713 Congress, Austin, 78701, 512/472-5470
photo by John Anderson
The grande dame of Austin theatres celebrated her centennial in 2015 with the replacement and illumination of a re-creation of the original light blade, a fitting beacon for this opulent but unpretentious soul of Austin arts. Somewhere in the vicinity of 10,000 artists have performed here, including Harry Houdini spitting needles in 1916, and the stage now hosts some 250 performances annually. The palatial décor encases a surprisingly intimate 1,300-seat venue where top hats long ago gave way to jeans as appropriate attire. Fancy film premieres, musical concerts that include annual traditions like the Kelly Willis/Bruce Robison Christmas concert, comics, literary giants, theatre for youth, and the beloved summer classic film series comprise the programming that sooner or later welcomes all of Austin into this gilded and groovy treasure.
This crowd-pleasing event, always packed to the rafters, celebrates the renaissance of burlesque, cabaret, and vaudeville-style entertainment, here unleashing titillating talents from around the country, with NYC's Jo "Boobs" Weldon and San Francisco's Alotta Boutte and Austin's own Coco Lectric as featured performers. April 27-28. Fri.-Sat., 8pm. $35-70.
Can you believe it's been 11 years since this pasties-filled fest began? Alotta Boutté (a founding member of Harlem Shake), Jo Weldon (King of Boylesque 2014), and Kalani Kokonuts (showgirl of burlesque) will perform during this award ceremony. Sat., April 28, 7-11pm. $35-70.