Pratt Community Concert Association's mystery extravaganza featured an art and music combo that resulted in a one-of-a-kind painting and special music, both of which were auctioned off to the highest bidder Sunday in Pratt.
Art and music combined to entertain more than 160 Pratt Community Concert Association attendees Sunday afternoon at Pratt Community College Carpenter Auditorium for a program that ended in an auction for both a painting and song created during the performance.
Featured performers artist Mark Flickinger and musician Stephen Butler, regaled the audience with talent and friendly banter. Butler and Flickinger are faculty members at Cowley Community College in Ark City, where they both reside with their families.
“We are excited to have Stephen and Mark as our ‘Mystery Performers,’ as they receive rave reviews wherever they go,” said Community Concert President Sheryl White as she welcomed members and guests.
White said auctioneer John Hamm would conclude the program with bidding wars for both Flickinger’s 24x36 inch acrylic-on-canvas painting and a tape and musical score of an original composition by Butler that he would complete during a brief interlude.
As they took their places on stage, Flickinger requested Butler to play something western to set the stage for his painting of a Kansas Flint Hills scene.
Flickinger, whose paintings grace the hall of the Kansas Governor’s Mansion in Topeka, began to daub paint while Butler sang and pounded his Yamaha electronic keyboard with nimble fingers that virtually flew across the ivories.
Audience members responded with enthusiastic applause to Butler’s renditions of favorites including “The Entertainer,” “My Girl” and “Hey Jude,” among other hit tunes, some of which he adapted to heckle his artist partner and spark chuckles from the audience.
Butler, who is also a Baptist minister, showed the fullness and strength of his rich baritone voice with a stirring rendition of “America the Beautiful.”
Before excusing himself to write an original composition for Pratt, Butler asked audience members to set some musical parameters, which the attendees decided should include that the composition be in the Key of G, the tempo should be 6/8 time and the style should be ragtime.
Butler jotted these guidelines on his hand and returned to the stage 20 minutes later to perform a three-part composition he entitled “Greenback Boogie, Thunderbird Swing, and Beaver Rag.”
The winning bid for Flickinger’s painting was $500 by Jana Mathes of Pratt. Butler’s musical score and recording brought a winning bid of $100 by Martha Wade, also of Pratt.
The next community concert event is “Jersey Tenors” on Wednesday, March 15, followed by “Brass Fire” on Monday, April 8, both at 7 p.m. at Pratt Community College Carpenter Auditorium.
Season tickets at $40 are available, which entitle holders to six programs locally and additional programs by participating concert groups.
Season tickets are available by calling White at 620-672-1596 or at Pratt Community Concert Association on Facebook.