The Kauffman Center’s 1,600-seat Helzberg Hall hosts a variety of local, regional, national and international artists and performance groups, including serving as the performance home of the Kansas City Symphony.
The 1,600-seat venue is oval in shape and the stage extends approximately one-third of the distance into the Hall, thus placing 40 percent of the seats alongside or behind the orchestra. This creates an intimate and immersive experience for both artists and audiences and allows a portion of the audience to experience the musician’s perspective during performance. The distance from the stage to Helzberg Hall’s farthest seat is just over 100 feet.
Helzberg Hall features mechanical risers that allow the stage configuration to be altered quickly and easily for the diverse needs of solo concerts, chamber music and full orchestra performances. Under the guidance of esteemed acoustician, Yasu Toyota, design elements within the concert hall were carefully chosen for their acoustical qualities and ability to bring musicians together as a unified instrument.
The Julia Irene Kauffman Casavant Organ, Opus 3875
The visual centerpiece of Helzberg Hall is the Julia Irene Kauffman Casavant Organ, Opus 3875, one of the finest concert hall organs in the country. Quebec-based firm Casavant Frères custom-designed the mechanical organ in the French romantic tradition, with 79 stops, 102 ranks, and 5,548 pipes.