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ARTS CORNER

LOVE AMIDST THE TURMOIL: Rep enlists top director to steer Wilson production

Theater comes in all shapes and sizes, but the plays that stick with us tend to be those that hold up a mirror to our own joys and tragedies, our loves and weaknesses and ruined relationships. When August Wilson’s plays began to appear on prominent stages during the 1980s, many noticed immediately the birth of […]

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IN REVIEW: Lyric’s open-hearted ‘Onegin’ strikes to the core of the work’s humanity

The Lyric Opera’s handsome production of Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin hit home partly because of its simplicity. The spare approach both to design and to direction, and the unfussy singing that managed to avoid excess (even as non-Russian-speakers labored to sing in Russian), allowed us to focus so intently on the drama that we found ourselves […]

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IN REVIEW: Performing-arts season opens with fine, variegated dance

Kansas City’s performing-arts season opened with a vengeance in mid-September, with more than a dozen professional-level productions of music, dance and theater vying for attention. Among the half-dozen or so I managed to take in, one that stood out (after Cliburn medalist Kenny Broberg’s recital, reviewed here) was the Harriman-Jewell Series’ presentation of Parsons Dance […]

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CAD OR VICTIM? Shattering Russian masterpiece opens Lyric Opera’s 60th-anniversary season

It’s true that many operas of the standard repertoire are drawn from stories that are implausible, overwrought or even downright ridiculous. Almost as often, though, composers find themselves setting literary masterpieces to music, and they are challenged to create a work that can at least function on its own terms, stand up to the mastery […]

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Email: Paul@kcindependent.com   Paul studied piano and musicology at WSU and Cornell University. He also earned a degree in journalism, because writing about the arts in order to inspire others to partake in them was always his first love. After earning a PhD from Cornell, he became Program Annotator for the Philadelphia Orchestra, where he learned […]

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REVIEW: Recital by local piano student suggests that Cliburn Silver was no fluke

By Paul Horsley Trying to gauge the artistry of a musician on the basis of a performance at an international composition is like trying to identify a future Oscar-winning filmmaker on the basis of a YouTube “short” he or she made in high school. This most unnatural of settings (for which the Van Cliburn International […]

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FROM THE PAGE TO THE STAGE: Carney’s R&J journey comes full circle with KC Ballet premiere

By Paul Horsley For a kid who was about to devote his life and career to dance, young Devon Carney sure took a long time to realize that Romeo and Juliet was not just a Shakespeare play but also one of the most famous ballets in the classical repertory. “The first time I actually experienced […]

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