Live Oak Theatre is a name that has been a fixture on the Austin theatre scene for 16 years, ever since Mac Williams directed the company's first effort -- Eugene O'Neill's A Moon for the Misbegotten, starring C.K. McFarland -- on the stage of the then-newly refurbished Paramount Theatre. Well, that name is being retired now, as the company marks a new era by embracing the name of its home space for the past three years and for years to come. As of this week, Live Oak is the State Theatre Company. The name change comes as the company is in the midst of its most dramatic evolution as a company since it acquired its first space at Third and Nueces back in 1985. The State is undergoing a major renovation, during which it will be formally converted from a dated cinema into a modern performing arts venue. When the upgrade is complete, the State will boast a new auditorium with stadium seating, a second black-box theatre, scene and costume shops, and new dressing rooms and offices. It will be a new space, and a new name is fitting.
As to how the renovation is progressing: The State's PR maven Amy Stinson says that Frank Seely has come on as Project Manager; Hogan Demolition has nearly completed the demolition of the floor and the front portion of the balcony; and contracts have been signed with Roof Management Systems for the new roof and Todd Sanders for the restoration of the State Theater sign, marquee, and canopy. For more info, call 472-5143.
AusTix Survives Flood
It's like one of those "my-luck-is-so-bad" scenarios: After hunting desperately for a new place to live, you land a spot that seems ideal, then, you move in, and the first rain, the water in front of your new home just keeps rising and rising. ... That happened to AusTix last week when the deluge hit just weeks after it had settled into its new location. Where? Only one of the most notorious flood-prone spots in Austin: the building at Lamar and Tenth, once inhabited by the original Whole Foods. Now, it's the home of CHEAPO, discount music. The good news: Neither AusTix nor CHEAPO were flooded out. So drop by, wish 'em well, and pick up some tickets -- including half-price tix -- to theatre, dance, and music events all over town. Call 454-TIXS or 454-HALF for info.