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7 Shows To See This Holiday Weekend In Kansas City

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Entertainment is all over the place this Christmas holiday weekend, offering the perfect opportunity to get out and see a show with family or friends.

Wait, you still have presents to wrap? Food to prepare? Relatives to practice being nice around? Then you really do need a diversion.

And if you find yourself flying solo, don’t fret. Your brothers and sisters in holiday fun are out there, just waiting to lift you up. Now let me give you a hand.

​1. Radkey

Three hard-rocking brothers from St. Joseph – lively lead singer and guitar slinger Dee Radke, bass maniac Isaiah Radke and don’t-get-in-my-way drummer Solomon Radke – have devoted the last several years to turning their family moniker into a catchphrase for calculated cacophony. The trio has been featured in Britain’s legendary music scene mag, New Musical Express, and toured Europe and North America. Fall under the high-decibel spell of Radkey in a Christmas night concert that should leave fans of original metal exulted and exhausted. Did someone yell for an encore? There they go again! Also on the bill: Drop a Grand and Stiff Middle Fingers.

Sunday, 10 p.m., RecordBar, 1520 Grand Blvd., Kansas City, Mo.; tickets: $12 advance ($15 day of show).

​2. Una Walkenhorst

This thoughtful singer-songwriter (and, yes, daughter of Rainmaker Bob Walkenhorst) creates compelling music with only her voice and an acoustic guitar. Pleasant melodies and penetrating lyrics prevail on this unexpectedly ethereal artist’s debut album, “Scars.” Multilayered songs include “Wooden Man,” about moving on in the relationship forest by carving a better fella for herself out of wood – uh, careful with that ax.

Friday, 6 p.m.; RecordBar, 1520 Grand Blvd., Kansas City, Mo.; admission: free.

3. Christmas at the Kick

No matter how much you may plan, things can go awry. So why not throw out the plan and throw in with the improvisational tactics of Kick Comedy Theatre? The group’s wacky crew of in-the-moment funny folks will tackle both short-form and long-form material with only a Christmas theme to guide them. Are you ready for a spontaneous skit pegged merely to the title of a Christmas song? Neither is Kick Comedy – but that’s the point!

Friday, 8 p.m.; Kick Comedy Theatre, 4010 Pennsylvania Ave., Kansas City, Mo.; tickets: $10 ($5 for students with I.D.)

4.‘Application Pending’

Accomplished Kansas City actress Jennifer Mays takes on more than 40 characters in a one-woman show that she’s described as an “amazing challenge.” The only greater test might be keeping a straight face as Mays expertly evokes all manner of comedic personas in the context of her central role as a besieged kindergarten admissions officer at a toney New York City prep school. Anyone who’s anyone wants to get their kid in. And everyone, as hilariously demonstrated by Mays, is out of their mind.

Friday, 8:30 p.m.; Unicorn Theatre, 3828 Main St., Kansas City, Mo.; tickets: $40.

5. Amazing Species: Life at the Limits

The world is full of truly astounding creatures. But enough about your family. All ages will find something to be fascinated by at this touring attraction put together by the American Museum of Natural History.  From elephant seals to dragon flies, the interactive exhibit utilizes life-size and way-larger models of fauna focusing on extraordinary examples of biodiversity to ponder. Among other things, find out about mating rituals and survival skills. But enough about your family.  

Friday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Museum at Prairiefire, 5801 W. 135th St., Overland Park, Kan.; tickets: $8-$13 (ages 2 and younger free).

6. The Floozies

Need a dance partner? You should be able to find one at this show by funk-fueled electronic music duo The Floozies (brothers Matt and Mark Hill from Lawrence), who are nothing if not devoted to keeping dance floors oozing with unbridled energy. You might say that producer/guitarist Matt and drummer Mark are two sides of the same move-your-bootie coin. Give it a flip.

Friday, 8:30 p.m.; Arvest Bank Theatre at the Midland, 1228 Main St., Kansas City, Mo.; tickets: $20.

7. Ugly Sweater Party: David Hasselhoff On Acid Reunion Show

Superficially an ugly sweater party, the real meat on this holiday bone is David Hasselhoff on Acid. Mind you, not the real star of TV’s “Knight Rider” and “Baywatch” getting all “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds,” but rather the trippy progressive rock band that copped the retro TV star’s name. The formerly defunct local group will rise from the psychedelic ashes for this reunion show. Trust me, you won’t need any hallucinogens (unless you count spiked eggnog) to feel like you’re part of something bigger than yourself. And, oh, the colors!

Friday, 8 p.m., Riot Room, 4048 Broadway, Kansas City, Mo.; tickets: $10 (21 and over).

Brian McTavish is a regular arts and culture contributor for KCUR 89.3. You can reach him at brianmctavish@gmail.com.

Brian McTavish follows popular culture in the belief that the search for significance can lead anywhere. Brian explains, "I've written articles and reviews ... reviewed hundreds of concerts, films and plays. And the thing is, these high arts all sprang from the pop culture of their day. Don't forget: Shakespeare was once Spielberg."
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