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Backstage And Beyond

‘BASTA!’ Heartland Men’s Chorus’ world premiere marks 50th anniversary of gay-rights milestone  

There’s only so much oppression that you can withstand before you finally burst out and shout: Enough! That’s pretty much what happened at the Stonewall Inn on June 28th, 1969, when one of the habitual police raids on the Greenwich Village tavern turned violent. The ensuing series of protests in and around the bar, which […]

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ANALYZE THIS: Lyric’s ‘Così’ is scintillating fun that spares us needless exegesis

The glory of Così fan tutte is, to a great extent, its music: Mozart is the reason we continue to treasure this masterpiece, more than two centuries after its premiere in Vienna in 1790. Thus we were grateful, at the opening of the Lyric Opera of Kansas City’s production on March 16th, that director James […]

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INNOCENCE LOST: Mezzo-soprano in Lyric’s ‘Così’ muses on the pleasures and perils of ‘being Dorabella’

Daniela Mack is by far one of the most thrilling young mezzo-sopranos of our time. Kansas City is privileged to have her join the Lyric Opera’s production of Così fan tutte, which plays at the Kauffman Center from March 16th through the 24th. (See our full preview article here.) Daniela’s bold interpretations are matched only […]

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ARE ALL WOMEN REALLY LIKE THAT? Lyric stages ever-controversial Mozart classic

Comedy is often most effective when it borders on the serious, when it delves into complex truths about human nature. Così fan tutte fascinates us not only because its score is “as consistently glorious and elevating as any ever written,” in the words of conductor-scholar Jane Glover, but because its sexual politics are as wittily […]

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SUSPENSION OF BELIEF: Ballet presents Romantic-era tale of love and death

From a purely visual point of view, Lady of the Camellias is one of the most appealing full-length works in the current repertory of the Kansas City Ballet, which in recent years has focused much attention on more “family-oriented” stories. Val Caniparoli’s choreography for this retelling of a semi-autobiographical Alexandre Dumas fils tale will delight the […]

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FROM TARTINI TO TAOS: UMKC presents singular collaboration

Followers of contemporary classical music are accustomed to experiments in fusing Old World traditions with those of rock, jazz, folk, even hip-hop. These projects “click” only about ten percent of the time, at best, and when they do it’s often difficult to articulate exactly why. Listening to the Innova Recording of The River, a 60-minute […]

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WOLF IN MASCOT’S CLOTHING: Symphony’s education programs reach thousands in KC each year

An orchestra is more like a sports team than you might imagine. If a lone violinist starts a piece two beats before everybody else, you’re bound for disaster. If an athlete grandstands to the detriment of a team effort, defeat lurks. These simple truths form one of the premises of the Kansas City Symphony’s upcoming […]

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FOUR GO FORTH: Kansas City’s new resident quartet aims high

Determination is usually the main factor that decides whether or not a new arts group will thrive. That’s why there’s good reason to believe that Opus 76, Kansas City’s new “resident string quartet,” is on course to blaze a trail as the most significant local professional quartet in recent memory. Now in its first season, […]

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RUSSIAN SOULS, AMERICAN ACCENTS: Symphony to feature homegrown violinist in all-Russian program

Maria Ioudenitch has spent most of her 23 years in Overland Park and, more recently, in Philadelphia and Boston, but she feels her artistic soul is Russian to the core. And, in fact, the aspiring violin virtuoso, who performs the Glazunov Concerto with the Kansas City Symphony from January 11th through the 13th, was born […]

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