Arts & Theater Events starting Jun. 15 in St. Louis - Grand Center

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Golf the Galleries

Sundays, 11 a.m.-4 p.m., Saturdays, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. and Mondays-Fridays, 12-8 p.m. Continues through Aug. 11
The Sheldon 3648 Washington Blvd., St. Louis St. Louis - Grand Center

Buy Tickets$6-$10 to play, free for spectators

Miniature golf, that salve for many a dull summer night, returns to the Sheldon Galleries (3648 Washington Boulevard; this summer, with creative and challenging holes designed by artists. The indoor golf course will fill the Sheldon's second floor, providing a welcome respite from the summer heat.

Golf the Galleries officially opens Saturday, June 1, with nine all-new holes. Justin King, creator of last year's recycled cardboard fantasia Serengeti Park, will be back with a new hole that's again made of old cardboard. King's Kraken's Cove has a giant octopus and other sea life; players must thread their ball through the creature's tentacles to sink their putt. Master puppeteer and theater scene designer Ryan Marshall will offer The Little Foxes, a scaled-down version of the Fox Theatre, starring marionette versions of Louis Laclede and a skulk of tiny foxes. And Constance Vale, architectural director of the Factory of Smoke and Mirrors, will offer The Mat, the Tapestry and the Magic Carpet, which inverts the golf course. Carpeted surfaces travel up the wall and are suspended above the floor, so that the playing surface becomes the obstacle.

Golf the Galleries will be open from noon to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, June 1 to August 11. The last tee time is one hour prior to closing.

It's free to walk through the course, and $6 to $10 to play. Tee times are first come, first served. Group rates and private rentals are also available; call 314-533-9900.


Circus Flora: The Caper on Aisle 6

Tuesdays-Sundays. Continues through June 30
Circus Flora Big Top 3401 Washington Blvd, St. Louis St. Louis - Grand Center

Circus Flora is an established St. Louis summer tradition, up there with Ted Drewes and baseball. The one-ring circus returns with an all-new show about a trip to the grocery store — but not just any store. In The Caper in Aisle 6, an ancient substance of great power has been lost for ages; now it's been found in the aisle of a local supermarket. Acrobats, aerialists, trapeze artists and daredevils try to uncover the secret behind the substance, with breathtaking results. The Caper on Aisle 6 officially opens at 7 p.m. Saturday, June 8, at the Circus Flora Big Top in Grand Center (3401 Washington Boulevard; The show continues Tuesday through Sunday through June 30, with a sensory-friendly performance on Thursday, June 20. Tickets are $10 to $60. 314-289-4040

Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis' Summer Exhibitions

Thursdays, Fridays, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. and Wednesdays, Saturdays, Sundays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Continues through Aug. 18

The Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis' summer exhibitions open at 7 p.m. Friday, May 17, and there are some heavy hitters involved. Lawrence Abu Hamdan is a finalist for this year's Turner Prize for his exhibition Earwitness Theatre (which CAM co-commissioned with several other institutions), which incorporates the artist's audio analysis of Saydnaya prison in Syria, site of numerous humanitarian abuses, a soundbooth and groups of objects Abu Hamdan uses as mnemonic devices to facilitate reenactments of crimes. Photographer Paul Mgapi Sepuya receives his first major museum survey thanks to CAM. Sepuya's images jumble and reorder the human body, while also revealing the mechanics of photography. Cameras are often a central figure in his work, while tripods, backdrops and lighting show up in his collages. Avoiding digital manipulation, Sepuya's work is about the importance of touch and contact, both between his subjects and his materials. Both shows remain on display at CAM (3750 Washington Boulevard; through August 18, and admission is free. 314-535-4660

Striking Power: Iconoclasm in Ancient Egypt

Fridays, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. and Thursdays, Saturdays, Sundays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Continues through Aug. 11
Pulitzer Arts Foundation 3716 Washington Blvd., St. Louis St. Louis - Grand Center

In his sonnet "Ozymandias," Percy Bysshe Shelley describes the legs of an epic statue in the desert wastelands, its ruined face lying "half sunk" in the sand. The inscription on the pedestal reads, "My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings; Look on my Works, ye Mighty, and despair!" The poem is a meditation on time wearing away the memory of even the mightiest, and a reminder that death means forgetfulness. In truth, it may have been Ozymandias' successor who destroyed the statue upon assuming the title of pharaoh. Statues and memorial inscriptions held ritual power for the Egyptians, and it behooved the new ruler to sweep away all remnant of his or her predecessor. In the Pulitzer Arts Foundation's (3716 Washington Boulevard; new exhibition, Striking Power: Iconoclasm in Ancient Egypt, the legacies of the pharaohs Hatshepsut and Akhenaten are examined through almost 40 historical objects that are both defaced and whole. Memory and visual culture are intertwined, and the destruction of the latter can easily erase the former. Striking Power opens with a free reception from 6 to 9 p.m. Friday, March 22. The work remains on display through August 11. 314-754-1850

Be More Chill

Thursdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m. Continues through June 22
Marcelle Theater 3310 Samuel Shepard Dr, St. Louis St. Louis - Grand Center

If you head to New York this weekend and you get lucky, you could get tickets to see Joe Iconis and Joe Tracz's hot musical Be More Chill on Broadway. Or you could save a ton of money by staying home to see Joe Iconis and Joe Tracz's hot musical Be More Chill in St. Louis, at New Line Theatre. How is it possible that a first-run Broadway show is playing concurrently in St. Louis?

Scott Miller, co-artistic director of New Line Theatre, says it all comes down to timing.

"Be More Chill was originally commissioned by Two River Theater in New Jersey, and after the run the show didn't get any takers to go Broadway," Miller explains. "So they did a cast album and released the rights for colleges and regional theaters — and then they got an offer for Off-Broadway, and from there it went to Broadway."

The big league's slow reaction time is to our benefit. But Miller also isn't surprised that Be More Chill was a slow starter.

"It doesn't feel like Broadway — it kind of tricks the audience," Miller enthuses with the passion of a musical theater lifer. "It seems like a rom-com about a lovable loser who wants to get the girl but can't. And then the Squip comes in at the end of Act I, and you realize it's a sci-fi thriller!

"They sneak up on you with it," he finishes.

"The Squip" is an an acronym for Super Quantum Unit Intel Processor. In the show, teenaged Jeremy is a loser on the outside of high school society. When he learns he can swallow a tiny Japanese supercomputer — the Squip — that will upgrade him with a customized internal voice advising him on how to be more chill, he takes it. The musical is based on a novel by Ned Vizzini, and it deals with teen depression, the digital age and bullying, all filtered through '50s sci-fi and the teen movies of the '90s.

It's the exact sort of rock & roll musical Miller loves to sink his teeth into, and with his co-artistic director Mike Dowdy-Windsor taking the lead as director, he has been left with more time to dig into what makes Be More Chill and its young cast (more than half of which are first time New Liners) tick.

"The interesting thing about this is it doesn't show off, lyrically," offers Miller. "There are no interior rhymes, no tricks. They don't sound like lyrics; they sound like high school kids talking. The show really treats these kids with respect, and if feels real. The kids say dumb things and do dumb things."

Be More Chill is performed at 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday (May 30 to June 22) at the Marcelle Theater (3310 Samuel Shepard Drive; Tickets are $20 to $30.


Be More Chill

Thursdays-Saturdays, 8-10:15 p.m. Continues through June 22
Marcelle Theater 3310 Samuel Shepard Dr, St. Louis St. Louis - Grand Center

Buy Tickets$10-30

The Breakfast Club meets Little Shop of Horrors, as New Line closes its season in June with the new sci-fi rock musical Be More Chil, with music and lyrics by Joe Iconis and book by Joe Tracz, based on the bestselling novel by Ned Vizzini. It’s an honest, fearless, funny look at life in the digital age, exploring teen depression, bullying, and other current issues through the comic lens of sci-fi films of the 50s, horror flicks of the 80s, and teen movies of the 90s. The show has been selling out everywhere it runs. 314-534-1111

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