Kauffman Center Presents Season in Full Swing for Spring

Now in its fifth season, the Kauffman Center Presents series has announced a lineup of internationally acclaimed artists ranging from legends of classical and country music to rock and roll hall of famers to an eclectic style-crossing band.  The annual series showcases a variety of superb artists and brings memorable experiences in the performing arts, delivering performances that complement the programming offered by other arts organizations so that audiences, performance types, and even ticket prices are diverse.

“The Kauffman Center Presents series features some of the greatest performers of our time from a variety of genres,” said Paul Schofer, President and CEO of the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts. “We know our patrons are going to be excited about the entertainment opportunities we have planned for 2016.”

Country Unplugged Tour: Joe Diffie, Lorrie Morgan & Mark Chesnutt
Friday, January 29, 2016 at 7:30 PM

With their names already firmly established as true Country music superstars, Mark Chesnutt, Lorrie Morgan, and Joe Diffie are set to join together on stage and captivate audiences with the music that made them household names. Mark Chesnutt’s authentic talent and deep country roots have embedded him as one of the treasures in country music. Lorrie Morgan made history when she became a lifetime member of the Grand Ole Opry at the age of 24 and today has become a renaissance woman of the country music genre. Joe Diffie has enjoyed unbelievable critical and commercial success with 13 albums and over 20 Top Ten singles to his credit. Together, Chesnutt, Morgan, and Diffie celebrate more than 57 Top Ten hits, 26 Number One hits, nine platinum records, and a myriad of awards and accolades including GRAMMY Awards, CMA Awards, and Grand Ole Opry Membership.

Mavis Staples & Nick Lowe
Sunday, March 13, 2016 at 7:00 PM

For the first time, these musical giants are touring together in a double-bill performance. Nick Lowe has made his mark as songwriter with hits such as “Cruel To Be Kind” and “What’s So Funny ‘Bout Peace, Love and Understanding.” The savvy veteran producer has earned an undisputable reputation as the consummate musician’s musician. But in his current ‘second act’ as a silver-haired, tender-hearted but sharp-tongued singer-songwriter, he has no equal. For six decades, the delta-inflected gospel sound of Mavis Staples has been the solid rock of American music. Alongside her family group, the Staple Singers, Mavis has managed to transform herself into a Rock and Roll Hall of Famer and GRAMMY Lifetime Achievement Award winner, with familiar hits including “I’ll Take You There” and “Respect Yourself.”

Orpheus Chamber Orchestra with Pinchas Zukerman
Friday, March 18, 2016 at 8:00 PM

A standard-bearer of innovation and artistic excellence, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra is one of the world’s foremost chamber orchestras. Founded in New York City in 1972 by cellist Julian Fifer and a group of fellow musicians who aspired to apply the chamber music principles of individual participation and personal responsibility to an orchestral setting, one of their founding principles was the musicians’ commitment to rehearse and perform without a conductor. This performance features violinist Pinchas Zukerman, a phenomenon in the world of music for over four decades. His musical genius, prodigious technique and unwavering artistic standards are a marvel to audiences and critics. Devoted to the next generation of musicians, Zukerman has inspired younger artists with his magnetism and passion. His enthusiasm for teaching has resulted in innovative programs in London, New York, China, Israel and Ottawa. The name Pinchas Zukerman is equally respected as violinist, violist, conductor, pedagogue and chamber musician.

A co-presentation with the Friends of Chamber Music Kansas City, the program includes:

  • J.C. BACH: Sinfonia in G Minor, Op. 6, No. 6
  • MOZART: Violin Concerto No. 3 in G Major, K. 216
  • BEETHOVEN: Romance for Violin and Orchestra No. 1 in G Major, Op. 40
  • MELTZER: “Vision Machine” – *World Premiere*
  • RAVEL: “Le Tombeau de Couperin”

Pink Martini
Sunday, March 20, 2016 at 7:00 PM

“Pink Martini is like a romantic Hollywood musical of the 1940’s or ‘50s, but with a global perspective which is modern. We bring melodies and rhythms from different parts of the world together to create something which is new and beautiful.”
– Thomas Lauderdale, the group’s bandleader and pianist.

Trying to categorize Pink Martini is nearly impossible. Their sound draws from a myriad of influences, spanning the globe, cultures and time. Drawing inspiration everywhere they go, Pink Martini crosses genres of classical, jazz and old-fashioned pop. The group began in 1994 and performs its renowned multilingual repertoire on concert stages throughout the world. Pink Martini is sure to dazzle with their eclectic brand of entertainment. Their performance will feature lead singer, China Forbes, who has been singing with Pink Martini for ten years. Forbes has commanded the stages of The Hollywood Bowl, Carnegie Hall, Walt Disney Concert Hall, Le Grand Rex of Paris and London’s Hammersmith Apollo. She has been praised as “an unpretentious pitch-perfect chanteuse” (New York Times) with her “fine, velvety voice” (Washington Post).

Tickets to these and other events are available through the Kauffman Center Box Office at (816) 994-7222, the Kauffman Center’s mobile app or online at www.kauffmancenter.org

–Megan Felling

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