Who's Counting

One night in St. Louis theater.

9:05 p.m. Act Two begins for Enchanted April and Say You Love Satan, the wildebeest stampede thrills viewers of The Lion King and the ne'er-do-well Dr. John is shot dead in The Hollow. (And good riddance.)

9:10 p.m. The fog machine backstage at Enchanted April accidentally goes off, covering the set of an Italian palazzo with unexpected mist. When the lights come up on the next scene, the castle seems to be covered in soft morning haze. During intermission at The Hollow, 76 of the 95 audience members participate in a contest to take a stab at who killed Dr. John. Thirteen viewers will guess correctly that the murderer was the good doctor's wife, and one of those thirteen will win complimentary tickets for next season.

9:38 p.m. As Say You Love Satan begins its curtain call, The Lion King embarks on Act Two.

edward kinsella iii

9:52 p.m. While three gallant dancers duplicate Bob Fosse's famed "Steam Heat" choreography in The Pajama Game, the I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change cast takes its bows.

10:18 p.m. Cast members conclude their bows and the lights come down on Enchanted April, while Othello, who's about to smother his beloved Desdemona, persuades himself to "Put out the light, and then put out the light."

10:30 p.m. Pajama factory workers sing about the hoped-for benefits of their threatened strike ("7-1/2 Cents"). At the ArtLoft another kind of strike is under way. The final performance of Say You Love Satan ended less than an hour ago, and the sets and lights are coming down.

10:35 p.m. During the next two minutes, Othello, An American Daughter and The Lion King will all end. At all three curtain calls, everyone will be wearing the proper shoes.

10:41 p.m. Curtain call for The Pajama Game, followed one minute later by The Hollow.

10:45 p.m. The Full Monty is the only game in town. The much-anticipated striptease begins ("Gentlemen, we only live once") and continues until lights blind the audience's eyes to the misadventures onstage.

10:54 p.m. The Full Monty curtain call is over, and the night is done.

One show has closed. Four more (An American Daughter, The Hollow, Othello, The Pajama Game) will have their final performances the next day. The Lion King will move on to Cleveland. Three shows (Enchanted April, The Full Monty and I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change) will do it all over again this weekend.

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