The Kansas City debut of ‘Hamilton’; a re-imagined celebration of ‘Oklahoma’; the triumphant return of the Maker Fest; the stirring Taps at the Tower ceremonies; and the farewell tour of music legend George Clinton raise the bar for a memorable stretch of arts and entertainment this week in Downtown Kansas City. Roll the highlight reel for what’s coming to Downtown KC from Monday to Sunday, June 17-23:
Crossroads KC, 417 E. 18th St. This week, will rock the East Crossroads with three nights of live music, including:
- Jim James, lead singer of My Morning Jacket, presents the live version of his new solo album, Uniform Distortion, at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday. Special guest Anderson East will open.
- Muddfest 2019, featuring Puddle of Mudd, Saliva, Trapt, Saving Abel and Tantric, will take flight at 7 p.m. Thursday.
- One Nation Under A Groove Tour featuring the farewell tour George Clinton w/ Parliament Funkadelic, along with Fishbone, Miss Velvet & The Blue Wolf, and P-Funk beginning at 7 p.m. Saturday.
HyVee Arena, 1800 Genessee, introduces a new, FREE live music series on Friday nights this summer. Nicki White will perform from 7-10 p.m. this Friday, and all ages are welcomed. The Bottoms Up bar will be serving.
KC Public Library, 14 W. 10th St. This week, Ralph Steadman: A Retrospective – a special exhibition of about 100 of his original works – are featured in the retrospective that runs through Sept. 8. at the Central Library Exclusive to the exhibition’s stay in Downtown is more than a dozen of Steadman’s images from his coverage of the 1976 Republican Convention in KC.
Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts, 1601 Broadway. This week, featuring:
- Season Finale: Pictures at an Exhibition – The Kansas City Symphony’s 2018/19 season closes with one of the most celebrated and colorful works in the entire symphonic catalogue, Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition, orchestrated by Ravel. Audiences love every minute of Brahms’ intensely beautiful First Piano Concerto with its thrilling technical demands and magnificent conclusion, performed by returning special guest pianist Benjamin Grosvenor. Performances are set for 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 2 p.m. Sunday in Helzberg Hall.
Knucklehead’s – the hottest honky tonk in the Big Town will be on fire this week 7 red-hot shows, including John Fullbright & Them Tulsa Boys at 8 p.m. Thursday and X The Band with special guest Dead Rock West at 8 p.m. Saturday.
Maker Faire – This jam-packed celebration of creativity, innovation and hands-on fun returns this weekend to Union Station, as it has the last 8 years. The KC event is planned and delivered each year by the local maker community. For complete details, visit Maker Faire Kansas City.
The Midland, 1228 Main – This week, will be jumpin’ with three shows:
- Theresa Caputo, star of the hit TLC show, Long Island Medium, will share personal stories about her life and explain how her gift works at 7:30 p.m. Monday;
- Red, White and Boom featuring Bazzi & Lizzo with guests Betty Who & Ally Brooke is set to explode at 7:30 p.m. Friday.
- Big Head Todd and The Monsters AND Toad the Wet Sprocket will be featured in a huge double-bill beginning at 7 p.m. Saturday. Opening will be Peter More.
National WWI Museum & Memorial – Enjoy the beauty and simplicity of the Taps bugle call with the symbolism of the Liberty Memorial Tower at sunset during Taps at the Tower. Presented nightly for one week – today through Saturday – visitors are welcomed to have a picnic, play games and enjoy the outdoors leading up to sunset (8:45 p.m.), when Taps will be played during a brief, moving ceremony.
Power & Light District – This week, the KC Live! Block will be rockin’ for three huge events, including:
- USA Women takes on Sweden in an official World Cup Watch Party at 2 p.m. Thursday;
- Hot Country Nights with Cody Johnson at 6 p.m. Thursday
- Friday Live! with Platinum Rock Legends at 9 p.m. Friday
Sprint Center, 1407 Grand. Up next, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame guitarist Santana with The Doobie Brothers on Thursday, July 11. The three-month, 29-date Supernatural Now Tour will commemorate the 20th anniversary of his groundbreaking, multiple Grammy-winning album Supernatural and the 50th anniversary of his momentous performance at Woodstock.
Union Station – More than 1.5 million people annually travel to the south of England to experience Stonehenge – the mysterious wonder and World Heritage site, dating back 5,000+ years. Now, with this America’s premiere exhibition, the ancient marvel comes to life in this large-scale exhibition, suitable for all ages and featuring multiple hands-on interactives to amplify key elements of the monument’s mysteries. Open daily at Union Station. Click here for hours and to plan your visit.
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 , throughout the Power & Light District, The Record Bar, The Ship … and, aboard the KC Streetcar from 5-7 p.m. Thursdays through Aug. 1.
LIVE THEATER is thriving on Downtown stages, including five magical productions this week:
- Broadway and All That Jazz – The four-part series of Broadway songbooks comes to a close this season, as the final chapter – Songbook of the 80s to the Present – runs through July 14 at the Quality Hill Playhouse.
- Elephant and Piggie’s ‘We Are in a Play’ – This lively and irresistibly charming musical look at friendship has become one of the best-selling and loved young readers’ series of the past decade. The show continues through Aug. 4 at The Coterie in Crown Center.
- Hamilton – The international sensation comes to Downtown KC for a three-week run beginning Tuesday at the Music Hall. The story of America’s Founding Father Alexander Hamilton features a score that blends hip-hop, jazz, blues, rap, R&B, and Broadway. It is considered to be the story of America then, as told by America now. Performances begin at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday.
- Oklahoma! – Rodgers & Hammerstein’s first collaboration remains their most innovative. This re-imagined production will feature the recently restored libretto and updated orchestrations which includes banjo, guitar, fiddle and other sounds commonly associated with the Oklahoma territory. The classic runs through Sunday, June 30 at MTH Theater in Crown Center.
- A Wrinkle in Time – Madeleine L’Engle’s science fantasy novel for young people won the Newberry Medal and has become a modern classic of children’s literature. Theater for Young America presents this beloved production beginning Tuesday, and continuing until July 6 at the City Stage in Union Station.