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Mozart is the most famous example of a musical prodigy, so it's not too shocking that he was but a youth of nineteen when he composed the music for Il re pastore (The Shepherd King). It is surprising that this was his tenth opera, however; does anyone else feel like their teen years could have been better spent? That's why he's Mozart and you're not. In Il re pastore we learn to love the humble shepherd Aminta (played by Heidi Stober, because the role calls for a soprano voice), who in turn loves Elisa. But a war between Alessandro of Phoenicia (Alexander the Great to you and me) and Stratone, Tyrant of Sidon, ends with Alessandro victorious, and he goes looking for the rightful heir to resume kinging it over Sidon. It's Aminta, in case you couldn't guess. Soon a planned political marriage between Aminta and Tamiri, daughter of Stratone, threatens to upset the would-be shepherd's happiness, but — you know what? It'll do you good to go to the show and experience how Aminta solves his and Elisa's troubles. Opera Theatre of Saint Louis presents il re Pastore in English at 7 p.m. Sunday, June 7, at the Loretto-Hilton Center on the Webster University campus (130 Edgar Road; 314-9681-0644 or www.experienceopera.org). Tickets are $25 to $117, and the show continues in repertory (five additional performances) through Friday, June 26.
Sun., June 7, 7 p.m.; Sat., June 13, 8 p.m.; Tue., June 16, 1 p.m.; Thu., June 18, 8 p.m.; Wed., June 24, 8 p.m.; Fri., June 26, 8 p.m., 2009

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