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Bravo

Amidst the bevy of high-profile soloists, the huge chorus and complement of supernumeraries, the children’s choir and the over-the-top scenic and costume designs, one thing was abundantly clear about the October 1st opening of Turandot at the Kauffman Center: With this production the Lyric Opera is entering a new epoch in its history, and future productions will […]

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At first glance Mark Twain’s Tom Sawyer might not seem an obvious choice for a novel on which to base a full-length ballet, and I confess that I approached William Whitener’s and Maury Yeston’s Tom Sawyer: A Ballet in Three Acts with some skepticism. But, wow. On October 14th the ambitious piece opened the Kansas City Ballet’s season in its world premiere at […]

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The New York Times’ prickly dance critic Alistair Macaulay seemed to have liked the Kansas City Ballet’s Tom Sawyeralmost as much as I did – though at times for different reasons. See my review here, and his here. Much was hanging on the new full-length ballet because it was the company’s first world premiere in the new Kauffman Center, and (as […]

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In what promises to be one of the most significant musical events of the Kansas City season, this week the Boston Early Music Festival brings Handel’s Acis and Galatea to the Friends of Chamber Music’s chamber series. This semi-staged production—at 8 p.m. on April 1st at the Folly Theater—strives for historical authenticity in all aspects. It […]

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Legendary and iconic dancer Jacques D’Amboise was in Our Town on April 1st to promote his new memoir, I Was a Dancer (Borzoi Books: Alfred A. Knopf, $35). Born Joseph Aheard in Massachusetts, D’Amboise would become one of George Balanchine’s most indispensable muses: Over the course of 33 years at New York City Ballet, Jacques had more works created for him […]

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There are extremes of misery in the world that defy comprehension. In the war-torn Democratic Republic of the Congo, violence and sexual brutality against women and girls have remained at epidemic levels for more a decade. “The sexual violence in Congo is the worst in the world,” United Nations undersecretary general for humanitarian affairs John Holmes told The […]

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The Lyric Opera’s new production of The Marriage of Figaro is well-sung, confidently acted and executed with a deft comic touch. Whether or not you buy into its conceit of setting the opera as a contemporary backstage drama, the production is at least consistent—at times relentlessly so—in its transfer of Mozart’s and Da Ponte’s 18th-century master-servant conflict […]

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Concluding the Kansas City Repertory Theatre’s 2010-2011 season is Henryk Ibsen’s Peer Gynt, in an adaptation by David Schweizer, who also directs it. The production is already in previews and opens April 29th at the Copaken Stage downtown. David is a prominent figure in American theater who has directed several off-Broadway productions as well as works at Lincoln […]

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It’s often said that choreography begins with music, but the Kansas City Ballet’s upcoming spring season suggests that the situation is a bit more complex than that. In fact the program presents three works with three very different relationships to music: one that clearly grew out of a preexisting score (William Whitener’s Mercy of the Elements), […]

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