George Winston | October 16th

George Winston

Sunday, October 16th | 7:00 PM

Helzberg Hall

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GRAMMY Award-winning pianist with over 15 albums to his name, George Winston brings his stunning brand of solo piano to the Kauffman Center. Inspired by the seasons and topographies, George Winston’s concerts feature a variety of styles including melodic folk piano, New Orleans R&B piano and stride piano. He performs songs from his seasonal albums Autumn, December, Winter Into Spring, and Summer, as well as Peanuts pieces from his Vince Guaraldi tribute albums Linus and Lucy and Love Will Come.

Montana native George Winston grew up listening to instrumental rock and R&B greats like Floyd Cramer, the Ventures, Booker T & The MG’s, The Doors, and Jimmy Smith. These iconic musicians (and the overall sound of R&B, jazz, blues, and rock) inspired Winston to begin playing the organ in 1967. After hearing pianists from the 1920s and 1930s like Thomas ‘Fats’ Waller and Teddy Wilson, he decided to try his hand at acoustic piano. At the same time, Winston designed his own style called folk piano. Winston drew inspiration from his Eastern Montana upbringing while creating many of his solo piano albums, including Plains (1999) and Montana – A Love Story (2004). In addition, Winston says he draws inspiration from Chinese music, which he calls “some of the deepest and longest running traditional music on the planet.” In 2001, Winston released Remembrance—A Memorial Benefit for those affected by the events of 9/11. This six-song album incorporates piano, guitar and harmonica solos to create a masterful example of how musicians can use their talents to better the world.

Winston has also worked with the late George Levenson of Informed Democracy on three projects, and performed the solo piano soundtrack for the children’s story The Velveteen Rabbit for Rabbit Ears Production.

Winston is currently focusing on live performances, and will be performing at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts on October 16th. Come out and enjoy an unforgettable night with one of the greatest musicians of our time.

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Winning Kauffman Center Inspired Cake Chosen at BravoKC, Kauffman Center Turns Five, Live!

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Cake Whimzy / Laughing Place Bakery’s Cake

The Kauffman Center celebrated its 5th anniversary at BravoKC, a free community event that took place on September 2nd from 5:00 – 9:00 p.m. Over 10,000 visitors joined the celebration, which featured free live performances from local performers on three stages, lawn games provided by KC Crew, birthday cake and a fireworks display to end the night.

As part of the interactive activities taking place during BravoKC, Kauffman Center hosted a cake decorating contest. Culinary artists joined in the fun and used the Kauffman Center and Kansas City performing arts as the theme and inspiration to create cakes and confections for the contest. Entries were displayed in Brandmeyer Great Hall during BravoKC and attendees had the opportunity to vote by text for their favorite cake creation. Local bakeries and culinary artists submitted cake entries, including 3 Women and an Oven, Bonterra Catering, Brooklyn Shumate, Cake Whimzy / The Laughing Place Bakery, Cami’s Cake & Coffee and Sasha’s Bakery.

Competition was fierce, as all entries provided beautiful and unique Kauffman Center inspired cakes. After a tally of votes, we are pleased to congratulate Cake Whimzy / The Laughing Place Bakery located in Gladstone, MO for providing the winning cake creation!

Many thanks to all participants and to those who attended BravoKC and voted for their favorite cake!

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Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts Celebrates 5th Anniversary

BravoKC: Kauffman Center Turns Five, Live!

10,000 attendees celebrated the FREE 5th anniversary celebration, a thank you to all who helped make Kauffman Center a cultural cornerstone in Kansas City

The Kauffman Center’s BravoKC welcomed 10,000 visitors who celebrated the Kauffman Center’s fifth anniversary. The FREE event, BravoKC welcomed the community on First Friday, Sept. 2 from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. and featured FREE live performances from local performers on three stages, interactive activities on the south lawn, birthday cake and concluded with a fireworks display.

“BravoKC is a thank you to all of those who have helped make the Kauffman Center a success in the first five years of operation. The tremendous support from the community has made the Kauffman Center a bridge to Kansas City’s most dynamic downtown neighborhoods and a cultural cornerstone of Kansas City,” said President and CEO Paul J. Schofer. “We could not be more grateful to be a part of the Kansas City arts community and home for the performing arts. Commemorating the Kauffman Center’s fifth anniversary, BravoKC welcomed all visitors to celebrate performances, events and memories from the first five years. Kauffman Center is excited about the future of the arts in Kansas City and is committed to providing memorable performing arts experience to all for generations to come.”

Since opening, the Kauffman Center has welcomed more than 2 million audience members and guests through its doors. Its diverse programming continues to showcase Kansas City’s vibrant arts community and attracts acclaimed national talent from all genres. Resident companies the Kansas City Ballet, Kansas City Symphony, and Lyric Opera of Kansas City, along with numerous other community arts organizations, have experienced record attendance in their new performance home.

Along with artistic successes, Kauffman Center’s first five years have been marked by solid financials due, in no small part, to efficiencies created within the Center’s operating and staffing models and from financial and volunteer support within the Kansas City community. Effective management and strong annual fundraising support have allowed Kauffman Center to operate in the black for each of its first five years, which is considered an exceptional accomplishment in comparison with performing arts centers nationally.

BravoKC: Kauffman Center Turns Five Live! Featured Performances by

Calvin Arsenia and Special Guests: Clint Ashlock, Jeff Harshbarger, Ryan Lee
DJ Sheppa
The Grisly Hand
Hembree
Jessica Paige
Kansas City Ballet Second Company
Kansas City Symphony Chamber Ensemble
Lyric Opera of Kansas City Resident and Young Artists
The Phantastics
UMKC Conservatory of Music and Dance Division of Jazz Studies

Interactive Arts Activities and More by

Balloon Displays provided by Molly Balloons
Fireworks provided by Wald & Co. All American Display
Lawn Games provided by KC Crew
PB&J Brands provided food and beverage including Red Robin, YaYa’s, Newport Grill and Burnt End BBQ
TooRooster Artistry, Cindy Scott

Cake displays provided by:
3 Women and an Oven
Bonterra Catering
Brooklyn Shumate
Cake Whimzy / Laughing Place Bakery
Cami’s Cake & Coffee
Sasha’s Bakery

The Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts would like to thank our official building sponsors, Aristocrat Motors and Mercedes-Benz of Kansas City for their generous support of our 2016-2017 season and INK Magazine, PB&J and their family of restaurants and 360 Vodka for their support of BravoKC.

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Lampedusa: Concerts For Refugees | October 8th

Lampedusa: Concerts For Refugees

Emmylou Harris, Steve Earle, Patty Griffin,
Buddy Miller, and The Milk Carton Kids

Saturday, October 8th | 8:00 PM

Helzberg Hall

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Enjoy an intimate evening of acoustic performances by renowned singer-songwriters Emmylou Harris, Steve Earle, Patty Griffin, Buddy Miller, and The Milk Carton Kids, all appearing together as part of a special 11-city tour.

Lampedusa

The recipients of multiple awards, Harris, Earl, Griffin, Miller, and The Milk Carton Kids are pillars of the Americana music scene. Individually, each has produced classic albums in folk, country, and pop. Through multiple collaborations, this close knit collective of friends have shaped and defined Americana music. But they rarely all appear together. These esteemed artists will share the stage for an evening of song-swapping, collaborative performances and story telling, performing songs from their extensive catalogues.

This special show has been organized by Emmylou Harris, widely regarded as the queen of Americana music.  The winner of twelve GRAMMY Awards, Harris’ candid songwriting and expressive singing share with the world her personal experiences that are heartbreaking and hopeful and intimately human.

And it was Harris’ humanistic outlook that led her to organize this concert. Harris is well known for her charitable work in her hometown of Nashville. But in recent years she has become increasingly concerned by the refugee crisis in Europe, the worst humanitarian crisis since World War II. All proceeds from the concert will support the Jesuit Refugee Service’s Global Education Initiative, designed to provide educational opportunities for refugees living in camps and in urban settings. For more information watch this video here:

Joining Harris are Steve Earle, Patti Griffin, Buddy Miller, and The Milk Carton Kids, all widely regarded as Americana royalty. Griffin is a GRAMMY Award-winning artist, renowned for rich character-driven songs rooted in folk, blues, rock and jazz. Miller is a legendary singer, songwriter and musician whose illustrious career has seen him collaborate and tour with many pre-eminent names in the Americana music world. And Earle is a multiple GRAMMY Award-winning singer songwriter best know for classic songs like ‘Guitar Town’, ‘The Galway Girl’ and ‘Copperhead Road’. An actor, writer, and outspoken figure, Earle accompanies his performances with engaging stories from his life.

Oh, and if this group of acclaimed artists is not enough, they will be joined by more special guests in what promises to be a once in a lifetime event for all fans of Americana music.

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Culture Club | July 27th

Culture Club

Wednesday, July 27th | 7:30 PM

Muriel Kauffman Theatre

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Calling all karma chameleons: Relive the ‘80s! Culture Club is back with its original lineup, fronted by the imitable Boy George. They will perform on Wednesday, July 27th in Muriel Kauffman Theatre. Tickets range from $79 to $129.

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Culture Club burst onto the scene in the early 1980s, wowing crowds with their vibrant style and unique blend of genres. This is a band that blazed a trail. They pushed boundaries, and redefined fashion and pop music in equal measure. Elements of soul, reggae, funk, and pop combine in a sound that defies definition, but is instantly recognizable and catchy.

As one of the biggest bands of the 80s, Culture Club broke many records, both in their native UK and here in the United States. Instantly memorable songs such as “I’ll Tumble 4 Ya,” “Do You Really Want to Hurt Me” and “Karma Chameleon” earned the group a string of nine Top 10 Hits. And now, after a hiatus of over 14 years, the band is back to doing what it does best: making and performing music. The show will include favorites from their albums including Do You Really Want to Hurt Me and Colour By Numbers, as well as Tribes, their latest release.

But the music is just one element of watching a Culture Club show. Boy George remains as fierce a showman as ever, taking the stage with the same outré fashion and flair that made him a global icon in the 80s. The loveable front man is captivating to watch as he conducts the band that he once described as a “living soap opera”. More than a gig, this is a performance. And their message of individuality, love, and acceptance remains as relevant today as it was when they first started making music in the early 1980s.

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