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American Heartland Theatre, Crown Center, 2450 Grand, third level, (816) 842-9999. Live theater at its best. Enjoy six shows – comedies, mysteries, musicals and drama – throughout the year. Unique features of the 420-seat theater include a full-service bar, a private suite and free covered parking.

Avila College’s Goppert Theatre, 11901 Wornall, (816) 942-8400, Ext. 2300. Resident company performers offer a variety of plays in an intimate setting.

Barn Players, 8600 W. 95th St., Overland Park, (913) 381-4004. A summer of theatrical productions for the whole family. Performing since 1955, this community theater group offers scholarships to Johnson County high school students. A fall production and a spring music tour the entire metro area. The Senior Barn Players also tour, presenting short comedy shows to retirement centers, churches and other groups.

Bell Road Barn Players, Park University Campus, 8700 N.W. Riverpark Drive, Parkville, Mo., (816) 587-0218. Kansas City’s oldest community theater encourages appreciation for theatrical arts in the community and provides opportunities in theatrical productions.

Carlsen Center, Johnson County Community College, 12345 College Blvd., Overland Park, (913) 469-4445. This celebrated performing arts center, dubbed “the crown jewel of the Johnson County cultural scene” by the Kansas City Star, presents or is host to 250 events each year. Performances include theater, dance, opera, symphonies, children’s shows and all types of music.

City Theatre, Roger T. Sermon Community Center, corner of Truman and Noland roads, Independence, Mo., (816) 325-7370. Popular plays with open auditions sponsored by the Independence Parks and Recreation Department.

Civic Opera Theater of Kansas City, Grace and Holy Trinity Cathedral or the Folly Theatre, (913) 262-6688. A company of singers, singing for the love of it under professional direction. They have three productions a year.

The Coterie Theatre, Crown Center, 2450 Grand, first level shops, (816) 474-6552. This theater offers hour-long productions of classical and new works for young audiences. Visit for more information.

Folly Theatre, 300 W. 12th St. (intersection of 12th and Central), (816) 474-4444. The theater building, on the National Register of Historic Places, is as big an attraction as the performances it houses. One of the restored and preserved architectural gems (it was once a burlesque house) of Kansas City, the Folly is home to a strong jazz series, children’s theater and family events.

Gem Theater Cultural & Performing Arts, 1601 E. 18th St., Suite 320, Kansas City, Mo., (816) 474-6262. Located in the American Jazz Museum, this 500-seat theater has state-of-the-art technology.

Leavenworth Performing Arts Center, Municipal Theater, 5th and Delaware, Leavenworth, Kan., (913) 682-7557. Four plays plus a Christmas show performed annually by the River City Community Players, sponsored by the Leavenworth Parks and Recreation Department.

Martin City Melodrama & Vaudeville Co., 13440 Holmes, (816) 942-7576. Family-oriented melodrama with traditional hissing and booing, followed by an original vaudeville show.

Missouri Repertory Theatre, UMKC Campus, 4949 Cherry (intersection of 50th and Oak), (816) 235-2700. Their season runs September-May and offers professional resident theater in a state-of-the-art facility. One performance of each play is done in sign language for the hearing-impaired.

The New Theatre Restaurant, 9229 Foster (one block west of Metcalf), Overland Park, (913) 649-SHOW. One of the metro area’s best for food and theater, offering local and Broadway talent performing Tuesday through Sunday evenings with matinees every Sunday and most Wednesdays. Admission includes dinner and show.

Olathe Community Theatre, 500 E. Loula, Olathe, Kan., (913) 782-2990. Offering a wide variety of productions for all ages.

Quality Hill Playhouse, 303 W. 10th St., Kansas City, Mo., (816) 421-1700. Located downtown near the convention center, this playhouse features cabaret revues, musicals and plays.

Rockhurst University Players, 1100 Rockhurst Road, Sedgwick Hall, (816) 501-4607. Students perform four academic productions in Mabee Theatre.

Sandstone Amphitheatre, 633 N. 130th St. (126th Street and State Avenue), Bonner Springs, Kan., (913) 721-3400. This outdoor theater brings in headline artists playing everything from hard rock to country music in a season that runs from April through October.

Starlight Theatre, 4600 Starlight Road (Swope Park). Ticket information – (816) 363-7827; or call 1-800-776-1730. An 8,000-seat open-air theater in the heart of Swope Park, updated and expanded in 2000. On stage are performed musicals and concerts throughout the summer months, and the Applause restaurant is available for season ticket holders. Visit the Web site at

Theater League, 1310 Wyandotte, Kansas City, Mo., (816) 421-7500. Broadway musicals and other special performances presented in Music Hall, another Kansas City architectural gem.

Theatre in the Park, 77th Street and Renner Road in Shawnee Mission Park, (816) 464-9420. Outdoor summer productions of musicals and concerts with auditions held in April. Sponsored by the Johnson County Park and Recreation District.

Theatre for Young America, Mission Center Mall, 4881 Johnson Drive, Mission, Kan., (913) 831-1400. Professional adult actors perform children’s comedy, drama and musicals. Preschoolers through high school students can attend acting classes here.

Unicorn Theatre, 3828 Main St., (816) 531-PLAY. Professional and amateur actors present contemporary and new plays focusing on social issues. The winner of the National Playwright Competition usually performs.

Wyandotte Players, Kansas City Kansas Community College Campus, 7520 State Ave., Kansas City, Kan., (913) 621-2047. Year-round entertainment for the whole family.

Young Audiences Inc., 4601 Madison, (816) 531-4022. This organization administers the Arts Partners Program, especially for grades K-12. They plan and organize curriculum-based performances and artists’ visits for students in schools throughout the metro area.