Dances in the Dark

And in India

You may think that by now the world's thespians have exploited every possible variation of Shakespeare's A Midsummer-Night's Dream. The comedy has been performed Hawaiian-style, and the stage has been set in barnyards. Kevin Kline, Michelle Pfeiffer and Calista Flockhart have all been involved in a version, with the usual fanfare. However, this weekend, an unusual permutation of A Midsummer-Night's Dream is staged at St. Louis University High School (4970 Oakland Avenue). This time, Dances of India puts its own twist on the old tale by presenting "A Midsummer Night in India."

Music for the show ranges from everyone's favorite, Ravi Shankar (not to be confused with meditation guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar), to Yehudi Menuhin to traditional South Indian classical. For those not yet acquainted with Indian dance, this is a stellar opportunity to see it performed in all its glory. The moves and costumes should both be spectacular, and Puck and Bottom promise to be up to their usual tricks on Friday and Saturday (October 15 and 16) at 7:30 p.m. (and also on Saturday at a 3 p.m. matinee performance). Tickets cost $15 in advance and $17 at the door; call 314-997-0911 for more details. -- Christine Whitney

Turn out the Lights!
And hop in your hybrid!

At the third annual EarthWays Home (3617 Grandel Square) Energy Festival this weekend (Friday through Sunday, October 15 through 17), we suspect the organizers plan to serve lots of Pimp Juice and energy bars and that most of the attendees will be bouncing off the walls from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day. Oh, wait, it's not that kind of energy fest -- it's actually a home-energy festival. Good thing, seeing as how natural-gas prices are supposed to be through the roof this winter. Learn how to make your house more energy efficient with sealed ductwork, energy-saving light bulbs and maybe even a solar oven! Cool, huh? The fest costs an economical $2 per person; visit or call 314-577-0220 for more info. -- Alison Sieloff

Are You All-Madden?
If you are, get to Union Station

SUN 10/17

Look at you, with your big thumbs and your keen understanding of the Cover 2 defense; whom do you have to thank for your deformed digits and Lombardi-like knowledge of football? John Madden, that's who. You've never played a football game in your life that wasn't part of the John Madden/EA Sports franchise of video games. The undisputed king of all sports games, Madden recently sired another offspring, and countless man-hours of work have been lost since then. So, who's going to notice if you blow another day at the helm of your trusty Dual-Shock controller? The EA Sports Madden NFL 2005 Challenge rolls into St. Louis Union Station (20th and Market streets) at 10 a.m., and you'd best bring your game face. For your $10 registration (a portion of which goes to the NFL Youth Education Town), you compete against other St. Louis Madden enthusiasts for the chance to represent the STL in the national championships and win the $50,000 grand prize. Check out for more info. -- Paul Friswold

The Bus Stops Here

SAT 10/16

You've been on house tours, but how about a bus tour? The Missouri Historical Society offers such a learning event from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. as part of its African-American History Series. Registration is required (314-361-7229) to ride from the Missouri History Museum (Lindell Boulevard and DeBaliviere Avenue) to the University of Missouri-St. Louis' Center for Human Origin and Cultural Diversity. That's where Dr. Jacquelyn Lewis-Harris discusses the concept of race. Learning and lunching for $25? Now that's a good tour. -- Alison Sieloff

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