Editor’s Weekend Calendar Picks, February 1-4

February is finally here and we have some calendar picks from KC Studio editor Alice Thorson for First Friday and beyond. Tickets for the Lyric Opera‘s performance of Rigoletto at the Nelson are sold out, but you can still stop before the show for a chance to grab a no-show seat before they’re gone! Friday, Saturday and Sunday, the Kansas City Symphony will perform Beethoven’s Eroica with Bernstein’s Serenade. First Friday will be busy with opening receptions for exhibitions around the metro area, including:  Belger Arts Center and Crane Yard Studios, Studios Inc, Greenlease Gallery at Rockhurst, The Box Gallery and Carter Art Center Gallery at MCC-Penn Valley. Stop by Mid-America Arts Alliance for a special First-Friday-only performance from Nebraska artist Charley Friedman. Starting Saturday night and continuing through February 18, the White Theatre at the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City presents the musical 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. And starting Sunday, see a selection of new, recent and historical works from Pele Prints in St. Louis at the Epsten Gallery, on view through April 8. For even more events this weekend, visit Kansas City’s most comprehensive arts calendar at kcstudio.org/events.

RIGOLETTO to Rigatoni

February 2, 2018 @ 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm | Free
Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

NOTE: No-show seats will be released to visitors without tickets on a first-come, first-served basis.

What’s that catchy tune in the background of a commercial? It might be from an opera.

Join the Lyric Opera of Kansas City’s Resident Artists, who will perform arias you’ve heard on radio and TV. Discover the real stories behind the music, featuring works from LOKC’s upcoming productions of RIGOLETTO and THE BARBER OF SEVILLE, plus other operatic favorites.

Are you now subliminally thinking about spaghetti? Consider coming early or staying late for a special Italian dinner at Rozzelle Court. Dinner seating is available between 5-9 p.m.


February 2 & 3 @ 8:00 pm
February 4 @ 2:00 pm
Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts

In honor of countless contributions to American music, the Kansas City Symphony and Music Director Michael Stern join in the worldwide celebration of the incomparable Leonard Bernstein, who would have been 100 in 2018. Bernstein’s lyrical Serenade culminates in a jazzy episode with the arrival of a band of drunken revelers. The first two chords of Beethoven’s Third Symphony launch a musical odyssey that includes an epic battle, a solemn march, a joyous scherzo, and a breathtaking theme and variations finale that hurtles the “Eroica” to its triumphant conclusion.

February First Friday Receptions

Hope 22: Dark to Light

February 2, 2018 – March 30, 2018
The Box Gallery

The public is invited to a free reception on February 2nd from 11:30-1:00pm. Free parking validation is available upon request.

HOPE 22 was named for the alarming fact that approximately 22 veterans take their own lives each day according to the Department of Veteran Affairs. With this exhibit, HOPE 22 aims to raise awareness surrounding our country’s veteran suicide epidemic while educating the public on mental health issues. The exhibit includes twenty-two photograph portraits of Kansas City veterans, each displayed with short personal stories of struggle, resilience and hope.

HOPE 22 partnered with local photographers Steve Gibson, Chuong Doan and John Howe, and with local veteran support organizations including Warriors’ Ascent, War Horses for Veterans, Veterans Community Project and Battle Buddy Service Dogs. Visitors to HOPE 22 will learn about the veteran experience through stories of hope and healing and aims to connect people to local resources.

1,000 Footsteps Tell the Story: Refugees’ Journeys Through Art and Conversation

February 2, 2018 – March 8, 2018
Carter Art Center Gallery

Opening Reception: February 2, 5-8pm
Artist talk: 6 pm

Opening Reception for Jessica Brandl and Jason Burnett

February 2, 2018 @ 5:00 pm – 9:00 pm | Free
Belger Crane Yard Gallery

Join us for the opening reception of “Jessica Brandl” and “Jason Burnett: Hit Play and Press Repeat”, meet the artists and enjoy light refreshments.

Jessica Brandl, a 2006 graduate of Kansas City Art Institute and a former Red Star Studio Artist-In-Residence, returns to KC with a solo exhibition of new sculptural vessels. Brandl was awarded Emerging Artist at the 2017 NCECA conference in Portalnd, Oregon, and is currently teaching at the Alberta College of Art and Design. Brandl’s image-laden work is heavily narrative and references the historic and pre-historic Midwestern landscape.

Featuring new works by ceramic artist, Jason Burnett, his work is influenced by American folk art, mid-century motifs, and pop culture material in both real and idealized landscapes. Meet the artist and join us for the opening reception on First Friday, February 2nd at Belger Crane Yard Studios.


February 2, 2018 – June 2, 2018
Belger Arts Center

Featuring artists from the Belger Collection. Opening Reception: Friday, February 2nd, 5-9pm.

disciplinary arcs

February 2, 2018 – March 23, 2018

studios.gallery is pleased to present disciplinary arcs, an exhibition featuring work by current and prior resident artists Miki Baird, Matthew Dehaemers, Jill Downen, Marcie Miller Gross, Miles Neidinger, Garry Noland, Hye Young Shin and Debra Smith. This exhibition focuses on multiple art disciplines and their continued progress along a respective line of development.

Exhibit on view from 02.02.18 to 03.23.18 with an opening reception Friday, 02.02.18 from 5:00-9:00 PM.

First Friday February: The Talisman

February 2, 2018 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm | Free
Mid-America Arts Alliance

M-AAA is pleased to present Lincoln, Nebraska and Brooklyn, New York artist Charley Friedman, performing Talisman for First Friday February 2 from 6:00–8:00 p.m. at 2018 Baltimore in Kansas City’s Crossroads Arts District.

The Talisman is part shaman, part muppet. He will attempt to engage with anybody who is willing. Each passerby is offered a free homemade talisman that is chosen to best suit the participant’s responses to its questions. The five talismans hand-crafted by the artist are: “Old Peoples Hair,” “Enchanted Bird Feather,” “petrified Squirrel Head,” “Squirrel Parts” and “Organic Nebraska Grass.”

“The glue that binds my work together is humor,” says Friedman. “The crux of my art is to explore the absurd, tragic, contradictory nature of living that humor can uniquely portray from multiple yet equal tangents.”

Darkness with Blue Sky

February 2, 2018 – April 7, 2018
Greenlease Gallery at Rockhurst University

Rockhurst University’s Greenlease Gallery of Contemporary Art welcomes French-born artist Myriam Mechita for “Darkness with Blue Sky,” its first exhibition of 2018.

The exhibition will open with an artist talk at 6:30 p.m. and a reception from 7 to 9 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 2 in the gallery, located between Van Ackeren and Sedgwick halls, and will be on view through April 7.

Born in Strasbourg, France, and a graduate of les Arts Decoratifs de Strasbourg, Mechita’s drawings, paintings and sculptures have appeared in galleries across dozens of cities, including Los Angeles, London, Paris and Berlin. Most recently, Mechita’s work was featured in the GNYP Gallery in Berlin as part of the “Body of Pain, Body of Love, Body of Wisdom” exhibition.

And beyond…

25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee

February 3, 2018 @ 7:30 pm
February 4, 2018 @ 2:00 pm
The White Theatre at the Jewish Community Campus

Six adolescents navigate life’s challenges while fiercely competing in the annual spelling bee. A hidden side of the Bee is quickly revealed, one filled with passion, puberty and a drive to gain the approval of overbearing – or absent – parents and less-than supportive siblings. Three adults adjudicate the proceedings: a nostalgic former winner, an insane Vice Principal and the official “Comfort Counselor”, an ex-con completing his community service. Much hilarity ensues as the characters unwittingly demonstrate the sheer ridiculousness of the need to win at all costs. Both tender and sardonic, this hilarious Tony Award-winning musical of overachievers’ angst brings you inside the spelling championship to end them all.


February 4, 2018 – April 8, 2018 | Free
The Epsten Gallery in Village Shalom

Featuring new, recent and historical works from Pele Prints, St. Louis, founded by master printer/owner, Amanda Verbeck.

KC Studio

KC Studio covers the performing, visual, cinematic and literary arts, and the artists, organizations and patrons that make Kansas City a vibrant center for arts and culture.

Leave a Reply