Best Gay Theater - 2000
Christian De Vries did a lot of living before he took over the small space on Washington Avenue and turned it into Bienvenue Theatre, one of Houston's most successful small theaters, gay or otherwise. In past lives he'd been a carpenter, a painter, an electrician and an actor. But no talent has served the man better than his flirty charm and his steel-hearted business acumen. No producer in town knows more about his audience and is less afraid of giving them exactly what they want. He provides free concessions and gives lots of warm welcomes to out-of-town audience members, and last but certainly not least, almost every show he's produced has filled up the stage with men in the buff. Take, for example, his most recent production, which bears the enticingly illicit appellation of Naked Boys Singing! The musical revue features ten -- count 'em, ten -- buck-naked men of various singing abilities who strut about the stage flinging their full frontal nudity much to the delight of the entire audience. The theater's seats have been filled to capacity ever since the show opened this summer. And what started out as a "gay thing" is beginning to find a place for itself with straight women who know a good thing when they see it. The shows are funny, solid and entertaining. And best of all, they're captivating to look at.