Jump directly to the Content
Jump directly to the content
Dancing to the Beat of Shalom: Christians Revive Kansas City's Arts Scene

Dancing to the Beat of Shalom: Christians Revive Kansas City's Arts Scene

The Culture House and Störling Dance Theater have given believers a voice in the local arts scene and beyond, meanwhile bringing a bit of racial peace to the Kansas City area.

"We saw that the whole community was starting to focus on the arts," Enna says. "We came here not to 'take over the city for Jesus,' but to at least sit at the table because of the quality of our work."

The vision of The Culture House, which includes the residency of Störling Dance Theater, is to enable quality artists, believers and nonbelievers alike, to have a platform in the marketplace.

The Culture House launched in 1996 in Overland Park, a suburb of Kansas City. It initially resided between a Chuck E. Cheese's and a Hooters. In 2005, the organization bought a larger facility in neighboring Olathe. The extra space proved useful.

"That's when we expanded our school of music and started our school of theater," says Enna, executive director. "We went from 100 students to 450 in one cycle. Then another 650 the next year, and it just grew from there. We now have about 800 students [and are growing."

While The Culture House is a Christian organization, Störling Dance Theater is a dance company run by Christians, not a "Christian dance company." As such, some of its dancers are not Christians. Yet "people still do, even if they're not Christian, ask for prayer," notes Störling-Enna, artistic director. "I'd say 90 percent of the dancers who joined the company and were not Christian have become Christian through the company."

Courtney Kierl-Bourman is one of them. Having danced for Tulsa Ballet Theater, the Kansas City Ballet, and Ballet Omaha, Kierl-Bourman returned to Kansas City after leaving an abusive marriage in California. It had been 14 years since she left Christianity, but as she danced for Störling Dance Theater, her faith was rekindled.


Rethinking the $3,000 Missions Trip

Rethinking the $3,000 Missions Trip

When I learned that kids in my city couldn't swim, I started to rethink how much I'd invested in overseas missions.
Furniture Fit for the Kingdom

Furniture Fit for the Kingdom

For Harrison Higgins, building beautiful furniture is not simply a steady job but a sacrament unto God.
Faith in a Fallen Empire

Faith in a Fallen Empire

Detroit's list of maladies is long. But some Christians' commitment to its renewal is longer.
'Daddy, Why Do People Steal from Us?'

'Daddy, Why Do People Steal from Us?'

How I answered the question would prove crucial to addressing racial divides in our D.C. neighborhood.

Comments Are Closed

No comments


Make a contribution to help support the This Is Our City project and the nonprofit ministry Christianity Today.Learn more ...


RT @MissionYear: A great collection of articles from @ct_city @CTmagazine http://t.co/OLmjHvUIfr

In honor of Kim Newlen, a friend of @ct_city who died Saturday, we share our story of her battle with cancer: http://t.co/S3FGKhVDuo

RT @CTmagazine: After three years, hundreds of stories, thousands of readers, our tribute to This Is Our City: http://t.co/Gz35NhAdqc @ct_c2026

The top 10 stories of @editor @KatelynBeaty picks her favorites and reflects on lessons learned in 3 years: http://t.co/BQxYdaoyD9

"As a community we have to do a better job of rescuing these young people." The newest (and last) City video: http://t.co/vZL0cRKO7H #RVA