Events And Theaters In Houston Area

Wortham Center

Wortham CenterWortham Center
501 Texas
Houston, TX 77002

PHONE: 832.487.7000

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.

The Wortham Theater Center is closed for repairs until September 2018. Other Wortham events will have updated information on the Calendar of Events Home Page.

"[Houston Grand Opera is] ... transforming Exhibit Hall A3 at the George R. Brown Convention Center into the temporary home of Houston Grand Opera, which will be called HGO Resilience Theater. It will feature approximately 1,700 seats, with a combination of stadium seating and floor seating (including wheelchair locations). The exact seating configuration will be finalized soon. Every seat will be less than 100 feet from the stage. The space will also give audiences more insight into and connection to the theatrical process."

Houston Ballet and Houston Grand Opera Schedule 

OPERA -- Cruzar La Cara De La Luna
(May 17 and 19, 2018 at 7:30 p.m., and May 20 at 2:00 p.m., at George R. Brown Convention Center)
A Mexican-American man questions his own place in the world as he straddles two cultures: his immigrant father's and his own as a first-generation American. As he faces his father's imminent death and long-buried secrets are revealed, he finds himself dramatically re-evaluating his own understanding of what makes a family. Set against a vibrant mariachi score performed by the Mariachi Los Camperos ensemble, the story of three generations shifts between the past and the present, Mexico and Texas, Spanish and English.

BALLET -- Play
(June 8 to 10, 2018, at George R. Brown Convention Center)

For our second “Unconventional Ballet at the Convention Center,” Global Movements has been completely reimagined by Artistic Director Stanton Welch as Play with memorable ballets created just for this unique space. Welch's beloved Play and Bolero Tryptich return but both re-worked and re-choreographed just for this space plus the event includes four World Premieres that will reflect on and celebrate Houston's resilience after Hurricane Harvey. With a stage that extends into the audience on three sides, this theatre creates an immersive experience, bringing you closer to the dancers than ever before. It's an event not likely to be repeated.

BALLET -- Swan Lake
(June 23 to July 1, 2018, at Jones Hall)

Houston Ballet presents the return of Swan Lake by Artistic Director Stanton Welch AM in Spring 2018. In this modernized production, the everlasting love between Prince Siegfried and the maiden-turned-white-swan Odette is tested by the evil knight Rothbart and his black swan enchantress, Odile. Stanton Welch’s Swan Lake utilizes Tchaikovsky’s full score as arranged for this three-act production. In his staging, Mr. Welch imbues the main characters with greater psychological complexity, and gives the work a twenty-first century pace. Mr. Welch, who collaborated with Mr. Fredrikson on Swan Lake, was inspired by John William Waterhouse’s painting, The Lady of Shalott (1888).  Waterhouse (1849-1917) was a British Neo-Classical and Pre-Raphaelite painter well-known for works featuring female characters from mythology and literature. The painting, which is based on Lord Alfred Tennyson’s poem by the same title, depicts a tragic maiden afloat on a lake.  Mr. Welch commented, “When I saw this painting I said, ‘This is our Odette.’  Here is a woman, a young heroine, lost in a forest by a lake, touched by tragedy.”

OPERA -- The Flying Dutchman
(October 19, 27, 30 and November 2 at 7:30 p.m., and October 21 at 2:00 p.m)

Every seven years, the Dutchman comes ashore for a chance to break the curse that binds him to the desolate seas. His quest for true love leads him to Senta, a captain's daughter who has been obsessing over a mystifying portrait of him. When the two meet, the Dutchman is hopeful, but Senta must decide between her arranged marriage and her overpowering love for the Dutchman.

OPERA -- La Boheme
(October 26, November 3, 6, and  at 7:30 p.m., and October 28 and November 11 at 2:00 p.m.)
Join the bohemian revolution in the heart of Paris as groups of artists live life to the fullest, make art, and fall in love. A chance encounter on a winter night changes everything for Mimì and Rodolfo, sending them into a deep, romantic whirlwind that brings audiences opera's most beloved love story—Puccini's La bohème. The return of this stunning production directed by John Caird tells the classic tale through scenic elements inspired by Marcello's paintings. Featuring some of opera's most famous music, La bohème brings to life the hope, thrill, and heartbreak of true love. An Opera in Four Acts

BALLET -- The Nutcracker
(November 23 to December 29, 2018)

We officially return to our home at the Wortham Theater with Stanton Welch AM’s joyous production of The Nutcracker. Join us for this holiday celebration as we open the 2018/19 season with beloved characters from this timeless classic set to Tchaikovsky’s splendid score. Gather your family and friends and join Clara in holiday revelry as she journeys from her home on Christmas Eve, through a magical Christmas tree, and into the whimsical Kingdom of Sweets, accompanied by her Nutcracker Prince.

OPERA -- Florencia en el Amazonas
(January 18, 26 and 30 at 7:30 p.m., and January 20 and February 3 at 2:00 p.m)

After leaving South America 20 years ago to pursue a music career, legendary opera singer Florencia Grimaldi journeys home to give a concert and to find Cristóbal, the true love she left all those years ago. Reality and fantasy come together for Florencia and her fellow passengers on the riverboat El Dorado as they travel down the mysterious Amazon toward uncharted fates. An Opera in Two Acts.

OPERA -- The Pearl Fishers
(January 25, February 2, 5, and 8 at 7:30 p.m., and January 27 at 2:00 p.m)

A rarely performed gem of the opera world, The Pearl Fishers, is noted for its extraordinary musical beauty. Composed 12 years before Bizet's masterwork Carmen, this opera tells the story of two best friends and the bond that is interrupted by the arrival of a priestess to bless the pearl harvest. This romantic love triangle between the best friends and the priestess lead to dramatic consequences. International stars Mariusz Kwiecien and Lawrence Brownlee lead the cast and come together to perform The Pearl Fishers duet, widely recognized as one of the most beautiful and famous duets in opera. The colorful, eye-popping production designed by Zandra Rhodes will transport you to a fantasy-inspired version of the island of Ceylon.

BALLET -- Sylvia
(February 21 to March 3, 2019)

Stanton Welch AM brings his own interpretation to the classic story of the strong mythological heroine, the huntress Sylvia, and her love for a mortal shepherd. The ballet follows her journey as she’s torn between her duty and her desires. Welch’s inspired work will showcase a constellation of figures from Greek mythology woven together in a tapestry of three love stories. This ballet is set to Léo Delibes’ famous score and provides an opportunity to see the classic story through Welch’s unique and creative narrative. This mythical romance is surrounded by gorgeous costume and scenic designs by world-renowned ballet and opera designer Jerome Kaplan, with projections by Houston Ballet favorite Wendall K. Harrington, whose delicious designs were featured in Stanton Welch’s The Nutcracker.

BALLET -- Robbins
(March 7 to 10, 2019)

We’re thrilled to join ballet companies around the world in celebrating the 100th anniversary of Jerome Robbins’ birth. In our first of three diverse pieces, we welcome back Robbins’ Fancy Free, a delightful glimpse into the lives of three sailors on leave during one hot summer night in 1940s New York City. The unique blend of Robbins’ iconic Broadway style and balletic grace in Fancy Free helped launch his career and inspire the Broadway musical On the Town. Stanton Welch AM has specifically selected The Cage, a lesser-known Robbins work that features our brilliant female dancers as they transform into a troupe of abstract insect-like creatures who hunt down their male prey. With our final Robbins piece, The Concert (or the Perils of Everybody), we bring back one of the great comedic ballets of all time.

BALLET -- Premieres
(March 21 to 24, 2019)

The range of our dancers is on display in a program made up entirely of premieres. After the triumph of her World Premiere Angular Momentum created in 2012 for Houston Ballet, Aszure Barton returns with Come In, a contemporary work for thirteen male dancers. Following the tremendous response to Justin Peck’s Year of the Rabbit, we’re pleased to welcome him back to Houston Ballet to create a World Premiere for the company. Look forward to seeing his approach, which is always energetic, current, and focused on the power of the music. Continuing our tradition of bringing Jiří Kylián’s ground-breaking works to Houston like Petite Mort, we’re pleased to present Kylián’s Dream Time. As part of the choreographer’s iconic repertoire at Nederlands Dans Theater, this ballet captures the power of dance to transcend time and communicate across all barriers, beautifully danced to a gorgeous score by the legendary Japanese composer Toru Takemitsu.

OPERA -- Don Giovanni
(April 20, 27, 30 and May 3 at 7:30 p.m., and May 5 at 2:00 p.m)

The legendary womanizer Don Giovanni adventures across Europe with his resourceful servant Leporello to take advantage of women and indulge his hedonistic desires. In Seville, after abandoning his latest conquest, the playboy plans to seduce even more women, including noblewoman Donna Anna and peasant Zerlina. Unfortunately, his luck runs out. Mozart's masterpiece returns to HGO in a stunning new production by Kasper Holten. Es Devlin's innovative, rotating set and Luke Halls's cutting-edge projections transport the audience deep into the dark mind of a serial philanderer.

OPERA -- Don Giovanni
(April 20, 27, 30 and May 3 at 7:30 p.m., and May 5 at 2:00 p.m)

The legendary womanizer Don Giovanni adventures across Europe with his resourceful servant Leporello to take advantage of women and indulge his hedonistic desires. In Seville, after abandoning his latest conquest, the playboy plans to seduce even more women, including noblewoman Donna Anna and peasant Zerlina. Unfortunately, his luck runs out. Mozart's masterpiece returns to HGO in a stunning new production by Kasper Holten. Es Devlin's innovative, rotating set and Luke Halls's cutting-edge projections transport the audience deep into the dark mind of a serial philanderer.

OPERA -- The Phoenix
(April 26, May 4, 7, and 10 at 7:30 p.m., and April 28 at 2:00 p.m)

Lorenzo da Ponte led a scandalous life that rivaled the stories he committed to paper, including some of his most popular operas: Don Giovanni, Così fan tutte, and The Marriage of Figaro. After becoming a priest and poet in Venice, he was banished when it was discovered that he had connections to many brothels and a secret family with two children. Luckily, he was introduced to Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart in Austria and flourished as a librettist. His new-found fame gained him access to the upper echelons of European society. Yet after much success, Da Ponte found himself bankrupt and needing to flee once more. He sought refuge in America where he made a modest living as a grocer before rising again to establish the New York City’s first opera company in 1833.

BALLET -- The Merry Widow
(May 31 to June 9, 2019)

The Merry Widow returns to Houston Ballet with a delicious cocktail of witty and intriguing characters based on the famous 1905 operetta by Franz Lehár. Choreographed by longtime friend to the company and esteemed British choreographer Ronald Hynd, this lavish story ballet is filled with rich music and sweeping drama as decadent lives intertwine in early 20th century Europe. When a secret romance is uncovered between Count Danilo and the glamorous, wealthy widow Hanna Glawari (a former peasant girl who’s transformed herself into high society), their homeland and its aristocracy plot to preserve their love affair while also saving themselves and the principality of Pontevedro from bankruptcy. With gorgeous costume and scenic designs by the acclaimed Roberta Guidi di Bagno, The Merry Widow is sure to enthrall audiences with its humor and grandeur.

BALLET -- Marie
(June 14 to 23, 2019)

History becomes HERstory as Marie returns to the Wortham in grand fashion to close our 2018/19 season. The past unfolds in Stanton Welch AM’s dramatic retelling of France’s infamous young monarchs, Marie Antoinette and King Louis XVI. This three-act ballet chronicles the Queen’s tragic life in a time of immense social and political strife for the people of France. Beautifully designed by Kandis Cook, Marie is elegant and extravagant, poignant and powerful, and follows one woman’s complex struggle to protect her family, friends, and nation. With compositions from Shostakovich’s rich body of work, Marie has been performed internationally and remains an example of Welch’s powerful blend of storytelling, artistry, and choreography.


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