By CHRIS PACKHAM
Look: We admit it. We were scooped by The Kansas City Star Thursday so forcefully that a tiny, vital part inside of us broke. Now we can feel it rattling around inside, like a cigarette butt in a beer can. I’ve personally apologized to our entire editorial staff for the complete failure of The Pitch's Night & Day section to highlight what is obviously the biggest entertainment story to hit Kansas City since marshmallowy singer Garth Brooks occupied the Sprint Center for a record-setting nine nights. Note that I’m using the word occupy the same way that hippies were described as “occupying” university administration buildings, often while wearing nothing but hemp sandals. Like the hippies, Brooks had to be forcibly dislodged by a hail of obsessive Timothy Finn blog reviews. And come to think of it, we totally missed the Garth Brooks story, too. So we’re 0-2 on this whole thing.
You win this round, Kansas City Star Preview section. Tonight, the 2006 Disney sensation High School Musical makes its Sprint Center debut translated into the girly idiom of figure skating — as clearly pictured in this huge image, reproduced in color at enormous expense, on the cover of yesterday's Preview section.
Adapting classic works for ice makes them that much better, the same way that reinterpreting Star Trek in the idiom of teddy bears adds layers of semiotic complexity to the glass case where your grandma keeps her Hummel figurine collection. Though I am forced to follow the example of the Kansas City Star Preview section in explicitly recommending High School Musical: The Ice Tour to readers of The Pitch, I would also like to point out that the excellent pun in the Preview headline, “High School Musical: The Ice Tour Is on the Rink of Success,” is followed up by this amazing play on words in the subhead: “Disney’s super franchise shows no signs of melting down anytime soon.” Then, inside, I found the headline “Ice Cool Musical.” While we’re doing our Daniel-san wax-on, wax-off in Preview’s backyard, hopefully Preview will also teach us which odd jobs will give us the muscle memory for crafting puns.
Shows are at 7 p.m. Friday; 11 a.m., 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. Saturday; and 3 p.m. Sunday.
It seems really weird that other events are happening on the same weekend — mostly on regular-friction terra firma rather than ON ICE! But outside the Sprint Center, things are proceeding pretty much normally. On Saturday alone, you can see:
Sterilize Stereo, American Catastrophe and Red Water Revival at the Brick (1727 McGee, 816-421-1634)
Hopeless Destroyers, Young Livers, the Rich Boys and Brutally Frank at Davey's Uptown Ramblers Club (3402 Main, 816-753-1909)
Electric Six, Willowz and We Are the Fury at the Record Bar (1020 Westport Road, 816-753-5207)
Ad Astra Per Aspera at Love Garden Sounds (936 ½ Massachusetts, Lawrence, 785-843-1551)
It's like they didn't even realize that High School Musical on Ice was getting "Japan Bombs Pearl Harbor"-grade front-page status in the Preview section. Maybe the bands will get some small turnout of their most hardcore fans.
Finally, after the prolonged weekend of rocking, you might consider attending the free screening of the 1980 East German film Solo Sunny at the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art (4420 Warwick, 816-753-5784) as part of the Behind the Wall Film Classics Series. I'm assuming that you somehow didn't manage to get tickets to every single performance of a certain lip-synced ice-skating extravaganza and you still need something to do. The film, which screens at 2 p.m., was the recipient of the coveted Silver Bear Award, which was the rickety and unreliable Party-sanctioned version of the Oscar, kind of the Yugo to the Academy Awards' Gran Torino. It addresses the longings and frustrations of German youth at the time — much the same way that High School Musical on Ice addresses the hopes and dreams of privileged Western kids on a smooth, Zambonied expanse of ice.
As a final act of contrition and an apes-in-the-wild display of submission to The Kansas City Star, I have crafted the image at right. Like a disgraced Japanese business executive in a movie caricaturing Japanese business culture, I now end my period of public self-flagellation.
I hope to demonstrate better judgment in the future.