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Not Second Rate


When a school is sizable enough to boast a satellite campus, the outpost is usually the lowest of the low. Lecturers, assistant adjuncts and other near-faculty types usually staff the off-site classes. This results in name-only institutions that serve education’s version of watery, 3.2 near-beer. Tonight, though, the University of Kansas seems determined to prove that its franchise’s brew is as thick as the original. At 7:30 p.m., the school’s Edwards Campus (Regnier Hall, 12600 Quivira Road in Overland Park) presents the comic romance Starting Here, Starting Now, the second musical in its Kansas Summer Theatre series. An intimate three-actor revue, Starting Here revels in the glitter and tumult of modern love, with each of its story songs trying to pack in a full-fledged narrative. The surprise: The show is directed by John Staniunas, head of KU’s Department of Theatre and Film. Though not an absolute guarantee of quality, it’s certainly encouraging. Staniunas is Kevin Willmott’s boss, after all, which is reason enough to expect that Starting Here will kick the holy shit out of Theatre in the Park. The production runs through this weekend and next, with additional performances later this month on the Lawrence campus. Call 785-864-3982 for tickets and information.

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