The Alley Theatre, founded in 1947 by pioneering educator Nina Vance, is a professional resident theatre company. Recipient of the 1996 Special Tony Award, the Alley performs year-round in its two-theatre complex at home in downtown Houston, and has toured 40 American cities and abroad. Nine towers and open-air terraces give the Alley Theatre a castle-like quality. Inside, a beautiful staircase spirals from the entrance vestibule to the second-floor lobby. The theatre includes two stages: the Hubbard Stage and the Neuhaus Arena Stage, seating 824 and 296 respectively.