in Forest Park
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The Nathan Frank Bandstand on Pagoda Island, in front of The Muny, was built in a classic Renaissance design with white marble columns, bronze railings and ornaments.
The Muny began in 1916 in Forest Park with a tribute to William Shakespeare. As You Like It, produced by Shakespearean actress Margaret Walsh Anglin featured over 200 St. Louisians playing a variety of roles on a gently sloping hill.
In 1917, concrete was poured for the production of Aida by Guy Golterman of the St. Louis Grand Opera Committee. The success of that event prompted St. Louis Mayor Henry Kiel to formally establish the Municipal Theatre Association of St. Louis in 1919.
From the beginning, The Muny set aside 1,456 free seats at the back of the theatre in order for the shows to be affordable to all. During its history, The Muny has produced and presented grand operas, concerts, operettas and ballet troupes.
The Muny is located on Theatre Drive, just north of the Jewel Box. In front of the entrance to The Muny, patrons and visitors to the park can enjoy the serene beauty of The Pagoda which is surrounded by water.
In 1998, The Muny completed the renovation of the stage area and backstage area as part of it Capital Improvement Campaign. Over $3 million was spent on new concession stands and doubling the number of womens bathrooms. In 2000, nearly 12,000 seats were replaced at the outdoor amphitheatre and the parking lots were resurfaced. A plaza was added east of the entrance. The area surrounding the Pagoda and the entrance was landscaped with plants, antique lights, sidewalks and bridges featuring decorative columns.
The tradition of The Muny continues with Broadway musicals from mid-June through mid-August in Forest Park.
For more information, call 314-361-1900.
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