Events: anytime, any location, all ages

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

The Kansas City Public Library, The Black Archives of Mid-America, and UMKC's Black Studies Program are working in partnership to present the Black History Month Book-to-Film Series Tuesdays and Thursdays throughout the month of February.

Diana Ross earned an Oscar nomination for best actress for her portrayal of legendary jazz singer Billie Holiday, based loosely on Holiday’s 1956 autobiography. 144 minutes. This title is Rated R and is recommended for adult audiences only.

Discussion leader: Adrienne Walker Hoard, director of the Black Studies Program and professor of art, UMKC.


Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Bill Zahner made a tough call shortly after taking charge of the family business in the late 1970s, shifting the focus of the A. Zahner Co. from siding and deck work to metal fabrication.

He shaped an architectural powerhouse whose work now adorns skyscrapers, museums, and artwork around the world. Among its current projects is construction of the facade for an elaborate, $130 million aquarium scheduled to open this year in Fortaleza, Brazil. Locally, the company created the distinctive “sky station” sculptures atop Bartle Hall and the corkscrewing, stainless steel spire on the Reorganized Church of Latter Day Saints Temple in Independence.

Zahner sits down for a public conversation with Library Director Crosby Kemper III in the latest installment of the Library's Kansas City: Cradle of Entrepreneurs series.


Thursday, February 5, 2015

The Kansas City Public Library, The Black Archives of Mid-America, and UMKC's Black Studies Program are working in partnership to present the Black History Month Book-to-Film Series Tuesdays and Thursdays throughout the month of February.

Detectives “Gravedigger” Jones (Godfrey Cambridge) and “Coffin Ed” Johnson (Raymond St. Jacques) investigate a wayward reverend in this Blaxploitation prototype directed by Ossie Davis. Taken from Chester Himes’ 1965 novel. 97 minutes. This title is Rated R and is recommended for adult audiences only.

Discussion leader: Delia Cook Gillis, director of the Center for Africana Studies and professor of history, University of Central Missouri.


Thursday, February 5, 2015

Even before Kansas became a state, Kansans wanted a university. What no one knew in territorial days or in the earliest years of statehood — or even after the University of Kansas opened for classes — was how big and how good it might become. In KU’s first semester, 55 students enrolled but the faculty of three found not one prepared for college work.

The university would grow into a vast and intricate educational machine that in the 21st century counts more than 27,000 students and 1,600 faculty members across multiple campuses. Former Kansas City Star and Kansas City Times editor Monroe Dodd, who has written a new coffee table book for Kansas City Star Books that commemorates the school’s sesquicentennial, discusses the often difficult, 150-year journey through wars, economic pitfalls, clashes of ideas and ideologies, and the unending demands of politics.


Friday, February 6, 2015

Through storytelling and song, vocalist and cultural historian Brother John helps young audience members explore the hidden, coded meanings and messages of classic spirituals and folk tunes used by Underground Railroad conductors in spiriting fugitive slaves to freedom.

Recommended for ages 5 and older.


Sunday, February 8, 2015

The annual Searching the Psyche Through Cinema film series returns in January and February with screenings of movies starring the late Academy Award-winning actor Philip Seymour Hoffman. A discussion featuring experts in cinema and psychoanalysis follows each screening.

Meryl Streep is an old-school nun and parochial academy principal who believes that Hoffman's parish priest has entered into an improper relationship with a student. The post-screening discussion is led by psychoanalyst Alice Brand Bartlett and Melissa Lenos, assistant professor of English at Donnelly College in Kansas City, Kansas.


Sunday, February 8, 2015

Richard L. Berkley once said, “I like meeting people.” Before, during, and after his record three-term tenure as Kansas City’s mayor — from 1979 to 1991 — he met hundreds of political leaders, entertainers, sports stars, and other celebrities. Most times, he asked to take their pictures. Berkley’s personal collection ranges from images of Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan to shots of Bo Jackson, George Brett, Annie Liebovitz, and Joanne Woodward.


Sunday, February 8, 2015

Join Kansas City Public Library staff for film screenings and animated conversations centered on quality film versions of books that are official selections of the Love on the Rocks 2015 Winter Reading Program. Discussions immediately follow film presentations. These screenings are open to the public. Participants are encouraged (but not required) to read the source book prior to the film screening.

Based on Terry McMillan’s novel, Waiting to Exhale celebrates the friendship of four very different African-American women as they support each other through the trials and tribulations of relationships, careers, and family life. With Whitney Houston and Angela Bassett. Directed by Forest Whitaker. 124 minutes. This title is Rated R and is recommended for adult audiences only.


Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Through storytelling and song, vocalist and cultural historian Brother John helps young audience members explore the hidden, coded meanings and messages of classic spirituals and folk tunes used by Underground Railroad conductors in spiriting fugitive slaves to freedom.

Recommended for ages 5 and older.


Tuesday, February 10, 2015

The Kansas City Public Library, The Black Archives of Mid-America, and UMKC's Black Studies Program are working in partnership to present the Black History Month Book-to-Film Series Tuesdays and Thursdays throughout the month of February.

Lawrence Cook joins the CIA but is merely the agency’s token black. Disillusioned, he drops out and uses his training to plot a new American Revolution. Taken from the 1969 novel by Sam Greenlee. Rated PG, 102 minutes.