Randy Stewart | KBIA

Randy Stewart

Randy Stewart joined the full-time KSMU staff in June 1978 after working part-time as a student announcer/producer for two years. His job has evolved from Music Director in the early days to encompassing production of a wide range of arts-related programming and features for KSMU, including the online and Friday morning "Arts News." Stewart assists volunteer producers John Darkhorse (Route 66 Blues Express), Lee Worman (The Gold Ring), and Emily Higgins (The Mulberry Tree) with the production of their programs. He's also become the de facto "Voice of KSMU" in recent years due to the many hours per day he’s heard doing local station breaks. Stewart’s record of service on behalf of the Springfield arts community earned him the Springfield Regional Arts Council's "Ozzie Award" in 2006.

Actors Theatre of Missouri’s Shakespeare At The Columns series presents William Shakespeare's "Twelfth Night, (or What You Will)", directed by Sarah Campbell, in FREE performances at the Springfield Art Museum auditorium.  Dates are Jan.10-12 and 17-19 with 7:30pm curtain on Fridays and Saturdays, and 2pm Sundays.  The “What You Will” part refers to the fact that, while free and open to the public, donations will be gladly accepted. We talked with two of the actors in the show, Samantha Henridi (playing Viola and Cesario) and Graham Weldon (Duke Orsino).

Springfield Contemporary Theatre at SCT Center Stage in Wilhoit Plaza (corner of Robberson & Pershing) celebrates the 90th birthday of Stephen Sondheim, the leading composer of American musical theatre for over fifty years, with a production of "Side By Side By Sondheim" January 10-26.  It’s an award-winning revue of Sondheim’s work up to the mid-1970s.                                                                              

Emily Frankoski, Community Arts Director for Joplin’s local arts agency Connect2Culture, joined us for the January 2020 edition of “Spotlight on Joplin.” “It’s kind of a sleepy time for the arts in Joplin right in the beginning of January, but it really will pick up towards the end of the month,” she said.

Sarah Diouf, who recently joined the Corporate Support staff here at Ozarks Public Broadcasting, shared a very special recipe with us for our "Table Traditions" series.                                                                

You probably know Jeff Houghton as the host of "The Mystery Hour" TV talk show on the local Fox affiliate. He and his wife Michelle have two children, ages 2 and 7. When she and Jeff decided to contact KSMU to get in on our Sense of Community "Table Traditions" series, Michelle told us straightaway: "This may not be exactly what you're looking for, because it's pretty basic food as far as most people are concerned. But--we live and die by 'basic' food as parents with young children."                                                                                 

Springfield Chamber Chorus’s 2019-2020 season is subtitled “What’s In A Name.” For their Winter Concert the ensemble focuses on the name “Emmanuel”—“God is with us” in Hebrew, and the name used in the Old Testament to refer to the coming Messiah.  They will perform two “Emmanuel” concerts this weekend at two Springfield churches—one with free admission, the other ticketed.  SCC Music Director Chris Brammer and Business Manager Katie Kring joined us on “Arts News.”                              

Contemporary playwright Lucas Hnath’s comic “sequel” to the classic Ibsen drama “A Doll’s House”—Hnath calls it “A Doll’s House, Part 2”—picks up 15 years after the original, introducing a decidedly contemporary attitude to late 19th-century Norway.

Emily Frankoski, Community Arts Director for Joplin's area art agency Connect2Culture, turns the Spotlight on Joplin for December 2019.  Among the many events listed at http://connect2culture.org/december2019/ for this month, Emily highlighted the following.                                                                                

Karen Craigo was heard on KSMU in our Sense of Community feature on the local Veterans Writing Workshop sponsored by Missouri Humanities Council, which aired in June 2018.  Craigo was the volunteer facilitator for the group.  She was in our studio this morning on “Arts News” to talk about recently being named Missouri Poet Laureate for 2019-2021 by Missouri Governor Mike Parson.

Well, it wasn’t that recent, she said.                                  

“I absolutely love teaching. Kids are wonderful, whenever and wherever. And I think I was just born always with an interest in the arts.  I mean, they were just things that meant something to me.”

--Bucky Bowman in March 2004                                       

“A life well lived, to the benefit and pleasure of all who knew him.”

Ozarks Technical Community College’s Fine Arts Department will present John Cariani’s collection of short romantic comedies, “Almost, Maine” in the Auditorium at the Springfield Art Museum, 1111 E. Brookside Drive, Wednesday-Saturday Nov. 20-23 at 7 p.m. and Sunday Nov. 24 at 2 p.m. We were joined on “Arts News” by OTC Theatre/Drama instructor Jon Herbert and two of the student actors in the production, Maggie Sauce and Mosiah Bradshaw.  Both play several roles in the show.                                  

It’s slapstick comedy as only Shakespeare could do it: his 1594 farce “Comedy of Errors,” in a new production by the Missouri State University Theatre and Dance Department, running November 21-24 in the Craig Hall Coger Theatre.  We talked with Dr. Kyle Thomas, MSU Assistant Professor of Theatre and Dance and Coordinator of the department’s BA/BS Theatre Program.  He’s in his first semester on the faculty, and directs this production.                                 

Messiah Project presents their annual "Holiday Prelude" performance, featuring "Holiday Memories in Song" and Gian-Carlo Menotti's Christmas opera "Amahl and the Night Visitors" on Friday, November 15th at 7 PM, and Saturday, November 16th at 2 PM at Venture Church, 1515 West Elfindale Street in Springfield.  We were joined on “Arts News” by Messiah Project’s Lindsey Robison, and one of the vocalists performing in “Amahl,” tenor Eric Meruelo, singing the role of King Kaspar.                                          

Drury University Theatre presents the satirical musical "Urinetown" by Greg Kotis and Mark Hollmann November 13-16 in Wilhoit Theatre in Drury’s Breech building. The show satirizes, among other things, the legal system, capitalism, bureaucracy, corporate mismanagement, and even musical theater itself. Director Josh Inman confirmed that “it is a satire, though it does touch on a serious subject: what happens when power takes over and society loses control.  But it’s all told through really fun song and dance, and it’s everything you want in a musical! It’s great.

Springfield Catholic High School, 2340 S. Eastgate, does a big musical theatre production every fall and spring. This year’s autumn production is "The Hunchback of Notre Dame," a musical comedy based on the Victor Hugo novel using Oscar-winning composer Alan Menken’s songs from the 1996 Disney animated film adaptation. Father Lewis Hejna, director of Springfield Catholic High's theater program, and Pastor at St.

For their 25th anniversary, Springfield Contemporary Theatre reunites with longtime collaborator Sandra Asher to present the world premiere of her newest play, "Death Valley: A Love Story." This production is directed by Jefferson Award nominated guest director Alan Souza from New York, and stars Andie Bottrell, Rachel Jamieson and Sarah J. Wiggin. It runs October 25-November 10 at SCT Center Stage in Wilhoit Plaza, corner of Pershing and Robberson downtown.

Missouri State University Theatre and Dance presents "CATS," Andrew Lloyd Webber's popular Tony-winning musical based on "Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats" by T.S. Eliot, Oct.25-28 in Coger Theatre. The production is directed and choreographed by Sarah Wilcoxon; joining us on “Arts News” was the show’s student Assistant Director Steven Horn.                                                                           

For KSMU’s November “Spotlight On Joplin”, we once again visit with Emily Frankoski, Community Arts Director for Joplin’s regional arts agency Connect2Culture, who selected just a few of her favorite events and exhibits from the agency’s huge “Arts, Culture & Entertainment in Joplin” list for the month—all 17 pages of it! It’s available in its entirety at https://connect2culture.org. Or call (417) 625-6683 for information.

The Southwest Missouri Art and Craft Guild celebrates the 25th anniversary of their “Art in the Park” fine art and contemporary craft show this weekend.  It’s Saturday and Sunday October 12 and 13 from 10:00am to 4:30pm at Sequiota Park, 3500 S. Lone Pine.  Marian Stahl Chamberlain from the Guild visited “Arts News” to tell us about this year’s show, which features 30 of the region’s best artists and crafters.                                                                                   

Springfield Little Theatre will host the world premiere of the play "Sticks" by local playwright Sandy Leigh Johnson, at our education facility, The Judith Enyeart Reynolds School of the Performing Arts for Springfield Little Theatre, 237 S. Florence, October 10-13.  Johnson told us on “Arts News” that “several years ago when I wrote the play, one of the driving forces of writing (it) was the fact that I didn’t feel there were enough plays starring older women.”  Her husband, John Johnson, directed this production, and the author herself plays the lead role of Gypsy.         

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

For their first production of the 2019-2020 academic year, Drury University Theatre presents "Arlington", subtitled "A Love Story," by Irish playwright Enda Walsh. Haddy Kreie, Assistant Professor of Theatre at Drury, directs this production, running Wed-Sat Oct. 2-5 in Sunderland Studio Theatre in Drury's O'Bannon Hall; evening performances are at 7:30pm, with a 2:00pm matinee on Saturday Oct. 5. Kreie came on KSMU’s “Arts News” to talk about the play with two of her student actors, Keandra Jennings and Katie Powell.

Today we visit Valley Water Mill Park, operated on land leased by the Springfield-Greene County Park Board from the owner, City Utilities of Springfield. Most Springfield-area residents have heard of “Valley Water Mill,” or the county road of the same name, also known as Farm Road 102.

But not everyone seems to know that, since 2010, this nearly 100-acre site just northeast of Springfield, once home to a 19th-century grain mill, has been a public park with hiking and strolling paths and a 13-acre lake. 

Nathanael Greene/Close Memorial Park is a 112-acre property located on South Scenic Avenue in Springfield, across the street from Horton Smith Golf Course. 

Missouri State University Theatre & Dance opens its 2019-2020 season with the “Southern Gothic” comedy "Crimes of the Heart" by Beth Henley.  Directed by Dr. Carol Maples, the production runs through Oct.1st in the Craig Hall Balcony Theatre: weeknights at 7:30pm and Sundays at 2:30pm.  Cast member Cary Wahlborg joined us on “Arts News.”

Support Ozarks Food Harvest at the annual Tea Bar & Bites Apron Fashion Show and Silent Auction, Thursday Sept.19 from 7-9pm at Tea Bar & Bites Bakery and Cafe, 621 S. Pickwick at Cherry. Colleen Smith from Tea Bar & Bites, and Sara Roelke from Ozarks Food Harvest, joined us on “Arts News” to talk about it.

The Branson Regional Arts Council launches their 7th theatrical production of the year with "Steel Magnolias," opening August 29th at the Historic Owen Theatre, 205 S. Commercial Street in downtown Branson.  According to BRAC Executive Director Jim Barber, “We are so thrilled with the response that we are getting already—tickets are selling quite well.  And we really love the fact that Springfield is getting behind what we’re doing down in Branson.  We had several Springfield actors involved in many of our productions recently.”

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