St. Louis' arts community is gearing up for a big season of live shows this fall! We went straight to the top and asked local arts and entertainment leaders what they're most excited about in the upcoming season:
Story: Travis has a predicament. He’s invited Shawn back to his apartment, and there’s a strong mutual attraction between them. Just as the relationship is getting intimate, though, Alyse walks through the door with her boyfriend, Ryan. Travis tells Shawn not to worry, that Alyse is just his wife.
Story: Dorante is an elegant, upper-class cad. He’s journeyed to Paris in 1644 in search of a wife, unaware that his father already has decided his marital fate. While there, Dorante stumbles upon an amiable chap named Cliton, an impoverished but decent fellow who needs a steady job. Cliton convinces Dorante that he should be Dorante’s servant, which appeals to the gentleman’s vanity.
It’s always hard seeing films with posthumous performances. I don’t mean watching a Jimmy Stewart classic or a Marilyn Monroe comedy. I mean watching Heath Ledger’s Joker or James Gandolfini in Enough Said. Here, we have Philip Seymour Hoffman (who died in February) in one of his final roles. Sadly, even his brilliant, charismatic performance isn’t enough to help this film.
Story: It’s 1961, and window washer J. Pierrepont Finch seems more absorbed in the book he’s reading than in cleaning the exterior of the World Wide Wicket building. He carries a self-help tome that describes in meticulous detail how an ambitious, enterprising young man (it is 1961) can rise to the top of the business world with nary an iota of talent.
Story: Last year, St. Louis Actors’ Studio introduced its LaBute New Theater Festival, a four-week offering of new, one-act plays receiving their world premieres at the Gaslight Theater. STLAS founding director William Roth and others at STLAS collaborated with noted playwright Neil LaBute, who agreed to lend his name to the festival and also to contribute an original work to the inaugural event.
Stage stars, music legends and acclaimed artists—oh my! Local arts institutions unveil this fall’s slate of creative new exhibitions and show-stopping live performances you won’t want to miss.
Story: Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, is distraught over his father’s death. When his uncle Claudius quickly marries Hamlet’s mother Gertrude and assumes the throne, the prince suspects that his uncle orchestrated the death of Hamlet’s father in order to become king himself. With that murder as motivation, the ‘melancholy Dane’ sets about an elaborate scheme to avenge his father’s death.
Santa Monica is a beachside city, bordered on three sides by the concrete sprawl of Los Angeles, and on the other side, the majestic sprawl of the Pacific Ocean—a marvelous mix of sophistication and kitsch.
Story: In a comfortable, old-fashioned home, Frank Gianelli talks about “tengo famiglia.” That’s Italian for “I support a family,” but Frank says it means even more than that, it means that a man “is doing well for my woman and my children. I have a reason for being alive.”
Story: Last year, St. Louis Actors’ Studio introduced its LaBute New Theater Festival, a four-week offering of new, one-act plays receiving their world premiere at the Gaslight Theater. STLAS founding director William Roth and others collaborated with noted playwright Neil LaBute, who agreed to lend his name to the festival and also to write an original work, The Possible, which premiered at the inaugural event in July 2013.
If I’m being incredibly optimistic, I would say studios are opting for quality, not quantity, this summer. We shall see. Here’s what’s coming to theaters in July and August...
Story: The third annual St. Lou Fringe Festival brought 35 different acts to mid-town St. Louis from throughout the metropolitan area and around the country. The festival began with a kick-off party on Wednesday, June 18 and a modest schedule of events on Thursday, June 19 before a full schedule of shows each day from Friday, June 20 through Sunday, June 22.
Story: Four vignettes all are set in the suite of a London hotel overlooking Hyde Park. In Settling Accounts, successful Welsh novelist Brian is shocked to learn that he is suddenly bankrupt. As he pieces together what happened, he realizes that his financial advisor Billy has drained Brian's bank accounts. Before Billy can skip town, however, he finds himself at the business end of Brian’s revolver, attempting to ‘explain’ what has happened to the money.
So, you’re looking for something different to do this weekend? Well, you’re in luck, because you’ve just hit the performing arts jackpot with the third annual St. Lou Fringe Festival.
Story: Henry Saunders has big plans for the Cleveland Grand Opera Company. Although the company is struggling with everyone else in the Great Depression, its general manager Saunders has come up with a dazzling idea for a fund-raiser: Get renowned opera star Tito Morelli, aka Il Stupendo, to perform the title role in Verdi’s Otello with the Cleveland Grand Opera. When Morelli accepts the assignment, Henry’s hopes are raised even higher.
Story: Vernon Gersch is a well-known composer and a self-described neurotic. Sonia Walsk is a lyricist and a free spirit, tethered to a lover named Leon she says is in her past but who keeps popping up in her life.
The latest cover of Opera News features four of five performers slated for next month’s Sing for Siteman benefit concert. Stephanie Blythe, Theo Lebow, Daniel Brevik and Tobias Greenhalgh grace the cover of the magazine’s June 2014 edition, along with fellow artist Elizabeth Futral.
So last week, Rolling Stone magazine came out with its readers’ poll, listing the 25 funniest films of all time. It’s an easy out for the magazine: When outraged fans post about missing movies or complaints about certain ones on the list, the editors can simply fall back on the 'readers’ poll' excuse. No going out on a limb there.
Story: Three short plays by Carter Lewis take an amusing look at modern-day foibles against the flavorful backdrop of Meskerem Ethiopian Restaurant. In the first vignette, No Preying, bellicose Heddie is busy browbeating Christian Agatha with her aggressive brand of atheism, ranting that God is no more likely to exist than giant insects.
Story: You want a story? There is no story, per se. This one-act comedy consists primarily of five performers delivering old jokes, new jokes, clever jokes, silly jokes, risqué jokes and a few unfunny jokes as they ‘work the room’ for yuks and lots o’ smiles while entertaining their audience.
Story: Magic Smoking Monkey Theatre, those intrepid simians who revel in lampooning all that is sacred, profound or hopelessly inept, this time offer their take on iconic host Rod Serling and what is perhaps TV’s greatest science-fiction series of all time (well, second to The X Files, anyway), The Twilight Zone.
Story: Willum is in a quandary. The Terre Haute architect is working on a couple of projects that, to his exasperation, have been seriously diluted by his clients. Additionally, his patient girlfriend Tansy is set to move to Washington, D.C. to accept a job as a TV meteorologist.
Let’s just jump right in, shall we? Here, we have yet another in a long line of 'female-empowerment' comedies—movies where Hollywood announces loud and proud that if you can’t see 40-something women like Cameron Diaz and Leslie Mann as gorgeous, sexy prizes, you’re going to get what’s coming to you. Think First Wives Club or The Witches of Eastwick. Honestly, I would think the message was absurd if Diaz herself didn’t have so much trouble hanging on to a man—maybe there’s a point to be made.