March Fourth / Beggar’s Carnivale / Montana Skies @ 2720 Cherokee, St. Louis, MO

Word and pictures by Duane Clawson
After witnessing this night of entertainment at 2720 Cherokee, a three-ring circus would have been a more fitting venue for the diversity that graced this club's stage.  To ease everyone into the night’s festivities, Montana Skies entertained with a guitar and cello blend that fit perfectly into tonight’s triple bill.  John and Jennifer compose this duo from Georgia, whom met while studying music at the University of Georgia.  At first, the duo had intentions of performing classical pieces but soon found out no classical works existed for a guitar and cello duo. Montana Skies decided they would write their own music and perform a few radio classics as well. Montana Skies put a unique spin on Pink Floyd’s “Another Brick in the Wall” and the Animals' “House of the Rising Sun” while enthralling an attentive gathering.  Montana Skies can be found on Facebook and Bandcamp.

Next up was the entertainment troupe, Beggar’s Carnivale, from St. Louis. Beggar’s Carnivale is a true modern day burlesque show. With a small acoustic band providing background music for the performances, you were transported back to the early days of show business and live performances. Beggar’s Carnivale reproduced many elements of a burlesque show with exotic dancers, fire dancers, and comedy routines. Beggar’s Carnivale fueled the anticipation level of 2720 and gave St. Louis a great glimpse of yesteryear.

After all this build up and curiosity, March Fourth better be damn good.  I wanted my dessert.  March Fourth (M4) came in with the force of an F5 tornado. Men and women on stilts, a majorette, horns, drumline, a guitar, and bass player filed onto the stage, whipping the large audience into a frenzy.  The band members were outfitted in old, retired band uniforms that resembled something that could have been found on the set of The Rocky Horror Picture Show.  Each band member alters these uniforms to fit their individuality.  M4 travels in tight quarters, nearly 30 members find home in a converted city bus.  A visual cornucopia of dancers and musicians trading time in the spotlight and interacting with each other had my camera lens searching for that right moment.  Needless to sayc I missed a few.  M4’s musical repertoire includes elements of big band, jazz, marching band, and funk.  Never slowing the tempo, M4 left the stage and intermingled with those in attendance and left the building as they entered it...with a bang and a roar. A history of March Fourth can be found on their website.

Thanks to Nayana Jennings for allowing MTC to witness and photograph a truly unique event.  Pictures of the show are below:

Montana Skies
Beggar's Carnivale
March Fourth
Contributed by Duane Clawson
March Fourth / Beggar’s Carnivale / Montana Skies @ 2720 Cherokee, St. Louis, MO March Fourth / Beggar’s Carnivale / Montana Skies @ 2720 Cherokee, St. Louis, MO Reviewed by Scott Rowe, Editor on June 22, 2012 Rating: 5
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