The Hedgehog is sorry to report great damage to Houston’s Wortham Theater Center due to the terrible force of Hurricane Harvey. Wortham is the home for the Houston Grand Opera and the Houston Ballet. The Hedgehog reported on the many contemporary dance events of the Dance Salad Festival held there in March, 2016.
More than a month after the Hurricane, the stage floor was still damp. Storage spaces below the orchestra pit had housed costumes, shoes, and other stage properties. These items, ruined by water, added toxicity and bad odors to the space as they mouldered away . Dressing rooms for the corps de ballet were in ruins with broken mirrors and furniture as well as ruined floors. Dyes used for costumes also added to the dangerous chemical soup. Air conditioning, electrical and mechanical systems were wrecked.
Nevertheless, the show went on: the Ballet opened in the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts, September, and the Opera had its season opening in the George R. Brown Convention Center, October. Predictions for the return to the Wortham Theater Center range from May, 2018, to October, 2018. Living in San Francisco where rebuilding and repairs to venues including the Opera House, Veterans Building, and City Hall from the 1984 earthquake continued for years, the Hedgehog wishes Houston a speedier recovery.