Westport Center for the Arts produces a broad spectrum events and programs designed to connect visual and performing artists with our urban and inter-generational community in Kansas City.
Brown Bag Concert Series
Now in its 21st season, our Brown Bag Concert Series presents FREE monthly noontime concerts from September through May featuring a wide variety of instrumental and vocal performers: classical, jazz and folk are included.
Concerts are usually scheduled at 12:10 p.m. on the third Friday of each month*. Concerts last from 50 to 60 minutes and are currently being held at Immanuel Lutheran Church, 1700 Westport Road as the Westport Presbyterian Church is rebuilt after the “Great Fire” in late 2011.
The Brown Bag Concert Series are well-attended by workers, retirees, and school children from the neighborhood. Feel free to bring a lunch, and join us for coffee and dessert after the concert.
*January features a jazz concert presented on the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday.
Kids Art Workshops
Children in kindergarten through eighth grade are encouraged to tap their creative energies and design masterpieces at WCA’s “Kids Team Up for Art” Workshops at the Kansas City Public Libraries.
Participation is FREE, just be sure to wear clothing that will survive paint and glue! Saturday sessions run from 1:30-3:30 pm., check the calendar for library sites and dates.
Our Art Team will focus on the completion of a group project by the end of the session as individuals build art and collaborative life skills.
Workshops use found and recycled materials, in addition to traditional materials like paint, clay and paper. We deeply appreciate the materials provided by our partners Accessible Arts and Artist & Craftsman Supply.
When is the last time someone read you a story? The tradition of Readers Theatre at WCA started with a live reading of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol in 1999. The concept is simple. Just close your eyes and listen to some of Kansas City’s best actors read Dickens’ story aloud. For years the WCA casts of A Christmas Carol tossed around the idea of presenting other literary works as Readers Theatre. In Summer 2009, Mark Twain’s Tom Sawyer debuted the “American Harvest” program. It was followed by “The Tell Tale Heart” and “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” as part of the annual “Haunted Westport” events. In 2010, we joined Westport in celebrating St. Patrick with “A Treasury of Irish Tales” the weekend preceding Kansas City’s Annual Parade. Join us for an evening of explosion free entertainment. Sit back, relax and let us read you a story.
WCA hosts many special events including special programming at the annual Kansas City Fringe Festival, and one time events such as a 10th Anniversary 9/11 Memorial Concert and a staged play entitled JFK: A Ghostly Evening in honor of the recent 50th anniversary of the assassination of President Kennedy.
Visual Art Shows
The Westport Center for the Arts Gallery has featured the work of many local artists including Diana Werts and S. Brian Morgan. We have also hosted several group shows with themes including Women’s Voices and Dia de Los Muertos.
We are currently seeking venues for art exhibitions since the WCA Gallery was destroyed in the fire at Westport Presbyterian Church in late 2011. If you can help, please contact us.