Kansas City Ballet Patrons Society celebrated the end of a very successful 2017-2018 performance season with a cocktail reception on May 24 hosted at Roth Living. Attendees reminisced about Kansas City Ballet’s Diamond Jubilee Season, which featured the WORLD PREMIERE choreography of Devon Carney’s Romeo & Juliet, the Anniversary Dance Festival with six Kansas City premieres in two weekends featuring George Balanchine’s Diamonds and James Kudelka’s The Man in Black, and the WORLD PREMIERE choreography of Devon Carney’s Peter Pan.
Several Patrons’ Society members embarked on a weekend excursion May 4-6, 2018 to see Tulsa Ballet’s Signature Series featuring three thought-provoking works. Each ballet reminded audiences of the dangers in allowing history to repeat itself, and inspired them to keep moving forward.
- Kurt Jooss’ classic 1932 The Green Table is a powerful statement on war that continues to remain provocative and relevant today.
- Rassemblement (which translates to “gathering”) is Nacho Duato’s moving look at the “liberating powers of music and dance” as related to human rights issues.
- And, an exciting new work called Glass Figures by Resident Choreographer and audience favorite Ma Cong.
While in Tulsa the group had dinner with Ma Cong at Dalessandro’s where he decribed his inspiration and motivation for his piece. He met the group before the show as well.
The next day the group also visited the Gilcrease Museum which houses the world’s largest and most comprehensive collection of art and artifacts of the American West and the Philbrook Museum of Art (where these photos were taken) an art museum in the historic home of Waite and Genevieve Phillips with expansive formal gardens located in Tulsa, Oklahoma featuring two locations.
If you are interested in joining the Patrons’ Society or making an individual donation, please contact Brent Kimmi at firstname.lastname@example.org or 816.216.5608.
Kansas City Ballet’s Celebrate 60 event was on Sunday, April 8, 2018 at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts and honored the people of Kansas City Ballet’s past and present. Former and current dancers talked about each era of Kansas City Ballet: Michele Hamlet-Weith for founder, Tatiana Dokoudovska; Kimberly Cowen for Todd Bolender; Logan Pachciarz for William Whitener; and Tempe Ostergren for Devon Carney. In addition, Jeffrey J. Bentley thanked Muriel McBrien Kauffman and Julia Irene Kauffman for their steadfast commitment to Kansas City Ballet and the performing arts in our community. The formal presentation ended with a mini-performance by Kansas City Ballet School Academy students. The night continued in Brandmeyer Hall with champagne and desserts to celebrate the dedicated artists, staff, volunteers, patrons, donors, students, parents, and audiences for all that they do to support & create excellent performing arts in Kansas City! Links to videos about the four eras of Kansas City Ballet are at the end of this post.
Photos from the Celebration
Photography: Larry F. Levenson
Videos: The Four Eras
A special thank you to Mobank Private Wealth as the Supporting Sponsor of Kansas City Ballet’s 2018 New Moves performances Feb. 15-18. As part of their sponsorship, they received a pre-performance reception on opening night. For the past five years, Mobank Private Wealth has been a valued Ballet Business Council member and a generous annual contributor. They support the ballet’s mission to establish Kansas City Ballet as an indispensable asset of KC through exceptional performances, excellence in dance training and community education for all ages. It’s partnerships like these that help the ballet bring a love of dance to children and adults alike through educational programs like Reach Out And Dance (R.O.A.D.), performances, and more.
Kansas City Ballet also would like to congratulate Molly Kerr for her new role as Kansas City Ballet’s 2018 Business Leadership Council Co-Chair! Molly is the Senior Vice President and KC Market Executive for Mobank Private Wealth, a division of Mobank/BOK Financial. Molly has worked in this field for nearly 30 years overseeing investments, and trust and private banking.
Learn more about 2018 New Moves here:
The 23rd Annual Sugar Plum Fairy Children’s Ball, hosted by chair Mrs. Shelley Zucht, on December 9th transformed the Muehlebach Tower of the Kansas City Marriott Downtown into a beautiful floral garden. Guests enjoyed the Kansas City Youth Ballet performance, as well as holiday carols sung by Ginger Frost High School Honors Artists from the Lyric Opera. It was indeed all about the twinkle and sparkle of the holidays as guests were treated with incredible magicians, jugglers, beautiful face painting, photos with the Sugar Plum Fairy and shopping at the Nutcracker market. At the end of the feast, everyone was whisked away to the matinee performance of The Nutcracker presented by Kansas City Ballet and sponsored by Bank of America. It was a wonderful way to celebrate the start of the holiday season.
Photography by Brian Goodman
The Muriel Kauffman Theatre stage at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts was transformed into Romeo and Juliet’s Verona on Tuesday, October 17, 2017 for The Diamond Ball’s Private Dinner. Generous patrons of the 50th Annual Ballet Gala were awed by the décor and ambiance, courtesy of Larry Wheeler and Craig Sole, and enjoyed an exquisite four-course dinner.
On Saturday, October 7, the much anticipated Diamond Ball, presented by the Kansas City Ballet Guild, kicked off Kansas City Ballet’s 60th anniversary season at the beautiful InterContinental Kansas City At The Plaza. Guests enjoyed a lively cocktail party with delicious cuisine, breathtaking decor by Larry Wheeler Design and Craig Sole Design, crowd-pleasing entertainment by Kokomo, and two Kansas City Ballet mini-performances.
Melanie and Mike Fenske, senior vice president of the Global Facilities Group at Burns & McDonnell, chaired the event, which drew 450 formally-attired guests and grossed more than $476,000 for Kansas City Ballet. Loren Whittaker, a lecturer at The Kansas City Art Institute, and Tom Whittaker, chief legal officer at J.E. Dunn Construction and past president of Kansas City Ballet’s Board, served as the Honorary Chairmen.
2017 PIROUETTE award WINNER
Before guests danced the night away, Guild President Gigi Rose honored Elizabeth Hard Simms (the first Ballet Ball Co-Chairman in 1968) with the 2017 Pirouette Award for her commitment to the performing arts.
PHOTOS OF THE EVENING
Kansas City Ballet BARRE KC members and friends gathered on Friday, Sept. 8 for the Welcome Back Dancer Party with an open rehearsal at the Todd Bolender Center for Dance & Creativity followed by a Meet the Dancer party at ULAH, a men’s apparel and lifestyle store at 47th and Rainbow. Tasty treats were provided by Moxie Catering.
What is BARRE KC?
BARRE KC is the premier organization for young professionals interested in supporting the Kansas City Ballet. BARRE KC members enjoy the benefits of discounted ticket prices, networking, and special events with insider access to the Kansas City Ballet. They host The BARRE Soiree annually in March which raises funds to benefit Kansas City Ballet’s Reach Out And Dance, a dance in schools program. Last year, they raised $7,000 that went towards 16 new R.O.A.D. Scholarship Schools allowing the program to reach 800+ kids in the Kansas City Public School District and Turner School District.
How do I Join?
You can join BARRE KC here. Cost is $45 and is tax deductible. There are a host of benefits from ticket discounts to backstage tours to exclusive networking events. Now is the time to join!
Photography: Karen Badgett
Kansas City Ballet served as the host of the 9th annual conference for Dance/USA annual (June 7-10, 2017).
The conference began with an awards ceremony on Wednesday night at Union Station’s Grand Hall and Sprint Festival Plaza. As a special treat, KC Mayor Sly James welcomed the crowd. Awards and award winners included:
- 2017 Dance/USA Trustee Award presented to Douglas Sonntag
- 2017 Dance/USA Ernie Award presented to Gina Gibney
- 2017 Dance/USA Honoree Award presented to Cleo Parker Robinson
- 2017 Dance/USA Champion Award presented to KC’s own Billie Mahoney
Thursday started off with an address from Executive Director of Dance/USA Amy Fitterer, followed by a special welcome from National Endowment for the Arts Chairman Jane Chu, and then keynote by Dawn J. Fraser talking about the importance of storytelling at the Kauffman Center. Read more about the speakers here. Breakout sessions for attendees began that afternoon at The National WWI Museum and Memorial. The night was officially capped with a Kansas City New Dance Partners performance back at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts in the Muriel Kauffman Theatre. Owen/Cox Dance Group, Wylliams/Henry Contemporary Dance Company and Kansas City Ballet performed on the program.
Friday was filled with more breakout sessions in both the morning and afternoon at Kansas City Ballet’s Home,
Friday was filled with more breakout sessions in both the morning and afternoon at Kansas City Ballet’s Home,
the Todd Bolender Center for Dance & Creativity. Kansas City Ballet hosted the lunch. That evening, attendees were invited to a preview screening of the new documentary “No Dominion: The Ian Horvath Story”. The film celebrated the life and career of the late Ian ‘Ernie’ Horvath, a dancer, choreographer, director, and champion for both dance and AIDS awareness.
The conference concluded on Saturday with a final morning of breakout sessions at the Bolender Center, followed by a closing keynote speaker Jawole Willa Jo Zollar who was originally from KC before moving to NYC and founding Urban Bush Women.
Thank you to all of the 2017 Annual Conference Sponsors, Dance/USA, the Host Committee, and attendees. Kansas City Ballet is so grateful for the opportunity to host you.
On March 11, BARRE, Kansas City Ballet’s young professionals association, held its annual fundraiser at Pennway Place to raise money to support Reach Out And Dance (R.O.A.D.) programs. R.O.A.D. programs are one of the many ways KCB’s Community Engagement and Education department reaches out to the Kansas City community.
Special Thank Yous
The event MC was the lively Mark Walberg from “Antiques Roadshow” and included a special performance for KCB’s Second Company. Guests also enjoyed tasty bites from PB&J Restaurants and beverages from Martin City Brewery, Rock and Run Brewery, Crane Brewery, Amigoni Winery, and Jacquie Ward. And, of course, there was also dancing with DJ Jeremy Anderson.
Kendra Scott Jewelry and SPC Portrait Art donated pull bags that were a flat $60 and $99 respectively. Plus, a silent auction with 35 items from massages, to Chiefs, Sporting KC, and Royals tickets, and more helped raise nearly $7K.
The proceeds will be earmarked for 16 new R.O.A.D. Scholarship Schools allowing the program to reach 800+ kids in the Kansas City Public School District and Turner School District.
The BARRE Board was quite pleased with the event turn out of nearly 150 attendees.
Save the Date
And, mark your calendars, work has already begun on next year’s fundraiser scheduled for March 10, 2018.
Not yet a BARRE member? Memberships are still available here. If you purchase now, your membership will be good through July 2018.