goes dark at the end of the season.

It was an unexpected announcement on April 4 that the American Heartland Theatre on the 3rd level of Crown Center would close after 26 years.

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Performance
5:00 am
Thu April 11, 2013

The Fishtank Stages Arthur Miller Play In Birdies

Birdies, a lingerie and bridal shop, is located on W. 18th Street in the Crossroads.
Studio 8183

On some occasions, a play calls out to be staged somewhere other than a theater. For example, last year, a production of William Inge's "Bus Stop,"  which is set in a diner, was performed in one in Lee's Summit.  This weekend, an Arthur Miller one-act about a man shopping for intimate apparel for his mistress will be mounted in a Crossroads boutique that specializes in that kind of women's wear.

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Visual Arts
3:49 pm
Wed April 10, 2013

The Nelson's Kansas City Sculpture Park Renamed For Donald Hall

Magdalena Abakanowicz's Standing Figures (Thirty Figures), 1994-1998.
Mark McDonald Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

The Kansas City Sculpture Park, the more than two dozen sculptures outside the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, opened in 1989. In honor of the park’s 25th anniversary in 2014, the museum will change the park’s name to reflect its roots.

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