From Our Editors
Jesse H. Jones, a businessman, philanthropist, and member of President Franklin D. Roosevelt's cabinet, knew what he wanted for Houston: more art. Before his death in 1956, Jones set in motion a plan to create a new cultural center for the city, and under the leadership of his nephew John, the Jones Hall became a reality. To keep the ushers from getting lonely on nights when the Houston Symphony and Houston Grand Opera weren't playing the younger Jones created the Society for Performing Arts.
The SPA brought Carol Channing to Jones Hall in its first season and later grew to be the largest such arts organization in the southwest. It's even expanded from its majestic flagship venue to fill another pair of theaters a couple of blocks away.