About Stages Theatre
In 1978, in the damp basement of a downtown brewery, Stages Repertory Theatre burst onto the Houston theatre scene, giving voice to new ideas that demanded to be heard and daring audiences to see the newest, most audacious works written for the stage. In 1985 Stages moved to its current two-theater facility in the historic Star Engraving Building on Allen Parkway, and became Houston’s second Equity theatre in 1988.
Now in its 38th season, Stages is a professional AEA theatre that produces new work, presents established work in new ways, and nurtures talent for the performing arts field. Characterized by courage, generosity, ingenuity and intimacy, Stages remains an integral part of the Houston arts community.
One of only two theatres in the region to offer year-round employment for actors, directors, designers and theatre technicians through professional unions, Stages brings a level of artistic excellence to Houston that raises the national profile of the whole community, improves the quality of life in the region, and offers residents and visitors thrilling live performances.
Two productions developed and premiered at Stages (Black Pearl Sings and Always…Patsy Cline) ranked among the ten most produced plays and musicals in America in both the 2009 and 2010 national theatre seasons. No other theatre in America can claim this distinction.
Stages has garnered national recognition for its work, including coverage in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Variety, Vogue and American Theatre magazine. Stages’ MainStage season includes a varied repertoire of world and regional premieres, innovative treatments of dramatic and literary classics, and pioneering, risk-taking productions that are not likely to be seen anywhere else in town. Each play is brought to life by an exceptional team of artists, performers and craftspeople largely from the Houston area, but also with guest artists from around the world.
Under the leadership of Artistic Director Kenn McLaughlin, Stages has strengthened its commitment to sustainable innovation through projects such as producing the first American regional theatre production of Stephen Sondheim’s latest musical, Road Show; re-envisioning classics like Auntie Mame and Veronica’s Room with bold new productions; commissioning and developing a series of Panto holiday musicals for family audiences; and presenting the annual “Get Talking” series showcasing the talents of America’s most fascinating contemporary playwrights, including Will Eno, Sarah Ruhl, Yasmina Reza, Philip Dawkins, Matthew Lopez, Johnna Adams, Julia Cho and Rebecca Gilman.
In addition to its varied season of contemporary plays, Stages offers a range of education and community outreach programs that provide unparalleled opportunities for talented and under-served youth, enrichment for educators and cultural leaders, and career development for the full spectrum of arts professionals.
Through this robust scope of activities Stages encourages conversation about important ideas, provides insight into other cultures and viewpoints, and helps develop each new generation of artists, audiences and citizens.