Like a rift in the space-time continuum, the brand-new Venetian Cinemas transports its clientele simultaneously to the past and the future. With architecture that pays homage to the ancient Venetians and Romans, the façade beckons passersby with towering cast-stone columns, enticing them through the doors and into the lobby, where vaulted hallways and more columns with Corinthian capitals sweep them along to the auditoriums. Four screens engross the eyes and ears while more than 800 stuffed leather seats cradle the body, and cuisine from the cinemas' restaurant delights the remaining senses for a complete entertainment experience akin to the famous Roman-gladiator chili cook-offs.
In front of the viewers, granite countertops hold a service button that, when pressed, beckons servers to take orders from the menu. Substantial gourmet offerings such as pizza topped with fresh mozzarella or tacos dressed with green-chili-roasted pork top plates and ready stomachs for belly laughs. While still in their seats, their eyes drawn to the on-screen drama on the wall-to-wall curved screens and their ears bathed in the waves of a 40,000-watt sound system, viewers can order cocktails, microbrews, or margaritas from a fully stocked bar. After the movie, staff members clean up, letting patrons leave their glasses, plates, and ketchup-scrawled plot summaries behind.
Did you know that, on average, 88% of the seats in a movie theater remain empty during a showing? According to the New York Times, this phenomenon really surprised Sean Wycliffe a few years back when he went to see the Oscar-winning film The King's Speech and shared the theater with only two other audience members. With all the focus on online video services, Sean realized movie theaters were being overlooked, and came up with a concept that could help movie houses fill their empty seats.
His brainchild became Dealflicks, a website that offers customers discounted tickets (sometimes with popcorn or soda) for same-day showings. Customers shop a selection of deals, each of which is specific to a particular film, theater, and showtime, and upon purchase, receive an email voucher they present at the theater's ticket counter. Dealflicks is partnered with theaters around the country, particularly independent and neighborhood venues, such as the treehouse of the enterprising kid down the street.
Donna Park's passion for performance preceded the bulk of her vocabulary: at 4 years old, she got into the habit of correcting the dance steps of the other children in her recitals. Her unquenchable thirst for performance led her through a theater minor in college to the discovery of film, then onto a career as a director, writer, and producer of television specials and commercials. Now, calling upon contacts developed during her 20-year career, she brings working professionals to Texas Creative Arts Academy to share their hard-earned wisdom with the young.
The Academy's year-round programs gather students aged 4 to 18 to celebrate their interest in dance, art, film, and melodrama. Aspiring artisans learn the basics of canvas and garment craftsmanship in Hi Ho! Van Gogh! and Design Fashion Diva! camps. Teachers unlock high notes in students' vocal ranges with voice lessons and train the eyes of future cameramen in video-production classes. Piano and guitar instruction empowers kids to realize a future where spontaneous public musical numbers don’t just happen on stage.
When players take a tumble or dive at Gatsplat, they?re cushioned by the same stuff that protects NFL players from harm. Both of Gatsplat?s indoor paintball fields are padded by NFL-quality Astroturf, but these are not the only safety measures the staff puts in place. Professional referees keep watch over games, as opposed to off-duty clowns looking to score some free face paint. Players are also divided by experience level, and standard 68-caliber markers can be swapped out for lighter-weight 50-caliber markers so kids as young as six can play.
The 26,000-square-foot climate-controlled facility also has a comfortable viewing area with wide windows for non-players to keep an eye on the action. Free wireless internet access and a wide-screen television keep them occupied, and between games, players and non-players can discuss strategy or compare paint splatters as they snack at picnic tables.
Within Studio Movie Grill's expansive auditoriums, towering screens enrapture audiences seated in plush leather recliners and at dining tables. As the familiar celebrity faces in blockbuster and cult-classic features deliver Oscar-worthy lines, sneakily quiet waiters deliver meals from a full menu decorated with more than 100 items, including gourmet pizzas, smoked ribs, and cocktails infused with the spirit of Daniel Day-Lewis. Bartenders at the lobby bar dole out glasses of premium liquors, wines, and draft beer before and after shows.
A nonprofit corporation, Texas Family Musicals helps launch the careers of talented young stars to the benefit of local family audiences. America the Beautiful is an uplifting spectacle that celebrates the excitement and wonders that make contemporary America great. This musical journey is a positive reinforcement of all things patriotic set to the sounds of catchy tunes and choreographed dancing. Cats holds the record for longest-running Broadway show with 7,485 shows in over 18 years. Enjoy the local adaptation of T. S. Eliot's classic collection of poems where eclectic cat costumes blend with sincere storytelling to entertain the human audience. The final performance option is The Sunshine Boys, which explores the 40-plus-year dichotic relationship between Al Lewis and Willy Clark, a vaudevillian team who enjoy professional success on stage but loathe each other off stage.