Open Calendar

2021 President's Gala

The President's Gala - April 12, 2021, from 7 to 8:30 p.m.

Benefiting the UCM School of Visual and Performing Arts 
Recorded at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts
Guest Artist - David Cook, 2006 UCM alumnus, 2008 winner of "American Idol"

The University of Central Missouri’s 16th president, Roger J. Best, Ph.D., is reviving UCM’s President’s Gala as an avenue to celebrate student, faculty and alumni collaboration while raising needed funds to extend the educational benefits of the School of Visual and Performing Arts. This one-time streaming event, which is free and open to the public, will showcase students’ work from each of the school’s three areas of study: Art and Design, Music, and Theatre and Dance. The gala's theme this year is "The Arts Are the Future."

The special event will showcase music, theater, dance and visual arts – both separately and in unison – throughout the performance. Bryan Busby, chief meteorologist for KMBC-TV 9 News, will serve as the master of ceremonies. One highlight for the evening is a performance by celebrity UCM alumnus David Cook, ’06, whose musical career skyrocketed after he was named winner of the “American Idol” reality TV show in 2008. 

Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts

How to Watch

This one-time streaming performance is free and open to the public. 

Register below to receive the private URL for this performance. Please direct any questions to Pat Smithson at or 660-543-4263.


Register Now

UCM theater students

Sponsorship Information

As funding for higher education grows more scarce, the responsibility to preserve and enhance students’ exploration within their areas of study has shifted to the private sector. UCM now relies more than ever on the generosity of donors who are passionate about the arts to support the future of the university, its students and its alumni. We appreciate the support of our honorary chairs, Debby, '74, and Gary Ballard and Kevin, '82, and Jeanette Prenger. 

Become a Gala Sponsor Make a Donation


Thank you to our generous sponsors!


Thank You to our Anonymous Presidential Honors Sponsor! 



Thank You to our Producer-Level Sponsors! 

Husch Blackwell logo - a sponsor of 2020's President's Gala

Equity Bank sponsor

Missouri Arts Council Logo

An Anonymous Gift From a Friend of the Arts


Thank You to our Director-Level Sponsors!

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas City

Commerce Trust Company

Delta Dental

ECCO Select

Homer and Becky Kay family 

McCown Gordon Construction LLC

Mike and Rhonda Orndorff - Infinitas Coordinated Wealth Counsel



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