Maltbias host gallery event

More than 150 people attended a Kauffman Center event on June 30 hosted by Ambassadors Anita and Gary Maltbia at a new midtown art gallery. “We are both truly excited about the potential of the Kauffman Center,” says former assistant city manager Anita Maltbia. “By hosting an event at the new Frazier Art Gallery, Gary and I managed to combine several interests and passions — and throw a really fun party at the same time.”

When the Maltbia’s told their friend, Bob Frazier, about their idea to host an event, he immediately offered to let them use the new Frazier Art Gallery at 3120 Troost. They assembled a list of friends, colleagues, family and business partners. They also featured as entertainment for the event, “The Kansas City Youth Jazz Band.” “At the Kansas City Young Audiences auction last fall Anita and I won the bid on a performance of the band. It made perfect sense to call on them and the venerable Leon Brady, director of the group, to perform at this event for the Kauffman Center,” says Gary Maltbia.

Jane Chu, president and CEO of the Kauffman Center was impressed by the Maltbia’s detailed planning — and thrilled by their obvious commitment to the new performing arts center. “We were all pleased by the turnout and really enjoyed getting to know the Maltbia’s diverse friends and family.” During a short program Anita and Gary talked about why they have become such active boosters of the Kauffman Center. Chu made a short presentation and invited guests to get involved. At several points in the evening, the 22 high school students from throughout the metropolitan area showed off their musical talents through several jazz numbers. “We can’t wait to have young people like this engaged at the Kauffman Center,” Chu commented.

A new five-minute video about the Kauffman Center, developed by Elaine Hamilton of Vision Teleproduction, Inc., was also unveiled that evening. “In this short video I focused on the Kauffman Center’s potential to energize our overall arts experiences and also emphasized the center’s commitment to youth — right in keeping with the jazz band that played that evening,” shared Hamilton, producer of the video. “I also wanted to show how central the Kauffman Center is to Kansas City’s exciting downtown revival.”

Guests also were able to enjoy the Frazier Art Gallery’s third art exhibit since opening last December. Works by local artists Reilly Hoffman and Trish Breed were on display throughout the gallery. Breed, who graduated 10 years ago from the Kansas City Art Institute, creates abstract oil paintings and multimedia pieces. Hoffman is a sculptor who won this year’s A. Zahner sculpture competition, bringing recognition to his work and generating scholarship income for the Art Institute.

The Frazier Art Gallery is the brainchild of businessman Robert Frazier, who owns the building. Jack Barkley, an architectural consultant and illustrator (most recently from New York), is gallery director. The Frazier is open from 11 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday or by appointment.

To see the complete web photo album of the evening’s activities and guests, click here.

Want to see the one-tenth scale model? It’s available for group tours and individual visits by appointment. Call 816-994-7200 to arrange a tour.

See the latest rendering of the Kauffman Center’s Concert Hall.