Houston's Theater Scene, Being Debated By The Chatters

All That Chat is the primary message board for Broadway fanatics; it gets cited from time to time in papers like The New York Times and is somewhat famous for its instant reviews of productions that have only just begun previews.

What are they chatting about today? Houston.

To a degree, anyway. But a semi-debate has emerged about whether Houston qualifies as a "good theater town," and opinions are mixed.

"midtowngym" starts things off by asking what are good theater towns besides NY and Chicago; commenter "London" cites the Bayou City.

Houston does have a shockingly strong theater scene. For those that are skeptical you must not have spent enough time there to know. Its not centered in only one location though. There is no Broadway outside of Broadway. Even in the West End the theaters are a bit dispersed.

It is much stronger than Dallas and Austin (or Phoenix or Tucson or Denver or Miami or Atlanta or Portland etc.). Seattle is known recently for high profile out of town try outs but the local stuff is nothing special. I've seen some real crap there.

This doesn't meet with universal approval.

Says "Glenn":

I completely disagree with midtowngym....The mention of Houston surprises me, because when I've been there and have been interested in seeing a show, there seemed to be very little to choose from. This spring, there was a production of "Mauritius", another show that had just closed before I arrived, and one that hadn't yet opened. Then again, perhaps the Houston Chronicle and the glossy city magazine simply doesn't list or cover anything but the biggest theatre companies, and you need to dig deeper.

"oldschool4me" takes up the banner:

Unsurprisingly (but often forgotten), Houston, the fourth largest US city, has quite a bit of theater going on. Theater Under the Stars (TUTS) and the Tony-Winning Alley Theatre are their biggies, but there are 18 others in the Houston area that produce full seasons every year in addition to the touring Broadway shows that come through and work produced by educational institutions (a few of which are surprisingly high caliber).

Color midtowngym impressed: "I had no idea. The things you learn on here."

Houston! It's worth it!

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