For more than 5 decades, Houston fans have flocked to Society of Performing Arts (lovingly known as “SPA”) Houston events, delighting in nationally and globally renowned dance, plays, music, author and celebrity visits, and more.
Now, the city’s premiere performing arts organization has a new name, look, and season lineup: SPA is now Performing Arts Houston. The organization teased the rebrand at its recent soiree, The Kaleidoscope Ball.
Why the name change now? “Dropping the word ‘Society’ from our name reflects our value of welcoming all Houstonians to participate in the performing arts,” notes a press release.
Whether locals found the name alienating or not, there’s no denying the organization’s appeal to audiences and performers and entertainers. CEO Meg Booth also cited another reason to reposition.
“We have a strong 55-year legacy of providing high quality artistic programming and arts education to the city of Houston,” she said in a statement. “We’re thrilled to carry this mission into a second half century with a new name and look. “It also lets us lose the acronym, SPA. As therapeutic as the arts are, we’re happy not to be confused in google searches with spa treatments.”
As for the highly anticipated 2022/2023 lineup, tickets go on sale July 12.
Dance highlights include Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan; Ragamala Dance Company, a classical Indian Bharatnatyam company; Dance Theatre of Harlem, a New York City institution; and Gregory Maqoma’s Vuyani Dance Theatre from South Africa.
Music fans will no doubt delight in New Orleans icons Preservation Hall Jazz Band. Grammy Award-winning gospel legends The Blind Boys of Alabama will perform a Christmas show with The Voice finalist and Houston’s own Sarah Grace & The Soul. Mariachi Herencia de México will take the stage with special guest Lupita Infante.
America’s Got Talent favorite, DIAVOLO, will perform Trajectoire plus a new work honoring veterans. Cirque du Soleil’s Cirque Dreams Holidaze, blends musical theater, holiday classics, and signature circus arts. Dog lovers shouldn’t miss Mutts Gone Nuts!, a family comedy act with supremely talented four-legged stars. Our Planet Live in Concert, reimagines the popular Netflix documentary series, featuring a live orchestra, and showcases the wonders of Earth. Local favorite, STOMP returns to kick it.
Making their Performing Arts debuts are hilarious motherhood YouTubers My Name is NOT Mom; stand-up comedian, actor, writer, and podcast host Tom Papa; and British cook, TV host, and writer Nigella Lawson, who has sold more than 12 million cookbooks worldwide.
For a full list of 2022/2023 performers and events, visit the new-look Performing Arts Houston site.