Kauffman Center Celebrates Local Youth Performers and Unique Kauffman Center Presents Performances

Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts welcomes a variety of audiences with different styles, interests and passions. The Center provides diverse programming for all ages and all tastes — everything from a family-friendly arts festival to a movie screening to a conversation with a film and TV legend.

This June, the Kauffman Center will present the sixth annual Future Stages Festival. This free community event will feature entertainment throughout the day on Sunday, June 16, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. with more than 650 performers on four stages, primarily youth aged 4 to 18. Future Stages Festival draws approximately 5,000 attendees, celebrates youth performances and family-friendly programming, and showcases young artists from the greater Kansas City metro area.

More than 15 arts activities will be available for guests in between performances, including: Heart of America Shakespeare Festival’s stage combat workshop, Kansas City Symphony’s instrument petting zoo and an arts and crafts activity with the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art.

Past festivals featured a wide range of performance groups, including Kansas City Ballet School, the Zhang Li Dance Academy, 5 Star Jazz Band, Kansas City Youth Percussion Ensemble, Harmony Project KC and many more! More than 40 percent of the participating performance groups were new to the festival in 2018, confirming the event reaches new parts of the Kansas City arts community every year.

“Dancers and their parents made lifelong memories and loved performing on the Muriel Kauffman Theatre stage. Performing on the same stage where they have seen Kansas City Ballet and other dancers and entertainers made it even more special! The entire day was magical, and the energy and power of the arts were strong during the festival and felt by everyone in attendance,” noted Kim Shope, Kansas City Young Audiences Teaching Artist, regarding their 2018 Future Stages Festival performance.

Future Stages Festival is a part of the Spotlight on Youth initiative in the Kauffman Center’s Open Doors program. Spotlight on Youth offers year-round programs and engagement opportunities that connect young people with the Kauffman Center.

Find out more and register for free at kauffmancenter.org/futurestages or call the Kauffman Center Box Office at
(816) 994-7222.

Saint Luke’s is returning for their third year as the festival’s presenting sponsor. Their presence includes the Saint Luke’s Outdoor Stage, audience activities and giveaways for performers. Other supporters are Missouri Arts Council, Hearst Foundations, JE Dunn, Nuwin Foundation and the Marlese and Robert Gourley Children’s Fund. Media support is provided by Cumulus Media.

Upcoming Kauffman Center Presents Programs Take Conversational Approach

The Kauffman Center Presents series is in full swing, providing distinctive programming options available to all audiences. Kauffman Center Presents performances are carefully selected to offer diverse event options, with tickets at a range of price points in order to ensure that everyone in the community enjoys memorable arts experiences. Two upcoming Kauffman Center Presents events include a unique question-and-answer format:

Napoleon Dynamite
Friday, June 28, 2019 – 7:30 p.m.
The beloved indie classic Napoleon Dynamite hit theaters almost 15 years ago. Since then much has changed, but the characters, as enduring as they are endearing, stay in our hearts. Appealing to the inner teenager in each of us, the story, and more importantly the dialogue, make Napoleon Dynamite one of the most quoted movies of our time. Napoleon Dynamite makes us laugh — and laugh hard — over and over again.

This unique evening includes a full screening of Napoleon Dynamite followed by a lively, freewheeling, moderated discussion with fan-favorite cast members Jon Heder (Napoleon Dynamite), Efren Ramirez (Pedro) and Jon Gries (Uncle Rico).

VIP tickets include premium seating and a meet and greet with Jon Heder, Efren Ramirez and Jon Gries.

Tickets for this event range from $29 to $79 plus applicable fees.

An Evening with Jane Fonda: A Celebration of a Storied Career
Tuesday, July 9, 2019 – 7:30 p.m.
Join two-time Academy Award-winning actress Jane Fonda for a career retrospective live on stage. Fonda will share clips from her storied career, along with anecdotes, conversation and an audience Q&A as we celebrate one of entertainment’s best.

Not limited to the big screen, Fonda has influenced society in many ways. Off screen, she is an impassioned activist supporting numerous causes to which she is deeply committed. Her aerobic-exercise videos in the 1980s helped shape a fitness craze that is still going strong. Her television projects (including The Newsroom and Grace and Frankie), best-selling books (including My Life So Far and Prime Time) and movies (including On Golden Pond and 9 to 5) have made her a true living legend. From Barbarella to Book Club, don’t miss a celebration of Jane Fonda.

Tickets for this event range from $49 to $250 plus applicable fees.

–Megan Felling

About The Author: Contributing Writer

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