We were in St. Louis last night to catch the Tans-Siberian Orchestra at the Scottrade Center. I first got wind of the band when my college roommate brought home a copy of "Christmas Eve and Other Stories" back in 1996. Today, they're one of the top-ten ticket selling acts in America, having gone directly to area shows without playing clubs or serving as an opening act for any other band. That's pretty impressive. And so is their stage show.
I should mention for those who don't already know that Trans-Siberian Orchestra isn't really an orchestra. They're a progressive rock band that performs rock operas with the assistance of some orchestral elements. They're kind of like Yes without the pretentiousness. Or Meat Loaf with talent. So, if you do decide to attend a concert, be aware that you're not going to encounter something like The Pops. You're going to have to strap yourself in and ride the wave of the rock opera where a story is being told. Whether or not that's something you want to see is up to you.
For us, we really enjoyed it. The entire show is an incredible visual spectacle framed around heavy metal music with a Christmas connection. We were expecting the show to last about an hour and ended up with something close to two and a half hours. The worst I can say about the Trans-Siberian Orchestra show is that there wasn't a true intermission, which one would expect from such a long show. We powered through it, though, and we were glad we did. During the second half of the show is when they really go all out with their stage show and they even use to moving arms that slowly hoist a performer above the crowd. That was pretty thrilling to look at, but you couldn't pay me enough to get on something like that myself.
All things told, we had a great time. The folks who make up Trans-Siberian Orchestra sure know how to put on a show and we definitely felt that we got our money's worth. We'd see it again in a heartbeat.