Houston, TX 77002
Wortham Center is home to Houston Ballet and Houston Grand Opera. Since its opening in 1987, funded entirely by the private sector during the height of the 1980s oil bust, Wortham has entertained audiences totaling more than five million people.
It has also served as the backdrop for hundreds of social galas, civic meetings, corporate and group events, and even weddings, further underscoring its role as a community center as well as a performing arts venue. The Wortham Center features two theaters, grand lobbies, and extensive space for performers and support personnel.
Houston Ballet and Houston Grand Opera Schedules
BALLET - The Nutcracker (Nov. 29 to Dec. 29, 2013)
This holiday, treat your lovelies to The Nutcracker, that shimmering, glittering spectacle of holiday cheer. Follow Clara on her journey from the family party to the Land of the Sweets. You’ll see a Christmas tree that grows to magnificent heights, dancing dolls, flying cooks and lots and lots of beautiful snow. With music by Tchaikovsky and stunning sets by Desmond Heeley, Ben Stevenson's production has something to delight every member of the family. It just wouldn’t be the holidays without The Nutcracker. Go to www.houstonballet.org for performance dates and times.
OPERA - The Passenger (Jan. 8 to Feb. 2, 2014)
En route to a new post with her husband, a German diplomat, Lisa is unnerved by the sight of a woman-another passenger-who eerily resembles Martha, one of the inmates Lisa tormented when she was an SS overseer at Auschwitz. The action of the drama takes us from the stylish gentility of a luxury liner's deck to the squalor of a death camp where cruelty, despair, and unspeakable courage are evident in equal measure. This American premiere will be one of the most important musical events of the year. JAN 18, 22, 25 and 31 at 7:30 p.m. and FEB 2 at 2:00 p.m.
OPERA - Rigoletto (Jan. 24 to Feb. 9, 2014)
Rigoletto, jester to the Duke of Mantua, is both reviled and respected for his razor-sharp, bitter wit. His only joy is his daughter, Gilda, whom he has hidden from his amoral employer's court. But Rigoletto cannot protect her from falling in love. When the Duke poses as a young student and adds Gilda to his long list of conquests, the jester swears revenge. Passion drives him to plot the Duke's murder but, naïve and blinded by love, Gilda spoils her father's scheme with heart- wrenching results. JAN 24, 29 and FEB 1, 7 at 7:30 p.m. and JAN 26 and FEB 9 at 2:00 p.m.
BALLET - Aladdin (Feb. 20 to Mar. 2, 2014)
Houston Ballet presents the American premiere of the celebrated English choreographer David Bintley's full-length Aladdin, a magical tale of love, trickery and triumph. A run-in with palace guards leads young tearaway Aladdin into a whirlwind of adventure and romance, involving unbelievable riches, love at first sight, treachery, and a magical lamp. Originally created for the New National Ballet of Japan in Tokyo in 2008, the production features spectacularly scenery by the celebrated English designer Dick Bird and an original score by Carl Davis, who has created numerous well-known television scores including Pride and Prejudice, Cranford, The World at War and Up Pompeii. Aladdin is a co-production between Birmingham Royal Ballet and Houston Ballet Foundation. FEB 20, 22, 28 and MAR 1 at 7:30 p.m. and FEB 22, 23 and MAR 2 at 2:00 p.m.
BALLET - Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Mar. 6 to Mar. 16, 2014)
Houston Ballet honors artistic director Stanton Welch's 10th anniversary season with a mixed repertory program spotlighting his remarkable choreographic breadth - as well as the depth of talent of the dancers. Centerpiece of the evening is the world premiere of Welch's The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra. Set on Houston Ballet to Benjamin Britten's iconic work of the same title, this huge, collaborative piece features the entire company and the talented musicians of the Houston Ballet Orchestra. Also on the program is Welch's Maninyas and the Houston premiere of one of his earliest works, Of Blessed Memory, a tribute to his mother, Australian dancer Marilyn Jones, O.B.E. MAR 6, 8, 14, 15 at 7:30 p.m. and MAR 9, 16 at 2:00 p.m.
OPERA - A Little Night Music (Mar. 7 to 23, 2014)
Old flames are rekindled and new affairs ignite in this farce about famous actress Desiree Armfeldt and her weekend guests: an ex-lover, Fredrik, his much-younger bride, and his son-a divinity student. When Desiree's current paramour arrives unannounced, the stage is set for grownup comedy. MAR 7, 13, 15, 18, 20, 21, 22 at 8:00 p.m. and MAR 9, 23 at 2:30 p.m.
OPERA - A Coffin in Egypt (Mar. 14 to 22, 2014)
An intimate afternoon conversation triggers a searing examination of the past in this tour-de-force written for superstar Frederica von Stade. The story is rich with regional imagery by Horton Foote, the legendary Texas playwright and author. MAR 14, 19 at 8:00 p.m. and MAR 16 at 2:30 p.m. and MAR 22 at 2:00 p.m.
OPERA - Das Rheingold (Apr. 11 to 26, 2014)
Deep beneath the surface of the Rhine, Alberich, a wily and treacherous dwarf, lusts after the Rhinemaidens' treasure: a cache of gold.Whoever owns the gold and forges it into a ring will have power over the world. Unable to catch one of the beautiful maidens, Alberich steals the gold. APR 11, 17, 23 and 24 at 7:30 p.m. and APR 13 at 2:00 p.m.
OPERA - Carmen (Apr. 25 to May 10, 2014)
The femme fatale is ubiquitous in literature, from the biblical Delilah to Shakespeare's Cleopatra to the smoky, dangerous beauties of the film noir era. But none embody this character like the Gypsy Carmen, a sexual bird of prey whose charms lead Don José into a fatalistic chain of events, uncontrollable passion, jealousy, and bloodshed. APR 25, 30 and MAY 2, 10 at 7:30 p.m. and APR 27 and MAY 4 at 2:00 p.m.
BALLET - Modern Masters (May 22 to Jun. 1, 2014)
Explosive energy. High attitude. Cool sexuality. This mixed rep has it all - and then some. The Four Temperaments was a milestone for George Balanchine, introducing the spare classicism he would employ throughout his career. His choreographic influence is evident in the works that follow. William Forsythe's In the middle somewhat elevated is in-your-face dance. Jiri Kylián's Petite Mort is filled with eroticism and his delightfully comic Sechs Tanze (Six Dances) provides levity. From three of the most influential dance makers of the last hundred years comes a truly masterful program. MAY 22, 24, 30, 31 at 7:30 p.m. and MAY 25 and JUN 1 at 2:00 p.m.
BALLET - Swan Lake (Jun. 5 to 15, 2014)
With the goal of making classical ballet relevant for a new generation of audiences, artistic director Stanton Welch has put his 21st century signature on this 19th century love story. Set to the hauntingly beautiful Tchaikovsky score, Swan Lake tells the classic tale of Odette - a beautiful maiden transformed into a swan by an evil knight - and the prince who swears his enduring love for her. It's good and evil in black and white, danced on rich and spectacular sets by the late, great New Zealand designer Kristian Fredrikson. JUN 5, 6, 7, 13, 14 at 7:30 p.m. and JUN 8, 15 at 2:00 p.m. and JUN 7 at 1:30 p.m.