Editor’s Weekend Calendar Picks, June 28 – July 1

Time for weekend calendar picks from KC Studio editor Alice Thorson to round out the month of June. Opening today at the Nelson and on view through December, see works from the collection of Lincoln Kirstein in the American Galleries. Tonight at the Blue Room, percussionist and bandleader Pablo Sanhuenza performs with the KC Latin Jazz All-Stars. Opening tomorrow at the WWI Museum, the exhibition For Liberty shares the stories of American Jewish soldiers in WWI. Celebrate the Fourth of July early on Saturday at Powell Gardens with the Lee’s Summit Symphony and fireworks at Booms & Blooms. And stop by the Blue Room on Saturday and hear saxophonist Doug Talley with Millie Edwards. For more events this weekend, visit Kansas City’s most comprehensive arts calendar at kcstudio.org/events.

A Figure of Influence: Lincoln Kirstein and American Art

June 28, 2018 – December 10, 2018
Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

Lincoln Kirstein (1907–1996) was an art insider with the imposing personality and ambitious projects to match his sizable six-foot, three-inch frame. Kirstein was involved in the early history of the Museum of Modern Art in New York and co-founded the New York City Ballet.

Though he abandoned his own painting career, Kirstein directed considerable energy toward shaping the lives of artists and the art world. He organized exhibitions, wrote about art, and connected artists with collectors, museums, and private galleries. An avid collector himself, he eventually donated work by the artists he championed to several institutions, including The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art.

This exhibition features selections from Kirstein’s gifts, including three works recently given conservation treatment. They are shown alongside works by artists who were his friends and collaborators. These artists focused on human subjects—the lives of people and the human figure itself. Kirstein believed that their work expressed universal experiences and therefore possessed enduring appeal.

Pablo Sanhueza and the KC Latin Jazz All-Stars

June 28, 2018 @ 7:00 pm | Free
American Jazz Museum – The Blue Room

Pablo Sanhueza is a Chilean born and raised Latin percussionist and bandleader. Since his arrival to Kansas City in 1996, He has distinguished himself as one of the foremost exponents of Latin American and Caribbean music across the Midwest. Since 2003, Pablo has led salsa & latin jazz ensembles as well as freelancing for various performing arts projects. The year 2018 marks the Fifteenth Anniversary of Pablo Sanhueza & KC Latin Jazz All-Stars. Additionally, he directs Calle Vida, the “street life band” side of the KC Latin Jazz All-Stars who maintain the grassroots presence of providing dance music for the people.

Although primarily self-taught, Pablo has immersed himself under the guidance of jazz saxophonist and composer Bobby Watson, with whom he toured Europe in 2006, appearing at Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland, Red Sea Jazz Festival in Holland and Champs Elysees in Paris, France. Pablo also has studied with Afro-Cuban legends Jesus Alfonso, Sandy Perez, (Muñequitos de matanzas) & Felipe Villamil (Master artist at National Endowment for the Arts, Congolese masters Titos Sompa & Mabiba Boegne, Brazilian mestre Carlos Barrao (Axe Capoeira), Senegalese drummer choreographer Fara Tolno and Zimbabwean choreographer, percussionist Rujeko Masango (Tony award winning first dancer and director of Broadway’s Fela Kuti the musical).

In recent years Pablo has found himself performing alongside some of the Latin Jazz legends and African drumming masters who had inspired him in his early years. Poncho Sanchez, Titos Sompa, Dave Valentin and Bobby Watson are among the international artists Pablo has had the honor to play with.

Pablo sees himself as a village musician whose presence and impact in the community is experienced through live performance and perpetuated through relationship building with the youth and local institutions.

For Liberty: American Jewish Experience in WWI

June 29, 2018 – November 11, 2018
National World War I Museum at Liberty Memorial

With American Jewish battlefield and home front participation in World War I, Rabbi Stephen S. Wise spoke for many when he wrote in the New York Times that military service would “mark the burial, without the hope of resurrection, of hyphenism, and will token the birth of a united and indivisible country.”

Nearly 250,000 Jews served in the American Expeditionary Forces, which totaled 4.8 million men and women. Eighteen percent were foreign born.

“I’m in a barracks with 270,” wrote one Jewish draftee, “and so far I’ve found a half dozen men who could speak English without an accent.”

Service men and women were not segregated by religion or ethnicity except for African Americans. Hailed by Time magazine as “a deep dive into a strange, history-shaking year” and by the New York Times as “remarkably prescient” For Liberty: American Jewish Experience in WWI shares these incredible stories through remarkable objects.

The exhibition features a letter from American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) leader Louis Marshall appealing to Jewish philanthropists like Julius Rosenwald to support the Ten Million Dollar Fund. Rosenwald was president of Sears, Roebuck & Company.

A map tells the amounts pledged to the JDC for Jewish war sufferers, 1917. A poster shows a shipment of kosher meat being loaded onto the SS Ashburn in New York City, bound for Danzig, Poland, June 1919. There is a photograph of the Passover Seder for the American Expeditionary Forces, Paris, France, April 1919.

From Irving Berlin’s draft registration card to the handwritten draft of the Balfour Declaration, July 17, 1917, of Leon Simon’s, which was forwarded to Lord Balfour, this exhibition illustrates the promise, the trials and tribulations and the lasting effects of World War I on the American Jewish population.

Congressman Julius Kahn, from California, served as Chairman of the House Military Affairs Committee, U.S. Congress. He wrote: “I desire to congratulate my co-religionists on the splendid showing they are making in the matter of serving our country in this war.”

For Liberty: American Jewish Experience in WWI, originally exhibited as 1917: How One Year Changed the World is organized by the National Museum of American Jewish History in Philadelphia and the American Jewish Historical Society in New York and made possible in part by the National Endowment of the Humanities: Exploring the Human Endeavor.

Booms & Blooms

June 30, 2018 @ 12:00 am – 8:00 am | Free – $12
Powell Gardens

Fireworks, flowers and fun! Join us Saturday, June 30 for Booms & Blooms. Tour our new exhibition, ‘Gardens of Myth’ during the day, cool off in our fountain, enjoy hands-on activities and family-friendly games and in the early evening spread your blanket in your favorite viewing spot and wait for the show, while enjoying the musical stylings of the Lee’s Summit Symphony and the wares of various food and drink vendors.

Doug Talley featuring Millie Edwards

June 30, 2018 @ 8:30 pm | $10
American Jazz Museum – The Blue Room

Doug Talley has performed with such jazz luminaries as Jay McShann, Clark Terry, Bob Mintzer, Claude “Fiddler” Williams, Bobby Watson, Karrin Allyson, Byron Stripling, Ignacio Berroa, Randy Brecker, Scott Robinson and Gary Foster. He is a familiar face throughout the Midwest as a jazz performer and educator. Talley has also appeared at the 18th & Vine Festival, the Kansas Jazz and Blues Festival, the Kansas City Spirit Festival, the Coleman Hawkins Jazz Festival, Mayport Jazz Festival, and in Las Vegas with The Four Freshman, The Platters and The Diamonds.

Doug Talley is the recipient of the 2010 Kansas Governor’s Arts Award and the 2009 Johnson County Library Pinnacle Award for arts in education. Talley is a Selmer saxophone artist and clinician and has served as a clinician with numerous college and high school musicians, including the University of Minnesota, Coe College, Kalamazoo College, Kansas State University, University of Nebraska, University of South Dakota, Central Missouri State, Emporia State and Kansas University, among many others. Talley was a faculty member of the Great Plains Jazz Camp for twelve years, and was featured at the 1996 MENC convention in Kansas City directing the Shawnee Mission (Kansas) Honors Jazz Band. He was a clinician at the 1997 International Association of Jazz Educators conference and a faculty member of the 2003 IAJE Teacher Training Institute.

Honored by Kansas City magazine as one of the “40 Under 40 Who Move and Shake Kansas City in Business, Politics and the Arts,” Talley was also recognized in Downbeat magazine “Auditions” in 1986. His discography includes four recordings on the Sea Breeze label for the Trilogy and Boulevard Big Bands as well as the Doug Talley Quartet’s four CDs, Town Topic — “…reminiscent of the Modern Jazz Quartet.” (Jam magazine), Night and Day – which received national airplay, Kansas City Suite – a musical depiction of the quartet’s hometown, and By Request, an offering of the quartet’s most requested music.

Millie Edwards is quoted as saying she was destined to be a singer/musician. She started playing piano at only four, and the viola at ten. She credits Elton John’s “Your Song” for helping her shift into high gear with her music. “It was rock with a classical feel, and I said, ‘I could do that.’ I purchased every Elton John songbook I could and started doing coffee houses.”

Edwards is known in Kansas City for her big voice and wide vocal range. She has been a regular on the Kansas City jazz and blues circuit, performing at the best clubs and in radio and television spots. Music critics have praised her as revealing “a confident, full-range voice that has no doubt been heard in church on many a Sunday.” Her singing has been characterized as being both honest and dynamic, and her phrasing is credited for finding new reflections from old, familiar words.

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.

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