This weekend in Kansas City: Comedians Sommore at KC Improv and Bill Burr at Sprint Center, Lyric Opera’s ‘Carmen,’ Walk MS

UniverSoul Circus opens Tuesday, April 26, at Swope Park and runs through May 1.
UniverSoul Circus opens Tuesday, April 26, at Swope Park and runs through May 1. The Associated Press

“The Ghosts of Lote Bravo”

Opening Wednesday, April 20, at Unicorn Theatre

When the starting point of a play is the disappearance and murder of a young girl, audiences know they are in for an evening of serious drama. But “The Ghosts of Lote Bravo,” which is set in Cuidad Juarez, Mexico, also offers hope in the midst of that area’s poverty and violence. Santa Muerte, the female folk saint of death, helps the girl’s mother learn of her late daughter’s hopes and dreams.

7:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 20 (through May 8). Unicorn Theatre. 816-531-7529. unicorntheatre.org. $27.50-$37.50.

Ron Campbell

Friday, April 22-Sunday, April 24, at Leawood Fine Art Gallery

The name might not be familiar, but his work almost certainly is. Campbell was the animator for the Beatles’ movie “Yellow Submarine” and directed the Fab Four’s Saturday morning cartoon series. He also worked on “Scooby-Doo,” “The Flintstones,” “The Jetsons” and many more. His one-man art show will offer for sale original Beatles cartoon paintings and other works from his 50-year career in animation.

10 a.m.-6 p.m. Friday, April 22, and Saturday, April 23; 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday, April 24. Leawood Fine Art Gallery. 913-338-4999. leawoodfineart.com. Free.

“A Grand Night for Singing”

Opens Friday, April 22, at Quality Hill Playhouse

The play was hardly a smash on Broadway — it ran for only 52 performances when it opened in 1993 — but that wasn’t because it didn’t have great music. Featuring the songs of Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein, “A Grand Night for Singing” was nominated for two Tony Awards. Among the highlights are “Maria” from “The Sound of Music,” “Hello, Young Lovers” from “The King and I,” “Some Enchanted Evening” from “South Pacific” and “Oh, What a Beautiful Mornin’ ” from “Oklahoma!”

7:30 p.m. Friday, April 22 (through May 22). Quality Hill Playhouse. 816-421-1700. qualityhillplayhouse.com. $33-$36.


Friday, April 22-Sunday, April 24, at Kansas City Improv

A native of New Jersey and a former schoolteacher in Atlanta, Sommore has been a bad girl of comedy since Amy Schumer was in diapers. Now one of the nation’s top comedians, she is a veteran of HBO’s “Def Comedy Jam” as well as the Queens of Comedy Tour, the Royal Comedy Tour and several stand-up TV specials.

8 and 10:30 p.m. Friday, April 22, 7 and 10 p.m. Saturday, April 23, and 7 p.m. Sunday, April 24. Kansas City Improv. 816-759-5233. improvkc.com. $25-$35.

Bill Burr

Saturday, April 23, at Sprint Center

Remember the TV show “Townies”? Probably not. It aired 20 years ago and starred a no-longer-teen Molly Ringwald and before-they-made-it-big Jenna Elfman and Lauren Graham. They made 15 episodes, but the show was canceled after 10. That brings us to Bill Burr. He was a regular on “Townies.” Yet his career survived. Burr has kept acting (including five episodes in “Breaking Bad”), but he also has emerged as a popular comedian known for his angry-guy humor and political incorrectness.

8 p.m. Saturday, April 23. Sprint Center. 816-949-7000. sprintcenter.com. $25-$48.

Bloom Party

Saturday, April 23, in the East Bottoms

Partiers can dress like sailors — or not — for this benefit for the Kansas City Care Clinic that will feature food, drink, music and a nautical theme. Bloom Fleet Week 2016 provides needed funds for the clinic’s operating budget.

8 p.m. Saturday, April 23. 507 N. Montgall Ave., East Bottoms. 816-753-5144. bloomparty.com. $125.

Downtown Wine Walk

Saturday, April 23, at Power & Light District

Studies have shown that drinking red wine is good for your heart. So it’s appropriate that the Downtown Wine Walk benefits the American Heart Association of Kansas City. Participants will receive a souvenir tasting glass and can enjoy live music as well as wine tastings and small plates at each of the seven participating venues (Bar Louie, Bristol Seafood Grill, Cleaver & Cork, Drunken Fish, Garment District Boutique & Bar, No Other Pub by Sporting KC and Yard House).

3-6 p.m. Saturday, April 23. Power & Light District. 816-842-1045. powerandlightdistrict.com. $30-$50.

Lyric Opera, “Carmen”

Opens Saturday, April 23, at Kauffman Center

Lyric Opera of Kansas City will conclude its 2015-16 season with “Carmen,” the popular comic opera by Georges Bizet. The two lead characters are the fiery gypsy Carmen, played by Zanda Švede, and the soldier whom she seduces, Don Jose, played by Rafael Davila. Although set in 19th-century Seville, Spain, “Carmen” is sung in French with English titles.

7:30 p.m. Saturday, April 23 (through May 1). Muriel Kauffman Theatre, Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts. 816-471-7344. kcopera.org. $89-$199.

Walk MS: Kansas City 2016

Saturday, April 23, at Kansas Speedway

The NASCAR drivers will arrive in a couple weeks for the Sprint Cup Series, but the speedway will attract a slower-moving crowd this weekend. Anybody who wants to support a good cause can circle the perimeter of the speedway while helping to fight multiple sclerosis. Participants in Walk MS: Kansas City 2016 can choose between 1- and 3-mile courses. KCTV chief meteorologist Chris Suchan will serve as emcee.

10 a.m. Saturday, April 23. Kansas Speedway. 855-372-1331. nationalmssociety.org/chapters/ksg. No fee; participants seek pledges.

Kansas City Symphony

Sunday, April 24, at Kauffman Center

Music isn’t the only attraction of the Symphony’s “Harry Potter and the Magic of Music,” which will feature melodies from the eight wizardly movies. The performance also will have an illusionist to enhance the mood. You’ll need to add your name to a waiting list if you don’t have tickets, however, because the performance has sold out.

2 p.m. Sunday, April 24. Helzberg Hall, Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts. 816-471-0400. kcsymphony.org. Sold out.

Trolley Run

Sunday, April 24, at 75th and Wornall

It’s all downhill from here on a four-mile course that traverses the Waldo and Brookside neighborhoods and ends on the Country Club Plaza. Runners and walkers will park on the Plaza, then take buses to the start. Buses will begin transporting participants at 6 a.m. on Nichols Road between Pennsylvania and Broadway streets. Proceeds from the popular race will benefit the Children’s Center for the Visually Impaired.

7:45 a.m. Sunday, April 24. 75th and Wornall. trolleyrun.org. $45 through April 23; $50 race day.

UniverSoul Circus

Opens Tuesday, April 26, at Swope Park

Acts from around the globe will perform under the big top, including motorcycle daredevils, contortionists, limbo dancers and, of course, clowns. One of the highlights is a flying trapeze act from China. Be warned, however, if you’re an animal rights advocate. Unlike the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, which has decided to retire its elephants because of public concerns about animal cruelty, this circus still employs the majestic creatures.

7 p.m. Tuesday, April 26 (through May 1). Swope Park. universoulcircus.com. $19-$30.

“Beau Jest”

Opens Wednesday, April 27, at New Theatre Restaurant

Don’t confuse the play “Beau Jest” with the movie “Beau Geste,” which was a 1939 adventure flick starring Gary Cooper. The play with a “J” is a romantic comedy about a nice Jewish girl who becomes involved with a decidedly non-Jewish man named Chris Kringle but tells her parents she is dating a Jewish doctor. Things get interesting when it’s time for the parents to meet the boyfriend. The play will feature Cindy Williams and Eddie Mekka, who teamed up more than 30 years ago on “Laverne & Shirley.”

7:35 p.m. Wednesday, April 27 (through July 3). New Theatre Restaurant. 913-649-7469. newtheatre.com. $42-$56.