Artist O’ the Week: Kevin Holden!

27 Apr
set design for The Unexpected Man

The set for THE UNEXPECTED MAN, designed by Kevin Holden

Kevin Holden, this week’s AotW, a prolific designer and director, designed the set and lighting for THE UNEXPECTED MAN, playing through May 13. Known for his fun-loving personality and his unique design perspective, Kevin shares a little about his background and what led him to direct and design for the theatre. Continue reading

You say Co-op, we say Alliance!

26 Apr

The Alliance AuditionsIt’s time again for a grand Houston theatre tradition…the Alliance Auditions! (formerly known as the Co-op Auditions). Stages coordinated the Auditions for many years before handing the reins over to the Houston Theatre Alliance in 2011. The HTA is administering the Auditions again this year and registration is now open! The Auditions are scheduled for  Continue reading

Artist O’ the Week: Seth Gordon

20 Apr
Seth Gordon

UNEXPECTED MAN director Seth Gordon

Seth Gordon, Associate Artistic Director of the Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, directs The Unexpected Man and shares his background as a director in this week’s Artist O’ the Week!  Continue reading

Dream duo reunites for UNEXPECTED MAN

14 Apr
Sally Edmundson

Sally Edmundson

James Belcher

James Belcher









Sally Edmundson and James Belcher are familiar faces on Houston’s stages – Sally, a Stages mainstay, has been involved with Stages since its earliest days, and James, a longtime Alley company member, was last seen at Stages in the intriguing A Picasso. The two have acted together at Stages before, in the 1997 production of Doug Wright’s Quills, and are now reunited in Yasmina Reza‘s early work The Unexpected Man. We’re excited to see what happens when these two amazing talents take the stage together again!

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Auditions! Auditions! YAC takes shape

12 Apr
YAC selection process

How will we choose from so many great candidates?!?!?!

Whew! Auditions are over for the Young Actors Conservatory…and now the hard part really begins! Selecting a small ensemble from the many talented students who audition….

At the start of each year, as early as January when summer vacation is a distant dream for students, I get to begin the process of recruiting and preparing for the summer Young Actors Conservatory. At Stages, we do a middle school conservatory session for two weeks, and then we do the high school, super-intensive four-week program! The high school YAC is FREE to participants, and is completely unique in the city (and in the nation, honestly) because we bring in  Continue reading

A Stages Icon Passes

11 Apr
The Blue Beast

It's so hard to say goodbye

Anyone who has worked or spent time at Stages is probably familiar with this beautiful blue beast, which for at least 15 years has served as the repository of staff lunches, event leftovers, actors’ forgotten takeout meals, and a vintage jar of orange marmalade. Stages lore has it that the refrigerator was donated to the theatre by astronaut John Glenn himself, and it must have been quite a marvel in its day, with early examples of ice maker and water dispenser, a strange small pass-through door (for those times when it’s just too difficult to open the entire door) and a wealth of removable bins and compartments.

Early this morning, Stages staffer Mitchell Greco opened the refrigerator as usual, only to discover that its once-icy majestic bulk felt….WARM. The freezer, likewise. And so today we say goodbye to this Stages icon, who has served so faithfully for so long. Farewell, old friend. In the words of John Glenn, it’s been a great ride!


10 Apr

We’re unbelievably excited to announce that we’re working with the amazing team at Culturepilot to develop a brand new Stages website! We’ll be launching the beta version in May, but in the meantime, everything you need will be right here on our blog. Dive in!

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Artist O’ the Week: Denise Fennell!

9 Feb

Denise Fennell stars as Sister in Late Nite CatechismHoly Moly! This week’s AotW, DENISE (MARIE CHRISTINA) FENNELL plays “Sister” in the Late Nite Catechism series, and prior to this, Stages fans most recently saw her in last spring’s Sister’s Easter Catechism: Will My Bunny Go To Heaven?

Denise is originally from Boston, MA, where she grew up in a very strict Italian Catholic neighborhood, often attending mass with her Grandma Bianca on a daily basis. Denise currently calls both Los Angeles and New York City home. Some of you may recognize Denise from Tony ‘n Tina’s Wedding, in which she frequently appears in the title role of Tina. Maripat Donovan discovered Denise as Tina in her white wedding dress, blue eye shadow and her hair sprayed so high it almost reached heaven. Maripat apparently saw something that led her to believe there was a nun lurking somewhere behind the gum chewing, wise-cracking bride. All kidding aside, Denise would like to thank Maripat for believing in her and for being patient while Denise took the time to believe in herself. It is with great honor that she trades her wedding dress in for a habit, and instead of Tony chooses to marry God.

And Sister spoke all these words, saying: “I am the Lord your Nun, who brought Laughter out of the land of Houston, out of the house of The Stages Theatre.

I shall have no other Sisters before me at Stages Theatre. It would be heartbreaking. I love to perform for the audiences here in Houston, and simply love Stages Theatre. Everyone at Stages has come to feel like Family to me. Love you all xoxo

You shall not make for yourself late for my class at Stages or chew gum or drink water or talk to your neighbor, or CLIP YOUR NAILS!!!

I shall share 3 secrets with you that happen right before performing the role of Sister. I have terrible stage fright, I tie my shoes over and over, and I convince myself right before I go on stage that someone has stolen my personality and that maybe I am not funny anymore.

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Artist O’ the Week: David Matranga!

27 Jan
David Matranga in 'Mistakes Were Made'

David Matranga plays theatre producer Felix Artifex in 'Mistakes Were Made'

Actor David Matranga is opening a show tonight, and having a show on a Friday night is pretty standard for this fellow. Houston audiences are fans of David, of course, and between commercial work, television, voiceovers, David has had a busy schedule of rehearsal and performances on the Houston Stage. It seems perfect character study for his current role in Mistakes Were Made, Craig Wright’s one-man comedy about a high-octane theatre producer who has to juggle a lot of balls at once (David can really juggle, by the way, like real balls and things).

Craig’s work might be best known to the lay-person as a television writer on shows like Six Feet Under, Lost, Brothers & Sisters, and Dirty Sexy Money. Stages has a history with the playwright’s work, and MISTAKES WERE MADE is the perfect culmination of one man’s career, having a toe in all waters, keeping all people on-the-line, and the ultimate struggle of maintaining authentic, lasting relationships at the end of the 80+ hour work week.

That’s definitely something everyone of us can relate to (theatre biz aside!). We celebrate the opening of this 90 minute power-house comedy with David as AotW! (Artist o’ the Week, for those “in-the-know”)

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