“Gem of the Ocean”
Opens 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 23, at Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre
The opening installment in playwright August Wilson’s 10-play, decade-by-decade cycle about the American Black experience in the 20th century premiered in 2003 and opened on Broadway a year later. “Gem of the Ocean” takes place in 1904 and, like all but one other play in the cycle, is set in Pittsburgh. Wilson’s “The Piano Lesson” and “Fences” won Pulitzer Prizes. Runs through March 11. 816-569-3226. metkc.org. $15-$49.
Never miss a local story.
7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 24, at Liberty Hall
Life in America hasn’t been real easy for a guy named Hasan Minhaj. But the first-generation Indian-American still can laugh about it, and he welcomes the audience to laugh along at his comedy show called “Homecoming King.” Minhaj has been a correspondent on Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show” since 2014 and recently filmed a comedy special for Netflix. 785-749-1972. libertyhall.net. $25-$35.
Kansas City Symphony, “Schubert’s ‘Unfinished’ Symphony with Mahler”
8 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Feb. 24-25, and 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 26, at Kauffman Center
Franz Schubert completed only two movements of what traditionally would have been a four-movement symphony nearly 200 years ago, but nobody is complaining. The Kansas City Symphony will be joined by mezzo-soprano Michelle DeYoung and tenor Joseph Kaiser for the concert, which also will feature Gustav Mahler’s “Das Lied von der Erde” (“The Song of the Earth”). Helzberg Hall. 816-471-0400. kcsymphony.org. $23-$78.
Mardi Gras Kansas City
7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 24, at Drexel Hall and 10 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 25, at Power & Light District
This isn’t New Orleans, but we do have some Mardi Gras celebrations, highlighted by this two-day event. On Friday evening, SocialHeart will present its Mardi Gras Masquerade Party with a performance by Quixotic, a DJ, drinking and dancing. The next morning will bring the Mardi Gras 5K Run/Walk with beads at every mile, food, masks and more. mardigraskc.com. $45 (party) and $35 (5K).
“Sesame Street Live: Elmo Makes Music”
10:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 24; 10:30 a.m., 2 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 25; 1 and 4:30 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 26, at Sprint Center
The Sesame Street Muppets will come to life, full-sized and with no strings — or hands — attached. All our favorites, including Bert, Big Bird, Cookie Monster, Ernie and, of course, Elmo, will put on a show designed to teach kids that everyone can make and enjoy music. Audience members are encouraged to sing, dance and clap along. 816-949-7000. sprintcenter.com. $20-$70.
Western Farm Show
9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Feb. 24-25; 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 26, at American Royal Center
The Western Farm Show will feature dozens of exhibitors as well as demonstrations, including one on low-stress livestock handling, and cooking tips from the Culinary Center of Kansas City. 816-561-5323. westernfarmshow.com. $8.
8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 25, at Polsky Theatre
Founded in 2007, the Los Angeles contemporary dance troupe BodyTraffic has built an international reputation for programming that is accessible even to people who are not well versed in dance. It was named “the company of the future” by the Joyce Theater Foundation and was listed as one of Dance Magazine’s 25 to Watch in 2013. Carlsen Center, JCCC. 913-469-4445. jccc.edu/theseries. $21-$35.
8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 25, at Municipal Auditorium
With Katt Williams, you can never be sure exactly what you’re going to get, but you can count on lots of laughs. Between his onstage blowups and his offstage legal troubles, the 45-year-old comic keeps his fans on their toes and his name in the news. After last year’s successful “Conspiracy Theory” tour, which brought Williams to the Silverstein Eye Centers Arena in April, he is back with his current “Great America” tour. ticketmaster.com. $54-$127.
Kansas City Brew Festival
Noon-4 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 25, at Union Station
The area’s top breweries will present their beers side by side with dozens of craft and international products at Kansas City’s first big beer festival of the year. More than 40 breweries offering about 100 beers will be on hand for the event, which also will offer music and food. The beer comes with the price of admission; the food is sold separately. kansascitybrewfest.com. $35-$45.
Kansas City Comets vs. Cedar Rapids
5:05 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 26, at Silverstein Eye Centers Arena
One of the best-kept sports secrets in town is our Major Arena Soccer League franchise, the Comets. Since their rebirth in 2010, they have reached the MASL championship finals three times, winning the title once, and they enter their final game of the regular season with a grip on first place in the Central Division with a 14-5 record. Their opponent, the Cedar Rapids Rampage, is in third place at 12-7. 855-452-4625. kccomets.com. $18-$49.
3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 26, at Folly
Here is a chance to see and hear a world-class performer for free, thanks to the Harriman-Jewell Series Free Discovery Concert series. Simone Porter, a 19-year-old violinist from Seattle, made her professional solo debut at age 10 with the Seattle Symphony and her international debut with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra at 13. She has appeared with the New York Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, Houston Symphony and Los Angeles Philharmonic and received an Avery Fisher Career Grant in March 2015. 816-415-5025. hjseries.org. Free.
“Odd Squad Live!”
1 and 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 28, at Yardley Hall
Kids will learn that math can be fun when the Odd Squad comes to visit. Orion and Oleanna, characters from the PBS series, will be turned into grown-ups by villains and the kids in the audience will use their math skills to help them escape their pickle. “Odd Squad Live!” is filled with gadgets, music and humor that produce irresistible fun. Carlsen Center, JCCC. 913-469-4445. jccc.edu/theseries. $6-$15.