It's Culture / Watch This

Take a World Trip in Downtown Houston

Around The World In 80 Days

The Alley Theatre
615 Texas Ave
Show runs until April 3

“The unforeseen does not exist.” — Phileas Fogg

The newly renovated Alley Theatre is back in full swing with “Around the World in 80 Days,” a fast-paced, smart comedy based on the book by Jules Vernes, published in 1873. The plot follows Mr. Fogg and his valet, Passepartout, as they try to make it around the world in 80 days enduring mishap after mishap and many delays from the detective who is trying to arrest Fogg for a robbery he supposedly committed. Believe it or not, this was “Science Fiction.” By the way, about 15 years after the book published, journalist Nellie Bly made the journey in just 72 days. Mic drop.

Nowadays, a world trip is impressive, but definitely takes way less than 80 days. That being said, the typical travel antics cracked me up. Honestly, the entire show cracked me up. Five actors and two musicians make the entire play happen. The props and the set is minimal, so much of the story is told by the actors themselves. They are all stupid talented, and our small Sunday crowd gave a standing ovation and hoot and hollered at the end.

Now that I (hopefully) convinced you, here are 5 things to know before you go:

  1. Get there early and bring cash to park. Downtown can be kind of hit or miss with traffic. There was a huge festival right next door to the Alley when we went, and we could have been stuck in a traffic nightmare. The best parking garage is located on the same city block as the Alley (it’s directly behind it). It’s $10 cash only. There’s also parking underground for the whole arts district in that area, and I think it’s only $10 ($15 tops) and they do take card. If you’re running late, valet is $18.
  2. Have a drink on the patio pre-show. Like I said, there was a festival right by the Alley, so we listened to the movie and hung out as the sunset. Such a nice downtown skyline to check out too.
  3. There’s no such thing as a bad seat in the Alley. First of all, quite literally, the seats are nice. Part of the renovation included new cushy chairs. All the seats are pretty good honestly. We were kind of in the back off to one side and I saw and heard everything very well. The musicians were amazing, and the actors enter from all sides and face different ways, so really it’s all the same from wherever you’re sitting.
  4. Bring a sweater. The Alley is a cliche cold theatre, so come prepared. There’s nothing worse than shivering your way around the world.
  5. Check out the cheap seats. Our tickets were, like, $19 bucks for the Sunday evening show, so that’s a bargain. A movie these days is basically that.

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