Not to Drop Names, But …

Name-dropping in conversation is annoying. Name-dropping in song is, well, that can be pretty annoying too. We’re looking at you, “We Didn’t Start the Fire.” We’ll light the fire if someone will tie this song to a stake. (We won’t even look at Maroon 5’s “Moves Like Jagger.” Die in a ditch, “Moves Like Jagger”!)... Continue Reading →

Our Alice Is the Best and We’ve Got Proof

We at The Straz and the Patel Conservatory know Alice Santana is the best. It’s always nice, though, when others notice as well. Alice, The Straz’s vice president of education and community engagement, has won the Cognia Excellence in Education Award for 2023. Cognia is an independent non-profit organization that accredits primary and secondary schools... Continue Reading →

The Way She Is

A struggling actor auditioned for a part as a singer. The director didn’t choose her but did advise her to add “singer” to her resume, a tip that proved prescient. Within a couple of years, the actor was a celebrated vocalist, headlining the ritziest nightclubs around, drawing ecstatic reviews and, whaddaya know, starring on Broadway.... Continue Reading →


Photo by Jason Shook In 2021 at the age of 90, William Shatner became the oldest person ever to fly into space, which he did aboard a Blue Origin sub-orbital capsule. One could argue that this was life imitating art. After all, Shatner is best known for his portrayal of James Tiberius Kirk, captain of... Continue Reading →

Decade of Dance

Houston Ballet Academy graduates and current Corps de Ballet dancers Neal Burks as Basilio and Magnoly Batista as Kitri in Houston Ballet Academy's Ben Stevenson's Don Quixote. Photo by Amitava Sarkar (2019). Courtesy of Houston Ballet. Neal Burks was a promising young dancer in 2013. Ten years on, that promise is being fulfilled. But for... Continue Reading →

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