Carl Stovall knows how important the Black Arts Festival is to the community. Founded in 1968 during the civil rights movement, its original mission was to give black families a respite from unrest both locally and nationally by offering an outlet for enjoying art and entertainment in a safe and supportive environment. The event has always been held, despite financial struggles in recent years. This year’s festival promises new activities and a greater opportunity for dialogue about several salient issues.
Once upon a time, a priest from Mexico serving in the United States taught the struggling kids in his parish to dance. The young people turned out to be such naturals that they eventually took the show on the road. Their traveling troupe will be in Wichita on Saturday to present “The Wonders of Mexico.”
Going to Crown Uptown’s “Some Enchanted Evening” is like stepping back half a century to when the love affair with the music of Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein was in full swing, thanks to the culture-changing successes of “Okahoma,” “South Pacific,” “The King and I” and “Carousel.”
The Wichita Art Museum board of trustees has adopted a master plan to redesign the grounds around the building and now wants to do the project all at once rather than phase in the work as originally planned, said director Patricia McDonnell.
Director/choregrapher Jon Engstrom has helmed more than 25 shows in his career, from Broadway to Europe and Asia. But when it comes to mounting yet one more production of the classic “42nd Street” – where he got his start – he sees himself as a caretaker rather than an innovator.
Local rock band Annie Up will headline the next installment of the KEYN Concert Series, which continues Fridays through Aug. 11 at the WaterWalk, 515 S. Main. The concert starts at 8 p.m., and gates open at 7 p.m. with food sales and pre-concert entertainment. Parking is free in the WaterWalk parking garage. Admission is free, and attendees are encouraged to bring lawn chairs. For more information, visit www.keyn.com/.
Bryan Pinkall, 28, a 2013 graduate of the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music and Dance, is one of just two Americans on the team producing the Olympics opening ceremony. He promises “an astounding production,” and as a historian of these events, he should know.
It’s unusual these days to hear classical music at the Trey McIntyre Project headquarters – or to see dancers working on pointe shoes. You’re more likely to hear popular tunes from the best hip, esoteric contemporary songwriters and dancers in soft ballet shoes working McIntyre’s intricate moves.