The St. Louis Symphony Orchestra kicked off its 140th season with a bang - literally - at its annual concert in Forest Park. The concert concluded with its annual fireworks display, but the entire evening began hours before, as concertgoers began to fill Art Hill as early as 3:30pm for the show. Presented in memory of Mary Ann Lee, the concert has been a fixture of St. Louis' summer since 1968.
Stéphane Denève, in his first concert as Music Director, led the orchestra in a St. Louis-inspired program that included favorites like John Philip Sousa's The Stars and Stripes Forever, the main title from Star Wars, and Leonard Bernstein's "Mambo" from West Side Story. He also programmed other works by American composers including Bernstein and John Williams, plus works by French composers Hector Berlioz and Georges Bizet. And, of course, St. Louis favorites "Meet Me in St. Louis," "Take Me Out to the Ballgame," and "St. Louis Blues March."
The finale was a rousing rendition of Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture, with contributions from the St. Louis Symphony IN UNISON Chorus, St. Louis Symphony Chorus, and St. Louis Symphony Youth Orchestra.
Stéphane and your SLSO open the classical season on September 21, performing works by Debussy, Gershwin, Ravel, Kevin Puts, Guillaume Connesson, and Jennifer Higdon.
Relive the magic of the Forest Park concert with these photos.