Insider Notes

What better way to ease the February blues than a big, bejeweled ballet? That is exactly what Houston Ballet delivers with Aladdin, David Bintley’s fantastical new story ballet. Houston Ballet principals Joseph Walsh and Karina Gonzalez not only grace our cover this month but every stage they set foot on. Fabulous dancing is just one part of the wave of momentum going down at Houston Ballet as Stanton Welch celebrates his 10th anniversary at the helm.

More dance magic is in store with Carolyn Dorfman Dance Company making its Houston debut as part of Evelyn Rubenstein Jewish Community Center’s Dance Month. Michael Wade Simpson brings us into Dorfman’s moving world. Claire Christine Spera visited with Ballet Austin artistic director Stephen Mills to learn more about The Glass Project, while Misha Penton takes us into Tod Machover’s futuristic Death and the Powers at The Dallas Opera. A + C’s trusted Dallas theater denizen Lauren Smart gets inside the excitement surrounding Luis Alfaro’s Oedipus el Rey at Dallas Theater Center.

As the San Antonio Museum of Art beefs up its curatorial staff, Devon Britt-Darby’s Loose Ends column looks at how the state’s—if not the country’s—least Eurocentric encyclopedic museum is aiming to diversify its strengths.

Kelly Montana previews the Blanton Museum of Art’s upcoming Converging Lines: Eva Hesse and Sol LeWitt, which explores the friendship and mutual influence between two artists whose work, at first glance, seems to have little in common.

We couldn’t kick off a new season without talking to plenty of artists. Britt-Darby checks in with David Bates on the eve of his two-venue retrospective; Nancy Zastudil talks with Hubbard/Birchler about Sound Speed Marker at Ballroom Marfa; and Rachel Adams huddles with some of the artistic minds behind Austin’s Co-Lab Projects.

As always, there’s more to read online, including an interview with Stark Naked Theatre Company’s artistic director Kim Tobin, Cortney Jacobs’ chat with HGO’s newest Rigoletto, bass-baritone Ryan McKinny, Elizabeth Baisley on HGO’s U.S. Premiere of Mieczyslaw Weinberg’s The Passenger, and my visit with Texas Commission on the Arts chief Gary Gibbs.

As Texas launches itself into the new year, we wish you an artful Spring.

Nancy Wozny