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Cathy Barnett and Jessica Biernaki Jensen create laughs in "Inspecting Carol." Photo credit: Cynthia Levin.
Cathy Barnett and Jessica Biernaki Jensen create laughs in "Inspecting Carol." Photo credit: Cynthia Levin.

Every week, the University of Missouri-Kansas City offers an array of on-campus activities. It’s nothing new. UMKC has a long legacy of hosting countless culturally enriching events. These activities are part of what has made UMKC an arts and culture powerhouse. The influence of UMKC-based and UMKC-trained artists extends well beyond the campus’ edge, so their activities are listed here as well.

Featured Event: “Inspecting Carol”

Tiny Tim is no longer tiny. Scrooge wants to do the whole play in Spanish.

Everyone’s favorite Christmas play goes horribly – and hilariously — awry in the Unicorn Theatre and UMKC Theatre’s co-production of “Inspecting Carol.”

In “Inspecting Carol,” a struggling Midwestern theatre company is mounting its annual production of “A Christmas Carol” when they learn their government funding, and their future, is on the line. When a wide-eyed wannabe actor gets mistaken for an inspector from the National Endowment for the Arts, good intentions backfire.

“Inspecting Carol’s” Director, Theodore Swetz, currently serves as the Patricia McIlrath Endowed Professor in UMKC’s MFA acting program. UMKC theater students Vincent Wagner, Jessica Biernaki Jensen, Thomas E. Tucker, and John Van Winkle join the cast as part of the UMKC partnership. Five UMKC graduate students contribute their behind-the-scenes talents in this production: Lee Berhorst (scenic design), Douglas Macur (lighting design), Lauren Gaston (costume design), Uldarico Sarmeinto (prop design) and Alex Glamyan (sound design).

Producing Artistic Director Cynthia Levin is in her 34th season with Unicorn Theatre where she has served as a director, actor, designer or producer for more than 250 productions.

The show also features some of Kansas City’s best known comedic actors:

John Rensenhouse is a past president and currently serves on the board of Kansas City Actors Theatre. He has been eager to get this show produced professionally in Kansas City since performing it 20 years ago at the Pioneer Theatre Company in Salt Lake City. John plays the actor who plays the bilingual Scrooge.

Cathy Barnett portrays the matriarch of the troubled theatre. You can watch for similarities to “Maxine”, the character Cathy voices on Hallmark cards. Cathy is also the voice of “Jill” on Garmin GPS devices.

Robert Gibby Brand has performed 19 seasons of “A Christmas Carol” at The Rep. In this production he plays Sidney Carlton, the actor who plays Marley. That adds a sixth role to his history with the holiday classic.

Phil Fiorini plays Cratchit, who can barely carry the too-big Tiny Tim, and character actors Nancy Marcy, Patrick Du Laney, Marilyn Lynch, and Bob Linebarger add to the comedy. Beckett Pfanmiller as Luther plays Tiny Tim.

What: UMKC Theatre and the Unicorn Theatre present “Inspecting Carol.”
Where: Unicorn Theatre, 3828 Main Street, Kansas City, Mo.
When: November 28 – December 23.
UMKC Connection: This is a co-production with UMKC Theatre.
Get more details.

Friday, November 30 – Thursday, December 6

What: UMKC Theatre presents “A Devil Inside.”
Where: Studio 116, James C. Olson Performing Arts Center, 4949 Cherry Street
Kansas City, Mo.
When: Friday, Nov. 30- Dec 9
Get more details.

What:Look Attractive.” The UMKC Gallery of Art presents a curated exhibition that features work from seven national and international artists who address the subject of attraction.
Where: 204 Fine Arts Building, 5015 Holmes Street, Kansas City, Mo.
When: Exhibit runs through January 14.
Get more details.

What: Master’s Recital with Bridget Clonts on piano.
Where: Grant Recital Hall, 5227 Holmes Street, Kansas City, Mo.
When: Friday, November 30, 5 p.m.
It’s free. Get more details.

What: Master’s Recital with Jonathan Eddy on violin.
Where: Grace and Holy Trinity Cathedral, 415 West 13th Street, Kansas City, Mo.
When: Friday, November 30, 5 p.m.
It’s free. Get more details.

What: A doctoral recital with Yu Hui (Grace) Lai on flute.
Where: Grant Recital Hall, 5227 Holmes Street, Kansas City, Mo.
When: Friday, November 30, 7:30 p.m.
It’s free. Get more details.

What: Special Performance: Our Land, Our Lives. Experience the Heartland of America through the lens of photographer Terry Evans.
Where: Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, 4525 Oak Street Kansas City, Mo.
When: Saturday, December 1, 2 – 3:30 p.m.
Get more details.

What: A senior recital with Chris Williams, horn.
Where: Old Mission United Methodist Church, 5519 State Park Road, Fairway, KS.
When: Saturday, December 1, 2:30 p.m.
It’s free. Get more details.

What: A doctoral recital with Shih-Hsun Pan on viola.
Where: Grant Recital Hall, 5227 Holmes Street, Kansas City, Mo.
When: Saturday, December 1, 5 p.m.
It’s free. Get more details.

What: Conservatory Choirs: A Season for Giving. The Conservatory Choirs, directed by Robert Bode and Charles Robinson, present the tenth annual choral concert to benefit the Harvesters Community Food Network. Non-perishable food items and monetary contributions to Harvesters will be accepted.
Where: Visitation Catholic Church, 5141 Main Street, Kansas City, Mo.
When: Saturday, December 1, 7:30 p.m.
It’s free. Get more details.

What: A master’s recital with Joseph Bahamundi on guitar.
Where: Grant Recital Hall, 5227 Holmes Street, Kansas City, Mo.
When: Saturday, December 1, 7:30 p.m.
It’s free. Get more details.

What: An artist certificate recital with Andrea Stanton, horn
Where: Parkville Presbyterian Church, 819 Main Street, Parkville, Mo.
When: Sunday, December 2, 5 p.m.
It’s free. Get more details.

What: A doctoral recital with Virginia Q. Backman on flute.
Where: Grace and Holy Trinity Cathedral, 415 West 13th Street, Kansas City, Mo.
When: Sunday, December 2, 7:30 p.m.
It’s free. Get more details.

What: A doctoral recital with Dustin Williams on trumpet.
Where:
Rainbow Mennonite Church, 1444 Southwest Blvd, Kansas City, Ks.
When: Monday, December 3, 5 p.m.
It’s free. Get more details.

What: Conservatory Saxophone Quartets. Saxophone students of all levels perform in quartets, directed by Tim Timmons.
Where: Grant Recital Hall, 5227 Holmes Street, Kansas City, Mo.
When: Monday, December 3, 7:30 p.m.
It’s free. Get more details.

What: Conservatory Wind Ensemble, directed by Joseph Parisi and graduate conductor Hayes Bunch.
Where: Shawnee Mission Northwest High School, 12701 West 67th Street
Shawnee Mission, Ks.
When: Wednesday, December 5, 7:30 p.m.
It’s free. Get more details.

What: A doctoral recital with Bryan Pinkall, tenor.
Where: Grant Recital Hall, 5227 Holmes Street, Kansas City, Mo.
When: Wednesday, December 5, 7:30 p.m.
It’s free. Get more details.

What: Composers’ Guild. New music will be performed by student composers of all degree levels.
Where: Grant Recital Hall, 5227 Holmes Street, Kansas City, Mo.
When: Thursday, December 6, 7:30 p.m.
It’s free. Get more details.

What: Fall Opera: Lehár’s “The Merry Widow.” The Conservatory presents its Fall Opera—Franz Lehár’s “Die Lustige Witwe” (The Merry Widow). The opera will be directed by Marciem Bazell.
Where: White Recital Hall, James C. Olson Performing Arts Center, 4949 Cherry Street, Kansas City, Mo.
When: Thursday, December 6, 7:30 p.m.
Get more details.

What: The UMKC Art and Art History department is hosting an Open Studio/Open House. Six graduate and advanced undergraduate students will open their studio spaces to display their work.
Where: UMKC Studio House at 5301 Harrison, Kansas City, Mo.
When: Friday, November 30, 4 – 7 p.m.
It’s free. Get more details.

What: “A Christmas Carol.” Complete with lively musical numbers, ornate costuming and dashing stagecraft, Dickens’ classic tale of hope and redemption continues to remind us what’s really worth celebrating.
Where: Spencer Theatre, James C. Olson Performing Arts Center, Room 326, 4949 Cherry Street, Kansas City, Mo.
When: November 16 through December 26.
UMKC Connection: The Kansas City Repertory Theatre is the professional theatre in residence at UMKC.
Get more details.

What: “On Display: Exploring Body Image,” a multi-media, group invitational exhibition. The selected works explore the broad concept of “body image” through a variety of methods – urging viewers to rethink personal perceptions. 
Where:
Greenlease Gallery at Rockhurst University, 1100 Rockhurst Rd, Kansas City, Mo.
When: The exhibit will run through December 1.
UMKC Connection: UMKC Studio Art BA student Jason Carron’s work is included in the exhibit.
Get more details.

What: “Dwell(ing).” The artists in this show were simply given the title, “Dwell(ing).”
Where:
The Beggars Table Church and Gallery, 2010 Baltimore Ave.,

Kansas City, Mo.

When: The exhibit will run through December 31.
UMKC Connection: Art BA alum Christopher Clark’s work is included in the exhibit.
Get more details.

What: The Blue Gallery presents Rich Bowman’s “Passages,” Stephen Dinsmore’s “New Paintings” and Sarah Williams’ “Homeward.”
Where: The Blue Gallery, 118 Southwest Boulevard, Kansas City, Mo.
When: Exhibition runs through December 3.
UMKC Connection: Kelly Kuhn, co-owner of the Blue Gallery, is a UMKC graduate.
Get more details.

What: The New Theatre Restaurant’s “The Game’s Afoot,” features Marion Ross, best known for her role in “Happy Days.”
Where: The New Theatre Restaurant, 9299 Foster, Overland Park, Ks.
When: Now through January 20.
UMKC Connection: Co-owners Dennis Hennessy and Richard Carrothers are both UMKC graduates and both were presented this year with honorary doctorates by the UMKC College of Arts and Sciences.
Get more details.

What: The Coterie Theatre presents “Shrek the Musical,” based on the DreamWorks film.
Where: 2450 Grand Blvd., Suite 144, Kansas City, Mo.
When: Performances run through December 30.
UMKC Connection: Two UMKC graduate theatre students founded the Coterie.
Get more details.

What: Handel’s “Messiah.” The power of more than 250 voices combined with the impeccable acoustics of Helzberg Hall provides a triumphant experience of Handel’s majestic choral masterpiece, led by the esteemed Music Director of the Grand Rapids Symphony, David Lockington.
When: November 30 – December 2.
Where: Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts, 1601 Broadway, Kansas City, Mo.
UMKC Connection:
The Kansas City Symphony was founded by faculty member Karl Krueger in 1933.
Get more details.

 


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