S’mores & Stories with Art Feeds Joplin

smores-and-stories-posterArt Feeds Joplin (AFJ) is excited to announce a brand new Art Feeds fundraiser for the Joplin community. Adapted from their wildly popular fundraiser Word Vomit, S’mores and Stories will be a night of storytelling and celebration. The event will be held Thursday, November 3, 7–9:30pm at Red Door Barn (9164 Missouri 43, Webb City, MO 64870).

AFJ has invited five adults from the community to wield words to the theme of ‘Round the Campfire (think all things fall). Each storyteller will tell a 10-minute, true story from their life and have a jar set up in their name. It’s simple: Like their story? Make a donation to their jar! At the end of the night, the storyteller with the most money donated in their name will be crowned the winner of S’mores and Stories.

All proceeds from the night will benefit local Art Feeds programs within organizations like the Leffen Center for Autism and Children’s Haven of Southwest Missouri. A ticket includes 1 drink (beer, wine, or pop of choice) + s’mores ingredients to craft your own dessert. Tickets are $25 for one or $40 for two.

This is an all ages event. However, alcohol will be present and stories may include content not suitable for children.

To purchase your ticket(s), visit smoresandstories.eventbrite.com. Any remaining tickets will be available at the door the night of the event. [spacer height=”0px”]

Heartland Opera Theatre to Open 18th Season

The Elixir of Love, a comic opera masterpiece by Gaetano Donizetti, will open the 18th season of Heartland Opera Theatre with performances on Friday, November 11 and Sunday November 13. The performance will be staged at MSSU’s Taylor Performing Arts Center in Joplin. Performance times are 7:30PM on Friday and 2:30pm on Sunday. Sung in Italian with English subtitles, the production will feature young professional singers from around the country in the leading roles, along with experienced singers from the region. The production is directed by Carol Werner-Feiertag. HOT artistic director Nicholas Gilmore will conduct the performance from the pit.


The opera is part of the season with the theme “Discover Donizetti.” The Italian composer was writing from the early to mid-1800s and is known for his comic ingenuity and beautiful soaring melodies that show off the singers’ abilities to the maximum. Heartland Opera artistic director Nicholas Gilmore says, “This opera is perfect for opera lovers and first-time opera goers alike, because it is delightful, accessible entertainment that can be enjoyed by everyone.” The work is among the most frequently performed operas throughout the world, he says.

jeremyblosseyLyric tenor Jeremy Blossey will perform the role of Nemorino, a love-struck farmer who woos the flirtatious Adina. Blossey is an accomplished singer of opera, concert, oratorio and musical theatre and has performed on stages in the United States, Europe and the Pacific. He has sung over forty roles in opera companies in cities including Cleveland, Natchez and Shreveport in the United States and Tel Aviv Israel, and Quebec Canada. Upcoming engagements this season include appearances with Baltimore Concert Opera, Opera Delaware, and gala concerts with the Orquestra Santa Cecilia in Madrid Spain.

bevin-hill-headshot-smileThe role of the captivating Adina will be sung by soprano Bevin Hill, a graduate of the Manhattan School of Music and currently living in New York City. She had performed with the Opera Company of Middlebury Vermont, Opera Iowan and the Des Moines Metro Opera, Arizona Opera, and DiCapo Opera Theatre in New York. She was a 2012 District Winner of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions in her home state of Georgia and Regional Semifinalist for the Southeast Region.

music-jordanwilsonDr. Jordan Wilson of Joplin will perform the role of Dr. Dulcamara, purveyor of the “magical” love potion designed bring the lovers together. Wilson, a baritone, is an Assistant Professor of Music at Missouri Southern State University.  Originally from North Carolina, he received his DMA in Vocal Performance from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Previously, he received both a Bachelor’s and a Master’s degree from the Eastman School of Music. Dr. Wilson has appeared previously several times with Heartland opera, including in La Traviata and Down in the Valley, and is currently serving as the Vice President of the Board of Directors

Tickets for the performances of Elixir of Love are $25 in advance, $30 at the door and $10 for students. For the first time, tickets can be purchased online at www.heartlandoperatheatre.com. A pre-opera reception will be held at 6pm in MSSU Phinney Recital Hall on November 11. Tickets are $60 per person for the reception which includes premium opera seats. Reception reservations and more information may be obtained by calling 417-782-4953 or emailing to info@heartlandopera.com. For more information, contact Gwen Hunt at ghunt@cableone.net. [spacer height=”0px”]

Phoenix Fired Art’s Fifth Annual Empty Bowls Fundraiser

Who isn’t ready for Empty Bowls at Phoenix Fired Art? In its fifth year, this is surely one of Joplin’s most enjoyable fundraisers. This year’s fundraiser will be held Thursday, November 17 with soup being served for lunch (11am–1:30pm) and dinner (5–7:30pm).

Joplin's 5th Annual Empty Bowls
Do you enjoy local artwork, tasty soups, and helping alleviate hunger in our community? Then this event is for you! Pay a minimum donation of $15 per bowl, select your favorite handmade ceramic bowl, and fill it with your choice of delicious soup from one of our area’s many local restaurants! Did we mention you get to keep the bowl as a reminder of your generous donation to help people in need? All proceeds will be split evenly between organizations working to alleviate hunger in our area: Crosslines, Meals on Wheels, Salvation Army, Watered Gardens and Webb City Farmer’s Market.

This year’s participating restaurants: Blackthorn Pub, The Bruncheonette, Club 609, Crabby’s, Eagle Drive-In, Festival, Fortune East, Granny Shaffer’s, Han the Sushi Man, Instant Karma, Kinnaree, Mes Place, Orient Express, Panera Bread, Red Lobster, Schlotzky’s, Suzanne’s Natural Foods, Tropicana, Wilder’s, Gayle O’Hare, Jeanne Matlock, Linda Kyger.

Want to buy a bowl early? Bowl presales are a $25 minimum donation. For more information, call 417.437.9281. [spacer height=”0px”]

The Story Behind the East Town Mural Design

Who’s that? What’s that? Many have had these thoughts while admiring the new mural in Joplin’s East Town neighborhood.

etd7Wonder no more! This week, the East Town Mural Project released a blog post from lead muralist Kyle McKenzie explaining the content included in the East Town Mural design. The official title of the mural is “Belonging to All the Hands Who Build” (from the Langston Hughes poem, Freedom’s Plow).

A central theme of the design is storytelling. In working with East Town residents on this project, I’ve learned the most by listening to them tell stories about their neighborhood. Many of the people I talked to have great pride in East Town and, repeatedly, I heard people say that they wanted the stories to be preserved or to reach a broader audience. This mural design does not attempt to tell these stories as completed statements, but to provide seeds for ongoing conversations.” – Kyle McKenzie, Lead Muralist

To learn the story behind the mural, click here. [spacer height=”0px”]

Music of Great Britain with Guest Violinist Erik Peterson

The Southern Symphony Orchestra will spotlight the music of Great Britain during a concert at 7:30pm, Friday, November 4, in Taylor Performing Arts Center at Missouri Southern State University.

Under the direction of Dr. Jeffrey Macomber, selections will include Peter Warlock’s “Capriol Suite” for string orchestra, Max Bruch’s colorful “Scottish Fantasy” for solo violin andorchestra, and Sir Edward Elgar’s moving tribute to friends and family, “Enigma Variations.”

csd110112_0802ep_fThe orchestra will be joined by virtuoso violinist Erik Peterson for “Scottish Fantasy.” Peterson, who is a member of the Colorado Symphony, is a frequent soloist and chamber music performer. He previously joined the Southern Symphony Orchestra for a November 2014 performance.

As part of the Great Britain Semester, the concert is sponsored in part by Missouri Southern’s Institute of International Studies, as well as the Helen S. Boylan Foundation of Carthage, the MSSU Music Department and individual donors.

The concert is free and open to the public. In addition to performing with the orchestra, Peterson will offer a Master Class in violin performance at 4pm, Thursday, November 3, in Webster Hall’s Corley Auditorium. The class is intended to provide instruction to interested student musicians of all ages. It is also free and open to the public. [spacer height=”0px”]