Thursday, July 13, 2023

Visit Missouri-Explore St. Louis - The Muny

Historic Bandstand at St. Louis Muny
Bandstand across from Muny


The St. Louis Municipal Opera, commonly called The Muny has been operating in Forest Park for more than 100 years.  It is America's oldest and largest outdoor musical theatre and is a real treasure for the residents and visitors to the St. Louis area.  

I have enjoyed many a delightful summer's evening watching Broadway style musicals at The Muny.  This year, I had the pleasure of introducing my youngest two granddaughters to The Muny when I took them to see a production of Beauty and the Beast.  They were delighted with the show, and it was wonderful to be able to watch it with them. 

We arrived at The Muny about two hours before the show started and enjoyed a picnic supper at one of the many picnic areas surrounding the Muny.  While enjoying our meal we were entertained by some of the pre-show entertainment.  On this evening there was a storyteller who delighted the children with stories and songs.  On other visits to The Muny I have enjoyed performances by some of the dance troops and singing groups before the show begins.   When it was about 30 minutes before the show we entered the outdoor theatre and made our way to our seats.  With time to spare we decided to get some ice cream from the refreshment stands to enjoy while we waited for the show to begin.  Here are Kate and Emily waiting for the show to start.

Grandkids at the Muny

The production of Beauty and the Beast was wonderful, and the girls were on the edge of their seats the entire time.

History of the Muny

About the time of the 1904 World's Fair in St. Louis the dreams of a permanent outdoor musical theatre were formed.  It was 1916 before this dream was finally realized.  At that time a site was pick on a hillside in Forest Park between two large oak trees.  The first production held their was As You Like It.  It was picked to observe the 300th year anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare.  The production was seen by crowds of over 8000 per night and everyone was delighted.  This was the beginning of the 105 year history of The Muny.

Today the theatre has 10,800 seats.  The last nine rows (1456) are free seats and the rest of the seats are reserve tickets, with prices rising as you get closer to the stage.  The theater is built as an amphitheater and gently slopes downhill towards the stage at the bottom.

It is a true cultural treasure of St. Louis that has been enjoyed by residents and visitors over the decades.

More Reviews on Forest Park in St. Louis

I have written several other reviews on Forest Park venues.  Here are a few of my favorites.
Forest Park and the Jewel Box

Find out more about The Muny


Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


  1. How awesome! What a wonderful opportunity and memory for your granddaughters. I would love to visit St. Louis again just to take in an outdoor show. Having a picnic beforehand would just make it all the more fun. I love the history you shared of The Muny. Just makes it all the more special to visit a place with such a rich theatrical history. Very cool indeed!

  2. The history behind the Muny was fascinating. I've known of the Muny for a long time, through my daughter who lives in St. Louis and has attended many plays there. But I never knew the history of how it began and had no idea it was built to long ago. Fascinating.

  3. Oh Mary Beth, this sounds delightful. I will have to make a trip to this area soon. I love outdoor theater and I know this would be a highlight for me. Thanks for your recommendations and the history lesson.

  4. Mary Beth, I am lucky enough to have enjoyed outdoor theaters in both New York and Boston. There’s something really special about enjoying a great theater performance outdoors! I’m sure my husband and I would love the Muny. Enjoy sharing this treasure with your family!

  5. This sounds absolutely wonderful! What a beautiful memory for your family. The history behind the Muny is very interesting. I would love to visit America's oldest and largest outdoor musical theatre and experience a performance there. Thank you for your recommendation and review.

  6. This comes in handy because my brother married a lady from St. Louis, and he will be moving there! He's been back and forth for years now and she has been here as well - As soon as all the details are settled he will be moving there. I flew to St. Louis in January for their wedding - had a wonderful time!


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