A Musical Weekend

This past weekend was a musical one. Saturday evening I set off on another mini-vacation. I read in the newspaper that there would be a performance of a new musical, “Moses” at the Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows. This is about 30 miles or so from where I live and I decided I’d go.

Earlier in the day I read another notice about the performance in the paper and they mentioned it was a youth performance. I thought, “Oh, no! It’s probably rock music” which I don’t like. But in the end I set off because I figured I could always leave if I didn’t like it.

The performance was in the outdoor amphitheatre. What a talent group of young people! They were a praise group. There were some good voices in their group. The dancing was well performed and in some instances amusing.

The musical told the life of Moses from when he was a baby floating in the river until after he had led the Children of Israel out of Egypt. I was really impressed with their staging of crossing the Red Sea. Part of the group formed two columns. They held over their heads long red pieces of fabric, probably about four or five feet wide by 15 feet long. When it came time for the crossing, the two columns side stepped and Moses and the others marched on through.

I was glad I went Saturday night even though it was terribly hot. My shirt was soaked through by the time I made my way home.

Sunday afternoon was a different kind of musical performance. For a number of years the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra performed a series of Pops Concerts in the summer. The conductor for those programs was Richard Haymen. He was in town to conduct a special concert at the symphony hall in celebration of his 90th birthday and his 50th wedding anniversary.

It was a privilege to be in the audience Sunday. You could feel the waves of affection which flowed from Richard to the orchestra and to the audience and from the audience to Richard. He was in great form, dressed in his trademark flashy outfits, cracking jokes, playing his harmonica and just being the professional showman he always was. 
Several of retired symphony musicians came back to play in this concert with him. The recently retired principal trumpet performed as the special soloist.  What a talent Susan Slaughter has!  When she played, “You Made Me Love You” you could almost see golden notes falling out of her trumpet. As a surprise, Richard brought the Metro Singers, a local chorus, out to join the orchestra on a couple of numbers.

A lot of senior citizens were in the audience. That should have been no surprise since they were the group who attended those Pops concerts years ago. Of course, they were much younger then but Sunday afternoon was a chance to enjoy a slice of their younger days.  It was a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon.

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