Benefits, Children's Events
The Annie Malone May Day Parade is famously the second-largest African American parade in the country, but it's also the most important fundraiser on the Annie Malone Children and Family Service's schedule. The charity provides kids from infancy to age 21 who have been abused or are at risk find a safe place and learn the skills they need to overcome hardship and become successful in life. The 108th edition of the spring spectacular starts at 11 a.m. today at 20th and Market streets (www.anniemalone.com/parade). There will be decorated floats, food and merchandise booths and essentially all of black St. Louis gathered to celebrate the legacy of Annie Malone, and to guarantee the future of the organization that bears her name. free admission for spectators
One hundred years ago St. Louis was a very different place. Many of the institutions we consider essential to our collective identity were either just getting started or not even dreamed up yet. And yet in 1918 as World War I ended and the glow from the 1904 World's Fair faded, Mayor Henry Kiel believed what St. Louis needed was a municipal theater that could provide entertainment and culture for everybody.
Here we are 100 years later, and the seed planted so long ago still bears fruit every summer. The Muny marks a century of performances, stars, changing tastes and audiences with a party on Sunday, May 20. The Muny Birthday Bash holds true to Kiel's inspired vision: It's free, and everybody is invited.
Tracy Utzmyers is the Muny's production manager, and she's currently in the midst of final preparations for the party. Still, she hesitates to claim ownership of an event a long time in the making.
"I'm not planning the Birthday Bash on my own, and I don't want to say I'm in charge. I'm just the loudest person in the room," Utzmyers clarifies. "We've been talking about the party for probably a year and a half, or two years now. We started sorting out the logistics of the big day probably back in September."
The "big day" is musically themed, naturally, with events that harken back to the deep repertoire of shows in the Muny's history. Highlights include Aladdin's camel rides for the kids, an All Shook Up bandstand and a Meet Me in St. Louis Ferris wheel, as well as food trucks, cupcakes and strolling characters.
"I keep thinking of it as a street fair; you're not going to be able to do everything," cautions Utzmyers. "You're going to have to pick and choose what you want to do. We have kid zones, some local bands, and we'll shut down the street in front of the Muny for the food trucks. It goes all the way up the hills toward the upper parking lot."
One of the most interesting options is the interactive backstage tour, which shines a spotlight on the Muny staffers who never take the stage.
"It's a self-guided tour that will take you through the whole backstage area," explains Utzmyers. "The orchestra, hair, wardrobe, wig and craft people will show you what they do to bring the Muny to life. They're the core of how we get this done every year. Oh, and the technical crew will be striking the lighting rig from the Friday night gala, so you can see how that comes down."
Of course, the audience is included in the celebration.
"The tour ends on stage, where we're encouraging people to take photos of themselves on stage," Utzmyers says. "If you use the hashtag 'muny100' with those selfies and photos, they'll be pulled into a program that will make a mosaic of our logo out of all the faces. That will be displayed around St. Louis in a number of places throughout the year. "
As always, no trip to the Muny is complete without a big finish that gets everybody on their feet. Utzmyers is tight-lipped about exact details, but she's willing to share a bit of information.
"We're going to video [record] the whole audience doing a sing-along at the end. I'm not sure what's going to happen with the video, but it will be shared in a few places," she promises. "The theater community keeps coming out every summer and asking for more. This is about everybody at the Muny thanking the community for what they bring, and asking them to celebrate a once-in-a-lifetime event with us."
The Muny Birthday Bash takes place from 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday, May 20, at the Muny in Forest Park (www.muny.org). Admission is free, and everybody is welcome.free admission
Andrew Lloyd Webster's colossal hit The Phantom of the Opera remains immensely popular for a show about a mercurial stalker. The titular Phantom haunts both an opera house and young chorus girl Christine. He mysteriously arranges for his obsession to become the star of a new opera written by you-know-who, but then lashes out at Christine when she falls in love with a kind man from her past rather than the masked man who murders her castmates. Full of special effects and Webster's eternal songs, Phantom still has the power to make audiences appear in their seats in an instant. The musical is performed Tuesday through Sunday (May 9 to 20) at the Fox Theatre (527 North Grand Boulevard; www.fabulousfox.com). Tickets are $39 to $200. $39-$200
The standard chess set has been reimagined in multiple formats, using everything from Simpsons characters to loaded shot glasses. The new exhibition at the World Chess Hall of Fame sees regulation Staunton sets done up with a fresh coat of paint, which doesn't sound all that impressive. But when it's artists such as Caio Locke, Sophie Matisse and Thierry Noir wielding the brushes, the results are dazzling. Painted Pieces: Art Chess from Purling London features vibrant, hand-painted chess sets exploding with color and invention. Painted Pieces opens with a free reception from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 12, at the World Chess Hall of Fame (4652 Maryland Avenue; www.worldchesshof.org). The show remains up through September 16. free admission
Very rarely does an art exhibition include the actual wall an artist worked on, but the Saint Louis Art Museum does so for Chinese Buddhist Art, 10th-15th Centuries. A six-foot-by-four-foot section of a temple wall that has a painting of the Bodhisattva Akalokiteśvara (Guanyin) on one side is the focal point of the exhibition, and an exceptionally rare object. The show also includes four hanging scrolls, and a never-before-displayed painted, wooden sculpture of a seated arhat, the Buddhist term for a person who has achieved enlightenment. Chinese Buddhist Art, 10th-15th Centuries is open Tuesday through Sunday (March 30 to August 30) in gallery 225 of the Saint Louis Art Museum (1 Fine Arts Drive; www.slam.org). Admission is free. free admission
Wild rose-ringed parakeets are found in Africa and India — and also in Düsseldorf, Germany. The German variety arrived as pets and then either were released or escaped into the city. The birds have made a home for themselves on one of the city's upscale streets, roosting happily in building façades. Artist Cyprien Gaillard followed the parakeets with a camera as they winged home at twilight. His short film KOE shows flocks of them as they fly past concrete and steel, thousands of miles away from their tropical ancestral lands. The silent film is a commentary on how humanity interferes with nature, and how animals are forced to adapt to a rapidly urbanizing world. KOE is shown on a loop in gallery 301 at the Saint Louis Art Museum (1 Fine Arts Drive; www.slam.org) as part of the New Media Series. It remains on display Tuesday through Sunday (April 20 to July 15), and admission is free. free admission
If you think you aren't familiar with Amy Sherald's work, you're wrong. Sherald painted Michelle Obama's official portrait, and that image was broadcast around the world and back. Sherald's portraits are of everyday black people (Mrs. Obama excepted, of course) with serene expression standing against featureless monotone backgrounds, and done in the large-size format once reserved for royalty and the wealthy elite. By portraying her subjects realistically and in vibrant color, Sherald liberates the black image from the traditional narrative; there are no sociological clues that hint at the status of her people. They are their own context, their eyes taking in the viewer with majestic calm. Amy Sherald, an exhibition of the artist's paintings, opens with a free reception from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, May 11, at the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis (3750 Washington Boulevard); www.camstl.org). The exhibit remains up through August 19, and admission is free. free admission
As part of its mission to present work by modern artists, the Contemporary Art Museum supports local artists through the Great Rivers Biennial. A team of esteemed jurors from the art world work through more than 150 applications to select three artists who live in the metro area for a high-profile exhibition at the museum. Addoley Dzegede, Sarah Paulsen and Jacob Stanley are the recipients of the eighth installment, and all three should be well-known to gallery habitues. In Ballast, Dzegede uses patterned textiles, sculpture and video to explore the hidden and forgotten history that creates a sense of "unified" identity. Paulsen combines consumer campaigns, immigrant narratives and stop-motion animation in an installation of single-channel videos to create a multi-part story about the invisible framework that supports and reinforces racial oppression. Stanley's sculptures are constructed to explore the nature and passage of time. His piece Accretion is a quarter-inch thick steel sheet; visitors can each place one sheet on top of it. As time passes and the weight increases, the steel will bend. The Great Rivers Biennial opens with a free reception from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, May 11, at Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis (3750 Washington Boulevard; www.camstl.org). The artists and jurors will hold a panel discussion at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 12. The show continues through Sunday, August 19, and admission is free. free admission
The ancient city of Thonis-Heracleion was Egypt's main Mediterranean port from 664 to 332 BC, or roughly 100 years longer than the country of America has existed. It was a thriving, international metropolis — and then a string of natural disasters wiped it off the map. Archeologist Franck Goddio and his team of underwater archeologists rediscoverd Thonis-Heracleion 1,000 years later, four miles off the coast of present-day Egypt. It was more than 30 feet below the surface of the sea, its colossal statues of gods, pharaohs and ritual animals resting in the ruins of a world long gone. Three of these massive statues comprise the heart of the new exhibition Sunken Cities: Egypt's Lost Worlds, which will be on display at the Saint Louis Art Museum (1 Fine Arts Drive; www.slam.org) Tuesday through Sunday (March 25 to September 9). Alongside the trio of statues are more than 200 ceremonial and commercial artifacts (bronze vessels, coins, jewelry) found both on the sea floor and on loan from museums in Cairo and Alexandria. Admission to the exhibit is $8 to $20, and free on Friday. $8-$20
Join us for our most popular ride of the year! This is a great family outing with a kid-friendly 7-mile route. End your ride with strawberry shortcake at the 32nd annual St. Jacob Strawberry Festival. Registration and Ride: 7:30 to 10:00 a.m. Mileage: 7, 23, 38, 54 Terrain: paved, flat to gently rolling, no big hills Price: members $12 online, $16 at event non-members: $16 online, $20 at event Note: This is a premium-priced ride. All riders get a $3 credit towards their strawberry dessert with their ride wristbands. $12 - $20https://trailnet.org/calendar/2018-strawberry-ride/
Children's Events, Pets & Animals
The Show Me Reptile & Exotics Show is one of the largest shows in the region.This is a safe and family friendly event geared to educate and introduce people to reptiles and exotics. This is the best place to purchase and learn with industry leading breeders bringing their knowledge, quality and passion to the show. This is also a great place to go if you already have pets there are also feeders and supplies from quality sources. $0 - $5http://www.showmesnakes.com/
314-531-0120 ext. 2102
@ Downtown St. Louis, Market St.
This St. Louis tradition began over a century ago in the historic African-American Greater Ville Neighborhood when thousands of St. Louisans would gather to honor Annie Malone, the founder of Poro College and the noted children’s home that carries her name. The Annie Malone May Day Parade takes place on every year in May and it is our biggest fundraiser, giving our kids and community sponsors their opportunity to shine! Varies see website
Benefits, Food and Drink, Pets & Animals
Join us for our annual Uncorked: A Cause for the Paws benefiting the cats and dogs at Five Acres Animal Shelter. Enjoy beer, wine, spirits and food tastings from some of the best establishments in St. Louis. Participate in the live and silent auction and raffles. Meet adoptable cats and dogs from Five Acres. Guests can also enjoy an intimate acoustic performance by up-and-coming country artist Ryan Griffin. $50-$100https://www.fiveacresanimalshelter.org/events/event/uncorked-a-cause-for-the-paws/
The Women's Hope Chorale presents Dynamic Voices: How Music Can Empower Underserved Youth. One of the most meaningful experiences a person can have is to be heard, to be understood. The Chorale is proud to examine the profound impact of arts education – where young people can learn to express their feelings and experiences – during the second in their series of Community Conversation Concerts. This immersive event will include presentations, performances by the Chorale and local students, a multi-media demonstration, and an opportunity to share insights with others during a post-performance reception. $10-15http://www.womenshopechorale.org
The Gateway Ringers’ 2018 Spring Concert, “Seasons,” features closers and audience favorites from our last ten years of concerts. The program includes “The Magnificent Seven,” Vierne’s “Carillon,” and “How Can I Keep from Singing,” as well as some music new to us such as “Seasons of Love” from the musical “Rent” and the world premiere of a piece newly commissioned for the Gateway Ringers. Concerts are open to the public, require no tickets and have no admission charge. Free