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It’s embarrassment of riches time in St. Louis, on both the theatre and concert scenes.
|Angels in America, Part 1|
Cavalia, its run extended yet again, continues through April 21 under the Really Big Top on Cerre Street at the I-64 Broadway exit. It’s the Rolls Royce of equestrian shows—a flashy, elegant evening featuring 48 horses, a raft of acrobats and aerialists, and some impressive multi-media effects. The show is not without its longueurs but even so, anyone who loves horses won't want to miss it. See my review at the KDHX web site. Visit www.cavalia.net or call 1-866-999-8111.
|Exit the King|
"It's like a musical wrecking ball"
The St. Louis Symphony has been marketing this weekend’s concerts with a clever on-line campaign emphasizing the high energy (and volume) of Prokofiev’s rarely heard Ala and Lolly (Scythian Suite), Op. 20. Written in 1915, the piece was originally intended as a ballet for Serge Diaghilev based on a legendary pre-Christian race known as the Scythians. Diaghliev turned it down—maybe it sounded too similar to Stravinsky’s Le Sacre du Printemps from two years earlier—so Prokofiev turned it into an orchestral suite. Its 1916 premiere didn’t cause riots, but it did scandalize the conservative Russian musical establishment with its unapologetic dissonance and rhythmic drive. A timpanist at the premiere is said to have burst the skin of one of his drums at one especially violent moment.
The rest of the program should prove exciting as well: Rachmaninoff’s valedictory Symphonic Dances and Ravel’s Concerto for the Left Hand with the great pianist Leon Fleisher at the keyboard. David Robertson is on the podium. Performances are Saturday at 8 PM and Sunday at 3 PM, April 14 and 15. For more information, visit stlsymphony.org.
|Jeffrey M. Wright|