cheers to 100!
Houston's most beloved outdoor theater toasts 100 years with a big birthday bash, ballet, and a giant cake
A big birthday deserves a big celebration. And a big cake. Miller Outdoor Theatre delivers on both counts Friday, May 12, marking the beloved Hermann Park entertainment venue's official centennial.
The 100th Anniversary Birthday celebration includes slices of birthday cake made for the occasion by beloved El Bolillo Bakery at the concession stand at intermission, and show-goers can take photos of themselves, their families and friends popping out of the colorful, giant cake created to mark the milestone.
Everyone in Houston has a story about Miller. Someone knows someone whose parents took them there as a kid and is now taking their kids. Someone knows someone — or is someone — who had a first date there. There have been engagements on the hilltop, theatrical debuts on the stage, and generations of memories made while watching the completely, totally, absolutely, 100-percent free shows the venue puts on from March to late October.
This birthday celebration is guaranteed to be one more. Festivities kick off at 7 pm; the performance starts at 8 pm.
In addition to the cake and cake popping, Friday marks the opening of the Houston Ballet's performance of George Balanchine's Jewels. The iconic ballet is divided into three acts, "Emeralds," "Rubies," and "Diamonds," each act featuring unique musical settings, costumes and Balanchine's instantly recognizable choreography. The founder of the New York City Ballet, George Balanchine premiered Jewels in 1967; it's become one of the iconic choreographer's master works.
Guests will also be able to check out “Life is a Dance,” a mural created by artist Mark DeLeon as part of the season-long celebration which will be on display at Miller that evening.
Seating is available on the lawn, where guests can bring their own chairs, blankets, pillows and picnic favorites. Covered seating is available with tickets that can be selected here. Covered seating and lawn seating are free of charge.
Miller Outdoor Theatre officially opened May 12, 1923 and was dedicated to "the Arts of Music, Poetry, Drama and Oratory," according to a press release outlining birthday celebrations.
A performance at Miller, circo 1960s. Photo courtesy of Miller Outdoor Theatre
Its very first show was a pageant called Springtime of Our Nation, with 2,500 performers. This year, Miller's calendar includes more than 130 shows from a diverse array of performing arts groups from Houston and around the globe.
Lovers of the arts and experiences should be sure to head over and celebrate the theatre's centennial, and wish it well as it embarks on its next hundred years.
Miller Outdoor Theatre's The 100th Anniversary Birthday takes place at 7 pm Friday, May 12 at the venue (6000 Hermann Park Dr.). Free; find select covered seats online.