Here are this week’s calendar picks from KC Studio editor Alice Thorson. For more events this weekend, visit Kansas City’s most comprehensive arts calendar at kcstudio.org/events.
June 1-4 @ 7:30 pm
Come along on a journey of self-discovery and the road trip of a lifetime that will have you dancing out of the theatre! Based on the cult film, Priscilla is the heartwarming adventure of three friends who hop aboard a battered old bus searching for love, family and the best of drag. Featuring Ron Megee with dancefloor favorites from Madonna, Cyndi Lauper, Donna Summer and more!
June First Fridays in the Crossroads Arts District and 18th & Vine, including:
June 2 – July 28 | Free
Main Street Gallery
Opening reception First Friday, June 2nd, 5-8 pm.
June 2 – July 1
In the front of the gallery #“An Homage to Josef Albers & the Square“ features works by one of the most well-known artists of his time. #Josef Albers profoundly influenced the Abstract Expressionism movement, as well as the tendency within Color Field Painting and Minimalism during the twentieth century. He not only was an artist, but also for decades published extensive theoretical work proposing that color, rather than form, is the primary medium of pictorial language. The exhibition focuses on his series Homage to the Square and related works, which he started producing in 1949 until his death in 1976. Albers used a single geometric shape to systematically explore the vast range of visual effects that could be achieved through color and spatial relationships alone.
June 2 – August 4
KCAI Crossroads Gallery: Center for Contemporary Practice
In association with Charlotte Street Foundation’s Every Street is Charlotte Street program, the KCAI Crossroads Gallery: Center for Contemporary Practice is pleased to present two exhibits opening June 2 and running through August 4.
Max Key is a 2005 Charlotte Street Award Fellow and alumni (’96 painting) of the Kansas City Art Institute. The exhibition features two new large-scale paintings. In regards to these works Key states:
“My paintings are meta-landfills. Wads of waste. Chewed mounds of collapsing leftovers and juicy catastrophes. It is in our culture of excess and gluttony where I find inspiration and the desire to find beauty and color in that blurry gray area between ‘need’ and ‘want.’”
The second exhibit Revolutionary Awakening features the work of Sonie Joi Thompson-Ruffin with Glenn North, poet, & filmmaker, Rodney M. Thompson. The exhibition features two series of works. The first, in conversation with written words by Glenn North, presents three new works by Ruffin reflecting on what has, or has not, changed in contemporary society as it relates to social activism. The second, My Mother’s Club: March On Kansas City, is a major work being debuted. Inspired by the history of African American women’s social clubs in Kansas City, these works are presented in tandem with the documentary film, My Mother’s Club, by Rodney M. Thompson.
Please join us for the opening reception of both exhibits on June 2 from 6-8 p.m.
June 2 @ 5:00 pm – 9:00 pm | Free
Todd Weiner Gallery
On time and innovative. These words describe the vibrant colors and engaging dimensionality of Patrick Schmidt’s art work. The entire front room of the Todd Weiner Gallery will transform into an installation of color, line, and shape. Schmidt will utilize paint and tape running from the ceiling, onto the floors, and out the front window into the street. Pulling its form from the two-dimensional works on the wall, the immersive installation will envelope the viewer as they weave between 5 foot sculptures. The acrylic paintings on canvas that hang in the room are comprised of overlapping brightly colored geometric shapes. Many layers and angled forms build the paint off the canvas and create an illusion of depth with pattern.
Schmidt’s intention is to use pattern as a metaphor to explore identity in the digital age. He appropriates image patterns from many digital technology sources and reduces them to line drawings overlaying them with ancient and contemporary archetypes to create a new “all-embracing design”. Color choice is important to Schmidt. In his artist statement he asserts, “As a painter, I value the primacy of color in my work. Because pigment suggests an inner energy, enhances ties to identity, and strengthens cultural bonds, I manipulate the combined effect of line, color, and shape into a cultural mythology in which everything happens at once.”
Schmidt has shown all over the world, most recently at the Florence School of Art in Florence, Italy. Schmidt holds an MFA and BFA in Painting from Central Michigan University and participates in visiting artist lectures around the U.S. His work has been featured in four additions of “New American Paintings” and earned him a grant renewal for the 1970 Faculty Development Fund, W&J College. Schmidt is a prolific artist and is steadily gaining national attention with his striking multidimensional artwork.
June 2 & 3 @ 8:00 pm
June 4 @ 2:00 pm
Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts
Legendary pianist Emanuel Ax performs two superb Mozart works with the Kansas City Symphony— the intricate Piano Concerto No. 16 and his 19th piano concerto, which was played at the coronation of the Holy Roman Emperor Leopold II in 1790. Strauss’ Till Eulenspiegels Merry Pranks, a composition recounting the tomfoolery and mischief of a famous German folklore rascal, is an orchestral tour-de-force from start to finish.
The G. Kenneth and Ann Baum Concert Comments will begin one hour prior to the concert. Concert Comments is a lively and informative discussion about the music being presented, frequently hosted by Music Director Michael Stern, Executive Director Frank Byrne and the featured soloist of the concert weekend.
June 3 @ 7:30 pm | $35
St. Paul’s Episcopal Church
Back by popular demand, Bach Aria Soloists reprise one of the highlights of the 2015-16 season commemorating the 400th anniversary of the death of Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra.
You will thrill to our unique interpretation of his literary masterpiece, featuring KC acting stalwart Mark Robbins, the colorful music of Spain and Telemann’s Don Quixote Suite.
After the concert, stay for a Meet-the-Artists reception that closes Season 17.
June 4 @ 6:00 pm
Spencer Theatre, Olson PAC, UMKC Campus
In response to pending budget cuts which threaten the very existence of UMKC Theatre, a public, community-wide Town Hall meeting has been scheduled for Sunday, June 4 at 6p at Spencer Theatre on the UMKC campus. Theatre faculty, students, alumni and supporters will be speaking to show support for UMKC Theatre and demonstrate to the UMKC administration the extensive community support for this program. Currently, severe budget cuts will mean the loss of four faculty positions for the coming school year, seriously jeopardizing its nationally prominent graduate MFA Theatre program.