March Madness begins … and that’s just for starters

Metallica will rattle the Sprint Center with an in-the-round concert on Wednesday.

Roll the highlight reel for the start of March Madness in Downtown Kansas City, including the MIAA Basketball Championships, plus the KC Auto Show, Kurt Elling at the Folly, Disney Capella at the Midland, Metallica in round at Sprint Center, and five theatrical performances during the week of Monday to Sunday, Mar. 4-10:

Folly Theater, 300 W. 12th St. – This week, the Kurt Elling Quintet will dazzle in the Folly Jazz Series at 8 p.m. Saturday and pianist Alexander Melnikov will headline this Friends of Chamber Music performance at 2:30 p.m. Sunday.

Kansas City Auto Show – Hundreds of new vehicles all in one place, classic cars, food trucks and a beer and wine garage, have come together for the event you’ve been waiting for all year. The Auto Show opens at 5 p.m. Wednesday runs daily through Sunday at Bartle Hall See below for a layout of the show floor.Kansas City Tornadoes – Next up, back home to face Tampa Bay at 7 p.m. Friday, March 15 at HyVee Arena.

Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts, 1601 Broadway. Next up, the Kansas City Symphony presents Soak Up the Baroquea free chamber music performance at 6 p.m. Tuesday, and its Classical Series featuring Mendelssohn’s “Scottish” with Barber’s Piano Concerto at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 2 p.m. Sunday in Helzberg Hall.

Knuckleheads, 2715 Rochester, will feature 13 blazin’ shows this week including Supersuckers performing the 30th anniversary of the ‘The Big Show’ Tour at 8 p.m. Wednesday; Bluegrass in the Bottoms presents The Lil Smokies with The Mighty Pines at 8 p.m. Friday; and Amy Lavere and Will Sexton will light up the Gospel Lounge at 9 p.m. Saturday.

MIAA Basketball Championships return to Downtown KC this week – Wednesday through Sunday – with more teams and a new format. The top 10  teams in the MIAA men’s and women’s basketball standings will comprise the 20-team field. A new format eliminates on-campus first round match-ups. All games will be played at Municipal Auditorium, beginning at noon Thursday and continuing until the Men’s Championship at 1 p.m. Sunday, followed by the Women’s Title Match at 3:15 p.m. Sunday.

DCappella, Disney Music Group’s new a cappella group, will perform Disney hits with a fresh, new beat.

The Midland, 1228 Main – This week, DCappella, Disney’s new a cappella group featuring 7 world class vocalists, will light up Downtown at 7 p.m. Thursday.

Sprint Center, 1407 Grand – This week, Metallica in-the-round at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday.

The Truman, 801 E. Truman Rd. – This week, Andrew McMahon with his Upside Down Flowers Tour featuring Flor and Grizfolk at 7:30 p.m. Friday.

AND, LIVE MUSIC is on tap most nights at these Downtown clubs and joints: Blue Room Jazz ClubBlack Dolphin, The BrickGreen Lady Lounge, Hush, The Majestic Jazz ClubMutual Musicians FoundationThe Phoenix, Prohibition Hall, The Record BarThe Ship, and throughout the Power & Light District.

‘School Girls’ is now showing on the Copaken Stage of the KC Rep.

LIVE THEATER is thriving on Downtown stages, including five productions this week:

  • Mr. Popper’s Penguins – In this charming musical adaptation of the beloved book, Mr. and Mrs. Popper’s lives take an adventurous turn when a mysterious box arrives on their doorstep with a penguin inside. Performances run through March 31 at The Coterie at Crown Center.
  • Polkadots – This new musical follows 8-year-old Lily Polkadot, the first Polkadot in an all Square school.  Inspired by American civil rights history, this Theatre for Young America production runs through March 23 at City Stage at Union Station.
  • Project Pride – An alliance  of LGBTQ and straight allied teens who create theater that gives voice to their experiences, culminating in a production that challenges the assumptions and celebrates the diversity of the participants and audience. Performances are set for 7 p.m. Saturday and 5 p.m. Sunday at The Coterie.
  • School Girls – Jocelyn Bioh’s hilarious re-imagining of the Mean Girls story is a loving exploration of the real lives of young African women trying to negotiate the confusion of Western beauty ideals. The Girls runs thru March 22 at the Copaken Stage of the KC Rep.
  • Songbook of the 50s – Perhaps no decade had more personalities to its music than the 1950s, as will this dynamite cabaret revue that opens Friday and runs through April 7 at the Quality Hill Playhouse.

For more of what’s happening in Downtown and Kansas City, check out ArtsKCGo and