Seg. 1: Getting Health Care In Rural Kansas. Seg. 2: Lawrence Opera Looks At "Driving While Black." | KCUR

Seg. 1: Getting Health Care In Rural Kansas. Seg. 2: Lawrence Opera Looks At "Driving While Black."

Nov 16, 2018

Segment 1: Kansas city of 10,000 has survived its hospital closing and may be the model for other rural communities. 

For the last eight years, non-urban communites have seen a high number of hospital closings across the nation. That included the small town of Independence, in the southeast corner of Kansas. To fill some of the void, a health care clinic with an emergency room was opened. Today, we heard from the chairman of the American Academy of Family Physicians, and an author with the Kansas Leadership Center Journal, on whether this and other measures are enough for rural areas to survive medical shortages. 

Roberta Gumbel, left, wrote the libretto and her friend Susan Kander composed the music for "*dwb* (driving while black)." Gumbel is the solo singer in an opera that examines an activity that, in this country, "has become a potentially lethal condition."
Credit Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Segment 2, beginning at 27:43:  Using opera to examine an issue of racial bias in America.

Handing your teen the car keys then worrying whether or not they will make it back is not an experience that everyone faces. For people of color this is a common concern and they are taught at a young age extra precautions that others are not. The Lawrence Arts Center explores the racial issues of driving while black with the premiere of a one-act opera that chronicles the struggle of a black mother when her son begins to drive.

'*dwb* (driving while black)' premieres at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 17 at the Lawrence Arts Center, 940 New Hampshire St., Lawrence, Kansas 66044. For tickets, go to LawrenceArtsCenter.org.