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Backstage And Beyond

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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Richard Harriman, the William Jewell College professor who spent a half century building the Harriman-Jewell Series into one of the nation’s premier performing arts presenters, died July 15 at Liberty Hospital. He was 77. A gracious and amiable man who always greeted his audience members as they arrived at Series concerts, Harriman had suffered from […]

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George Harter has a message for all who will listen: Just as jazz, blues and rock ‘n’ roll are indigenous American musical genres, musical theater was born here, too. And just as those forms drew from elements as disparate as hymnody and African folk song, the musical drew from European operetta and other sources but brought those elements […]

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n the early years of the 17th century, at Nipe Bay in northeastern Cuba, three fishermen weathered a tumultuous storm and prayed for deliverance. When the skies cleared, they found a statue of a girl floating in the water, with an inscription saying I Am the Virgin of Charity. As a tribute to this miracle, La Virgen de […]

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Nobody knows for sure why the Basques came to Idaho, but come they did: The state boasts one of the largest Basque populations in the world. Even the mayor of Boise is Basque. So when choreographer Trey McIntyre was invited to create a piece celebrating this fascinating culture, he knew he had to immerse himself completely to […]

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It began with a circle. R. Keith Brumley’s scenic design for the Lyric Opera’s new production of Carmen took as its point of departure the circular shape of the bullfight ring of Act 4, where the searing drama of Bizet’s opera reaches its breaking point. In the three acts leading up to that wrenching moment, the curved walls that […]

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