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Arts and Entertainment

Spotlight on Joplin For October 2019

(Logo design courtesy

Emily Frankoski, Community Arts Director for Joplin’s arts agency Connect2Culture, joins us again for her “Spotlight on Joplin. 

Joplin Pro Musica celebrates its 40th season this year by inviting some old favorites back to Joplin to perform. The Brentano Quartet first came to Joplin in the 1995-96 season, made another appearance in the 2015-16 season, and are back in Joplin for a third concert, Friday October 4 at 7:00pm at First Presbyterian Church, 509 S Pearl Avenue. Since its inception in 1992, the Brentano String Quartet has appeared throughout the world to popular and critical acclaim. In the fall of 2014, the Quartet became the Resident String Quartet at the Yale School of Music where they perform in concert each semester, and work closely with the students in chamber music contexts. Free and open to the public. More information: Deb Billings,, or call (417) 625-1822.

The Joplin Public Library sponsors two more showings of the ten short films selected for the worldwide Manhattan Short Film Festival on Saturday Oct. 5th—11:00am to 1:00pm, and 4:00pm to 6:00pm. Audience members are asked to vote for their best picture and best actor choices. It’s free and open to the public. Viewer discretion advised for anyone under 18. Parent or guardian required for children under 18. More information: Evan Martin,, or call (417) 623-7953.

Missouri Southern State University continues its semester-long exploration of the 14 or so countries that make up the Pacific Island region known as Oceania, with a program of “Music from New Zealand,” Tuesday Oct. 8 at 7:30pm in Corley Auditorium on the MSSU campus in Joplin (3950 E Newman Road). This concert by flutist Alexa Still showcases music written by New Zealanders and inspired by New Zealand’s landscape, history, culture, events in the Oceanic region, and the mythology of New Zealand’s indigenous people, the M?ori. The music includes M?ori text and musical instruments of the M?ori people mixed with modern western flutes (assisted by Missouri Southern’s own Elizabeth Robinson on piccolo, flute and alto flute). Free and open to the public. More information: Chad Stebbins,, or call ( 417) 625-9736.

Spiva Art Gallery at Missouri Southern State University, 3950 E Newman Road, presents “Ladylike,” an exhibit by Emily Beck, Associate Professor at Notre Dame, October 8 – 30.  Beck both explores and challenges the female gender construction through video, animation, and sculpture. Beck’s work examines the stereotypes that complicate the progress of those identifying as female. Free and open to the public. More information: Dr. Christine Bentley,, or call (417) 625-9563.

Two new exhibits open Saturday October 12 at George A. Spiva Center For The Arts, 222 W. 3rd Street. In the Main Gallery, Spiva’s Membership Show returns for its 72nd year and honors the wide range of passions and creativity its members channel into their work. Almost 100 local artists’ work will be displayed, featuring a variety of mediums and styles. It runs through December 14. And in the Regional Gallery at Spiva, Lenexa, Kansas artist Catherine Kirkland answers “What’s the Point?” with her vivid series of pointillist paintings. It will run October 12 – December 21. Both shows are free and open to the public; donations appreciated. More information: Jade Henning,, or call (417) 623-0183.

October 17–19: Spring Awakening, 7:30pm (Saturday 2:00pm) at Joplin Little Theatre (3008 W 1st St). Dream Theatre Troupe will produce “Spring Awakening” as a fundraiser for Joplin Little Theatre, 3008 W. 1st Street. Performances are Thurs-Sat Oct.17-19 at 7:30pm, with a 2:00pm matinee on Saturday. It’s an electric, vibrant celebration of youth and rebellion that fuses issues of morality, sexuality, and rock and roll into a powerful, emotional story. For mature audiences. All profits benefit Joplin Little Theatre. Tickets: $12 General Admission. More information: Becki Arnall,, or call (417) 622-6470.

Back by popular demand, the Spiva Center for the Arts (222 W 3rd St) 48-Hour Film Competition: Halloween Edition, the weekend of Oct.18-20, allows participants to exercise their creativity, work with a limited period, and celebrate the spooky season of Halloween. Contestants are to meet at Spiva in the Main Gallery on Friday October 18 at 6:00pm. There, teams will receive the criteria needed to create a 4-minute short film based on a horror sub-genre. They have until 6:00pm on October 20 to submit their films at Bookhouse Cinema. Cost: $20 per team.  On Thursday Oct. 24 from 5:30-9:00pm, Bookhouse Cinema (715 E. Broadway, Joplin) will host the screening of the short films produced for Spiva’s 48-Hour Film Competition: Halloween Edition.  There will be at least three screenings through the evening beginning at 5:30pm.  Awards will be presented after the final screening. Admission is $3. More information: email Shaun Conroy,, or visit; phone (417) 623-0183.

The next Night Market at Joplin Empire Market, 931 E. 4th Street, is dedicated to all things cozy and autumnal (and some creepy Halloween vibes, too)! It’s Saturday Oct.19 from 7:00-10:30pm. Enjoy pours from the new Chaos Brewing Company, a S’mores bar, live music, apple bobbing, pumpkin painting, the market bar, food, drink, vendor shopping, and much more. Festivities will take place outside in the Empire Market Festival Courtyard (weather permitting). Free and open to the public. More information: Ivy Hagedorn,, (928) 514-7713.

Glass Lanterns with Jane McCaulley (for ages 13+), Saturday Oct. 26, 12:30–4:30pm at Spiva Center for the Arts (222 W 3rd St). Create a beautiful, fused, 8-inch glass lantern, perfect for illuminating the holiday season. Students will be able to choose between fall or winter designs or bring their own ideas!.Cost: $40. More information: Jade Henning,, or (417) 623-0183.

Connect2Culture’s own “Curtains Up” performance series for 2019/2020 kicks off with Ailey II, the company of the world-renowned Alvin Ailey Dance Theater, in concert on Tuesday Oct.29 at 7:30pm (doors open 6:30) at Joplin High School Performing Arts Center (2104 Indiana Avenue). After experiencing segregated life in the South, legendary choreographer Alvin Ailey sought to make dance available to all people. The Ailey II company fulfills this mission annually through a global tour. For 45 years, Ailey II has selected 12 gifted students from The Ailey School and developed their skills further through instruction, community outreach, and professional performances. Today, the group combines the spirit and energy of our nation’s best, young dancers with the passion and creative vision of today’s emerging choreographers to create unique and spectacular shows. Each performance blends fresh, innovative choreography with stunningly disciplined dancers, to make Ailey II the company Dance Magazine calls “second to none.” Tickets: $30 Orchestra, $25 Mezzanine and Front Balcony, $20 Back Balcony. Packages tickets and group discounts available. Tickets may be purchased at, at the C2C Pop-Up Box Office located at Joplin Empire Market (Oct. 12, 19, 26 from 10am–3pm), or at the door. More information:, or call (417) 625-6683.

Finally, Emily wanted to highlight National Arts and Humanities Month throughout October. It is a nationwide collective recognition of the importance of culture in America, designed to encourage all Americans to explore new facets of the arts and humanities in their lives, and to begin a lifelong habit of active participation in the arts. Public interest in the arts and humanities as well as the number of arts and humanities related organizations and businesses in Joplin continues to grow. These organizations have had substantial impact both within the city and the region. The arts and humanities are being recognized for positively impacting quality of life, attracting visitors, and enhancing both cultural and economic growth. The nonprofit arts and cultural industry in Joplin generates more than $5.4 million in total economic activity annually, $452,000 in government revenue, and supports the full-time equivalent of 191 jobs. To encourage active participation in the arts and cultural events happening throughout Joplin, Connect2Culture will distribute a physical version of their online calendar. The October 2019 calendar will include arts and cultural events happening throughout the month in Joplin. This calendar will also be distributed to coffee shops, schools, and other locations throughout the city. To access the calendar online, visit: