The 2023 St. Louis Summer Arts Guide


Summer is the perfect season to immerse yourself in the arts, which enrich the lives of one and all. On tap between now and late September are more than 60 cultural events, including operas, art fairs, concerts in many a genre, a much-loved circus, theater performances, special exhibits, a celebration of a local polka band’s debut album, comedians, cultural festivals and a new “Disney on Ice” show for the whole family. 

Get some seasonal fun on your calendar today! 


The 2023 season for Opera Theatre of St. Louis, on stage now through June 25 at the Loretto-Hilton Center, includes four rotating operas: Joplin’s “Treemonisha,” Puccini’s “Tosca,” Mozart’s “Cosi fan tutte” and American composer Carlisle Floyd’s classic “Susannah,” which “offers a powerful indictment of religious and social hypocrisy.” For performance times and tickets, call 314-961-0644 or visit

You still have time to view “Monet/Mitchell: Painting the French Landscape” at the St. Louis Art Museum, but the exhibit closes June 25. Monet, of course, is Claude, and Joan Mitchell, an American abstract expressionist painter, was active in the New York School of artists in the 1950s. Both lived and painted in France, and the exhibit displays 24 paintings that highlight their different styles. Admission is $12 for adults, $10 for seniors and students and $6 for children ages 6-12. See for more information. 

Now through the end of July, explore the architecture and general vibe of local neighborhoods on any of the many “See STL Walking Tours,” sponsored by the Missouri Historical Society. Led by a knowledgeable guide, each tour lasts two hours, and the routes are accessible for participants who use wheelchairs. The cost is $20 per person or $15 per person for MHS members. See

Dance St. Louis sponsors the 15th annual Emerson Spring to Dance Festival 2023 May 26-27, featuring two nonstop days of dance by 17 nationally touring professional companies at the Touhill Performing Arts Center on the UMSL campus. Tickets, $15-$25, are available at For more information, see

African culture will be on display at the 32nd annual African Arts Festival May 27-29 at the World’s Fair Pavilion in Forest Park. The festival will include live entertainment, art vendors, food, a children’s village, an African marketplace and more. Admission is free. See

Polka fans: A joyous show celebrating the release of the So Grand Polka Band’s first full-length album — the culmination of accordion player Jess Adkins’ artist residency with the Kranzberg Arts Foundation — will take place at 5 p.m. May 28 at Central Stage, 3524 Washington. Tickets cost $12. See or

Shakespeare Festival St. Louis will present “Twelfth Night” May 31-June 25 at Shakespeare Glen in Forest Park, just off Fine Arts Drive on the east side of Art Hill between the St. Louis Zoo and the St. Louis Art Museum. Performances start at 8 p.m. six nights a week. (No shows on Mondays.) Seating is free, unless you opt for paid reserved seating. For details, visit or call 314-287-3348.

Every Wednesday from May 31 through Aug. 2, music lovers will gather at the Missouri Botanical Garden for free concerts, courtesy of the Whitaker Foundation. The music starts at 7 p.m., but visitors are encouraged to arrive after 5 p.m. for a picnic — bring your own or buy food and beverages on site. See


A family friendly spy story featuring aerialists, acrobats, contortionists and comedians, “Undercover” will delight fans of Circus Flora. Performances are scheduled June 1-25, with morning, mid-day and early evening shows under the Big Top in Grand Center, 3401 Washington Blvd. Tickets range from $10-$65 See or call 314-534-1111.

Learn about feminist Gloria Steinem’s life and legacy and share your stories about equality at Emily Mann’s “Gloria: A Life,” on stage June 1-18 at the New Jewish Theatre. Afternoon and evening performances will take place at the Wool Theatre in the Jewish Community Center’s Staenberg Family Complex. Tickets cost $27-$58. See

Up for something familiar, maybe something peculiar? How about “comedy tonight?” From June 1-24, you can see New Line Theatre’s production of “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum,” by playwright and screenwriter Burt Shrevelove and master songwriter Stephen Sondheim. It’s funny, it’s ribald and it’s on stage at The Marcelle, 3310 Samuel Shepard Drive. Tickets cost $20-$30 at 

Dubbed “a timeless love story” set in ancient Egypt, Elton John and Tim Rice’s “Aida” will open the season at Stages St. Louis with performances June 2-July 2. All performances are at the Ross Family Theatre at the Kirkwood Performing Arts Center. Tickets range from $51 to $76. For performance times, see or call 314-821-2407.

More than 80 artists from all over the country will show their work June 2-4 at the 19th annual Webster Arts Fair at the corner of Bompart and Lockwood avenues. The fair, which is free, also features local entertainment, food and hands-on art activities for all ages. Hours are 6-9 p.m. June 2, 11 a.m.-9 p.m. June 3 and 11 a.m.-4 p.m. June 4. For more info, go to

The Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre expects to draw crowds in June with this triple-threat line-up: Shania Twain at 7:30 p.m. June 4, Dead & Company at 7 p.m. June 7 and Hank Williams Jr. at 7 p.m. June 16. For more information and tickets, see or call Ticketmaster at 800-745-3000.

Looking for a different sound? The Glenn Miller Orchestra will bring Swing and Big Band music to town at 4 p.m. June 4 at the Sheldon Concert Hall. Tickets are $48-$68, available at Metrotix (314-534-1111 or For more information, visit

A master of the guitar, banjo and mandolin, Billy Strings elevates the sound and speed of bluegrass as he folds in elements of rock, jazz, and psychedelia. He plays the Chaifetz Arena at 8 p.m. Friday, June 9. Tickets start at $39.50, available at

The Muny’s 105th season kicks off with “Beautiful: The Carole King Musical” (June 12 – 18), the story of the legendary singer and songwriter. Next up is “Disney’s Beauty and the Beast” (June 22 – 30), a magical tale as old as time — or so says Mrs. Potts. Shows start at 8:15 p.m. and tickets ($19 to $120) are available at Metrotix (314-534-1111 or or come early to grab a free seat. For more information, visit 

The Open Highway Music Festival returns June 16-17, with performances at the Chesterfield Amphitheatre, 631 Veterans Place Drive. Hear Jason Isbell, The Funky Butt Brass Band, Hillary Fitz and more. Individual tickets and passes are available. For schedules and ticket prices, visit

Buckle up your swash and head for “The Princess Bride: Live in Concert,” brought to you by the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra at 7 p.m. on June 16 and 18 at the Stifel Theatre. Expect “romance, wit and daring duels,” as well as those pesky Rodents of Unusual Size, all backed by the power of a full symphony orchestra performing the musical score. Visit for tickets or more information.

The award-winning Ambassadors of Harmony will present “Acapella Live” at 2 and 8 p.m. on June 17 at the Touhill Performing Arts Center. Tickets range from $17-$33. See  

Opera Theatre of St. Louis presents “Center Stage” at 7:30 p.m. June 20 at the Loretto-Hilton Center, where you’ll hear rising opera stars perform “iconic melodies from opera’s greatest hits and cherished rarities.” Tickets cost $15-$115. See

Kenny Barron (honored by the National Endowment for the Arts as a Jazz Master) and Benny Green (American hard-bop jazz pianist; former member of Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers) will join forces for a five-night run June 21-25 for Jazz St. Louis, on stage at the Harold and Dorothy Steward Center for Jazz. Tickets cost $37-$42. See

Laughs galore are in store at Bert Kreischer’s Fully Loaded Comedy Fest at 7 p.m. June 24 at Enterprise Center, featuring Bert Kreischer, Tiffany Haddish, Fortune Feimster, Big Jay Oakerson, Jay Pharoah and Chad Daniels. Tickets cost $46.75-$126.75. See

Pridefest St. Louis’ celebration “Diversity Creates Community” will take place June 24-25 downtown. Expect music, vendors, local artists, a Children’s Area, nonprofit organizations, plenty of food and live entertainment. The parade begins at noon on Sunday at 8th and Market. For more information, see

“Action/Abstraction Redefined: Modern Native Art, 1940s–1970s” — the first exhibition at the St. Louis Art Museum to focus on modern Native American art — opens June 24 and runs through Sept. 3 at the museum in Forest Park. Expect “groundbreaking paintings, sculptures, textiles and works on paper that challenged stereotypical expectations of Native American art during the postwar era.” A free public preview starts at 4 p.m. June 23; after that admission is $12 for adults, $10 for seniors and students and $6 for children ages 6-12. See for more information. 

At last — after having to postpone last fall — the one and only Judy Collins will sing at 8 p.m. June 27 at the Sheldon Concert Hall. Tickets cost $40-$64.50, available at Metrotix (314-534-1111 or For more information, visit


Ever been so happy it hurts? That’s the name of Bryan Adams’ national tour, coming to the Enterprise Center at 7:30 p.m. July 1, and Adams is bringing along Joan Jett and The Blackhearts. Tickets range from $56.50 to $146.50. See or 

Fair Saint Louis 2023 will celebrate the 42nd year of holiday partying on July 4 (one day only) on the riverfront. The festivities will begin with a 140th America’s Birthday Parade on the morning of July 4 and conclude with a giant fireworks display against the backdrop of the Arch. See for details. 

In partnership with the World Chess Hall of Fame and St. Louis Chess Club, The Muny will present “Chess” July 5-11. Next up this month, the Jets and the Sharks will mix it up in “West Side Story” July 15-21. And don’t miss “Little Shop of Horrors” — a rollicking comedy “to die for,” all due to a total eclipse of the sun — on stage July 25-31. Shows start at 8:15 p.m. and tickets ($19 to $120) are available at Metrotix (314-534-1111 or or come early to grab a free seat. For more information, visit

Moonstone Theatre Company will present “The Nerd” at the Kirkwood Performing Arts Center from July 6-23. The play follows the plight of Willum Cubbert, whose life was saved in Vietnam by Rick Steadman. Cubbert has never met his hero, so when Steadman shows up unexpectedly, Cubbert is excited – until he realizes how irritating Steadman is. Tickets range from $15 to $40 and are available at 

Let Them Eat Art, a tribute to France’s Bastille Day, will take place from 6 to 10 p.m. July 7 in downtown Maplewood. The free event features live art demonstrations by regional artists, live music, kid’s activities and food and drink by Maplewood’s food purveyors. Shops will be open late. For more info, go to

Union Avenue Opera’s 29th Festival Season will present Benjamin Britten’s “Turn of the Screw” July 7-8 and 14-15. (Bonus: Christine Brewer will be in the role of Mrs. Grose.) Next up is Donizetti’s farce “Don Pasquale,” on stage July 28-29 and Aug. 4-5. All performances are at the Union Avenue Opera House, 733 North Union Blvd. Single tickets range from $32-$55; season tickets also are available. For tickets and performance times, see or call 314-361-2881.

The St. Louis Actors’ Studio will present the 9th Annual LaBute New Theater Festival July 7-23 at The Gaslight Theatre. Tickets cost $35-40. For performance times and tickets, see

Singer-songwriter Steve Earle brings his unique brand of storytelling and musicality to the City Winery, located at the City Foundry, at 7:30 p.m. July 12. Tickets range from $75-$88 and are available at

RiverBend Bluegrass, “a traditional band dedicated to the performance and preservation of the ‘High-Lonesome Sound,’” will pay tribute to the sounds of the founders of the genre at 7:30 p.m. July 14 at The Blue Strawberry, 364 North Boyle. Tickets cost $15-$20. See

On her “Ocean to Ocean” tour, singer/songwriter Tori Amos will enchant St. Louisans at 7:30 p.m. July 14 at the Stifel Theatre. Tickets range from $36.50-$111.50. See

The St. Louis Jewish community’s own Brothers Lazaroff have put together “Laz Jazz Fest,” slated for the Grandel Theater & the Dark Room on July 15. In addition to the Brothers Lazaroff, expect multiple jazz acts on two stages. Ticket information and line-up to come. Go to for more info.

The musical story “of one young man’s journey to be extraordinary,” “Pippin” will be on stage July 20-22 at COCA in the Catherine B. Berges Theatre. The show is recommended for individuals 14 and older. Tickets cost $28-36. For details on matinee and evening performances., see

A “farce-meets-murder mystery,” “Clue” is based on a board game we all remember well. The musical opens July 21 and runs through Aug. 20 at Stages St. Louis. All performances are at the Ross Family Theatre at the Kirkwood Performing Arts Center. Tickets range from $51 to $76. For performance times, see or call 314-821-2407.

The Midnight Company returns July 26 and Aug. 2 and 9 to The Blue Strawberry (364 North Boyle) with “You Made Me Love You,” a tribute to Judy Garland with Jennelle Gilreath Owens, directed by artistic director Joe Hanrahan. For ticket prices and show times, see

Kansas — the band, not our neighboring state — is coming to the Fox Theatre at 7:30 p.m. July 29 for “Another Fork in the Road: The 50th Anniversary Tour.” Tickets run $45-$125. Why not treat yourself — remember, all we are is dust in the wind. See


Seems as though we’ve waited many multiples of “five hundred twenty-five thousand six hundred minutes” for The Muny to present “Rent,” and our patience will be rewarded Aug. 4–10. Then the musical comedy “Sister Act” brings the 105th season to an end, on stage Aug. 14–20. Shows start at 8:15 p.m. and tickets ($19 to $120) are available at Metrotix (314-534-1111 or or come early to grab a free seat. For more information, visit 

Matthew Paul Miller, aka Matisyahu, is known for his meshing of rock, reggae and hip-hop interlaced with Judaism-inspired lyrics. He comes to The Factory, with special guests G. Love and Special Sauce, at 7:30 p.m. on Aug. 5. Tickets, at $35.50, are available at

Welcome “Saturday Night Live” veteran Melissa Villaseñor — and her many amazing comedic impressions — on stage Aug. 10-12 at the Helium Comedy Club at the St. Louis Galleria. If you’re 18 or older, choose from five performances. Tickets cost $24-$44. For show times, see 

Oh, What a Night! Frankie Valli (The Original Jersey Boy) and the Four Seasons will take us down memory lane at 7:30 p.m. Aug. 10 at the Stifel Theatre. Tickets range from $35-$125. See

Jazz fans: Hear Marvin F. Cockrell and Focus at 7:30 p.m. Aug. 12 at the 17th Annual Smooth Jazz Concert at the Sheldon Concert Hall, with special guest Giulia Lorezoni 4tet from Rome, Italy. Tickets cost $50-$75, available at Metrotix (314-534-1111 or For more information, visit

Whether he’s fronting Hootie & the Blowfish or performing with his own band, Darius Rucker has proven time and again he’s a musical force to enjoy rather than be reckoned with. See him when he brings his Starting Fire Tour to St. Louis Music Park at 8 p.m. Aug. 12. For tickets and more information go to

Theater, music and more, all showcasing original material by independent artists — that’s what The St. Lou Fringe Festival promises, on stage Aug. 14-20 at several venues in Grand Center and beyond. Check out for more information. 

Listen up: The Smooth Jazz Cruise on Land, featuring Lalah Hathaway and Boney James, will perform Aug. 18-19 at The Factory in Chesterfield. For performance times and ticket prices, see

The alt-country band from Dallas, Old 97’s, are marking their 30th year as a band with a tour that pulls into Delmar Hall on Aug. 24. For an 8 p.m. show. Tickets are $30/35 and can be gotten at

“Ragtime,” with glorious music by Steven Flaherty and inspiring lyrics by Lynn Ahrens, will be on stage Aug. 18, 19, 25 and 26 as part of Union Avenue Opera’s 29th Festival Season. All performances are at the Union Avenue Opera House, 733 North Union Blvd. Single tickets range from $32-$55; season tickets also are available. For tickets and performance times, see or call 314-361-2881.

The Evolution Festival, featuring Brandi Carlile, The Black Keys, The Black Crowes, Ben Harper & the Innocent Criminals and a dozen other top musical acts, takes place Aug. 26-27 in Forest Park. In addition, attendees can enjoy the best in local barbeque as well as local and regional bourbon brands along with the diverse music lineup. For information on how to become an Evolution Insider and for details on the different ticket levels and pricing, visit

Founded in 1934, the celebratory Festival of Nations will fill the eastern edge of Tower Grove Park Aug. 26-27. Expect dance, music, craft demonstrations, an ethnic gift bazaar and some 50 food booths at what is said to be the bi-state region’s largest annual multicultural celebration. For more information, see 

Rick Springfield brings his “I Want My 80’s Tour” to St. Louis Music Park in Maryland Heights at 7:30 p.m. Aug. 29. He’ll get a little help from The Hooters, Paul Young and Tommy Tutone. For ticket prices, see

Labor Day Weekend

The Greater St. Louis Artists will present the Labor Day Weekend Art Fair at Queeny Park Sept. 1-3 in the Greensfelder Recreation Complex at the park in Ballwin. The juried fine art and fine craft show will feature up to 130 artists from 20 states. Tickets are $6 at the door for adults; kids under 18 are free when accompanied by an adult. For details, see

The St. Louis World’s Fare Heritage Festival & Games, open from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sept. 2-3, aims to “honor the major achievements that occurred in St. Louis during the 1904 World’s Fair while celebrating our talents today.” On the upper lot at The Muny, expect music, an artists’ village, a Ferris Wheel, food trucks and a green space for kids, plus the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair Historic Experience and a local business expo. For more information, see

One of the largest and oldest festivals of its kind in the U.S., the Japanese Festival at the Missouri Botanical Garden celebrates the history, culture and people of Japan Sept. 2-4,  showcasing music, art, dance, food and entertainment. General admission is $14 for individuals 13 and up and $6 for residents of St. Louis City or St. Louis County. For details, see