Things to do: Visit Performing Arts Houston during its 2022-23 season

After 55 years of providing a variety of performing arts and arts education programs in the Houston area, the Society for the Performing Arts is experiencing a major shift. At its peak, the organization officially renamed itself Performing Arts Houston, and it did so in its 2022-23 season reveal.

“In the later stages of pre-pandemic life, we were about three quarters of the way through a strategic plan where we had identified one of the things we really wanted to work on within the organization. That was our identity…making sure we knew who we were and how to effectively communicate that to the public. This included reviewing our entire brand, including our name,” said Meg Booth, President and CEO of the organization.

Now Booth and his team have followed through on that accusation.

“Throughout discussions, we identified that we were not a startup. We have a 55-year legacy of delivering high-quality arts and crafts education in Houston, and we wanted to stand on the shoulders of our heritage. But many of us felt that the word ‘Society’ was not as inclusive and welcoming as we would have liked,” she added. “Really, all we’re doing is masking that word ‘Society’. It’s just a soft change. It doesn’t change the organization’s commitment to connecting artists and audiences through performance. and educational experiences.

That’s good to know, because the SPA-turned-Performing Arts Houston has offered some of the best programming over the years. And while the name has changed, many things will remain the same with the organization, including its commitment to bringing a cornucopia of art to the region.

“The City of Houston has amazing production organizations and Performing Arts Houston has supplemented that by bringing touring artists here to Houston. Also, we have never been a one-man organization. We are committed to representing diverse forms of art from all over the world,” Booth said.

It’s true. The organization has brought musicals, theater, dance, photography, spoken word, painters, and nearly every other art form imaginable through its doors. And this is done by bringing together international groups and individuals. This upcoming season includes artists from Taiwan, South Africa, England, Austria, Mexico and India. Even dogs are on the list this year.

“I am thrilled that we are combining extraordinary and diverse music, contemporary dance, a family speaker series and comedy. Our commitment has always been to look at all forms of art,” she said.

Click to enlarge

The Blind Boys of Alabama will not disappoint in the 2022-23 Performing Arts Houston season.

Jim Herrington’s photo

Performing Arts Houston also turns the spotlight on the international stage to the collage of exquisite talent located right here in Bayou City with NEW/NOW: The Houston Artist Commissioning Project. Through this initiative, the organization welcomes project proposals for new 20-25 minute works from artists and groups of artists working in the Greater Houston metropolitan area. Details and applications at PerformingArtshouston.org/newnow.

For many small or medium-sized businesses, it is difficult to know how to manage marketing, assemble the technical team and meet all the challenges of realizing creativity. Thanks to NEW/NOW: The Houston Artist Commissioning Project, this will all be handled by Performing Arts Houston so the creator can focus on…well…creating. Applications for scholarships are open until midnight on Friday, May 20.

“We have such an amazing arts sector, culture sector and arts fabric here in Houston. We have so many cultural assets. The project shows the world that Houston is committed to high quality work. Performing Arts Houston is not s “We’re not just committed to high-quality work happening outside of Houston. We’re also committed to high-quality work happening in Houston. We’re committed to the extent that we can help shine a light on these artists. and to support innovation among the people who work here,” she added.

Click to enlarge Third Coast Percussion knows how to deliver a good time.  - PHOTO BY SAVERIO TRUGLIA

Third Coast Percussion knows how to deliver a good time.

Photo by Saverio Truglia

Booth also mentioned that there will be a different payment structure for the coming year…namely, a membership program. Starting at $25, members get early access to the best seats at upcoming shows, ticket discounts, invitations to exclusive events and more.

“By returning to this concept of engagement and being able to communicate better with our fans and patrons, the membership program provides a more structured opportunity to send communications more effectively and give people the opportunity to participate in a meaningful way. We are a non-profit organization, and the cost of ticket sales alone does not cover the cost of bringing artists to Houston. The membership program gives us the opportunity to facilitate philanthropic involvement. people to our programming.

So what’s on the agenda for the coming year? Check out the list below.

September 9 – 10
My name is NOT mom
Cullen Theatre, Wortham Center

October 1st
Taiwan’s Cloud Gate Dance Theater: 13 Tongues
Cullen Theatre, Wortham Center

October 7
Tom Papa: Family Reunion Tour
Cullen Theatre, Wortham Center

October 14 – 15
DIAVOLO
Jones Room

October 16
Cuando México Canta: Mariachi Herencia de México with Lupita Infante
Jones Room

October 18
2022 Cliburn Gold Medalist
Cullen Theatre, Wortham Center

October 23
Mutts Gone Nuts!

Cullen Theatre, Wortham Center

November 13
Tenebrae: the passage of the year
Cullen Theatre, Wortham Center

November 18
Matthew Whitaker
Cullen Theatre, Wortham Center

November 27
An Evening with Nigella Lawson
Cullen Theatre, Wortham Center

December 4
Blind Boys of Alabama Christmas Show
Jones Room

December 23 – 24
Circus Dreams Holidaze
Jones Room

January 28, 2023
Gazillion Bubble Show
Jones Room

February 3-4, 2023
Harlem Dance Theater

Jones Room

February 24-25, 2023
NEW/NOW: The Houston Artist Commissioning Project
Cullen Theatre, Wortham Center

February 26, 2023
Mnozil Brass: Gold
Cullen Theatre, Wortham Center

March 10, 2023
Ragamala Dance Company: The Fires of Varanasi
Cullen Theatre, Wortham Center Preservation Hall

March 14, 2023
Jazz Band: 60th Anniversary Celebration
Jones Room

March 15, 2023
Randall Goosby
Zilkha Hall, the recreation center

March 22, 2023
Our planet in concert
Jones Room

March 23-26, 2023
crush
Jones Room

April 21, 2023
Vuyani Dance Theater by Gregory Maqoma: Cion: Requiem from Bolero by Ravel
Cullen Theatre, Wortham Center

May 5, 2023
Metamorphosis: Third Coast Percussion
Cullen Theatre, Wortham Center

The season is filled with programming faithful to Performing Arts Society’ The tradition of Performing Arts Houston, and Booth mentioned that more shows will fill the schedule over time.

Click to enlarge Matthew Whitaker knows how to tickle the ivory keys and entertain the crowd.  - PHOTO BY JACOB BLICKENSTAFF

Matthew Whitaker knows how to tickle the ivory keys and entertain the crowd.

Photo by Jacob Blickenstaff

“When we were working on our strategic plan and rebranding, we heard the same thing from people over and over again. It’s that we organize every season, and whatever every season brings, it’s going to be good. It gives people the opportunity to see something different every time,” Booth added. “It’s a great variety, and our customers are going to remember great experiences at the theater.”

Performing Arts Houston presents at Jones Hall, 615 Louisiana; The Wortham Theater Center, 501 Texas; and Hobby Center for the Performing Arts, 800 Bagby. For tickets or information, call 713-227-4772 or visit PerformingArtsHouston.org. Membership starts at $25.