Arts notes

Ottawa theater to stage dark comedy

Ottawa -- Ottawa University Theatre will stage "How I Learned to Drive" by Paula Vogel, winner of the 1998 Pulitzer Prize, at 8 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday in the University Administration Building Auditorium.

The cast of Ottawa University Theatre students will tell the story of Lil' Bit, a woman who learns the rules of the road and life from behind the wheel.

"How I Learned to Drive" is a dark comedy about a young girl's tumultuous relationship with her uncle. This first-person account takes the audience on a wild ride, somewhere between hilarity and grim shock.

Tickets are $7 for adults, $5 for students, and may be purchased by calling (785) 242-5200, Ext. 5037.

Workshop designed to break writing barriers

Mission -- A workshop called "Find the Writer Within You" is designed to help writers and want-to-be writers develop creativity, writing techniques and marketing skills.

The workshop will be taught by the authors of "Creating Fiction That Sells" and the editors of the forthcoming magazine Kansas City Voices.

Sponsored by the Kansas City Writers Group, the workshop will meet in eight sessions, from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. Thursdays, beginning March 13 and continuing through May 1. Classes meet at 6000 Lamar Ave., Mission.

The fee for eight weeks is $50. Registration deadline is March 10. For more information or to register, call Lawrence and Suella Walsh at (816) 630-7063.

'Buffalo Soldier' comes to JCCC stage

Overland Park -- "Buffalo Soldier," based on the true story of America's longest-surviving buffalo soldier and veteran of the Spanish-American War, will be performed at 9:45 a.m. and noon Wednesday in Yardley Hall of the Carlsen Center at Johnson County Community College, 12345 College Blvd., Overland Park.

The play tells the heroic story of the black soldiers of the ninth and 10th cavalries, which were created after the Civil War and marked the first time blacks were allowed to enlist in a peacetime regular army. Indians used the term "buffalo soldiers" to refer to the black cavalry troops.

Representatives and descendants of the buffalo soldiers will be present at the performance. An exhibition about the buffalo soldiers from the Black Archives of Mid America will be on display.

The play, part of the Carlsen Center's ArtsEducation program, is geared toward children in third grade and older. Tickets are $4 and are available by calling (913) 469-4445.

Aeros to take flight at Carlsen Center

Overland Park -- Eighteen world champion Romanian gymnasts will perform Aeros at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday in Yardley Hall of the Carlsen Center, Johnson County Community College, 12345 College Blvd.

Aeros, "flying" in Greek, features gold medal-winning gymnasts from the Romanian Gymnastics Federation directed by Daniel Ezralow, David Parsons and Moses Pendleton, three choreographers who have revolutionized dance during the past 25 years, in collaboration with STOMP creators Luke Cresswell and Steve McNicholas.

The gymnasts, ages 19 to 26, achieve exceptional speed and height in a hybrid form of athletic dance.

Tickets are $35 and $28 and are available by calling (913) 469-4445.

Mime troupe to play Topeka stage

Topeka -- Discovery Mime Theatre will perform three shows Saturday at Washburn University.

The troupe, made up of Brian Begley, his wife, Mary Inman, and their youngest child, Ariel, 13, will combine slapstick, music, drama, dance, comedy and illusion to entertain audiences at 10:30 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. in the Andrew J. and Georgia Neese Gray Theatre on the Washburn campus.

Begley and Inman have performed together since 1981 and have created a repertory of more than 50 original pieces that also include juggling and puppetry. The couple met as freshmen theater students at the University of South Dakota, where they are now artists in residence. They later studied under France's acclaimed mime, Marcel Marceau.

Tickets are $3, with children under 2 admitted free. Group rates are available by calling (785) 246-1292 or (785) 266-5638.

Acclaimed organist headlines conference

Topeka -- The recital of the Topeka Chapter of the American Guild of Organists will feature nationally renowned organist Dana Robinson.

Robinson, a Boston native who has played on some of the most significant modern and historic organs in America, will perform "Ad nos ad salutarem undam" by Liszt at the 3 p.m. concert on March 9 at First Presbyterian Church, Eighth and Harrison streets, Topeka.

Robinson has presented recitals, master classes and lectures for the Boston and River Valley chapters of the American Guild of Organists, the Round Lake Historical Society, Boston's "First Night" festival, Methuen Memorial Music Hall, the Old West Organ Society, Baroque Artists of Champaign and the National Convention of the Organ Historical Society. His performances frequently are featured on the nationally syndicated program "Pipedreams."

He is currently organist at Grace Lutheran Church in Champaign.

Mulvane Art Museum offers art classes

Topeka -- A series of art classes for children and adults are being offered by Topeka's Mulvane Art Museum.

  • "I Am An Artist," ages 4-6. Students will learn about famous artists and their work and create their own masterpieces, inspired by styles and techniques of VanGogh, Picasso, Ringgold, etc.
  • "Still Life: Reinterpreting the Ordinary," ages 7-10. Students will get an introduction to the elements of art and principles of design while exploring a variety of media in which to create still life work.
  • "Collage and Assemblage," ages 9-13. Students will experiment with texture, shape, color, line, value and space to create 2-D and 3-D compositions.
  • "Beginning-Advanced Ceramic," ages 9-adult. Instruction ranges from basic, hand-building techniques to more challenging projects as well as experimenting with low fire glazes and other ceramic surface treatments.
  • "Drawing: New Ways of Seeing with Line," teens and adults. Explore how line suggests direction; divides spaces; has length, width tone and texture; and describes contour.

Classes meet from 10 a.m. to noon Saturdays. Cost is $50, with a discount for members of Friends of the Mulvane. Classes begin March 8. For more information, call (785) 231-1010, ext. 2422.

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