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Ovation Performance Series

About

This season features trailblazing artists whose creative work is infused with jump-out-of-your-seat energy. The season commences with award winning-playwright Laura Shamas’ new play  “Top Secret Deer Daycare”. It continues with Ghanaian master percussionist Tijan Dorwana, and a world-premiere performance by contemporary dance company CercaTrova.

Spring 2020 will feature actor Scott Cox’s one-man show “Shakespeare for EveryDay Living”, Boston Symphony violinist Catherine French with pianist Nina Ferrigno in an all Beethoven program, the return of the UCM School of Visual and Performing Arts to the Kauffman Centre for the UCM President's Gala "The Arts are the Future," and the renowned Mesner Puppet Theater presents “The Cat Came Back”.

Would you like to be a Concert Insider and get reminders about upcoming events via text or email?  Text “Concert” to 660-248-0496 or fill out this short form.

Performance Spaces

The University of Central Missouri is located in Warrensburg, Missouri. We are an hour drive southeast of Kansas City, and approximately 3 hours west of St. Louis.

Hart Recital Hall is located in the Utt Music Building. It is most easily accessible from Visitor Parking Lot 24 on South Street.

Highlander Theater is located in the Martin building. It is most easily accessible from Parking Lots 11 and 12, both located on Clark Street.

The Kauffman Performing Arts Center is located at 1601 Broadway, Kansas City, Missouri.

Sponsored by the Missouri Arts Council and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Tickets

Tickets for “Top Secret Deer Daycare”, Kyle Mullings & CercaTrova, and Mesner Puppet Theater will be available from the UCM Theater online ticketing system

Tickets for Kyle Mullins & Cerca Trova are available here: Kyle Mullins & Cerca Trova Tickets.

Tijan Dorwana, Catherine French/NinaFerrigno, and the Scott Cox show do not require tickets.

The President's Gala at the Kauffman Performing Arts Center is free, but tickets are required to reserve a seat. Tickets will be available in Spring 2020.

Raise the Curtain: Support the Ovation Performance Series

Do you enjoy having world-class music, theater, and dance artists perform in our community? 

Your gifts make programming such as this come to life. Help us “raise the curtain” by giving to the UCM Ovation Series fund.

For more information on donations, contact Mia Hynes at hynes@ucmo.edu or (660) 543-8900.

Fall 2019 Events

Top Secret Deer Daycare
by Laura Shamas winner of the University of Central Missouri
National Playwriting Competition for Theater for Youth.

Top Secret Deer Daycare

Dates:
October 23-26, 2019

Times:
October 23: 1:00pm
October 24: 10:00am, 7:30pm
October 25: 10:00am, 1:00pm, 7:30pm
October 26: 2:00pm

Location:
UCM Highlander Theater

Tickets:
Purchase tickets here

About:
After moving with her parents from the city into a new house at the edge of the forest, Jill discovers a naturalist boy named Stanley sitting just beyond her backyard fence line. Captivated and intrigued by the sudden emergence of a young fawn and its family, Jill and Stanley join forces to protect the colonies of deer who have grazed the land for generations. All is well until they receive news that a developer has purchased the forest and plans to build a larger “colony” of their own. Determined to preserve the beauty before them, the two vow to fight for their newfound friends and a greener world. Written by Laura Shamas Directed by Matthew Briggs.

Tijan Dorwana, master Ghanaian percussionist, and Alex Smith:
"Saving the Songwood: Global Consumption, Sustainability, and Value"

Tijan

Alex Smith

Date:
November 6, 2019

Time:
7:00pm

Location:
UCM Hart Recital Hall

Tickets:
Free admission, no tickets required 

About:
The gyil, a Ghanaian marimba, is caught at the intersection of environmental sustainability, global market strains, and its cultural relevance. People value the gyil’s primary material, the endangered Pterocarpus erinaceus (AKA African rosewood), not only for its musical properties, but also its cultural power, domestic usages, and spiritual significance. Complicating this scenario is the fact that international communities now desire these materials for their own music and furniture markets resulting in deforestation and over usage. Collectively, the over usage of gyil materials threatens gyil practice, its tourism industry, natural habitats, and continued access to these materials by indigenous populations in Ghana’s Northern Region. But, because of the gyil community’s dual role as an ambassador for Ghanaian music and culture and as a rosewood consumer, it is in a unique position to represent the unheard voice of its natural habitats under threat. Through depiction of these narratives with film, discussion, and live gyil performance and carving, this multi-media performance presentation encourages a more compassionate and proactive discussion of rosewood sustainability in the percussion community; one that considers the impacts of global consumption on indigenous communities and natural habitats in addition to instrument markets, and that organizes our larger percussion community into activism for us all.

Tijan Dorwana (Ghana) and Alex Smith (USA) are both performers, teachers, and instrument makers concerned about the future of rosewood in their respective communities; they began collaborating on their current project in summer 2012. Tijan Dorwana was a member of the Ghana Dance Ensemble from 1979-1985 and the Kalifi Dance Ensemble from 1985-1988. He began making gyil in 1988 and soon after became the resident gyil maker for Bernard Woma’s Dagara Music Center. Dorwana has toured throughout Western Europe, the USA, and China. Alex Smith is Assistant Professor of Percussion at University of Central Missouri (D.M.A. candidate, M.M. performance, and M.A. ethnomusicology; Michigan State University). Smith’s research is published in peer-reviewed journals such as International Journal of Music Education, Ecomusicology Review, Percussive Notes Online Research Edition, and Perspectives in New Music. Smith received a Fulbright-Hays DDRA Award to continue his work with Dorwana for eight months in Ghana in spring 2019.

This event is co-sponsored by the UCM African Performing Arts Fund.

Kyle Mullins and Cerca Trova Dance

Cerca Trova

Date:
November 9, 2019

Time:
3:00pm

Location:
Hart Recital Hall

Tickets:
Purchase tickets here

About:
Cerca Trova Dance is a contemporary repertory company founded by artistic director Kyle Mullins in 2018. Based in Kansas City, MO, Cerca Trova’s mission is to present dance works both new and historical by local, regional, and national choreographers. 

“Cerca trova”, meaning “seek and find”, defines Mullins’ approach to the creative process. Pose questions, search for answers, and move towards them. Collaboration and dialogue are essential to our process. Cerca Trova is committed to bringing high quality works of art to Kansas City audiences in both traditional and non-traditional venues.

This event co-sponsored by the UCM Dance Club and the UCM Center for Teaching and Learning Speaker Series grant.

Spring 2020 Events

Scott Cox, One-Man Theatre Show:
“And God Did Shake the Pear: Shakespeare for Everyday Living”

Scott Cox

Date:
February 8, 2020

Time:
7:30pm

Location:
UCM Highlander Theatre

Tickets:
Free admission, no tickets  required

About:
Scott Cox has been a stage actor in the Kansas City area for 25 years.  He also founded and facilitates Living Shakespeare, a prison theatre troupe at Lansing Correctional Facility, now in its fifth season. Recently he starred in Relevance Productions' critically acclaimed productions of Derek Trautwein's The Islander and Eugene O'Neill's Hairy Ape at the KC Fringe Festival, directed by Trevor Belt. Previously Cox spent three seasons acting with the Heart of America Shakespeare Festival, taught 12 seasons for the Coterie Theatre, acted in their touring show "Once Upon a Treasure Trunk" for two seasons, and appeared on the Coterie mainstage in Stuart Little.

Dr. Scott Cox, founder and director of Living Shakespeare, a rehabilitative theatre program at Lansing Correctional Facility, believes that The Bard has answers to almost any question one can pose on the subject of life. In this solo performance, he combines the one-man-show he has been performing for over twelve years with inspirational and humorous anecdotes from “inside the walls.” Prepare to be entertained, educated, and enlightened—and there may even be puppets. There will definitely be pears.

And God Did Shake the Pear debuted at the 2018 KC Fringe Festival. It won the "Best of Venue" designation for the most-attended production, and has since enjoyed productions at Lenexa's City Center Live, Benedictine College, Riverwood Winery, and the Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre as well as the New York City Fringe Festival. 

This event is co-sponsored by the Meridith Harmon Sauer Guest Artist Series.

Catherine French, violin and Nina Ferrigno, piano:
Three Beethoven Sonatas

Catherine French

Nina Ferrigno

Date:
March 9, 2020

Time: 
7:00pm

Location:
Hart Recital Hall

Tickets:
Free admission, no tickets  required

About:
Catherine French and Nina Ferrigno will be celebrating the 250th anniversary of Beethoven’s birth with a program of three sonatas for violin and piano.  

Canadian violinist Catherine French, a member of the Boston Symphony Orchestra since 1994, has established herself as a versatile and accomplished soloist and chamber musician in addition to her distinguished orchestral career. Ms. French garnered the grand prize at the Canadian Music Competition, the CBC Radio Competition, and the National Competitive Festival of Music, Canada's three major music competitions. She has performed as soloist with many leading Canadian orchestras and given recitals throughout North America and Argentina. Ms. French was featured with the Juilliard Orchestra and James de Preist, the Boston Pops and John Williams, and at Carnegie Hall in her debut with David Gilbert.

Lauded for her "superbly lyric" playing and her "amazing level of artistry" by Strad Magazine, Ms. French is a dedicated member of the Calyx Piano Trio and Collage New Music. Ms. French has recorded for Albany Records and is featured in Donald Sur's Berceuse for Violin and Piano with pianist Christopher Oldfather.

Nina Ferrigno, described by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch as "a magnificent pianist," has appeared in major concert venues throughout North America. She has performed with the St. Louis Symphony, Boston Symphony, Boston Pops, and the Boston Modern Orchestra Project (BMOP), with whom she has been a core member since its inception. 

Her festival appearances include those at Tanglewood, Banff, Norfolk, the Skaneateles Festival, and the Carolina Chamber Music Festival. Her appearance with members of the St. Louis Symphony at the Pulitzer Foundation was touted as "the high point" of the evening by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. 

UCM President's Gala

Presidents Gala

Date:
March 30, 2020

Time:
8:00pm

Location:
Kauffman Performing Arts Center

Tickets:
Available in Spring 2020

About:
Join host President Roger Best, KMBC-TV 9 meteorologist (and percussion player) Bryan Busby, and UCM Alumnus and American Idol winner David Cook ('06), as they celebrate "The Arts are the Future" with UCM faculty and students of the School of Visual and Performing Arts.

https://www.ucmo.edu/college- of-arts-humanities-and-social- sciences/college-highlights/ presidents-gala/

The Mesner Puppet Theater Presents “The Cat Came Back”

Cat Came Back

Date:
April 4, 2020

Time:
1:00pm

Tickets:
Link coming soon

About:
The Ovation Series concludes with the renowned Mesner Puppet Theater and their production of “The Cat Came Back”. 

Mesner Puppet Theater is a globally known professional puppet theatre company based in Kansas City, Missouri. The company performs a local season of plays as well as tours nationally and internationally to more than 30,000 audience members every year;  their Christmas show “The Nativity” is one of the most beloved events in the Kansas City cultural calendar. The company performs and builds all of the puppets and scenery for every show.  

At the conclusion of “The Cat Came Back,"  audience members are invited to stay for a “behind the scenes” presentation with Question & Answer session with the puppeteer. 

This event is co-sponsored by the UCM Community Music Program.

Sponsored by the Missouri Arts Council and the National Endowment for the Arts.

 

Missouri Arts Council Logo

 

National Endowment for the Arts Logo

Contact

Mia Hynes
Director, Ovation Performance Series

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