Arts & Culture
1997 Readers Poll
1997 Critics Picks
Best Annual Party

Oh, bother. That unexpected tempest threatened to spoil Eeyore's celebration, but wily Poohs and Piglets saved the day.

Best Art Gallery

The gorgeous atmosphere was perhaps the reason Laguna Gloria garnered more votes than its own parent museum, downtown Austin Museum of Art, which won second. Mary Doerr and Laughing at the Sun tied for third.

The Contemporary Austin at Laguna Gloria
3809 W. 35th
512/458-8191
www.thecontemporaryaustin.org

Devaki Knowles

photograph by John Anderson   John Anderson

Best Artist

For the first time in years, an artist who actually lives in Austin beat out regular fave Amado Peña. Doerr's Images of Austin are everywhere. One peek at her shop on Burnet will show you why.

Mary Doerr
Gallery Images of Austin
4612 Burnet
www.images-austin.com/artwork1.htm

Best Book By A Local Author

Sterling's edgy tale of aging and art in the late 21st century won out among stiff competition. Daniel Quinn's Ishmael and the paperback release of Marion Winik's Telling tied for second place.

Best Cartoonist

In a town saturated by java joints and caffeine, his "Too Much Coffee Man" leaves fans jonesing for more.

Best Choreographer

Lambrou's infectious enthusiasm for ballet and contemporary sensibility give even perennials like The Nutcracker a fresh spin. Andrea Ariel throws herself into the art of dance – part gymnast, part sprite – to make movement that's exhilarating. Gray is a hoofer, plain and simple – a dancer with that old-school show biz polish and panache, and an old-schooler's mastery of tap; her every step jazzes.

Best Comedy Troupe

Two decades of making musical mirth, and these postmodern vaudevillians are still ripping it up; when you see them, it is to laugh.

Esther's Follies
525 E. Sixth
512/320-0553
www.esthersfollies.com

Best Comic

Call him Ronnie Velveeta, call him a Uranium Savage, call him Elvis, he's always hilarious, jabbing Austin's funny bone with savage glee.

photograph by John Anderson   John Anderson

Best Dance Company

With a repertoire ranging from the romantic to the racy, a company of dancers who just get more impressive every show, and a shiny new Nutcracker, this troupe makes you hungry for ballet.

Best Dance Space

Nia (Non-Impact Aerobics) offers classes in everything from bellydancing to salsa-merengue and specializes in NIA dancing, a combination of fitness and expressive, fluid movement.

Best Photographer (art)

Repeat winner Pogue's work is artistic, political, and above all, human.

Alan Pogue
Texas Center for Documentary Photography
2104 E. MLK
www.documentaryphotographs.com

Best Place To Hear Poetry

For those who complain that Austin's recent growth trend has stolen the city's identity, Ruta Maya may be the spot to soak up some native vibes, particularly when Austin's local poets show up.

Best Poet

Whether the lash of her Tejana tongue is solo or spread atop the jazzy riffs of her groovy accompaniment, McNada, Gomez is a modern bard with attitude.

Best Theatre Actor

His lounge act and a show-stealing turn as Ruthless' incontestable diva prove Joe York is no drag. Rather, he is dazzling, charismatic, and one of our most prized performers.

Best Theatre Company

After decades of dependable theatre, this company can still steal the show.

Topfer Theatre at Zach
202 S. Lamar
512/476-0541
www.zachtheatre.org

Best Theatre Space

At once nostalgic and novel, the Paramount makes sure everyone rides first class, with wine and beer to boot.

Paramount Theatre
713 Congress
512/472-5470
www.austintheatre.org

photo by John Anderson

 
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