THE DOWNTOWN THEATER District is about to experience a transformation, with the long anticipated grand opening of Lynn Wyatt Square for the Performing Arts (LWS). Located within a “square” created by Texas avenue and Capitol, Smith and Louisiana streets, and flanked north and east by the Alley Theatre and Jones Hall, the beautifully designed, $26.5 million green space has it all: a flexible performance lawn for concerts, a cascading fountain, one-of-a-kind rockers and tête-à-tête seating, and plenty of accessible entries to its promenades and gardens. Wyatt made a $10 million gift toward the project, and Downtown Redevelopment Authority, Houston First, and numerous foundations funded the rest. LWS will be fully open to the public beginning Friday, Sept. 22.
“I love Houston, I love the arts, and I absolutely love this beautiful square,” said Wyatt, now 88 years young, in a statement. “I look forward to all the good this Square will do now and in the future for the people of this dynamic city and our world-class performing arts community.”
As a longtime supporter of such institutions as Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Houston Grand Opera, Houston Ballet, and Alley Theatre, the range and impact of Wyatt’s philanthropic endeavors, not to mention her unerring sense of style, cannot be overstated. Wyatt was featured on the cover of Houston CityBook’s premiere Leaders and Legends issue and in the Spring 2023 debut of our Cool 100. (In October 2020, we enjoyed a rare opportunity to meet and write about her beloved husband Oscar Wyatt.)
“This is a gamechanger for downtown Houston,” said Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner in a statement. “I am so excited to see this square come to life as a greener public space that not only connects the arts, but more importantly connects people to the arts.”
Free, family-friendly programming for LWS’s opening weekend includes lawn games, live entertainment, and a special interactive experience called “Bees” created by Polyglot Theatre, a world renowned contemporary children’s theater company based in Australia.
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