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Galveston is a premier destination for experiencing creativity up close. There’s no shortage of arts and culture to take in, with something for lovers of theater, live music, and other performing arts.
Seek out your next artistic venture while in town, pop into a unique venue, or spend an evening at "The Official Opera House of Texas."
pictured: The Grand 1894 Opera House.
Offering entertainment since 1894, The Grand Opera House, recognized as “The Official Opera House of Texas”, is one of the few remaining theatres of its era in the state. Situated in historic Downtown Galveston on Postoffice Street, it hosts a top calendar of events year-long, including concerts, plays, and ballet. Willie Nelson, Liza Minnelli, and other legends have graced its stage, and even the local younger set: ages 7–16 can sign up for a week-long summer camp that culminates in a musical performance on The Grand’s famous stage.
Experience quality classical music on the island with The Galveston Symphony Orchestra. With a strong commitment to artistic excellence and community involvement at the heart of each performance, highly-skilled amateur and professional musicians, and internationally-famous soloists, deliver exciting live concerts with a repertoire ranging from Baroque to contemporary. The upcoming season of symphonic music takes place at Moody Mansion and The Grand 1894 Opera House.
Island ETC (East-End Theatre Company) is Galveston’s only professional theatre company, staging five to six productions each year. Enjoy live productions of repertory plays and musicals, and if you get the acting bug, sign up for “Students on Stage” classes (for 3rd-12th graders). Classes end with a public performance of a show at the end of the session at the landmark theatre, located across from the historic Tremont Hotel on Mechanic Street.
The official dance company of Galveston, Galveston Ballet has offered dance instruction with a classical ballet focus since 1986. The company produces mixed repertory ballet performances and full classical story ballets at The Grand 1894 Opera House, and you can find Galveston Ballet dancers volunteer and perform at various community events. A variety of classes and workshops are also offered for ages 3 to adult at their Market Street studio.
Learn more about Galveston’s incredible history at the family-friendly Pier 21 Theatre at 21st Street and Harborside Drive. Three documentaries — Galveston: Gateway on the Gulf, The Pirate Island of Jean Laffite and The Great Storm, the story of the 1900 storm that ravaged the island — are shown daily. Chronicling the storm (the deadliest natural disaster in the history of the United States) that ravaged the island, the film has been upgraded from its original 35mm format to a widescreen, high-definition format.