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.

Megan Buchbinder, Marketing Director of Springfield Little Theatre, has told KSMU that Little Theatre has postponed their opening of "Matilda The Musical" due to Coronavirus concerns.

"At this time... our leadership team is currently working on the calendar for the rest of the season to see where things can move around." They will let the community know when the production will be rescheduled.

For information call (417) 869-1334, or visit https://www.springfieldlittletheatre.org.


The Springfield Symphony Orchestra has cancelled their March 28 concert, "The Civil War In Missouri," at Hammons Hall. According to a press release issued by the Symphony:

According to a press release received from Springfield Regional Opera:

Local film production company Passive Aggressive Films has begun a Kickstarter campaign to help them raise funds to produce "Eldrich, USA," "an energetic feature-length horror/comedy/musical film about sibling rivalry, a backwoods cult, and the lengths we'll go to in order to right a wrong.” The man behind Passive Aggressive Films, Ryan Smith, will produce and direct the new film.                                                       

Local non-profit theatre production company Actors Theatre of Missouri has announced they have postponed their upcoming production of the play "Museum," originally scheduled for March 26-29 at the Springfield Art Museum.  According to the organization's Facebook page, "We're working out all the new details and will update this event as soon as possible. To those who already purchased tickets: We hope you will be able to attend our rescheduled dates, but if not, refunds are available by contacting Brown Paper Tickets. Please have your order confirmation number handy.

"Music and Mark Twain," featuring songs of the Mississippi with Will St. Clair as Mark Twain, scheduled for April 7th at First Unitarian Universalist Church in Springfield, has been postpoined due to concern over the spread of COVID-19. Organizers intend to reschedule the event for "late May or early June," according to the church website, https://springfielduu.org/marktwain.


The new show featuring work by painter Alicia Farris and jewelry artist Marie Scarpa, scheduled to run April 3-25 at Waverly House Gifts and Gallery (2031 S. Waverly in Springfield) has been postponed, accorded to Eunice Wallar at Waverly House. For more information call (417) 882-3445 or visit https://www.waverlyhouse.com.



According to a press released issued by Jeff Kessinger, Communications Manager of the Downtown Springfield Association, "After continued monitoring of national Centers for Disease Control and local health department guidance, the Downtown Springfield Association and the Film and Media Association of Springfield today announced that the Rated SGF Film Festival has been postponed."  The local film festival had been scheduled for March 27 and 28 at the Fox Theatre on Park Central Square.

TheatreSquared in Fayetteville, AR announced today that in the interest of public health concerning the COVID-19 virus, the company will adjust its performance schedule for the remainder of the 2019/20 Season to support containment efforts in Northwest Arkansas.  

Executive Director Martin Miller said, “We are grateful that the flexibility provided by our new two-venue facility allows us to postpone, rather than cancel, our remaining performances for the season.”

The Springfield Mid-America Singers has announced the cancellation of their remaining rehearsals and concerts for the 2019-2020 season due to the current coronavirus situation and, as their press release says,  "due to the national alerts for social distancing." The group's upcoming concert scheduled for April 26 at Wesley United Methodist Church, 'Compassion's Cry,' featuring the work 'Annelies' by James Whitbourn, has been cancelled.

Walton Arts Center in Fayetteville, AR has suspended all performances and events effective today through April 5. 

“We have decided to take this unprecedented step to suspend public performances now because of safety concerns and in accordance with the declared state of emergency issued by local authorities,” said Peter Lane, president and CEO of Walton Arts Center. “The health and safety of our patrons and community are our top priorities and we have not made this decision lightly.”

Drury University Theatre has added another production to their season: Adam Gwon's musical "Ordinary Days," scheduled for Tuesday through Thursday March 10-12 all at 7:30pm in Sunderland Studio Theatre, located in Drury’s Mabee Center for the Performing Arts. This production is made possible through a Fusion Experiential Learning Grant from Drury University, which allows the theater department to offer the play at no admission charge.  We talked about the production with Drury Professor of Theater Dr.

For this month’s “Spotlight on Joplin,” Connect2Culture Director Emily Frankoski had trouble keeping to our 15-minute on-air time limit for her segment. “It’s like every day we’ve got something else going on (in March)—it’s amazing,” she said. But here are the Joplin-area events she chose to highlight.

The Missouri State University Opera Theatre and the MSU Meyer Library will transform the Crystal Ballroom at MSU’s Kentwood Hall into a 1920s-style speakeasy, when they present their “Gatsby Soiree” on Friday March 6 from 7 to 9pm. The evening will include a performance of a new chamber opera by Evan Mack, “Ghosts of Gatsby,” which deals with the relationship between F. Scott Fitzgerald and his wife Zelda. It’s a fundraiser for the MSU Opera Theatre. Joining us on “Arts News” to talk about it, and about the multi-departmental collaboration that made it possible, were Dr.

Bob Bradley, who directed Springfield Contemporary Theatre’s new production of Tom Morton-Smith’s drama “Oppenheimer,” said he was inspired to look for a play on the subject of J. Robert Oppenheimer and the development of the atomic bomb while attending a production of another major recent treatment of the subject: John Adams’s award-winning 2005 opera “Doctor Atomic.”

Springfield Little Theatre has begun a month-long crowdfunding campaign titled “The Bigger Picture,” with a goal to raise $120,000 during the month to cover the remaining debt acquired from purchasing their new dedicated education facility, “The Judy”—the Judith Enyeart Reynolds School of the Performing Arts for Springfield Little Theatre, in the summer of 2019. Located at 237 S. Florence, it’s the former McDaniel School building, built in 1908.                        

Ozarks native Michael Spyres, who over the past decade and a half has become one of the most sought-after operatic tenors of his generation, spends part of his year in Springfield as Artistic Director of Springfield Regional Opera. 

Springfield Little Theatre will produce "Hello, Dolly!," the multiple Tony-winning Broadway classic, for the first time since the 1999-2000 season. It opens Friday Feb. 7 and runs through Feb. 23 at the Landers Theatre, 311 E. Walnut.  Director and choreographer Chyrel Love Miller talked about the production on “Arts News.”                                                                           

The Springfield-Drury Civic Orchestra, conducted by their Music Director Dr. Christopher Koch, Drury University Associate Professor of Music and Music Director of Springfield Regional Opera, will present their season finale concert on Wednesday, February 5th at 7:30pm in the Juanita K. Hammons Hall for the Performing Arts on the MSU campus.  Dr. Koch joined us in the studio along with his Drury Music Department colleague, award-winning composer Dr. Carlyle Sharpe, Drury Professor of Composition and Music Theory, to talk about the concert, and the new work by Dr.

Emily Frankoski, Community Arts Director of Joplin’s regional art agency Connect2Culture, joined us on Arts News for the February “Spotlight On Joplin.” This month’s list of arts, cultural and entertainment events in the Joplin area (available online as of February 1st at https://connect2culture.org/februrary2020) is a long one, and Emily picked and chose carefully to present what she considered the highlights.                                                                               

Local musician and concert promoter Chris Albert joined us this morning on “Arts News” to talk about “Music Monday of the Ozarks,” the local group of music creators and fan who meet the first Monday of the each month to share in the heritage of music in the Ozarks. Albert is in charge of booking guest speakers for the monthly events.                                       

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.