discover. create. perform. live.
The Uptown Arts Bar is dedicated to performing arts in Kansas City presenting original, unjuried and uncensored art every day of the week. Performers range from improv and comedy, burlesque to belly dance, poetry and playwrights, from mime to music, and so much more! We proudly partner with The Fringe Festival every year as part of the city’s growing interest in the performing arts.
Greg Patterson, owner of the Uptown Arts Bar, founded the venue in February of 2012 and established his deep conviction about the importance of the arts as the backbone of the bar. His dream was to create a small scale, intimate venue for performers of all ilk to make their home. Since he took the chance, the Arts Bar has grown from just a few events a week to one of the busiest venues around. We host an average of 50 events a month, including private parties and fundraisers. The upstairs bar, Niche, hosts a stunning hand-made sound system called Meta Hi-Fi and showcases a wide array of electronic music every week Th-Sat.
Mr. Patterson holds a strong conviction on the importance of giving back to the community. The bar has annual fundraisers for many different organizations: KKFI community radio, Historic KC, YMCA, Heart of America Shakespeare Festival, Heartland Chapter of the Alzheimers Association and more. We are very proud to be able to contribute to the success of these important groups. Greg also hosts many events to engage the community or increase awareness and annually produces “The Human Be-In,” which not only celebrates the revolutionary spirit of the ‘60’s, but also encourages a current sense of social action. He has also presented special remembrances for John F. Kennedy, Nelson Mandela, Maya Angelou, and Robin Williams.
In 2013 and 2014 the Uptown Arts Bar was voted by Pitch Magazine readers as the BEST OPEN MIC venue in KC. Kick off your week with Comedy Open Mic hosted by Norm Dexter on Mondays at 9, follow up with Lyric Lab, a music open mic, 9 pm, hosted by PRiM-ONE and our signature “Bruise-Me Tuesdee” crazy drink specials. Then hit the hump on Wednesday with a poetry and spoken word open mic on Wednesdays, hosted by local collective, Poetic Underground, at 9 pm. Every Thursday is KARAOKE, never a cover, always wild.
We also regularly host Kansas City Cabaret burlesque troupe, Lucha Raptor improv group showcases, Nique Poetry features, Brother John’s musical revues, Billie Mahoney tap jams, Beth Byrd’s cabaret shows, Potluck Productions staged play readings, Spenkel Korp comedy showcases, 1001 Arabian Nights belly dance and beyond, Prim-One's Sound Pit Saturday open mic, and techno powerhouse Todd Howard with Juxtapose.
The Arts Bar is located near the intersection of Valentine and Broadway in the Uptown District of Midtown, which is the coolest up and coming neighborhood of the city. The bar was built in 1925 and originally named the Betsy Ross Building. We can host up to 150 people between the main bar, the main stage, our upstairs bar “The Niche,” and our 2nd floor outdoor patio which lets guests bring their drinks to enjoy the weather and a square.
We have a great set-up for shows. Guests can watch and listen to the main stage performance on multiple screens throughout both bars and on the patio. We have led lights which create a great dance vibe for DJ nights, and most importantly there is never a television show on in the bar! The Arts Bar is the spot to get away from the norm and be entertained by something live, original and creative.
Our bar features a delightful menu of classic cocktails such as a French 75, Moscow Mule, and Manhattan. We also have a great selection of craft beers. A small kitchen features fresh and delicious light bar food. Our original recipe, fresh-made marinara sauce and fresh baked flatbreads enlighten the artisan pizza selection, which includes new vegan options.
Come on along to the Arts Bar and be entertained!
Uptown Arts Bar