Roll the highlight reel for a mesmerizing week in opera, live theater, jazz and for UMKC Conservatory musicians in the Big Town – Monday to Sunday, April 22-28:
The Amazing Brain – The largest and newest exhibit in Science City, this 2,800-square-foot exhibit explores the body’s command center. Designed to exercise the 3-pound organ in your head, the exhibit features 14 unique exhibit pieces. Only at Union Station.
The City Market welcomes SPRING this Sunday with free, family-friendly fun! Bring chairs/blankets grab a bite at your favorite City Market restaurant; and relax from noon to 3 p.m. Sunday. Scheduled activities will be just inside the entrance at 5th & Walnut by Pavilion 1, including Backyard Buggin’ giant puppets at noon; the Moondrop Circus aerial acrobats at 12:30 p.m.; Eco Elvis rockin’ the Market at 1 p.m.; Backyard Buggin’ giant puppets at 2 p.m.; and an encore performance of the Moondrop Circus at 2:30 p.m.
- UMKC Conservatory Wind Symphony, directed by Steven D. Davis, will feature the music of James Mobberley and special guest Maria Kanyova, soprano, in its annual performance at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday.
- UMKC Conservatory Wind Ensemble – directed by Joseph Parisi and graduate conductors David Blon, Isaac Brinberg, and Corey Seapy – will feature guest conductor Steven D. Davis. in its annual performance at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday.
- Amanda Shires will perform in the new Americana Series, presented by the Folly and 90.9 The Bridge, at 8 p.m. Friday. Known for her folksy, Americana sound, Shires was named the 2017 Americana Music Association’s Emerging Artist of the Year and she frequently lends her voice and style to her husband Jason Isbell’s band, The 400 Unit.
- Arturo Sandoval – the legendary trumpeter will close out the 36th season of the Folly Jazz Series at 8 p.m. Saturday. The 10-time Grammy-award winning artist was born outside Havana, Cuba and began studying trumpet at the age of 12. Sandoval has performed at the Grammys, Oscars and Billboard Awards.
KC Convention Center – This week, featuring back-to-back nights of entertainment, including:
- Magician Michael Carbonaro brings his signature blend of bizarre antics, audience interaction, hilarious video clips, and mind-blowing magic, live on stage at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Music Hall;
- Legends of Hip Hop Tour featuring Juvenile, Mystikal, 8 Ball & MJG, Scarface, DJ Quik, and Bun B will bring the magic at 8 p.m. Friday at Municipal Arena.
KC Public Library presents three programs at the Central Library this week that are open to the public this week, including Becoming American with a discussion led by University of Missouri-Kansas City historian Sandra Enriquez; Eisenhower: Becoming the Leader of the Free World by Eisenhower author Louis Galambos at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday; and Marking Meat: Race, Labor and the Kansas City Stockyards presented by UMKC historian John Herron at 2 p.m. Sunday.
Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts, 1601 Broadway. This week, featuring two special performances, including:
- The Pearl Fishers – PASSION. BETRAYAL. VENGEANCE. JUST ANOTHER DAY IN PARADISE. The Lyric Opera of Kansas City presents the sensuous staging of Bizets exotic pre-Carmen classic that explodes with expressive patterns and extravagant colors created by fashion designer Zandra Rhodes. Performances begin at 7:30 p.m. Saturday in the Muriel Kauffman Theatre and continue with three more shows next week.
- Cloudy with a Chance of Music – Experience the elements in Helzberg Hall as the Kansas City Symphony presents a fun and fascinating family concert about all things weather. KMBC-TV Channel 9 Chief Meteorologist Bryan Busby explores the musical side of weather including rain, snow, wind and much more at 2 p.m. Sunday.
Knuckleheads, 2715 Rochester, This week, another 11 rockin’ shows including Son Volt with special guest Ian Noe at 8 p.m. Tuesday; The Mavericks with The Sweet Lizzy Project at 8:30 p.m. Friday; and Mary Gauthier with Jaimee Harris at 8 p.m. Sunday.
The Midland, 1228 Main. This week, will sere as the epicenter of Downtown magic this week with four HUGE shows, including:
- I Prevail lifts rock to a plateau where soundscapes can unpredictably toss and turn between heavy metal, alternative, hip-hop, and electronic moods without warning. Buckle up for a wild ride beginning at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday;
- Rain, The Tribute to The Beatles – In celebration of the 50th anniversary of Abbey Road, RAIN will bring the greatest hits of this epic recording to life, in addition to all the early Beatles favorites. The fun begins at 8 p.m. Thursday;
- Aziz Ansari – The comedy legend brings his Road to Nowhere tour to Downtown KC this weekend with two shows at 4 and 7:30 p.m. Sunday. An Emmy and Golden Globe winner, Aziz currently stars in, writes, and directs MASTER OF NONE, a Netflix original comedy series,
Power & Light District – This week, Spring has blossomed in Downtown KC’s entertainment district with two BIG events, including:
- Big Sky Nights return to the KC outdoor concert scene with the Outlaw Jim and The Whiskey Benders at 7 p.m. Friday.
- Downtown Wine Walk – Sip, taste and explore at the annual walk this Saturday. However, the spring event is currently listed as a sell-out, so mark your calendars for the fall walk on Saturday, Nov. 2. Proceeds benefit The Children’s Place.
AND, LIVE MUSIC is on tap most nights at these Downtown clubs and joints: Blue Room Jazz Club, Black Dolphin, The Brick, Green Lady Lounge, Hush, The Majestic Jazz Club, Mutual Musicians Foundation, The Phoenix, Prohibition Hall, The Record Bar, The Ship, and throughout the Power & Light District. And, Downtown’s hottest outdoor concert venue – Crossroads KC at Grinders – will begin its 2019 schedule next weekend!
LIVE THEATER is thriving on Downtown stages, including seven productions this week:
- The Ballad of Lefty and Crabbe – This witty and gleefully ridiculous musical comedy won a Best of Fringe designation in 2015, packed houses in its 2017 run, and last year won several awards including Best of the Fest at the Chicago Musical Theater Festival. Performances run through May 12 at The Living Room Theatre in the Crossroads.
- Frida … A Self Portrait – Frida Kahlo’s life is explored in this astonishing play by KCRep Fox Fellowship Resident Actor Vanessa Severo. Through beautiful physicality and raw honesty, the triumphs and challenges of the now-celebrated painter and wife of the equally-renowned artist, Diego Rivera, is unearthed in the brave new work. Frida runs through May 19 at the Copaken Stage at H&R Block.
- Funny Girl – With humor, talent, and chutzpah, young Fanny Brice defies the odds and becomes one of the greatest stars of her generation in this beloved musical. Funny Girl runs through Sunday at the MTH Theater at Crown Center.
- Grand Hotel – Come spend an evening, or a night or two, in the world’s most luxurious and mysterious hotel, a seamless musical that won multiple Tony and Drama Desk Awards. Performed by The Barn Players, performances open Thursday and runs through May 5 at The Arts Asylum.
- Go, Dog, Go! – P.D. Eastman’s classic book is the foundation for this Theatre for Young America production that features highly mobile dogs careening around in cars, scooters and anything that rolls fast. The fun rolls on through May 11 at City Stage at Union Station.
- Songbook of the 60s and 70s – Celebrate the era of Broadway when traditional musicals lived alongside innovative ones, while the jazz world evolved to reflect an eclectic culture. This nostalgic celebration opens Friday and continues through May 26 at the Quality Hill Playhouse.
- Unreliable – Playwright Dipika Guha looks at the slippery slope regarding culpability and expectations, using absurdist humor as a powerful tool in this provocative KC Rep production runs through May 19 at the Copaken Stage at H&R Block.