Tuesday, June 24, 2014

#27: Peabody Opera House

Nearly 3 years ago (2011), I attended the grand re-opening of Peabody Opera House. Sure, it was pricey, for me at least! But everybody who was important, St. Louis-wise, was there. From the mayor to local media personalities to Ozzie Smith. Not only did I want to be a part of history, but I also wanted to catch Aretha Franklin ('The Queen of Soul') live. Jay Leno was also a headliner, and I remember Jenna Fischer ('The Office', 'Dewey Cox') did a speech about her hometown St. Louis. Some other things stood out in my mind, like reading about people's memories of the Kiel Opera House, including a time when a man saw the Eagles perform live there in the 70s, and when a lady jumped on stage with the Doors, and Jim Morrison said to her, 'I'm gonna have to ask you nicely to leave the stage, babe'!

Some factoids about the former Kiel Opera House:
  • Opened its doors in 1934 as the 'Municipal Auditorium'.
  • Changed its name to Kiel Opera House in 1943 after former St. Louis mayor Henry Kiel died shortly before. He is cited as one of the main people who championed for the Opera House.
  • According to its website, the Rolling Stones, Harry S. Truman and Johnny Carson have held private parties there.
  • Speaking of Johnny Carson, he was part of the historical televised concert that was held at the Opera House in 1965, starring 'The Rat Pack' (Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr.). Carson was subbing for Rat Pack member Joey Bishop, who had a bad back. 
  • Since its re-opening, it has hosted several plays and shows, and of course, concerts from faded to current acts (fun., Lorde, The Avett Brothers, Widespread Panic, The Pixies,etc)
  • It had been adjacent to the Kiel Auditorium, which was replaced by the Scottrade Center.
Peabody Opera House from a distance

Duhhhhh Bear!

B.B. King performing at Peabody Opera House on April 4, 2014

B.B. King on stage at Peabody Opera House on April 4, 2014
Here's a link that lists most of those who performed at Kiel Opera House.

NOTE: When it was added to the National Register of Historic Places, it is listed by its former name, Kiel Opera House.

Wikipedia link
Peabody Opera House on FB
Official website

1400 Market St., ST. LOUIS, MO, 63103
Cake artist: Marilyn Callahan

No comments:

Post a Comment