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Friday, December 17, 2021

Jazz Singer Denise Thimes Returns to St. Louis Stage In February

Posted By on Fri, Dec 17, 2021 at 4:13 PM

click to enlarge Denise Thimes returns to the St. Louis stage in February. - COURTESY METRO THEATER COMPANY
  • Courtesy Metro Theater Company
  • Denise Thimes returns to the St. Louis stage in February.

Metro Theater Company’s latest production will bring a St. Louis jazz legend to the stage: Native St. Louisan Denise Thimes will star in the company’s musical Last Stop on Market Street during next year's 2021-2022 season.

Beginning February 6 at the Grandel Theatre (3610 Grandel Square), the musical follows Thimes as Nana, with a press release describing the character as “a veritable force of nature who lives in a world considerably different” from her grandson, CJ, who is reluctantly staying with her. The two embark on a bus ride after Nana notices CJ is too plugged into his tablet and phone. She guides her grandson to connect closer with his roots and “see things that have not been seen."

The jazz singer is no stranger to the stage – she’s won eight awards from the St. Louis Black Repertory for both musicals and drama. She’s shared stages with musicians like Bobby McFerrin and Clark Terry; she’s sung for Queen Elizabeth II at the British Embassy and performed at the White House for President George W. Bush in 2007.

Motown meets hip-hop for a mashup of genres; playwright Cheryl L. West adapted Matt de la Peña’s award-winning picture book to create the musical. Other St. Louisans also will join the musical’s ranks: actor, theater professor at UMSL, and MTC Associate Artist Jacqueline Thompson will direct and Philip Woodmore, a longtime member of the St. Louis music community and executive director of P. Woodmore Music, LLC, is the musical director.

Thimes is joined by five other actors on The Grandel’s stage. The production runs 70 minutes with no intermission, and is recommended for ages five and up. Tickets begin at $20, and a virtual option is available. Masks are required in the theatre, as well as proof of vaccination for those twelve and older or a negative COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours of the event.

The show will run until February 27. Purchase tickets on

Follow Jenna on Twitter at @writesjenna. Email the author at [email protected]
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