Drive by Fitzgerald's most weekend nights, and plenty of weeknights, and the line to get in often snakes out the door and around the corner, and sometimes around the block. It's a pretty good sign that something great could be about to happen on one of the venue's two stages. Since the summer of 2010, Fitz has hosted countless sold-out shows by acts from any musical genre you'd care to name, and has become an anchor for the thriving area radiating from the corner of Studemont and White Oak. Even when it's crowded — which it is, often — Fitz doesn't feel claustrophobic; rather, the close quarters help enhance the communal experience so fundamental to enjoying live music. Last month Fitz entered yet another chapter of its long and illustrious history as one of the best sound engineers in Houston, Lauren Oakes, took over the general-manager role at the venue; her first task is supervising a series of much-needed renovations designed to bring the venue up-to-date and make it even more fan-friendly. That could be a tall order considering the recent success Fitz has enjoyed, but it's also hard to imagine anyone better qualified for the job.
READERS' CHOICE: Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion