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St. Louis Symphony Orchestra is stringing up for Europe concert tour

This is its first international concert tour since before the pandemic.

ST. LOUIS — The St. Louis Symphony Orchestra is stringing up for its European concert tour this weekend. This is its first international concert tour since before the pandemic.

"The St. Louis Symphony Orchestra has a distinctive sound," St. Louis Symphony Orchestra Music Director Stéphane Denève said.

It's their first international tour with Denève.

"I think it is a great privilege to be the musical ambassador of our community, of St. Louis, of Missouri and to be able to play in such prestigious halls all over Europe," he said.

They leave this weekend. Their first stop is Vienna.

"It's of course a city that people like Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert … so you imagine what it is for us to play in that place," he said.

Next they'll go to Brussels, which is special for Denève because he lived there for years with his wife and daughter.

"I can't wait to be back there and show all my friends the incredible orchestra," he said.

Before wrapping up in Madrid, they'll bring their sweet sounds to Amsterdam's hallowed halls.

"Then we go to maybe the best hall in the world (except Powell Hall), The Concertgebouw in Amsterdam ... Legendary Hall," Denève said.

This marks the SLSO's 143rd season.

"Since the pandemic I don't take any concerts with audiences for granted," he said.

It's a harmonious tour in more ways than one.

"St. Louis is a great city, a great community, I live here now so I know now all the treasures of the city, and the SLSO is a gem. I think it's the musical treasure of the city," he said.

It's special for the symphony orchestra, and for St. Louis.

"It's fantastic to just show the city has produced such a great history. We are the second oldest orchestra in America," Denève said.

The Symphony Orchestra is performing Thursday night at 7:30. They will start packing their instruments and equipment after the concert Wednesday night.

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