School Matinees

The Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts is passionate about providing youth in our community opportunities to experience high quality performing arts.

Please sign up below to join our educators email list and be informed of upcoming opportunities for the coming school year.

Kauffman Center Presents

Black Violin 

  • Thursday, November 17th, 2016 at 10:30am

All Tickets: $2
Length: Approximately 1 hour

Wilner “Wil B” Baptiste (viola) and Kevin “Kev Marcus” Sylvester (violin) are Black Violin – an exhilarating violin/viola hip-hop duo that wows audiences of all ages. Classically trained musicians, they met as high school orchestra nerds; today they play genre-bending music, radically fusing hip-hop and pop with classical to create a kaleidoscope of sounds uniquely their own. The group is on a perception-changing, stereotype-shattering mission with their unique take on classical music. Named one of the hottest bands at South by Southwest, they have opened for such diverse names in music as Kanye West, 50 Cent, Aerosmith, and Tom Petty, and creatively collaborated with the likes of Wu-Tang Clan, Linkin Park, Wyclef Jean and Alicia Keys. Their major label debut, Stereotypes, was released last year to critical acclaim and incorporates their many musical influences from classical, R&B, and soul to rock and beyond. The pair creates a distinctive, peerless sound that continues to resonate with a broad variety of music lovers.

Ticket Form

National Geographic Live!
Charlie Hamilton James presenting I Bought a Rainforest

  • Tuesday, February 7th, 2017 at 10:30am
  • Wednesday, February 8th, 2017 at 10:30am

All Tickets: $2
Length: Approximately 1 hour
Themes: current events, biodiversity, ecosystems, geography
Suggested grades: 5-12

Discover what it’s like to live in—not just visit—two of the world’s great wildlife parks. Charlie Hamilton James has been shooting in Peru’s Manú National Park—the most biodiverse place on Earth—for more than two decades. More recently, James has been living in Yellowstone, America’s original wildlife park, in preparation for the 2016 centennial of the National Park Service. For a forthcoming National Geographic story, he has gone beyond the park’s boundaries, investigating the larger ecosystem that Yellowstone supports. Join this critically acclaimed photojournalist as he recounts his unlikely journey from the Peruvian rain forest to the mountain landscapes of Yellowstone.

Ticket Form

National Geographic Live student matinees are now eligible for bus transportation assistance through our Open Doors program. Transportation assistance applications and more information can be found here.

National Geographic Live!
Anand Varma presenting Beauty and the Bizarre 

  • Tuesday, April 4th, 2017 at 10:30am

All Tickets: $2
Length: Approximately 1 hour
Themes: biology, biodiversity, photography
Suggested Grades: 5-8

When Anand Varma takes a photograph of a parasitic wasp consuming a caterpillar from the inside, he doesn’t want to you to be disgusted—he wants you to be amazed! He’s devoted years of his life to perfecting his techniques to create dramatic, bizarre—and beautiful—images of the miniature world around us. In these unique images, he reveals the secret life cycle of the honeybee, captures the lightning-fast behaviors of hummingbirds, and offers students a rare and astonishing glimpse at our world’s small wonders.

Ticket Form

National Geographic Live student matinees are now eligible for bus transportation assistance through our Open Doors program. Transportation assistance applications and more information can be found here.

+Frequently Asked Questions

Who can purchase tickets for these performances?

Any school in the five-county metropolitan Kansas City area can submit an order form to purchase tickets for students and chaperones to attend any of the Kauffman Center Presents student matinees. Homeschool groups are also welcome to purchase tickets to these performances.

How long will it take to review my order form?

Orders will be processed as they are received and confirmation emails with invoices will be sent to the teacher and billing contact within 2-3 weeks.

Are all the Kauffman Center student matinee performances eligible for Transportation Assistance?

Each year, there will be over twenty school matinee performances, and they are listed under the Student Matinee page of our website. At this time, all student matinee performances qualify for the Open Doors Transportation Assistance program. Please be aware that only groups with more than 20 students that are traveling by bus are invited to apply. Also, transportation assistance applications must be received at least 5 business days prior to the scheduled performance.

What if my group receives plans to purchase tickets to a Kauffman Center Presents student matinee, but we need to cancel at a later date?

If your approved group needs to cancel a National Geographic Live student matinee reservation, please let the Kauffman Center know as early as possible by sending a notification to Tickets must be paid for in full no later than one month prior to the performance date, and if a school cancels beyond that point, they will not receive a refund.

Can our school change our total number of students and adults attending in the months or weeks leading up to the performance?

Yes, you can adjust your numbers as needed, but all changes are subject to ticket availability. All changes must be made by one month prior to the performance date when ticket payment is also due.

For any other questions, please send an email to Open Doors at

Kansas City Symphony

Young People’s Concert: Uncle Sam’s Symphony

  • October 11th – 13th, 2016 @ 10am & 11:30am
  • October 14th, 2016 @ 10am only

All tickets: $2
Recommended: Grades 3-6
Length: Approximately 1 hour

Kansas City Symphony Young People’s Concerts are designed to spark the imagination of students in grades 3-6. Programs include an introduction to the orchestra while making connections to the social studies curriculum.

 Explore the Executive, Legislative and Judicial branches of government with an exciting orchestral twist! Students will learn about the structure of state and federal governments while also discovering different roles our musicians play in the orchestra. In addition to incorporating state and national standards in Social Studies, Music and English/Language Arts, the concerts will feature winning entries from our 5th annual Writing Challenge. This year’s Young People’s Concerts have expanded to include students in grades 3-6. 

KinderKonzert: Symphony Citizenship

  • January 31 – February 2, 2017 @ 10am & 11:30am
  • April 27, 2017 @ 10am & 11:30am

All tickets: $2
Recommended: Grades K-3
Length: Approximately 1 hour 

Kansas City Symphony KinderKonzerts are designed to introduce students in grades K-3 to the instruments of the orchestra. This year’s programs include curricular ties to social studies curriculum.

What makes a good citizen? With the help of musical examples from your favorite composers, the Kansas City Symphony explores how communities are strengthened through good citizenship traits including teamwork, listening skills and kindness.  KinderKonzerts are designed for students in grades K-3.

Link Up: The Orchestra Rocks

  • April 18, 2017 @ 10am & 11:30am
  • May 12, 2017 @ 10am & 11:30am
  • May 16, 2017 @ 10am & 11:30am

All tickets: $2 Student Ticket (does not include recorder), $5 Student Ticket (includes recorder), $5 Adult Ticket
Recommended: Grades 3-5
Length: Approximately 1 hour

One universal element of music is rhythm. Composers and musicians play with elements of musical time, creating patterns of sound and silence that are expressive and exciting. A consistent groove can unite musicians, singers, and audiences in an experience of listening and performing together. Through the Link Up repertoire, hands-on activities, and a culminating interactive performance with the Kansas City Symphony, we will discover how the orchestra rocks!

*Each student ticket includes a student workbook. Teachers may also opt to purchase student tickets that also include a recorder. One teacher per school will receive Carnegie Hall’s Teacher’s Guide, recorder, KCS Teacher Training Workshop and access to Carnegie Hall’s online teacher resource center.

Contact info for tickets:
Crystal Mann, Education Ticketing Coordinator
1703 Wyandotte, Suite 200
Kansas City, MO 64108
Phone: (816)-218-2609
Fax: (816) 329-1809

Kansas City Ballet

The Nutcracker

  • Thursday, December 1st, 2016 at 10:30am
  • Friday, December 2nd, 2016 at 10:30am
  • Friday, December 9th, 2016 at 10:30am

All tickets: $12
Length: 2 hours (includes 1 intermission)
Recommended for: 2nd grade and older. For groups of students only; 1 adult per 15 students at this special group rate. Reservations are made on a first come first serve basis and groups must have a minimum of 10.

In 2015, Kansas City Ballet Artistic Director Devon Carney presented an all-new production of this favorite holiday classic. Carney gave audiences a traditional yet boisterous, adventurous, and re-imagined production. Two act ballet based on E.T.A. Hoffman’s story—featuring vibrant costumes, elaborate scenery, and stunning sets, this holiday classic tells the timeless story of Clara, the Mouse King and her Nutcracker Prince.

Contact info for tickets:
Kansas City Ballet Outreach
(816) 216-5583

Lyric Opera of Kansas City

Pirates of Penzance Student Dress Rehearsal

  • Thursday, April 20th, 2016 at 6pm

All Tickets: $5
Recommended for: 3nd grade and older
Length: Approximately 2.5 hours

High jinks on the high seas! Gilbert and Sullivan’s cheeky and charming operetta abounds with pirates, maidens and a Major General with the true gift of gab. Featuring hyperkinetic lyrics, madly colorful sets and a bevy of bungling bobbies, this production promises to be an evening of pure fun. Young Frederic, instantly smitten by the lovely Mabel but beholden to a Pirate King, and beleaguered by the Major General, must fulfill his sense of duty while staying true to his love. Sound complicated? That’s because only in The Pirates of Penzance will you hear the words ‘’lot o’ news’’ rhymed with “hypotenuse.’’  Sung in English with English subtitles and suitable for children who still pretend they’re pirates.

 Groups of 13 or more receive the educational materials and attend the dress rehearsal for $5 per person; add an in-school visit for a flat rate of just $885. Two adult chaperones are required per every 13 students at the final dress rehearsal.

Contact info for tickets:
Linda Brand, Director of Education and Community Engagement
(816) 802-6053

Störling Dance – Culture House

Störling Dance Theater’s UNDERGROUND

· Thursday, February 2nd, 2017 at 9:30 AM
· Friday, February 3rd, 2016 at 9:30 AM

All tickets: $5 2 FREE tickets per class for teachers and teacher’s aids.

Recommended for 3rd Grade – 12th Grade
Length: 1 hour and 45 minutes (with one intermission)

Chosen as one of the Top 10 Performances of the Decade for Kansas City, Störling Dance Theater’s UNDERGROUND is a powerful and inspiring portrayal of the Underground Railroad movement and the abolition of slavery. All teachers attending will receive a copy of the nationally award winning Underground Curriculum Guide that meets Missouri and Kansas State Educational Standards in the areas of Language Arts and Social Studies.

Contact info for tickets:
Tonya Franken
(913) 393-3141

Sign Up for Education Emails

Be among the first to learn about educational opportunities at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts by signing up for our Education Email List. By opting in to this education email list, you will receive information about Kauffman Center educational programs as well as performances that will be presented at the Kauffman Center.

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