Your weekly guide to Houston: Cinderella as a modern woman, J.J. Watt as a cowboy & bees as friends


There was no doubt that Majestic Metro’s first public screening would sell out. When the Houston Downtown Management District partnered with the Alamo Drafthouse to pair Valentine’s Day with the classic film Breakfast at Tiffany’s, the Art Nouveau historic theater brought back the feel of its 1926 glory days.

Couldn’t get tickets? Save the date for the June 5 screening of Some Like it Hot

I tried but I didn’t have the endurance to taste 2,454 wines from 736 wineries at RodeoHouston’s Roundup and Best Bites Competition at Reliant Center last weekend. A few veggie-friendly restaurants did have edibles for a tofu-head like me — thank you Tango & Malbec and Narin’s Bombay Brasserie — though my attention was occupied watching the mixed bag assemblage savoring Philippe Restaurant + Lounge’s burgundy beef cheeks and truffle mac and cheese, Haven’s wild boar chili with jalapeno cheese and Sorrel Urban Bistro’s duck confit tartlet with dried cherry chutney.

Last weekend was a big one for music with premieres at the Houston Symphony and the River Oaks Chamber Orchestra. The Third Annual Texas Yoga Conference and Music Festival has gone Namaste, Mardi Gras is now a distant memory and our own Shelby Hodge looked dazzling in aubergine as the honoree at the Ballet Ball. 

On deck this week is a mishmash of art performances, shopping fetes, brainy fundraisers and live music concerts:

Houston Ballet’s Cinderella at Wortham Theater Center

By today’s standards, Cinderella is a tad pathetic. The girl needs a fairy to help her land her prince charming, who rescues her from the woes of a wench of a stepmother and two whiny sisters. She’s helpless.

Houston Ballet’s Stanton Welch updates the story. His Cinderella is more virile, robust, spunky. When she sees evil, she will find a way to step on it. When she sees her guy, nothing stops her from grabbing and holding on to him, firmly. She’s a girl living in the 21st century who understands she is in control of her own destiny.

The music of Russian composer Sergei Prokofiev is the backdrop for the Welch original ballet, with stage and costume designs by Kristian Fredrikson and lighting by Lisa J. Pinkham. Runs through March 4. Tickets start at $19.

Stark Naked Theatre’s Dinner with Friends at Studio 101 at Spring Street Studios

Now that Stark Naked, in collaboration with Mildred’s Umbrella Theaterand Classical Theatre Company, has settled into its new space at Spring Street Studios after a never-ending party that attracted more than 400 guests and carried on into the wee hours of the morning, it’s time to observe how the first show at Studio 101 unfolds.

Hubby and wife team Philip Lehl and Kim Tobin are busy bees, taking time from acting engagements and teaching posts to run their own company, aiming to mount theater that deserves to be seen in Houston.Dinner with Friends is a 2000 Pulitzer Prize-winning play by Donald Margulies that begins with Houston’s favorite activity: Eating.

Drama ensues quickly as one of the seemingly happy married middle-aged couple is about to breakup, a development that tests friendships, familial bonds and loyalties. 

Through March 11. General admission tickets are $20, $17 seniors and $10 students.  

Houston Modern Market 2012 at Winter Street Studios

Expect great finds for the modern guy and gal. The hallways of Winter Street Studios will morph into a shopping frenzy with vendors showcasing modern fine art, furniture, jewelry and objects. More than just an opportunity to unload cash, the event includes lectures, a vintage car show, a film screening and modern architecture tours

The market begins with a preview party set for 6 to 10 p.m. Friday ($50) during which guests will get first dibs at the goods while enjoying drinks and live entertainment. The market reopens Saturday (10 a.m. to 6 p.m.) and Sunday (10 a.m. to 4 p.m.). Admission is $10.

2012 Downtown Rodeo Parade

A 73-year tradition, the Downtown Rodeo Parade brings Houstonians and out-of-town spectators together in one of the city’s most popular celebrations. Decorative floats intermingle with thousands of men and women on horseback amid skyscrapers and freeways, filling the streets with hoof beats and marching bands.

When the parade rolls through town, you know the Rodeo is really here. It starts at Jones Hall and ends at Tranquility Park. Houston Texans stars Andre Johnson and J.J. Watt will serve as grand marshals, adding a fresh feel.

Saturday at 10 a.m.

Plant a Hummingbird Feeder Hanging Basket Workshop at Houston Arboretum and Nature Center

When I was a child, hummingbirds scared the bejesus out of me. I have come to terms with my phobia of these hovering aerial creatures, so much so that during my weekend strolls at the Houston Arboretum and Nature Center, I often buzz in delight as they extract the nectar from flowers.

At this family-friendly two-hour workshop, guests will make a feeder hanging basket to take home. For foliage-challenged folks — like me — a knowledgeable plant guru will share a dozen or so colorful edibles sure to attract the ruby-throated hummingbird.

Sunday at 1 p.m. and repeated at 3 p.m. Tickets are $45 for Arboretum members and $55 for non-members. One child age 10 and up is welcome with each paid adult. Register online

Staff writer and adorable Houston explorer Whitney Radley’s pick: Shovels & Rope at McGonigel’s at Mucky Duck

Whitney says: “For one, Shovels & Rope got its name from an album made up of murder ballads. Second, the band can make a lot of surprisingly harmonious noise, given the size (two) and the instrumentation (which varies from song to song). Third, the couple is precious. See them at McGonigel’s Mucky Duck on Sunday at 6 p.m.

Arts smarty pants and lovable dance maven Nancy Wozny’s pick: Catastrophic Theatre’s Endgame at DiverseWorks

Nancy says: “‘You’re on earth, there’s no cure for that,’ Hamm says to to Clov. Beckett is back thanks to those wonky word geeks over at Catastrophic Theatre with their uber tight production of Endgame, starring Greg Dean as Hamm, Troy Schulze as Clov, Joel Orr as Nagg and Mikelle Johnson as Nell. Directed by Jason Nodler, Endgame’s title says it all. If you love language, wordplay, divine banter and humor with a falling off a cliff edge, this is a play for you.

“Running at DiverseWorks until March 3. Beckett doesn’t come around very much, this is a terrific cast and a fine production, so you had better go.” Tickets are pay-what-you-can.