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About Us

Houston Arts Alliance (HAA) is the local nonprofit arts and culture agency that enhances the city’s quality of life through advancing and investing in the arts and diverse cultural programming. The work of HAA encourages Houston’s development and shapes its global reputation by fostering tourism and supporting and promoting the city’s creative economy.

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Public Art

Creating public spaces for civic and cultural use requires artists, designers, architects, and the community to collaborate. By actively fostering these partnerships, both public and private, HAA’s Civic Art + Design program initiates, manages, and maintains public artworks throughout Houston. It serves a vital role as catalyst for change that generates a culturally relevant and rich environment for residents and visitors alike.

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Folklife + Civic Engagement

Houston Arts Alliance’s Folklife + Civic Engagement program identifies and honors the artistic and cultural traditions of the city’s tremendously diverse and various communities and works to address the needs of all residents through engagement, citizen-driven initiatives, and equitable community outcomes. The Folklife program has been in existence since 2010. The addition of Civic Engagement to its portfolio was enacted through an HAA bylaws change in 2016.

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Grants are a fundamental means of promoting excellence in the creative sector. On behalf of the City of Houston, HAA awards approximately 225 grants annually to nonprofit arts and cultural organizations and individual artists through a competitive grant allocation process.

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Capacity Building

Houston Arts Alliance provides voice and leadership through its support of arts organizations and individual artists with programs and services that help build and foster a vibrant and creative community—these programs and services help to ensure that the arts professionals’ creative contributions remain a vital part of community life across Houston and the region.

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Houston Arts Alliance continues to play an important role in arts and culture research projects, initiating and participating in studies that demonstrate the far-reaching impact of arts and culture on our economy and quality of life.

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Get Involved

Looking for a way to lend a hand? Investing in the arts and culture is an investment in the quality of life for all Houstonians. Join Houston Arts Alliance as a donor, member or volunteer!

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Houston Arts Alliance utilizes different vehicles to communicate with it diverse audiences, ranging from the city’s arts and culture community to residents to tourists. Find out more about HAA’s electronic newsletters and connect with us through social media. Our online Press Room provides resources for members of the media.

Thursday, September 28, 2017
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Tuesday, February 20, 2018
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Wednesday, February 21, 2018
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Tuesday, March 27, 2018
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An Intimate Evening With Audra McDonald

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Thursday, April 6, 2017, 7 p.m.
Hotel ZaZa, 5701 Main Street


On Thursday, April 6, 2017, Houston Arts Alliance (HAA) welcomed six-time Tony Award winning actress and singer, Audra McDonald to its annual fundraising dinner, An Intimate Evening with…. McDonald, who currently plays Madame Guaderobe in the live-action remake of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, captivated the audience with her performance, which included a number of her personal favorites, including two lullabies, several songs from the Great American Songbook, and an introduction to the work of several of her favorite new songwriters and composers.

Led by Chairman of the Board, Philamena Baird, Event-Co Chairs Regina Garcia and George Lancaster and Honorary Chairs Phoebe and Bobby Tudor, this special evening honored Minnettte Boesel, former assistant for Cultural Affairs to Mayors Annise Parker and Bill White, and the late Stephanie Smither, a self-taught art collector, philanthropist and Smither Park namesake.

Funds raised during An Intimate Evening with Audra McDonald will be used to support Capacity Building services which provide programming to help arts organizations and individual artists be effective stewards of their resources. Capacity Building focuses on strengthening the business acumen of the creative sector and helping organizations expand their audiences. Services range from professional development workshops for the creative sector to database management, customer relationship management and crowdsource funding. 


Chairman of the Board

Philamena Baird


Honorary Chairs

Pheobe and Bobby Tudor


Event Co-Chairs

Regina Garcia 

George Lancaster 



Minnette Boesel

Stephanie Smither


Audra McDonald is unparalleled in the breadth and versatility of her artistry, as both a singer and an actress. In 2014, she made Broadway history and became the Tony Awards’ most decorated performer when she won her sixth award for her portrayal of Billie Holiday in Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill. Her first award was for her role as Carrie Pipperidge in the 1994 revival of Carousel. In addition to setting the record for most competitive wins by an actor, McDonald is the first and only person to receive awards in all four acting categories. McDonald was last seen on Broadway as Lottie Gee in Shuffle Along, Or, The Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed.


In addition to her Tony Awards, McDonald also has two Grammy Awards, an Emmy Award, and a long list of other accolades including five Drama Desk Awards, five Outer Critics Circle Awards, four NAACP Image Awards nominations, an Ovation Award, a Theatre World Award, the Drama League’s 2000 Distinguished Achievement in Musical Theatre and 2012 Distinguished Performance Award, and the 2015 Rockefeller Award for Creativity. In 2015, she was named to the Time 100—Time magazine’s list of the most influential people in the world.


Gifted with a luminous soprano and an incomparable gift for dramatic truth telling, she is equally at home on Broadway and opera stages. McDonald made her opera debut in 2006 at Houston Grand Opera! 

July 16
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