Things To Do

Best Bets: Thanksgiving, “We So Houston,” and (DeQuina) Moore

DeQuina Moore stars in Houston For the Holidays with DeQuina Moore at Stages.
DeQuina Moore stars in Houston For the Holidays with DeQuina Moore at Stages. Photo by Melissa Taylor
Seems like we’re in for a rainy Thanksgiving weekend, but that’s no excuse to stay cooped up at home, not when there’s so much to do this week. From a new light installation down at Buffalo Bayou Park and the return of a Houston Ballet tradition to a 50-year-old masterwork from Luis Buñuel and a new holiday show down at Stages, keep reading so see all of your best bets for the holiday weekend.

It's been two years since Houston’s seen its annual Thanksgiving Day parade (thanks to a worldwide pandemic and then weather), but today, Thursday, November 24, at 9 a.m. we’ll see if 2022 will mark its long-awaited return. Though it’s forecasted to rain, Lisa Helfman, the senior director of public affairs for H-E-B Houston, told Houston Public Media that the 73rd Annual H-E-B Thanksgiving Day Parade will go on “rain or shine” unless there’s lightning. We’ll be optimistic and say that the parade – grand marshaled by Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson and including more than a dozen floats and 30 balloons – will make it through 20 city blocks of downtown Houston without a hitch. The parade is free, but if you’re someone who likes a seat, you have until 8 a.m. this morning (Thursday, November 24) to reserve a first come, first serve seat here for $25.
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Come check out Cistern Illuminated, the winter light installation that will soon decorate the Buffalo Bayou Park Cistern with flickering light.
Photo by Katya Horner
On Friday, November 25, Buffalo Bayou Partnership will open their new winter light installation, Cistern Illuminated, in the Buffalo Bayou Park Cistern. Designed by Fenris founder Kelly O’Brien, the temporary seasonal lighting will also be complemented by special performances from Schola Cantorum of the Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart, which will perform works from past to present. If you can’t make it opening weekend, Cistern Illuminated will be on view through January 8, 2023, with 30-minute tours offered Wednesdays through Sundays at 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 3 p.m., and 5 p.m., with an extra tour on Friday nights at 7 p.m. Tickets can be purchased here for $8 to $10, or you can take advantage of free admission on the first Thursday of every month. Schola Cantorum will perform at 7, 7:45, and 8:30 p.m. on December 18, 20 and 22, and January 5 and 6, 2023. Tickets can be purchased for the performances here for $20.

What do you think when you think of Houston? Is it the two-time World Series champion Houston Astros? How about “chopped and screwed” innovator DJ Screw, whose collection of vinyl records sits in the Houston Hip Hop Research Collection at the University of Houston? Or maybe it’s U of H? Whatever it is, you’ll probably find it represented this weekend at “We So Houston,” a group art show presented by War’Hous Visual Art Studios, Super Happy Incredible Toys, and White Cup Entertainment. Curated by Dandee Warhol, the free family-friendly event will cover the beer hall in Saint Arnold Brewing Company with notable Houston architecture, famous local faces, and much more. You can check out the show Friday, November 25, from 6 to 10 p.m., Saturday, November 26, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., or Sunday, November 27, from 12 to 6 p.m.
Swing by the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston on Friday, November 25, at 6 p.m. for a 50th anniversary digital restoration screening of Luis Buñuel’s The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie. Buñuel’s “greatest commercial and critical success” – so much so that the man who said “nothing would disgust me more morally than winning an Oscar” won the Oscar for Best Foreign Film in 1972 – is “a comedy of frustration in which a sextet of well-heeled, super-civilized haute bourgeois (five French people and the ambassador from an imaginary South American country) repeatedly attempt and fail to sit down at dinner.” As The New York Times noted, it may have been “shooting fish in a barrel, but French manners have seldom been so expertly ridiculed.” The MFAH will also screen Buñuel’s satiric film at 6 p.m. on Saturday, November 26, and Sunday, November 27. Tickets are available for $7 to $9.

Not only is a Houston tradition returning on Friday, November 25, at 7:30 p.m. when Houston Ballet opens Artistic Director Stanton Welch’s The Nutcracker, but it will be the first time since the start of the pandemic that the show will include a full cast – that’s 61 company dancers and more than 300 young dancers. New Houston Ballet Principal Dancer Beckanne Sisk, who will dance the role of the Sugar Plum Fairy, recently discussed the audience’s relationship with The Nutcracker with the Houston Press, saying, “Everyone knows this music. It's just a classic. So to be able to dance and be the music as Sugar Plum, it's like I'll show you what the music looks like." Performances continue at 2 and 7:30 p.m. Saturdays, December 20-23 and December 26-27; 1 and 6:30 p.m. Sundays; and 7:30 p.m. Fridays and December 19, through December 27 at the Wortham Theater Center. Tickets can be purchased here for $30 to $200.
Can you imagine Fantasia without Mickey Mouse? Yep, Walt Disney considered casting Dopey or creating an entirely new character before ultimately sticking with the mouse. It’s hard to imagine, just like it’s now hard to imagine the innovations Disney made with music and sound for the 1940 film, innovations that led Time to say, “The music comes not simply from the screen, but from everywhere; it is as if a hearer were in the midst of the music.” This weekend, you can experience Disney’s Fantasia from within the midst of the music when the Houston Symphony plays the soundtrack – including Beethoven, Tchaikovsky and, of course, Paul Dukas’s “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice” – while the film is projected on the screen in Jones Hall on Friday, November 25, and Saturday, November 26, at 8 p.m. and Sunday, November 27, at 2:30 p.m. In-hall tickets for the concert can be purchased here for $32 to $139.
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DeQuina Moore stars in Houston For the Holidays with DeQuina Moore at Stages.
Photo by Melissa Taylor
Fresh off a powerhouse performance in Plumshuga: The Rise of Lauren Anderson, triple threat DeQuina Moore is back at Stages for Houston For the Holidays with DeQuina Moore. The 90-minute show, written by Moore and Shawanna Renee Rivon, is part holiday cabaret – complete with classic Christmas songs like “Jingle Bell Rock,” and “Silent Night” – and part autobiography. This includes true personal and behind-the-scenes stories, with Stages Artistic Director Kenn McLaughlin describing the show as “personal, intimate, here I am,” and Moore recently telling Houston CityBook that “there will be some tea spilt in this script as well.” The next performance is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. Saturday, November 26, with future performances scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays, 8 p.m. Fridays, 2:30 and 8 p.m. Saturdays, and 2:30 p.m. Sundays through December 24. Tickets can be purchased here for $30 to $84.

Tejas Got Soul, a three-Sunday series of programming at Discovery Green that celebrates Houston’s Tejano music scene past and present, comes to an end this Sunday, November 27, when Avizo takes the Anheuser-Busch Stage from 5 to 7 p.m. Isaac “Simmer Down” Rodriguez – a DJ and one of the team members behind the Tejas Got Soul project along with Nick Gaitan, Angel Quesada, Roberto Rodriguez and Pat Jasper – has said the “drive behind Tejas Got Soul Sundays is to promote the artists and the music to a whole new generation of music lovers,” with each selected band representing “a distinct Chicano music legacies and styles in Houston.” During Sunday’s free concert, the final handpicked band, Grammy-nominated Tejano band Avizo, will pay tribute to two groups that played a strong role in Houston’s Chicano music scene: Big Lu y Los Muchachos and Neto Perez and the Young Originals.
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Natalie de la Garza is a contributing writer who adores all things pop culture and longs to know everything there is to know about the Houston arts and culture scene.