Friday, October 31st, 2008 from Saturday, January 17th, 2009

Over twenty Whoop Dee Doo artists worked to create this colorful set that stood like an oversized fort within Kansas City’s La Esquina exhibition space. This show included a range of contests and performances including a staring contest between the audience and Mount Rushmore, a local barbershop quartet called the Chordtime Quartet, and featured one of our youngest performance groups, Chhondo Dance Academy, with dancers as young as three years old performing in Manipuri dance and costuming.

In their first performance on Whoop Dee Doo, the music group Ssion worked in collaboration with 20 youth to create an emotional music video for their cover of Iggy Pop’s Nightclubbing.  The youth were taught the to expertly fake cry and wore gowns made of garbage bags.

This kid-friendly faux public access television show features a mix of dancing, community acts, performances, games, skits, and contests. Structured like a high school talent show, Whoop Dee Doo highlights a diverse array of participants from the Kansas City community and engages audiences of all ages and cultural backgrounds. Seating is limited, kids are welcome, and costumes are encouraged.

Whoop Dee Doo blurs the lines between curating, art-making, performance, and community-building to yield a wildly inclusive, participatory event. Unlikely combinations and collaborations among both performances and set designs inform its bold and original aesthetic. What happens when a four-year-old and a Mexican biker create a high school backdrop together? What is the sound of an opera singer backed by the haunting howls of a six-year-old bloodhound? What does it look like when a teenage Christian fiddler, a drag queen, and members of the Midwest Cloggers create a giant wedding cake centerpiece, then dance their hearts out to oldies music all night? An unexpected convergence of talents and sensibilities informs the aesthetic basis of every aspect of the show. Whoop Dee Doo’s influences include shows such as The Carol Burnett Show, Pee Wee’s Playhouse, Mr. Wizard, The Gong Show, American Bandstand, The Muppet Show, Kid America, Sesame Street, Soul Train, Double Dare, Hee Haw, and You Can’t Do That on Television.

Whoop Dee Doo is based in Kansas City, Missouri, but has begun traveling to different venues, including Bemis Center for Contemporary Art in Omaha and the Van Abbemuseum in Eindhoven, the Netherlands earlier this year, and the Smart Museum in Chicago in 2009.

This Whoop Dee Doo series is made possible with support from Arts KC Fund, Muriel McBrien Kauffman Foundation, Bradley and Linda Nicholson, Kansas City Artists Coalition, Jeanette Nichols, and Charlotte Street Foundation.

For photos, check out our flickr!

Event Details

October 31st, 2008 from January 17th, 2009


La Esquina (1000 West St. Kansas City, MO 64108)

Next Event

2024 Gala


Saturday, October 19 from 7:00-11:00 PM

Charlotte Street Campus (3333 Wyoming)
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