Center for the Performing Arts hosts more than 300 performances each year,
showcasing a wide range of entertainers and genres. The Center is the performance home to three of the Kansas City
region’s leading groups: Kansas City Ballet, Kansas City Symphony, and Lyric
Opera of Kansas City.
Kauffman Center Presents
Designed to complement the programming of the Center’s three resident companies, the Kauffman Center Presents series showcases a wide variety of performance genres.
Artists from diverse styles perform 20-25 events each year in the Kauffman Center Presents series. Poet Rupi Kaur entertained a sold-out crowd in Helzberg Hall for the release of her second book.
Punch Brothers at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts (2018-09-09) by Cody BostonKauffman Center for the Performing Arts
Artists from the rock, jazz, soul, country and classical worlds have performed for Kauffman Center Presents, like the Punch Brothers, pictured here. Notable past artists include Aretha Franklin, Willie Nelson and John Legend.
Live in the Lobby Pre-Show at the Kauffman Center (2018-09-09) by Cody BostonKauffman Center for the Performing Arts
Local artists perform for audience members before Kauffman Center Presents shows in a new series, Live in the Lobby. Here, Amado Espinoza entertains the audience before a concert.
Future Stages Festival at the Kauffman Center - 5th Annual Event (2018-06-10) by Jillian ShoptawKauffman Center for the Performing Arts
As part of the Kauffman Center’s Open Doors program, more than 700 youth artists perform on the Center's stages each year for Future Stages Festival. The free, annual community event has welcomed 25,000 guests since launching in 2014.
Future Stages Festival shines a spotlight on youth artists from many performance styles, including dance, choral music, theater and more. More than 3,500 Kansas City youth artists have performed at the free, one-day annual event.
The Kauffman Center hosts many special events throughout the year. During a 5-year celebration of the Center opening, singers from the Lyric Opera of Kansas City’s Resident Artist Program performed in Helzberg Hall.
Kansas City music and dance icons the McFadden Brothers – Lonnie and Ronnie McFadden – performed a concert for Kauffman Center members in Helzberg Hall.
Kansas City Ballet
Kansas City Ballet is in residence at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts’ Muriel Kauffman Theatre. Founded in 1957, the Ballet enriches the cultural landscape of the Kansas City region through exceptional performances, touring engagements, community engagement and education activities, and Kansas City Ballet School.
Kansas City Ballet dancers in "Swan Lake" at the Kauffman Center - 2 by Brett Pruitt & East Market StudiosKauffman Center for the Performing Arts
Under the leadership of Artistic Director Devon Carney and Executive Director Jeffrey J. Bentley, the 30-member professional ballet Company performs a variety of full-length story ballets and mixed repertory programs per year with a focus on the rich history of American ballet.
Eclectic programming ranges from classics to contemporary ballets. Classic works have included “Romeo and Juliet,” featuring dancers Molly Wagner and Liang Fu.
Contemporary works have included “Diving Into the Lilacs,” with choreography by Yuri Possokhov. The ballet premiered in 2009, with its Kansas City Ballet premiere in May 2016.
Each Ballet season includes The Nutcracker—completely reimagined with new sets by Alain Vaes, costumes by Holly Hynes, lighting by Trad A Burns and choreography by Mr. Carney. The company was invited to perform this production of The Nutcracker in 2017 at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in D.C.
Dancers Lilliana Hagerman, Dillon Malinski and Ryan Jolicoeur-Nye perform "Petal,” with choreography by Helen Pickett.
The Kansas City Ballet Company has earned the respect of the national dance community as well as the city and region as an organization devoted to excellence, committed to the best interests of its artists and willing to take artistic risks.
Tatiana Dokoudovska founded Kansas City Ballet in 1957 with the goal of establishing a regular presence for ballet in the city. The Ballet celebrated its 60th Anniversary Diamond Jubilee season in 2017-2018, with performances including “Diamonds,” seen here.
Kansas City Symphony
Praised for performances of uncompromising standard, the 80-member Kansas City Symphony performs more than 100 concerts each year in Helzberg Hall at the Kauffman Center.
Explore a 360-degree view of the Kansas City Symphony performing "The Star Spangled Banner" in Helzberg Hall at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts.
During its 42-week season, the Symphony performs a wide variety of subscription, educational, touring and outreach concerts. In addition, the Kansas City Symphony performs with the Lyric Opera of Kansas City and the Kansas City Ballet.
Audience members gather in Brandmeyer Great Hall at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts before a performance by the Kansas City Symphony.
Music Director Michael Stern is in his 13th season with the Kansas City Symphony, hailed for its remarkable artistic ascent, original programming, organizational development and stability, and the extraordinary growth of its varied audiences since his tenure began.
Associate Conductor Jason Seber leads the Symphony in nearly 70 performances each season for Classics Uncorked, Pops, Family, Screenland at the Symphony and education concerts, as well as a multitude of other programs in the community.
Kansas City Symphony Performs a LinkUp Concert (2018) by Eric WilliamsKauffman Center for the Performing Arts
More than 60,000 people participate in Kansas City Symphony education programs annually. Most popular are specially programmed school concerts — KinderKonzerts, Young People’s Concerts and Link Up — performed for more than 30,000 students and teachers annually.
Through interactive musical activities at Petite Performances, children learn about the instruments of the orchestra on stage in Helzberg Hall. Events include a brief performance and a hands-on introduction to the instruments through an instrument petting zoo.
During the popular Screenland at the Symphony series, the orchestra performs a live score to a full screening of fan-favorite movies.
Thank you to our audiences
Hundreds of thousands attend performances at the Kauffman Center each year, enjoying extraordinary and diverse arts experiences. Since the Center opened in 2011, nearly 3 million have attended a show. The Kauffman Center thanks all past, present and future audience members.
Photos of Kauffman Center Presents events by:
Photos of Kansas City Ballet by:
Brett Pruitt and East Market Studios
Photos of the Kansas City Symphony by:
360 video of Kansas City Symphony performing "The Star Spangled Banner" by Bic Media, courtesy of VisitKC
See a complete list of upcoming events at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts at: www.kauffmancenter.org.
Kansas City Ballet: www.kcballet.org
Kansas City Symphony: www.kcsymphony.org
Lyric Opera of Kansas City: www.kcopera.org