Explore Calendar January/February 2023Dec 27, 2022 08:20AM ● By Omaha Magazine
BRIAN STOKES MITCHELL January 21 at the Lied Center for Performing Arts, Lincoln. Dubbed “the last leading man” by The New York Times, two-time Tony Award winner Brian Stokes Mitchell has enjoyed a career spanning more than 40 years in Broadway, television, film, recordings, and concert appearances with the country’s finest conductors and orchestras.
Holdrege-Empire Wild January 21 at the Tassel Performing Arts Center, Holdredge. A genre-bending, crossover trio, Empire Wild has brought their signature mix of original music, inventive covers, and twists on the classical canon to audiences across the country.
LINCOLN FRIENDS OF CHAMBER MUSIC- SEASON 58: THE AXIOM STRING QUARTET January 22 at the Lied Center for Performing Arts, Lincoln. The Axiom Quartet is a dynamic and passionate string quartet that explores all genres of music with no boundaries or limits. Axiom Quartet has become known around Texas for its inventive programs that mix music from the classical canon with transcriptions, and new compositions along with the inclusion of popular rock, electronic, indie, jazz, and pop genres in a single concert experience.
E.N. THOMPSON FORUM PRESENTS: MARTHA SCHWARTZ January 23 at the Lied Center for Performing Arts, Lincoln. Martha Schwartz is a landscape architect, urbanist, and climate activist. Her work and teaching focuses on the urban public realm landscape and its importance in making cities “climate ready.” For more than 40 years, Martha Schwartz Partners has completed projects around the globe, from site-specific art installations to public spaces, parks, master-planning and reclamation.
ON YOUR FEET January 27-28 at the Lied Center for Performing Arts, Lincoln. The inspiring true story about heart, heritage and two people who believed in their talent—and each other—to become an international sensation: Gloria and Emilio Estefan.
Travis Anderson Trio February 4 at the Merryman Performing Arts Center, Kearney. A Minneapolis-based ensemble, the Travis Anderson Trio, gives a modern twist to classic jazz and pops favorites. This creative ensemble will perform a familiar program of 1960s TV theme music, Disney hits, and pops/jazz standards that will charm both seasoned connoisseurs and jazz newcomers alike.
VIVA LIED VEGAS February 4 at the Lied Center for Performing Arts, Lincoln. Don’t miss the fabulous new Vegas-inspired fundraiser at the Lied Center with four stages of live entertainment. Enjoy a martini on the Main Stage to the smooth sounds of jazz with Kathy Morrow & Friends, eat your heart out with Joseph Hall as Elvis in the Commons, or shake your tail feather to the 402 high-octane dance band in the Carson Theatre. Then, visit the High Roller Lounge and be serenaded to Sinatra style tunes by Bobby Gadoury while you try your hand at blackjack, craps, roulette, and more.
PREDICTOR: WORLD PREMIERE February 10-19 at the Lied Center for Performing Arts, Lincoln. The real-life story of Margaret Crane who, in 1967, defied all odds and expectations to become the inventor of the first home pregnancy test. Energetic and theatrical, PREDICTOR illuminates Meg Crane's lost contributions to both science and design, celebrating her persistence, her relentless positivity, and her desire to make the world a better place—for everyone.
JAZZMEIA HORN February 14 at the Lied Center for Performing Arts, Lincoln. Winner of the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Jazz Album and recently voted as No. 1 Jazz Vocal Album by NPR Music’s Jazz Critics Poll, Jazzmeia Horn makes her Lied Center debut in a Valentine’s Day concert you won’t want to miss.
BLAKE SHELTON Special guests Carly Pearce and Jackson Dean February 16 at Pinnacle Bank Arena, Lincoln. Superstar entertainer Blake Shelton returns to the road in 2023 for his headlining Back to the Honky Tonk Tour. Set to join the lineup are reigning ACM Female Artist / CMA Female Vocalist of the year Carly Pearce and rising artist Jackson Dean.
REZA: EDGE OF ILLUSION February 18 at the Lied Center for Performing Arts, Lincoln. REZA has taken the art of illusion to a new level, delivering his rock concert-style magic show to audiences across the globe. His new production “Edge of Illusion” features the most incredible cutting-edge magic in existence today, with breathtaking, signature grand-scale illusions, including making motorcycles and helicopters materialize out of thin air, live on stage.
Parallel Exit February 22 at the Fairbury Junior/Senior High School, Fairbury. A New York City-based nouveau vaudeville company of three. The ensemble combines song and dance with slapstick physical comedy to produce a delightful show for any audience.
LEGALLY BLONDE THE MUSICAL February 23-25 at the Lied Center for Performing Arts, Lincoln. Fabulously fun and international award-winning Legally Blonde - The Musical is the ultimate Broadway tribute to girl power. The story follows the transformation of Elle Woods as she tackles stereotypes, sexism, snobbery, and scandal in pursuit of her dreams—proving that you can be legally blonde and still the smartest person in the room. This contemporary, sassy musical moves at a breakneck pace driven by memorable songs and explosive dances. Legally Blonde - The Musical warms the heart by proving that self-discovery can be way too much fun and hilarious to boot.
CATS January 3-8 at the Des Moines Civic Center, Des Moines. The record-breaking musical spectacular by Andrew Lloyd Webber that has captivated audiences in over 30 countries and 15 languages, is headed to the Des Moines Civic Center. CATS tells the story of one magical night when an extraordinary tribe of cats gathers for its annual ball to rejoice and decide which cat will be reborn.
SOMI January 19 at the Temple Theater, Des Moines. Somi Kakoma—the vocalist, composer, and writer born in Illinois to parents who emigrated from Rwanda and Uganda—discovered her musical identity traversing the cultural bridge between America and Africa. That sense of discovery continues to guide a career in which she has forged a musical signature, channeling the jazz, soul, and the music of her roots.
COLLISION OF RHYTHM January 21 at the Des Moines Civic Center, Des Moines. A duo comprised of tap-dancing classical virtuoso, Aaron Williams, and beatbox-juggling keynote speaker, Bronkar Lee. They’ve previously worked with companies like GoPro, Coca Cola, and Google, and have been featured on The Tonight Show, America’s Got Talent, and in SuperBowl commercials. Both have achieved internet fame with “rhythmic” viral videos.
NATE BARGATZE January 22 at the Des Moines Civic Center, Des Moines. Hailing from Old Hickory, Tennessee, stand-up comedian Nate Bargatze is selling out shows across the world on his lauded Raincheck Tour. Bargatze’s comedy is both clean and relatable, ensuring the whole family can enjoy a night of gut-busting humor.
HARRY POTTER AND THE GOBLET OF FIRE IN CONCERT January 27-28 at the Des Moines Civic Center, Des Moines. Grab your broom and prepare for the trials ahead. The Triwizard Tournament comes to Hogwarts in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire in Concert. Relive the magic of Harry Potter soaring across the big screen in high-definition, accompanied by the Des Moines Symphony performing Patrick Doyle’s unforgettable score live at the Des Moines Civic Center.
MISS GAY IOWA USOFA 2023 January 28 at the Temple Theater, Des Moines. Miss Gay Iowa USofA is proud to celebrate its 34th year honoring some of the best female impersonation artists in the state of Iowa, as they compete to be the state representative on the national stage. Join us as we honor the reign of national top 12 finalist, Destiny Michelle and explore “The Wizardly World of USofA” to discover who shall be the next to wear the crown on their journey to the national contest in Dallas, Texas. The evening will feature the reigning Miss Gay USofA, Tonica Cavalli of Houston, Texas plus a host of former winners and special guests.
FORBIDDEN BROADWAY: THE NEXT GENERATION January 31-February 5 at the Temple Theater, Des Moines. From FROZEN to PHANTOM to WICKED, this all-new fall-down funny, satirical roast of over 30 Broadway hits features outrageous costumes, silly spoofs of the songs you know by heart and madcap impressions by a stellar cast. Recent spoofs include HAMILTON, DEAR EVAN HANSEN and MOULIN ROUGE. It’s never been more fun poking fun at your favorite musicals and stars.
SIX February 7 - 19 at the Des Moines Civic Center, Des Moines. From Tudor Queens to Pop Icons, the SIX wives of Henry VIII take the microphone to remix five hundred years of historical heartbreak into a Euphoric Celebration of 21st century girl power. This new original musical is the global sensation that everyone is losing their head over.
COMEDY XPERIMENT February 10-11 at the Stoner Theater, Des Moines. Comedy XPeriment, Des Moines’s longest-lasting improv troupe returns to the Stoner Theater. Celebrating 17 years of bringing laughs to audiences of all sizes, CXP is thrilled to be performing for the home crowd once again. Comedy XPeriment specializes in improv based on suggestions from the audience—no two performances are the same. The group cooks up hilarity in a sports-themed format, a series of non-sensical scenes, or even a short 1-Act play.
IN THE YEAR OF THE BOAR & JACKIE ROBINSON February 18 at the Temple Theater, Des Moines. In 1947, the Year of the Boar, a young girl leaves China with her parents for a new beginning in America...but it's far more difficult than she expected. Though her classmates in Brooklyn come from a variety of backgrounds, Shirley is the only one who doesn't speak English, and she worries that she will never have a friend. Yet, through a new love of the Brooklyn Dodgers (especially her hero, Jackie Robinson), Shirley begins to feel at home. Based on the book by Bette Bao Lord and told through humor, Chinese and English, and a rich multimedia staging, the play celebrates the bravery and sacrifice of those who bring new perspectives to our country.
THE SIMON & GARFUNKEL STORY February 25 at the Des Moines Civic Center, Des Moines. The immersive concert-style theater show chronicles the amazing journey shared by the folk-rock duo, Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel. It tells the story from their humble beginnings as Tom & Jerry to their incredible success as one of the best-selling music groups of the '60s to their dramatic split in 1970. It culminates with the famous “The Concert in Central Park” reunion in 1981 with more than half a million fans in attendance.
LARRY MCCRAY February 26 at the Temple Theater, Des Moines. Larry McCray first emerged on the international stage with his debut release on Point Blank/Virgin in 1990. Through the 1990’s, and behind 4 albums on that label, he quickly ascended the hierarchy of the blues and roots world—not just as a guitarist who could slay—but also as an impassioned singer who could knock out audiences with his soulful, barrel-chested vocals.
2023 Cars For Charities Rod & Customs Charities Car Show January 13-15 at the Century II Performing Arts & Convention Center, Wichita. The 66th Annual Cars for Charities is chocked full of events for the whole family, featuring a free kids zone with face painting, a coloring stations, and special appearances by their favorite cartoon characters.
April 4th, 1968: Dare To Dream January 14 at the Lied Center, Lawrence. Written and directed by local playwright Rita Rials, April 4th, 1968: Dare To Dream honors the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the civil rights movement, bringing to life the joy, pain, sorrow and hope of those who dared to dream. This dynamic production includes music essential to the life of Dr. King and the civil rights movement, and it will inspire audiences to keep the dream alive.
The Great Lover January 21 at the White Concert Hall, Topeka. The Topeka Symphony is delighted to offer Chen Yi’s beautiful “Romance and Dance,” featuring concertmaster Zsolt Eder and assistant concertmaster Kenya Patzer. The Young Artist Competition Winner will also be crowned, and Sibelius’s Second Symphony, which Sibelius described as “a confession of the soul,” is set to be performed. The symphony is grandiose, profound, and ecstatic, and its love themes range from love of country to a meditation on Don Juan, the notorious Italian lover.
Wichita Bridal Expo January 21-22 at the Century II Performing Arts & Convention Center, Wichita. The Wichita Bridal Expo features more than 150 wedding professionals and drawing thousands of brides from all over the state of Kansas—the largest live wedding fashion stage show in the state. This area's top wedding professionals gather, while guest enjoy tastings, decor, photographers, DJ sets, and more. Visitors have a chance to win two $7,000 grand prizes, among others.
Afternoon In Paris January 22 at the Century II Performing Arts & Convention Center, Wichita. Escape Wichita's winter with dreams of springtime in Paris with this concert of enchanting French music. The music of 19th-century French composer, Louise Farrenc, has emerged in recent years with newfound and deserved respect among musicians and audiences. Considered her supreme masterwork, discover her Third Symphony charged with turbulence and romanticism.
Hairspray February 2 at the Lied Center, Lawrence. You Can’t Stop the Beat! Hairspray, Broadway’s Tony Award-winning musical comedy phenomenon is back on tour. Join 16-year-old Tracy Turnblad in 1960s Baltimore as she sets out to dance her way onto TV’s most popular show. Can a girl with big dreams (and even bigger hair) change the world?
Blue Electra February 11 at the Century II Performing Arts & Convention Center, Wichita. Multiple adventures await in the music of this concert. Superstar violinist Anne Akiko Meyers ascends with Blue Electra, the brand-new violin concerto from Grammy Award-winning composer Michael Daugherty. American & Kansas icon Amelia Earhart and her Lockheed 10-E Electra inspire the music and audience imagination in this symphonic adventure.
Blue Man Group February 13-14 at the Lied Center, Lawrence. It’s everything you know and love about BLUE MAN GROUP—signature drumming, colorful moments of creativity and quirky comedy—the men are still blue, but the rest is all new. Featuring pulsing and original music, custom-made instruments, surprise audience interaction and hilarious absurdity, join the Blue Men in a joyful experience that unites audiences of all ages.
KBA Winterfest23 February 17-18 at the Wichita Marriott Hotel, Wichita. The Kansas Bluegrass Association will be throwing its annual festival, which will include songwriting workshops, activities for kids, and fun throughout.
Aretha: A Tribute February 18 at the Century II Performing Arts & Convention Center, Wichita. A Tribute to the Queen of Soul, this program features Broadway veteran Capathia Jenkins and Darryl Williams performing the iconic hits “Respect,” “Think,” “A Natural Woman,” “Chain of Fools,” “Amazing Grace,” and more. Broadway guests are joined by Wichita's own gospel choir A.R.I.S.E. and the talents of local celebrities Injoy Fountain, Koko Blanton, and Jaslyn Alexander.
Uptown Nights January 6-8 at the Kauffman Center for Performing Arts, Kansas City. Byron Stripling is heralded as a “powerhouse trumpeter gifted with a soulful voice and a charismatic onstage swagger.” He’ll explore a magical world of song and dance popularized in the clubs of the ’40s and ’50s. Inspired by Harlem’s famed musical hot spots like The Cotton Club and The Savoy, this swingin’ night of musical sensations focuses on Harlem’s heyday — a time when Duke Ellington’s orchestra was the house band, and Cab Calloway, Ella Fitzgerald, and Ethel Waters showcased the classics.
The Fountains and Pines of Rome, Plus Mozart's Third Violin Concerto January 13-15 at the Kauffman Center for Performing Arts, Kansas City. Mason Bates has carved out a reputation as an innovator and he delivers on that promise with Garages of the Valley, a trek through the imagined music of Silicon Valley’s tech geniuses in their garage development days. Bates conjures a quicksilver world out of exotic textures and tunings, taking the music from low-tech garage to hyperkinetic virtual reality. Written when he was a teenager, Mozart’s Third Violin Concerto is a wonderful gem filled with some of his most irrepressibly joyous music. New Zealand-born violinist Geneva Lewis shares her youthful exuberance—and serious artistry—in performances sure to coax a smile. Guest conductor Francesco Lecce-Chong will be the tour guide for a visit to Rome, via Respighi’s colossal Fountains of Rome and Pines of Rome. Respighi depicts nature and cascades of water in that “other” City of Fountains before turning his attention to the centuries-old trees which so characteristically dominate the Roman landscape. Join Maestro Lecce-Chong and the Kansas City Symphony for this stupendous adventure.
Tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. January 16 at the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, St. Louis. The IN UNISON Chorus and Director Kevin McBeth join the SLSO and Music Director Stéphane Denève for a free, one-hour concert honoring the legacy Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Marvel Studios’ Black Panther in Concert Film + Live Orchestra January 25-28 at the Kauffman Center for Performing Arts, Kansas City. In 2018, Marvel Studios’ “Black Panther” quickly became a global sensation and cultural phenomenon, showing a new dimension of what superhero films could be. Rolling Stone raved, “The film lights up the screen with a full-throttle blast of action and fun. That’s to be expected. But what sneaks up and floors you is the film’s racial conscience and profound, astonishing beauty.” Now audiences can relive the excitement of T’Challa becoming king and battling Killmonger, all while the Kansas City Symphony performs Ludwig Göransson’s Oscar and Grammy-winning score live to picture.
Shen Yun Presented by Falun Dafa Association of Kansas City January 27-29 at the Muriel Kauffman Theatre, Kansas City. Through breathtaking dance and music, Shen Yun weaves a wondrous tapestry of heavenly realms, ancient legends, and modern heroic tales, taking audiences on a journey through 5,000 years of Chinese culture. Its stunning beauty and tremendous energy leave audiences uplifted and inspired.
Bernstein and Sibelius January 28-29 at the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, St. Louis. The great civilization that once flourished just across the Mississippi River comes to musical life in James Lee III’s new work, written for the SLSO. Violinist James Ehnes returns with Bernstein’s exploration of love, inspired by Greek philosophers. Sibelius’ Second Symphony glints and gleams, becoming synonymous with the fight for Finnish independence.
Philharmonia Fantastique January 29 at the Kauffman Center for Performing Arts, Kansas City. An animated film that flies through the instruments of the orchestra to explore the age-old connection of creativity and technology. This collaboration between composer and DJ Mason Bates, director and sound designer Gary Rydstrom, and animator Jim Capobianco is guided by a magical sprite who makes violin strings vibrate, brass valves slice air, and drumheads resonate. Imaginatively blending traditional and modern animation styles, it is a kinetic and cutting-edge guide to the orchestra.
Happy Hour Concert February 1 at the Kauffman Center for Performing Arts, Kansas City. Musicians of the Kansas City Symphony present free Happy Hour concerts that will add delightful music to the middle of one’s week. Bring friends and family to enjoy familiar classical works and exciting modern compositions, too. The beautiful Kauffman Center Brandmeyer Great Hall lobby will be serving drinks after work starting at 5pm, followed by a short and casual concert starting at 6pm.
Störling Dance Theater’s UNDERGROUND February 3-4 at the Muriel Kauffman Theatre, Kansas City. It’s time to go subterranean. Störling Dance Theater, together with UniteKC, presents the 16th annual performances of UNDERGROUND in Kansas City. Don’t miss the performance that has brought Kansas City together for 16 years and was chosen as one of the “Top 10 Performance of the Decade!” by Paul Horsley of The Independent. The story of the Underground Railroad is told like never before—capturing audiences’ hearts and reviving their spirits anew.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens In Concert February 3-5 at the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, St. Louis. Light and dark. New and old. The Star Wars saga begins anew with Rey, Poe, Finn, and Kylo Ren. The SLSO performs John Williams’ iconic score live to film as audiences travel to a galaxy far, far away…
My Fair Lady February 7-12 at the Muriel Kauffman Theatre, Kansas City. The story of Eliza Doolittle, a young cockney flower seller, and Henry Higgins, a linguistics professor who is determined to transform her into his idea of a “proper lady.” But who is really being transformed? Director Bartlett Sher’s glowing production is thrilling, glorious, and better than ever.
Cinderella February 17-19 at the Muriel Kauffman Theatre, Kansas City. Devon Carney’s world premiere choreography accompanied by Prokofiev’s captivating music brings this enchanting story to life. Enjoy a special twist on this favorite fairy tale where the characters are sure to delight. The Fairy Godmother, the pumpkin that becomes a carriage, fairies weaving spells, the handsome prince, and of course, the wicked stepmother and riotous, bumbling stepsisters all come together to tell this beloved story.
Star-Crossed Lovers February 4 at the Juanita K. Hammons Hall for Performing Arts, Springfield. As far as lovers go, Romeo and Juliet need no introduction. Their ill-fated love story endures through the centuries, and Prokofiev’s score for the ballet is stormy, passionate, and full of the fervent feelings of young love. Alas, tragedy never felt so right.
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Check with venue or event organizer to confirm.
This article originally appeared in the January/February 2023 issue of Omaha Magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.
This article originally appeared in the January/February 2023 issue of Omaha Magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.