by Kimberly Davis-Guerra
Above Photo by Mark Britain
Join the Celebration!
If you are interested in celebrating the 125th Anniversary, tickets start at $125 for A Night of Stars on January 3, 2020. Dress as your favorite character from one of the theater’s past shows and enjoy music by Rob Landes and scrumptious cuisine by some of the best Galveston has to offer!
Can you imagine what life was like in 1894 in Galveston? According to The County Information Program, Texas Association of Counties, the population in 1890 Galveston was approximately 31,476. Compared to the over 291,000 today, it seems tiny. Less than the half the size of today’s student population at Texas A&M! However, think about how many people that was on that island. The first gasoline powered automobile wasn’t even available yet, so folks definitely stuck close to home. Life centered around their home, church and community. Entertainment was extremely hard to come by until….The Grand Opera House opened on January 3rd, 1895.
Hailed as one of American theatre’s finest creations, Galveston’s Grand Opera House was built to last. It has survived the Great Storm of 1900, Hurricanes Carla, Alicia, Ike & Harvey as well as countless tropical storms. The Great Depression came & went. The population grew and popular interests changed along with it. However, The Grand Opera House has stood the test of time and is looking better than ever.
As one of the few American theatres actually constructed for live performances, this venue offers a unique experience for the average patron. From the moment you enter the building, you can feel the history oozing out of every nook & cranny.
From the minute you are greeted by the gorgeous statue at the foot of the red carpeted staircase, you feel transported back in time. Back to a day when going to the theatre was a luxury not afforded by most. Being transported into a story surrounded by the opulence of The Grand Opera House surely must have been the talk of the town when the velvet curtains were drawn back on opening night back in 1895, because it still feels that way today.
What The Grand Opera House lacks for in size, it only seats approximately 1000, it makes up for in character. The thoughtful design allows every patron to experience the performance with the best view. Designed in a non-traditional manner at the time, the curved seating offers viewers, big & small an opportunity to witness excellence on the very large stage! Whether you choose to be on the first, second or third floors, you are in for a treat!
Over the years, The Grand Opera House has showcased extremely popular artists as well as the best kept secrets. Some of the standout performances have been by the great BB King, our own Willie Nelson and Jerry Jeff Walker. Theater performances include Annie, A Streetcar Named Desire, Cabaret, Miss Saigon, Rent, the Sound of Music and so many more.
Kicking off 2020, the grand 1894 Opera house is offering 12 shows between January – May. All are family-friendly and offer something for everyone!
- The Greatest Love of All: A Tribute to Whitney Houston
- The Oak Ridge Boys
- Finding Neverland
- Lyle Lovett
- An American in Paris
- One Night of Queen
- Beautiful: The Carole King Musical
- Yamato – the Drummers of Japan
- Rob Landes Trio
- VIVA MOMIX
- The Texas Tenors
- The Temptations
Subscriptions are available. Tickets@thegrand.com
Support the Official Opera House of Texas as deemed by the Texas Historical Commission and transport yourself back in time. Back to days when life was a little bit slower, families were a little bit tighter and a night at the theatre made you feel special. Visit The Grand 1894 Opera House and play your part in helping to continue the history being made every day within those beautiful walls.
SAVE THE DATE!
THE GRAND KIDS FESTIVAL
Saturday, April 4, 2020 – 25th Anniversary!
10am – 5pm Tons of Free Fun! Mark your calendars now to celebrate with The Grand 1894 Opera House as they present the 25th annual Grand Kids Festival. It’s sure to be a day filled with non-stop performances and art activities on Postoffice Street in Galveston’s historic downtown Cultural Arts District between 20th and 23rd Streets.
New this year:
- Inspirational Ground Stickers – Inspirational quotes re: art on the grounds throughout the festival.
- 3 selfie stations – one on each block
- Speed painter Jessica Haas
- New Musical guests, New Storytellers, New Artists, The Mobile Dairy Classroom & more!
Old friends coming back for the celebration include:
- Missoula Children’s Theatre with Beauty Lou and the Country Beast
- Bits ‘N Pieces Puppet theatre with Thimbelina
- Smart Family Literacy
- Toni Simmons
- Dave Kleevan “Critterman”
- Sky Kings Birds of Prey
- United Freestyle stunt Bike Team
For the latest information on The Grand Kids Festival, please visit the festival website at www.GrandKidsFestival.com.