Monday, October 30, 2017

Bernstein Centennial Celebration Coming to Heinz Hall

PNC Pops
Bernstein Centennial Celebration
Friday, November 10 | 8:00 p.m.
Saturday, November 11 | 8:00 p.m.
Sunday, November 12 | 2:30 p.m.



*If discount is not automatically applied when clicking above link, please enter promo code: PSOTWENTY. In this case, discount will be applied when tickets are added to the cart.
Offer is not valid on previously purchased tickets.

Francesco Lecce-Chong, conductor
Ana Victoria Luperi, clarinet
Zhan Shu, violin
Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra Student Chorale, directed by Christine Hestwood
Hugh Panaro, vocals
Alli Mauzey, vocals

Join the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra as they celebrate the 100th anniversary of the birth of one of the most iconic composers, conductors and musicians of all time – Leonard Bernstein. From film to stage, his music has made a lasting mark. Experience your favorite tunes from Bernstein's four major stage works - West Side Story, Candide, On the Town and Wonderful Town. Joining the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra are two incredibly talented vocalists, straight from the Broadway stage:

Alli Mauzey has a big voice – and some serious stage credits. She last appeared to critical acclaim on Broadway as Glinda in Wicked, one of the most successful Broadway productions in history. She’s also appeared on Broadway in Cry-Baby and Hairspray, as well as roles in off-Broadway productions and national touring companies.

Hugh Panaro is a prolific Broadway actor currently starring in the title role of the critically-acclaimed production of Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street. Panaro, who has scored some of the biggest roles on the Great White Way and across the pond, is best known for his portrayals of the Phantom in The Phantom of the Opera as well as Marius in the original Broadway production of Les Misérables. He also made his West End debut in the original company of Harold Prince’s Show Boat, a role he previously played in the Broadway and Toronto productions.

A Pops Talk will be held on stage following the Friday performance only. Pops Talks are free and open to ticketholders.
VIDEOS: A preview of how Bernstein's Centennial is being celebrated around the world;
An excerpt of the PSO playing West Side Story in the 2015-16 season

FROM THE ARCHIVES| Listen to this 1987 recording of the PSO performing Bernstein's Symphonic Dances from West Side Story. Fun fact: This was performed at Edinburgh Festival in Scotland with conductor Michael Tilson Thomas. The PSO was the first American Orchestra to be designated Resident Orchestra at Edinburgh Festival.

READ|This is exactly how Leonard Bernstein changed everything in classical music

READ|The Power and Passion of Leonard Bernstein
"If a screenwriter working for Metro Goldwyn Meyer in the 1940s was asked to provide a character sketch of a great American classical musician (then almost a hypothetical entity), the result might have looked very much like Leonard Bernstein."

Students, faculty and staff have access to discounted tickets to Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra concerts! Student tickets start at $15 and faculty and staff tickets start at $20! Visit the Pittsburgh Symphony university page for more info, or call 412.392.4819. If your school is not listed, email the Group Sales department to have your school added.
*Pricing for special concerts varies. Certain restrictions apply.

 BRING YOUR GROUP OF 10 OR MORE & SAVE UP TO 25%! For more information: Call 412.392.4819 or send an email!

To purchase:
Visit the Heinz Hall Box Office
Call 412.392.4900
Or buy online at

Two Noteworthy Events Upcoming at the New Hazlett Theater

All Quiet on the Western Front
Presented by Prime Stage Theatre
November 3-12
By Erich Maria Remarque | Directed by Scott P. Calhoon
Adapted for the stage by Robin Kingsland

The US Premiere adaptation brings to life the poignant novel of World War I by Erich Maria Remarque. Paul Baumer, a student of 19, shares the lives, victories, and tragedies of the young soldiers who faced German soldiers in the trenches of the Western Front.

Produced by Jennifer Saunders LaRocco
November 13  |  8PM
Chrysalis is a snapshot of Jennifer Saunders LaRocco’s recent work. Join her, Baritone Brian Keith Johnson, and Pianist Raymond Blackwell on a journey through love, intrigue, and laughter.

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Bach Choir of Pittsburgh Presents WAR – A Reflection in Music

Outrage, Fear, Love, Loyalty, Anger, Anguish, Hatred, Heartbreak, Triumph, Hope!

On Saturday and Sunday, November 11th and 12th the Bach Choir of Pittsburgh presents WAR, the first of
three concerts of the 2017- 2018 season that will trace the human experience of conflict from WAR to HOPE and, finally, to PEACE.

The Hunt Armory will resonate with the power of 80 voices and orchestra proclaiming a shared response through music.
Central to the performance is Joseph Haydn’s beautiful and uplifting Mass in Time of War, one of the most popular of the fourteen Mass settings the composer wrote. Composed in 1796 as a
response to the effect of the Napoleonic Wars on Austria, the dramatic use of tympani, especially
in the Agnus Dei section, reflects the unsettled nature of life during war. For this reason, the
Mass is also known as ‘Paukenmesse’ or ‘Drum Mass’.

Framing this monumental work are two pieces by Mohammed Fairouz: Anything Can Happen (2011) depicting the anguish of the
September 11th attacks, performed partially in Arabic using ancient texts and poetry by Seamus Heaney, and The Second Coming (2015), based on the apocalyptic poem by W. B. Yeats. Deeply
moving and not to be missed!

Artistic Director Thomas W. Douglas says:
‘We are all touched by the turmoil and conflict in the world today, some more than others. We
felt we had to say something about war in the best way we know – by bringing these musical
responses to life.

The works we have chosen for our opening concert, WAR, reflect the range of
emotions that are as relevant today as in Haydn’s time, from the fear and anguish of conflict and
death to our enduring capacity for compassion and hope for a better day. Mass in Time of War
was Haydn’s response, building to a climax with the chorus, orchestra and timpani, and ending
with hope and yearning for peace. Fairouz sets ancient Arabic text and thought-provoking poetry
to music. Our response is to sing with our hearts.’

The Bach Choir is proud to offer free admission to Active-Duty Military, Veterans, and
First Responders (including Police Officers, Firefighters, Paramedics, and Emergency
Medical Technicians) In appreciation for their service. For free admission present
affiliation ID at the box office.

Mohammed Fairouz, born in 1985, is one of the most frequently performed, commissioned, and
recorded composers working today. Hailed by The New York Times as “an important new
artistic voice” and by BBC World News as “one of the most talented composers of his
WAR! A Reflection in Music press release page 2 of 2
generation,” his large-scale works engage major geopolitical and philosophical themes with
persuasive craft and a marked seriousness of purpose.

Fairouz’s cosmopolitan outlook reflects
his transatlantic upbringing and extensive travels. His catalog encompasses virtually every genre,
including opera, symphonies, vocal and choral settings, chamber and solo works.

Hunt Armory (also known as Pittsburgh Armory) is listed in the National Register of Historic
Places (1991) and is a City of Pittsburgh historic landmark (2014). Designed by Pittsburgh
architects W.G. Wilkins Co., the building was completed in 1916 and named after Spanish
American War hero, metallurgist, and industrialist Captain Alfred E. Hunt (1855-1899), best
known for founding the company that would eventually become Alcoa. The armory occupies an
entire city block and has a floor area of 1.84 acres.

Until the Pittsburgh Civic Arena was completed in 1961, the Hunt Armory was the largest
auditorium in Pittsburgh and was frequently the host for concerts and political events including:
Presidents Truman (1948), Eisenhower (1956), Evangelist Billy Graham (19520), and Led
Zepellin (1969).

The Urban Redevelopment Authority, which recently took ownership of the property, and the
Shadyside community are reviewing developer proposals to install: an urban beach with sand, a
pool, and palm trees; a skating rink; a multi-use sports facility; or a mixed-use facility with a
rink, a movie theater, and a restaurant.

Concert information:
Who: The Bach Choir of Pittsburgh
with the Academy Chamber Orchestra
Thomas W. Douglas, Artistic Director
What: Mass in Time of War
by Joseph Haydn
Anything Can Happen
The Second Coming
by Mohammed Fairouz

When: Saturday, November 11th @ 8:00pm
Sunday, November 12th @ 4:00pm

Where: Hunt Armory, 324 Emerson Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15206

Tickets are available in advance at or at 1-888-718-4253
And at the door on the day of performance.
Prices range from $12.00-$30.00
More info at

Kyle Abraham Returns to Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh native and MacArthur “genius” Kyle Abraham returns home to present a trio of work that draws inspiration from jazz and hip-hop to focus on racial injustice. Born into hip-hop culture in the late ‘70s and raised with an artistic upbringing including classical cello, piano, and the visual arts, his work approaches movement as a way to deeply delve into personal identity.

Friday, November 10
Saturday, November 11
August Wilson Center
980 Liberty Ave
Pittsburgh PA 15222

Box office phone:
Get Tickets Online:

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Spooky Sopranos Haunt Pittsburgh on Tuesday!

Rebecca Shorstein's appearances in Bon Appétit!, Macbeth, the Holiday Cabaret, Cinderella, Side by Side by Sondheim, Elixir of Love, and Trouble in Tahiti

Join Resonance Works Pittsburgh at Bar Marco next Tuesday, October 31 at 7:00 pm for the first event in its Resonance Chamber Series this season - and it's the spookiest yet!

Rebecca Shorstein and Monica Pasquini are one-upping their holiday cabaret from last year with witch-y selections from Wicked, Hocus Pocus, and more!  This will be Rebecca’s eighth appearance with ResWorks, and they’re only getting better: don’t miss it!

With a special food and drink menu from Bar Marco, and tickets at only $15, (all of which goes to the performing artists) who would want to spend their Halloween anywhere else?!  Costumes are optional.

The Spooky Sopranos Haunted Cabaret
When: Tuesday, Oct. 31 @ 7:00 pm
Where: The Union Hall, above Bar Marco*
Why: Music, food, drink, and spooky surprises
Tickets: $15

*Use rear entrance, not wheelchair accessible

Get Ready! "The Color Purple" is Coming to Pittsburgh's Benedum Center

A Scene from "The Color Purple" Cynthia Erivo and Josephina Kalukango Credit: Matthew Murphy 2016

The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust announces the Tony Award®-winning revival THE COLOR PURPLE is coming to the Benedum Center, 237 7th Street, Pittsburgh PA 15222, as part of the North American tour. The tour began October 7th in Schenectady, New York and will have its official opening on October 17 in Baltimore, Maryland. Performances at the Benedum begin Tuesday, November 14th and continue through Sunday, November 19th. This touring production is part of the 2017-18 PNC Broadway in Pittsburgh series, presented by the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust and Broadway Across America.

Cast members from the 2016 Broadway revival leading the current company include Adrianna Hicks (Aladdin, Sister Act - Germany) as Celie, Carla R. Stewart (Ghost – National Tour, Rent - Regional) as Shug Avery and Carrie Compere (Holler If You Hear Me, Shrek the Musical – National Tour) as Sofia.

They will be joined by Gavin Gregory (The Color Purple - Revival, The Gershwins’ Porgy & Bess) as Mister, N’Jameh Camara (X: Or, Betty Shabazz v. The Nation) as Nettie, J. Daughtry (The Color Purple - Revival, Beautiful: The Carole King Musical) as Harpo, along with Darnell Abraham, Amar Atkins, Kyle E. Baird, Angela Birchett, Jared Dixon, Erica Durham, Bianca Horn, Gabrielle Reid, C.E. Smith, Clyde Voce, Nyla Watson, J.D. Webster, Brit West, Nikisha Williams and Michael Wordly.

Based on the Alice Walker’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel and the Warner Bros. / Amblin Entertainment motion picture, THE COLOR PURPLE is adapted for the stage by the Tony Award® and Pulitzer Prize-winning Marsha Norman, with music and lyrics by Brenda Russell, Allee Willis and Stephen Bray. Tony Award®-winning director and scenic designer John Doyle (Sweeney Todd, Company) recreates his award-winning work for the national tour, alongside costumes by Ann Hould-Ward, lighting by Jane Cox, sound by Dan Moses Schreier and wig & hair design by Charles G. LaPointe.

The revival of THE COLOR PURPLE opened to great acclaim in summer 2013 at London’s Menier Chocolate Factory, followed by a Broadway bow on November 10, 2015 at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre. THE COLOR PURPLE went on to win two 2016 Tony Awards, including Best Revival of a Musical, two Drama Desk Awards, including Outstanding Revival of a Musical, the 2017 Grammy Award® for Best Musical Theater Album and a Daytime Emmy®. THE COLOR PURPLE played 483 performances on Broadway, closing on January 8, 2017.

The North American tour is produced by Scott Sanders Productions, Roy Furman, Troika Entertainment, David Babini, Tom Siracusa, Caiola Productions, James Fantaci, Ted Liebowitz, James L. Nederlander, Darren Bagert, Candy Spelling, Adam Zotovich, Eric Falkenstein/Morris Berchard, Just For Laughs Theatricals, Tanya Link Productions, Jam Theatricals, Independent Presents Network and Carol Fineman.

For more information, please visit

Cynthia Erivo and the Cast of "The Color Purple" Credit: Matthew Murphy 2016
Tickets for THE COLOR PURPLE at the Benedum Center currently start at $30* and are available at these Pittsburgh Cultural Trust official ticket sources:, by calling 412-456-4800 or in person at Theater Square Box Office, 655 Penn Avenue. *All ticket prices are subject to change. For information about the PNC Broadway in Pittsburgh subscription series, visit or call 412-456-1390. Tickets for groups of 10+ are available online at or call 412-471-6930.

Performances are Tuesday through Thursday evenings at 7:30 p.m., Friday evening at 8:00 p.m., Saturday at 2:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. and Sunday at 1:00 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.

In Pittsburgh, the following special event will take place alongside THE COLOR PURPLE:

Wednesday, November 15th, 2017: Know the Show Before You Go, hosted by Christopher Rawson of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and KDKA, is a free pre-show talk for all PNC Broadway in Pittsburgh patrons. The talk begins one hour before show time at the Trust Arts Education Center, 805-807 Liberty Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15222. For more information and to register, visit:

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Talk to Focus on Gettysburg Natives Who Fought for the South

Gettysburg Rebels : Five Native Sons Who Came Home to Fight as Confederate Soldiers
The gripping true story of five young men who grew up in Gettysburg, moved south to Virginia in the 1850s, joined the Confederate army - and returned "home" as foreign invaders for the great battle in July 1863.

Drawing on rarely-seen documents and family histories, as well as military service records and contemporary accounts, Tom McMillan delves into the backgrounds of Wesley Culp, Henry Wentz and the three Hoffman brothers in a riveting tale of Civil War drama and intrigue.

Tom McMillan is also the author of Flight 93: The Story, The Aftermath and The Legacy of American Courage on 9/11. He serves on the board of trustees of Pittsburgh's Heinz History Center, the board of directors of the Friends of Flight 93, the marketing committee of the Gettysburg Foundation and as a tour guide at the Espy Civil War room at the Andrew Carnegie Library in Carnegie, PA.

Tom McMillan Credit" Courtesy Photo
He has spent a lifetime in communications as a newspaper sports writer for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, among others, as a radio talk show host, and, for the past 21 years as VP of Communications for the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Following the lecture, you are invited to stay for the dedication of the Andrew Carnegie Free Library & Music Hall's flagpole at 2:30 pm.

Registration not Required. Free and open to the public. 2nd Saturday Lecture Series made possible by the Massey Charitable Trust.



Book & Lyrics by Kevin Hammonds
Music by Kristin Bair
Directed & Choreographed by Marlo Hunter
Music Direction by Douglas Levine
Principals must be available January 2 – April 15, 2018

Benedum Center Rehearsal Studios
719 Liberty Avenue, 3rd Floor
Pittsburgh, PA 15222

Saturday, November 11, 2017
Audition Appointments: 10am – 2pm, 3pm – 6pm
Callbacks: Sunday, November 12, 2017, Time TBD.

A company of five actors will play all of the roles in UP AND AWAY. See below for casting breakdown. Actors of all ethnicities are encouraged to submit for all roles. Please note that we are looking for deeply collaborative and generous actors who are not afraid of making bold, unique choices.
All parts will be on an AEA SPT Contract
EMC and non-union members who meet the requested role requirements may audition.
No housing, transportation or per diem for out-of-area performers

Reads 25 – 30
Vocal Range: Tenor with a strong high singing voice. Range A2-A4
A kind, intelligent, yet fearful man who is happy to never stray from the farm. Content with life as it is, Jerry is distrustful of outside forces, and inherently nervous, but will stop at nothing to protect the ones he loves.

Reads 20 – 25
Vocal range: Tenor with rockabilly high notes. Range A2-G4
An all-American, strapping farm boy, with broad shoulders and good looks. Confident that he is meant for great things, his slightly dim wit and his childlike enthusiasm don't always serve him well, but his handsome face and clueless charm don’t hurt.

Reads 20 – 25
Vocal Range: Spunky leading lady soprano with belt to F5. Range A3-A5
A feisty, ambitious, but incredibly indecisive and easily distracted young woman who will do anything to be become a news reporter - even swear off men until she attains the success she thinks she deserves.

PLAYER 1 (Male)
Reads 35 – 40
Vocal Range: Bari-tenor with strong mid-range and credible female falsetto. Range A2-G4
Plays Ronak Fairchild, an eccentric billionaire and philanthropist who seems just outrageous and mysterious enough to be your biggest ally or the most diabolical villain. Also plays many other smaller roles in the show. Must be an expert character actor with a wide range of voices and tricks up his sleeve.

PLAYER 2 (Female)
Reads 40 – 50
Vocal Range: Alto comfortable with character singing and tight vocal harmonies. Range A3-E5
Plays Mother Jessup, a very hard, unemotional, no-nonsense woman, born of the earth who would do anything to protect her boys. Also plays many other smaller roles in the show. Must be an expert character actor with a wide range of voices and tricks up her sleeve.

Auditions on Saturday, November 11 will consist of individual appointments.
Please bring/prepare:
A headshot and resume, stapled together
A completed Audition Application
32 bars of an up-tempo comedic song (with sheet music)
Character Side(s) for your preferred role(s), available HERE

Please email to request an audition appointment.
Please provide:
Your full name
Your preferred phone number
The role(s) for which you will read
Your requested audition time (please provide availability in at least 30-minute increments). Auditions will be held from 10am – 2pm and 3 – 6pm on Saturday, November 11

Be prepared to clear your schedule on Sunday, November 12 for callbacks.
You will receive a response within 2 business days. Please check your email for your confirmed audition time.

Red Masquers Present "The Busy Body"

The Busy Body hits the stage at Duquesne University! The play will be offered as a part of The National Conference of 18th Century Women Writers! The Busy Body by Susanna Centlivre is directed by John E. Lane, Jr., who directed Death of a Salesman (starring: Mark Yochum, Nancy Bach Love, Jay Keenan, and Curt Wootton – The Pittsburgh Dad) during the Red Masquers’ inaugural performance of the Genesius Theater.

The Busy Body (starring: Jay Keenan and Nancy Bach Love) is a fast-paced comedy with a good measure of wit. A laugh-out-loud, one-of-a-kind, social satire about people who can’t mind their own business from one of the great female playwrights of the 18th century!

The production runs November 2 through November 12. Thursday through Saturday performances begin at 8 PM. Sunday matinees are at 2 pm. All shows will be performed at the Genesius Theater at Duquesne University, adjacent to the Mary Pappert School of Music. Ticket prices are $16.50 for general admission, $11.50 for senior citizens, and $6.50 for students. Group rates are also available. Tickets can be purchased at the door or online at

Washington-Based Comedy Troupe to Tickle Byham Audience

Cast of The Capitol Steps Credit: Courtesy Photo

The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust announces the return of The Capitol Steps, a Washington DC-based comedy troupe that began as a group of Senate Staffers. The Capitol Steps will present a show based on songs from their current album Orange is the New Barack on Sunday, November 5 at 7:30 p.m. at the Byham Theater, 101 Sixth St., Pittsburgh, PA 15222. This event is a part of the Cohen & Grigsby Trust Presents series.

The Capitol Steps have elevated political satire to an art form. Before The Daily Show, Full Frontal, and The Colbert Report, this Washington, DC-based comedy troupe gave audiences laugh cramps with their bipartisan lampooning. The Capitol Steps began in 1981 as a group of Senate staffers who set out to satirize their employers and haven’t let up since. If you’ve been keeping up with the news, you know there’s no shortage of material. The troupe is coming back to Pittsburgh with a new show of musical and political comedy. It doesn’t matter if you’re a Republican or Democrat, a snowflake or a deplorable: neither side is safe from the group that puts the “MOCK” in Democracy!

Most cast members have worked on Capitol Hill; some for Democrats, some for Republicans, and others for politicians who firmly straddle the fence. Taken together, the performers have worked in a total of eighteen Congressional offices and represent 62 years of collective House and Senate staff experience. Since they began, The Capitol Steps have recorded over 35 albums, including their latest, Orange Is the New Barack. They’ve been featured on NBC, CBS, ABC, and PBS, and can be heard twice a year on National Public Radio stations nationwide during their Politics Takes a Holiday radio specials.

Tickets start at $35 and are available from the following official Pittsburgh Cultural Trust ticket sources: online at, by calling 412-456-6666, or in person at Theater Square Box Office, 655 Penn Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15222. Group discounts for 10 + tickets are available at or by calling 412-471-6930.

For more information, visit

To view video clips of The Capitol Steps, visit:


Rendering of PICT’s new performance space at WQED’s Fred Rogers Studio, by Jonmichael Bohach.

PICT’s main stage season will open with William Shakespeare’s ROMEO AND JULIET on October 21st, 2017 at WQED’s Fred Rogers Studio in Oakland; the very studio that hosted the production of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood from 1968 to 2001.  The play will be directed by PICT Classic Theatre Artistic and Executive Director and will feature Adrianne Knapp as Juliet, Dylan Meyers as Romeo, and 2015 Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Performer of the Year James FitzGerald as Friar Laurence.

Director Alan Stanford will be setting the production within the “Little Italy” section of New York City, circa 1930.  “Of all the plays of Shakespeare, ROMEO AND JULIET is the most Italian,” says Stanford.  “Not only for the romance but for the feud that blights it. This is not just a story of love, this is a story of vendetta. Of a feud between families that is so old that no-one can even remember its cause. A feud that has caused death in the past and will cause death even now. And this is not just a piece of history. Even today, such interfamily hatred can destroy the lives of the young and innocent.”

Headshot, Dylan Meyers (Romeo) Credit" PICT Theatre

Scenic Designer Johnmichael Bohach will reflect Stanford’s vision in the construction of the production’s set, designed specifically for the unique space within the Fred Rogers Studio.  “[Stanford] and I decided to set the play in a 1930's Italian neighborhood of New York City,” says Bohach.  “We are gesturing towards this environment with a collage of textures and colors which you might find in such a neighborhood; panels of brick and brownstone intermix with other architectural features hanging above a concrete piazza along with the suggestion of an elevated train overhead. High metal arches and sweeping staircases give our 'fair Verona' an urban modernity with a Renaissance feel."

PICT’s ROMEO AND JULIET will run from October 21st, 2017 through November 4th, 2017, with a preview performance on Friday, October 20th.  Evening performances will begin at 7:30pm, and matinees will begin at 2:00pm.

PICT Classic Theatre 2017-2018 Season Subscriptions are available and include ROMEO AND JULIET, IN THE COMPANY OF OSCAR WILDE (December 6th through December 10th, 2017), and JANE EYRE (April 5th through 28th, 2018).  Subscriptions are $99, with single adult tickets available at $39.  Season specials, THE TRIAL OF OSCAR WILDE, and OSCAR WILDE FAIRY TALES are priced separately.  Tickets and season subscriptions are available at or by calling the PICT Ticket Office at 412-561-6000.

Headshot, Adrianne Knapp (Juliet) Credit: PICT Theatre
About PICT Classic Theatre
PICT Classic Theatre is committed to the creation of high-quality, professional thought-provoking theatre of substance.  PICT accomplishes its mission by investing in and promoting the greater Pittsburgh community.  PICT is the only professional company within the Pittsburgh region dedicated solely to presenting classics and the “modern” classics of Irish and world theater.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Legacy - 70 Years of Jazz at North Texas College of Music

 Celebrating 70 years of jazz at North Texas, the North Texas Jazz record label has released special compilation albums to honor this milestone.

Legacy—Neil Slater at North Texas is the newest release by the North Texas Jazz record label at the University of North Texas College of Music. The 4-CD boxed set contains the complete recordings of all compositions and arrangements by Grammy-nominated composer Neil Slater written for and recorded by the UNT One O'Clock Lab Band, plus a Grammy-nominated tribute piece composed by Rich DeRosa, 38 tracks in all.

A 168-page book is included as part of the boxed set, featuring hundreds of photos and notes by band members, colleagues and friends. This landmark historical compilation honors the legacy of Neil Slater, the longest-tenured director of the world-renown One O'Clock Lab Band.

“This boxed set is the most significant and ambitious CD release in the history of the jazz program at North Texas, and that is saying a lot, considering the magnitude of the North Texas Jazz record catalog and the accolades the One O’Clock Lab Band has earned over five decades of critically acclaimed recordings,” said Craig Marshall, lab band manager and producer.

It includes the Grammy-nominated compositions “Neil,” by Rich DeRosa, for whom Slater was a mentor, and “Values” a commissioned work Slater composed to celebrate UNT’s 100th anniversary.

Legacy is currently submitted for Grammy consideration in the historical album category.

Neil Slater at North Texas
Other Seasons
Partly Cloudy
No Promises
Common Ground
Sky Window

DISC 2: The 1990s
Slow Heat
My Foolish Heart
Lead On, O King Eternal

DISC 3: The 2000s
Call Waiting
Side Effects
Separately Together

DISC 4: A New Era
Another Other
Time Sensitive
Not Yet
Special Interests
3rd & 55th
Will or Would?

Neil Slater Credit: UNT

What I learned most from Neil as a member of the One
O’Clock Lab Band was how to act and perform as a
professional musician. Neil never looked at the One
O’Clock as a student ensemble. He instead viewed it as
a world-class professional jazz ensemble that was making
its own unique contribution to the big band repertoire.
He didn’t coddle students and he never minced his
words. He would tell you exactly what he thought. I
came to appreciate his approach more and more as I
realized that this was how things were in the professional
world, too. It was always inspiring to me that Neil was not
just the director of the One O’Clock but also a great
composer and jazz pianist as well.
Dave Pietro

Listening to this recording recently, for the first time in
many years, actually brought tears to my eyes. The
maturity of the playing, the depth of the writing, the
confidence and personality of the soloists—it was
remarkable to hear this band fully realizing such
challenging music so completely. What a thrill! And the
ensemble playing! Neil’s ability to get the most out of a
band would be hard to overstate. This track is a true
testament to his leadership and vision.
Jeff Antoniuk

Neil Slater brought a “New York” intensity to Denton. His
goal was to give the students a glimpse of what the
industry standard was and how prepared one needed
to be to succeed in a competitive field. He wanted to
be on the cutting edge of big band writing, having a
visionary concept for the program. The competition for
placements in the Lab Bands was unlike any other
program in the country, yet in the One O’Clock there
was a very strong sense of camaraderie and pride.
Precision and excellence are the hallmarks of the
program and Neil upheld those benchmarks until his
Tim Ishii

Friday, October 20, 2017

Six Reasons Dracula Will Give You Goosebumps

PBT's 2011 Production of Dracula Credit: Rich Sofranko

Dracula kicks off Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre’s 2017-2018 Season with a darkly beautiful ballet perfect for Halloween weekend. Here are the top six reasons it will give you goosebumps.

PBT's 2011 Production of Dracula Credit: Rich Sofranko
1. The ballet is adapted from Bram Stoker’s 1897 gothic novel – the granddaddy of all vampire dramas.
The ballet tells a dark, yet juicy love story. Dissatisfied with his undead brides, Dracula fixates on Svetlana, a young woman who’s head over heels for a mortal man, to satiate his thirst for fresh blood. His obsession traps Svetlana and her new fiancé Frederick, in a dangerous love triangle.

Tales of vampire-like creatures date back to ancient Rome, Greece and Egypt, but today’s depiction emerged during the 1700s in Eastern Europe: evil spirits that lurked in graveyards, entering dead bodies and awakening them to an “undead” state. Along with attempts to explain the unexplainable, vampirism seems to find root in humans’ fear of dying and the desire to live forever. Although vampire lore has existed for centuries, the image Stoker created has become the standard in pop culture and artistic interpretations around the world.

PBT's 2011 Production of Dracula Credit: Rich Sofranko
2. Like bats, these vampires take flight.
The choreography includes a spooky levitation scene for Svetlana and eerie flying sequences for Dracula and a few of his leading ladies. For the aerial scenes, choreographer Ben Stevenson recruited Foy Inventerprises (also know as Flying by Foy), the same experts who’ve given wings to film, Broadway and music stars, including Lady Gaga, Beyoncé and Taylor Swift.

PBT's 2011 Production of Dracula Credit: Rich Sofranko
 3. The New York Times says, “the sets, costumes and lighting are not just lavish but exquisitely beautiful and atmospheric.”
The ballet opens in the Count’s candlelit crypt, a “dark, nocturnal world in which vampires thrive,” explains set designer Thomas Boyd.

To depict 19th-century Transylvania (the central part of present-day Romania), both Boyd and costume designer Judanna Lynn studied the fictional world of Stoker’s novel and the traditional dress and architecture of the actual region. The ballet features three distinct scenes –  the crypt, the village and Dracula’s bedroom – and over 70 costumes. Most elaborate is the Count’s.

When Dracula fully unfurls his 30-pound cape, its bat-like edges reach an imposing wingspan of 23 feet. His brides wear tattered wedding gowns, streaked with the dirt of the grave and adorned according to the era they became vampires.

For the scenery, Boyd said, “The works of 19th century German painter Caspar David Friedrich are very evocative of the feeling and style that I was seeking. In his work, there is a sense of immortality, of timelessness, of an energy that transcends time.  And it is this feeling that I am seeking to evoke in setting the scene for the ballet.”

PBT's 2011 Production of Dracula Credit: Rich Sofranko
4. The dancing has teeth (and so do the dancers).
Some say the ghostly corps de ballet scenes, with 18 swirling vampire brides, reminds them of a spin on Giselle’s veil-wearing Wilis, zombie-like maidens jilted before their wedding days. Although the choreography is worlds away, choreographer Ben Stevenson employs similar “ballet en blanc” conventions for the corps of vampire brides: all-white wardrobe and unified movements.

Meanwhile, in the village, normal life goes on, with bright folk dances and joyful variations for the newly engaged Svetlana and Franz…at least until Dracula crashes the party and abducts the belle of the ball. As Boyd puts it, “This is not your typical ‘happy peasants in the village scene.’ There’s a classic dichotomy here: These peasants live near Dracula’s castle, under the shadow of evil.”

PBT's 2011 Production of Dracula Credit: Rich Sofranko
5. Pyrotechnics raise the stakes.
Garlic, crosses, stakes – the villagers try it all in their quest to rescue Svetlana from the Count’s clutches.

But a vampire’s ultimate kryptonite is sun exposure, so we’re pulling out the pyrotechnics for the Count’s final blaze of glory and Svetlana’s only saving grace. Keep your eye on the chandelier.

PBT's 2011 Production of Dracula Credit: Rich Sofranko
6. Franz Liszt’s Dance of the Dead inspired Ben Stevenson to set the choreography to this composer.
Liszt took the melody for this music from a 13th-century Gregorian chant called the Dies Irae, a piece of music that has been adapted for many works, including film scores for The Shining and even The Lion King. Hear some of this theme in this Dracula trailer.  Another musical highlight is an Act I dance with two brides and Dracula to The Lugubrious Gondola (1882), an atonal work Liszt originally wrote for a funeral procession. Stevenson and John Lanchbery, the renowned music arranger and ballet conductor, chose the music of this famous 19th-century Hungarian composer and pianist, because they thought it was capable of creating the “atmosphere of terror” that descends on this 19th-century Hungarian village.

Experience all the chills for yourself! Dracula returns Oct. 27-29, at the Benedum Center with tickets starting at $28. Get yours now by phoning 412-456-6666.

4 x 4 Ephemeral Architectures Coming to August Wilson Center

Saturday, November 4 • 8pm
August Wilson Center
For tickets phone 412-456-6666.

Formed by world-renowned jugglers Sean Gandini and Kati Ylä-Hokkala, Gandini Juggling is at the vanguard of contemporary circus, reinventing and reinvigorating juggling for the 21st Century.

Four jugglers and four ballet dancers share a stage for the first time, tracing pathways in space. Both of these formalized systems are ephemeral journeys through time and space, leaving an unseen trace, describing an imaginary architecture. 4 x 4 Ephemeral Architectures is a celebration of the intersection where these paths meet.

Directed by world renowned juggler Sean Gandini, choreographed by the Royal Ballet’s Ludovic Ondiviela, with original composition, Suspended opus 69, by Nimrod Borenstein.

“★★★★ Jaw-dropping. A show of elegant, wistful beauty.”
-The Guardian, UK

“★★★★ Mesmerizing. The interweaving of ballet and juggling
creates something astonishing.”
–Broadway Baby

PSO TO perform Beethoven's Eroica

Beethoven "Eroica"
Friday, October 27 | 8:00 p.m.
Saturday, October 28 | 8:00 p.m.
Sunday, October 29 | 2:30 p.m.
Tickets start at $20! Phone 412-392-4900

Manfred Honeck, conductor
Alisa Weilerstein, cello

MacMillan: Manfred Honeck 10th Anniversary Commission - Larghetto for Orchestra (World Premiere)
Schumann: Cello Concerto
Beethoven: Symphony No. 3, “Eroica”

Manfred Honeck’s 10th Anniversary celebration continues with a premiere by former Composer of the Year Sir James MacMillan, an orchestration of his beautiful Larghetto for Orchestra, originally for a cappella choir. Following a recent performance of Schumann’s Cello Concerto in San Francisco, critic Joshua Kosman wrote of Alisa Weilerstein: “This was a luminous account of a work that has the potential to be problematic, and Weilerstein didn’t so much finesse those issues as face them head-on in an explosive show of artistic strength.” Audiences are surely in for a treat when Weilerstein brings the concerto to Pittsburgh.

Manfred Honeck and the Pittsburgh Symphony take center stage to bring the performance to a powerful close with Beethoven’s famous “Eroica” Symphony, which will be recorded for future commercial release. Springing to life from two brusque opening chords, this revolutionary symphony has been described as “the greatest single step made by an individual in the history of the symphony.”

After Friday and Saturday’s concerts, a group of PSO musicians will be performing the first and last movement of Mendelssohn’s Octet in E-Flat Major. These musicians include: Jeremy Black, Erin Keefe, Laura Motchalov and Christopher Wu (violins); Andrew Wickesberg and David Harding (violas); and Anne Martindale Williams and David Premo (celli). These performances, happening on stage immediately following the concert, are free and open to ticketholders.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

CLO Auditions for Roles in The Roberto Clemente Story

The Roberto Clemente Story
Part of the Gallery of Heroes School Series
Who: Male and female actors and singers ages 20-40. All ethnicities welcome.
Adult Non-Equity Auditions for Pittsburgh CLO's Gallery of Heroes production: ¡Arriba! ¡Arriba! The Roberto Clemente Story
VERA CLEMENTE (Roberto's Wife)
LUIS CLEMENTE (Roberto's Brother)
DOT (Stadium peanut vendor; female)
Pittsburgh CLO Academy
130 Cecil Way
8th Floor
Pittsburgh, PA 15222
When: Monday, October 23 • 2:00-6:00 pm
Email us to set up a time for your appointment
Head shot and resume
One-minute cuts two contrasting musical theater songs
Bring legible sheet music in your key and clearly marked
Completed audition application
Audition Process:

All the information you need is available on our website. Just follow these simple instructions:
Set up a time for your appointment by emailing us using the link above.
Download and complete the Audition Application. You will need to bring this to your audition appointment.
If you are having trouble downloading the application, arrive a few minutes early to complete; we will have them available on the day of your audition.
Note: No housing, transportation or per diem available to out-of-area performers.
About the Program:

The 2018 Gallery of Heroes school tour will offer local actors the opportunity to perform in ¡Arriba! ¡Arriba! The Roberto Clemente Story. The spring tour will run from January through May, 2018. The Gallery of Heroes program offers an entertaining alternative to traditional lectures and books.

Forty-five years after his untimely death, the hopes and dreams of Roberto Clemente are still making a difference in the lives of people everywhere. Pittsburgh CLO pays tribute to this Pittsburgh Pirates legend in ¡Arriba! ¡Arriba! The Roberto Clemente Story, an original musical depicting the inspiring life of the hero, Hall of Famer and humanitarian, Roberto Clemente. Pittsburgh CLO brings history to life through this educational musical about the magnificent man who once said, “I want to be remembered as a ball player who gave all he had to give.”

¡Arriba! ¡Arriba! The Roberto Clemente Story is a musical with book, music & lyrics by Jason Coll. With direction by Jason Coll and choreography by Alivia Owen. Performers must be available during the day Monday-Friday from January through May. Rehearsals begin January 2, 2018. Both rehearsal and performances are in the daytime.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Pittsburgh CLO Academy Seeking Internship Candidates for the 2018 Gene Kelly Awards

Attention: Communication, Arts and Entertainment Management Majors

Applications are now being accepted for college sophomores, juniors and seniors to coordinate the 2018 Pittsburgh CLO Gene Kelly Awards. Two candidates are being sought to work in tandem on this program. The internship placement will run January 3 – June 8, 2018.

The Gene Kelly Awards interns will organize, manage and assist with all aspects of producing this annual high school musical theater awards show. Duties include: event planning, marketing support and administrative responsibilities, as well as website updates, serving as liaison with participating school directors, coordinating schedules with Gene Kelly Awards judges, planning and implementing social media strategy, writing the Gene Kelly Awards blog, presenting scholarship information to participating schools and providing production assistance.

For a complete description of the internship and position requirements, visit or contact Michael Cerchiaro at, or 412-281-2234. Applications will be accepted through December 1, 2017.

Pippa Pig - Full of Interactive Fun, Games and Surprises

Pippa Pig Credit: Courtesy Photo

The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust announces the North American Tour of Peppa Pig’s Surprise, visiting more than 60 cities in 2017 and beyond, will make a stop in Pittsburgh on Sunday, October 22, 2017, with performances at 2:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m., at the Byham Theater, 101 Sixth Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15222.

This event is presented by the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, part of the 2017-2018 Cohen & Grigsby Trust Presents series.  The Peppa Pig stage show, based on Entertainment One’s (eOne) top-rated TV series, airing daily on Nick Jr., is one of the most successful family theater tours in U.S. history.  Peppa Pig’s 2016 national tour was rated the “#1 box office family tour” by Pollstar.

Tickets starting at $43.75, and VIP tickets at $143.75, are available at the following official Pittsburgh Cultural Trust ticket sources: online at, by calling Guest Services at 412-456-6666, or in person at Theater Square Box Office, 655 Penn Avenue.  For groups of 10+ call 412-471-6930, online at, or in person at Theater Square Box Office.

In Peppa Pig’s Surprise, it’s a lovely day and Peppa is playing outside with her friends. Mummy Pig and Daddy Pig have got a surprise for her and her younger brother George, but no matter how hard they try, they cannot guess what it is.

Audiences will enjoy interactive fun, games and, of course, many surprises. The live show encompasses the charming, colorful nature of the incredibly popular television series and features brand-new songs and life-size puppets that walk, talk, dance, and jump up and down to give audiences a unique, interactive theatrical experience from the moment the curtain opens. The fun-filled show brings the hit TV series to life on stage, giving families the opportunity to engage with their favorite characters like never before in an unforgettable first live theater experience.

“Peppa Pig’s Surprise promises to be the perfect theater show for all preschoolers,” said Director Richard Lewis, who returns to adapt episodes from the hit TV show for stage as he did with the touring smash hit Peppa Pig’s Big Splash. “It’s been an incredible experience seeing the children’s reactions to the live stage show. It just confirms that Peppa Pig really is a worldwide phenomenon.”

“Audience response has been overwhelmingly positive to the first tour and we look forward to bringing Peppa’s story to life on stage once again with a whole new adventure,” said Jonathan Shank, Executive Producer, Red Light Management. “Kids love interacting with these characters on stage.”

Peppa Pig Surprise is directed by Richard Lewis, with composer Mani Svavarsson, lyricist Matt Lewis, designer Simon Scullion, music director Andy Booth, and produced by Red Light Management, Fiery Angel, and eOne.

For more information and tour dates, please visit  Follow Peppa Pig Live on Twitter and like us on Facebook.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

For Fans of Opera and Voice

2017 Semifinalists

The Mildred Miller International Voice Competition in Pittsburgh is slated for this weekend and the public is invited to attend. You can read my advance on the competition, which was posted today to for more information. Simply go to 

Opera Diva Mildred Miller

Saturday's semi-finals are free and open to the public, although advance reservation are strongly recommended. The Final Round is from 2 to 5 p.m. on October 22 at the Frick Art and Historical Center, 7227 Reynolds Avenue in Pittsburgh’s Point Breeze neighborhood. WQED-FM’s Jim Cunningham will  host the Final Round. For more information and tickets, go to

Edgar Allen Poe to Visit Fort Necessity October 30

Rob Velella as Edgar Allen Poe Credit: NewTV

Edgar Allan Poe rises for a special appearance this October 30!

Poe was born in Massachusetts in January 1809.  He died in October 1849, but his visage will return at Fort Necessity, portrayed by literary historian Rob Velella, who will read a combination of Poe's well-known and lesser-known works.  Poe will also explain his reasons for writing the way he did and take questions from those in attendance.

This special evening program will be held at 7:00 p.m. at the Visitor Center at Fort Necessity National Battlefield. Tickets are $10 per person.  The recommended age for this program is 13 and up. Tickets must be purchased in advance as seating is limited.  Tickets will be sold online through 5:00 p.m. on Monday, October 30, as long as space is available.  Tickets may be purchased electronically through PayPal.  Reservations may not be made without a ticket purchase.  Any remaining tickets will be sold at the door.

To pay electronically via PayPal, visit and send the payment to  Please include the following information with your payment: a name for the party, the number of tickets desired, and a phone number or email address to confirm the ticket purchase.

Rob Velella is an independent literary historian and playwright specializing in American literature of the 19th century.  As a scholar, Velella has published articles and presented academic papers on figures as varied as Margaret Fuller, Oliver Wendell Holmes, and Walt Whitman.

Nicknamed the “Prometheus of American literary scholarship,” he has taken his research outside of academia by lecturing at various historical sites, libraries, and colleges from Pennsylvania to Maine.  He has worked on museum exhibits at the Boston Public Library and at Houghton Library at Harvard University.  In his ongoing efforts to bring the writers of yesterday back to the readers of today, he has dramatically brought to life literary figures Nathaniel Hawthorne and Edgar Allan Poe, for which he has been featured on National Public Radio and the LA Review of Books.

For more information, email or call 724-880-3897 Fort Necessity is located 11 miles east of Uniontown on Route 40, the National Road.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

The Story of the Dragon and the Phoenix to be Told at the Carnegie Carnegie

The Spanish Hurdy Gurdy and the Chinese Ehru tell the story of the dragon and the phoenix...

Join the Andrew Carnegie Free Library and Music Hall in Carnegie for a mid-week happy hour in its ‘urban hipster’ Studio space as Mimi Jong and Tomas Lozano unveil the Pittsburgh premiere of a new collaboration.

Tomas Lozano, performing the Spanish Hurdy Gurdy and Mimi Jong, performing the Chinese Ehru (both instruments with a history longer than a millennium) tell the story of a dragon and a phoenix, born from each end of the world in the ancient time when, in the minds of the people, the world was flat.

Wednesday, October 18 at 6:30 p.m..

Doors open at 6:00 pm || Concert begins at 6:30 pm
Tickets: $10 at the door

Listen Locally Downstairs is made possible by Peoples Natural Gas and the McKinney Charitable Trust.

Friday, October 13, 2017

"Out Damn Spot" Rings True at W & J's Olin Fine Arts Center

Jonathan Holtzman and Denise Burbach in Macbeth 2011 Credit: Michael Bailey

Get ready for some dastardly deeds when the American Shakespeare Center’s Wicked Folly Tour presents Macbeth - one night only at Washington and Jefferson College.

The Witches Boil and Bubble in Macbeth Credit: Michael Bailey

A brave Scottish general named Macbeth receives a prophecy from a trio of witches that one day he will become King of Scotland. Consumed by ambition and spurred to action by his wife, Macbeth murders King Duncan and takes the Scottish throne for himself. He is then wracked with guilt and paranoia. Forced to commit more and more murders to protect himself from enmity and suspicion, he soon becomes a tyrannical ruler. The bloodbath and consequent civil war swiftly take Macbeth and Lady Macbeth into the realms of madness and death.

Ally Farzetta as Lady Macbeth and  Calder Shilling as Macbeth Credit: Michael Bailey

Tickets required. Call 724-223-6546 M-F, noon- 6 p.m. Closed  Oct. 16th and 17th for college fall break.

More info is available at:

Monday, October 23, 2017 at 7:30 P.M. Olin Fine Arts Center theatre, W&J College

GPS Street address: 285 E. Wheeling St. Washington, PA 15301

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Film and Talk Address Thaddeus Kosciuszko's 200 Year Legacy

Portrait by Karl Gottlieb Schweikart. Kościuszko is shown wearing the Eagle of the Society of the Cincinnati, awarded to him by Gen. Washington.

Thomas Jefferson called Kosciuszko “the purest son of liberty that I have ever known."

This American Revolutionary War hero from Poland bequeathed his entire American estate not only to free Jefferson’s slaves but for their education as well.  As a military engineer, he offered his services to aid General Washington in our revolution. His  successful  defense  at  West  Point  is considered by many historians the turning point in the war, proving to our French allies that the Americans could  win significant battles.    

He fought  for  America’s  freedom  against  the British,  then, returning  to  Poland,  fought  for Poland’s freedom against the Russia.  

Join the Polish Cultural Council for a special!documentary film on the life of our hero entitled "Kosciuszko: A Man Ahead of His Time” by Pulitzer award winning journalist Alex Storozynski.

Following the film, Professor Graham Hodges, Colgate University, specialist in Colonial and Revolutionary American History,will give  a seminar and lead a discussion about the extraordinary life and times of this Polish-American patriot. The event is free and open to the public.  Donations arewelcome

Thaddeus Kosciuszko Celebration  200 Years Legacy  Saturday, October 21st 2017, 5 p.m., Room #332, Cathedral of Learning, University of Pittsburgh.

Pour a Glass of Bubbly on October 20

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Off the Wall Productions Presents World Premier Play

Director Austin Pendleton and Actress Anne Stockton Credit: Off the Wall Productions

Carnegie Stage welcomes the long-awaited return of writer/actor Anne Stockton and director Austin Pendleton (The Speed Queen - 2012), in collaboration once again, to present its season opener.

As an actor/trainer for the New York City Police Department's Hostage Negotiation Team and Emergency Service Unit, Stockton plays mentally ill individuals in training scenarios based on real life events. She is also a practicing psychiatrist. Her insight into the criminal mind has been a big part in creating the character of Nicki, the protagonist in “I Won’t Be In On Monday”.

The story sounds simple, Nikki is being interviewed by a detective in the high level financial firm where she works about the disappearance of two very valuable rings earlier that morning. But, as new information is revealed about the characters’ past and about the current situation, the story begins to unfold into a  ‘who dunnit’ play. A witty look at the ways in which we are swept away by the scenarios we imagine for our lives.

After its Pittsburgh premiere, the play will move to New York in February 2018 as part of the off the WALL “This Fortnight is Female” one-woman play festival.

Performance dates: Oct. 12, 13, 14 at 8:00 pm,  Oct. 15 at 3:00 pm
Tickets: $ 5.00 - $ 40.00
Phone: 724-873-3576.

Shostakovich Triumphant + PSO Debut of Violinist Ray Chen!

After a successful debut in the 2014-2015 season, Polish conductor Krzysztof Urbanski returns to lead the compelling young violinist Ray Chen in his own Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra debut. As the winner of the Queen Elizabeth (2009) and Yehudi Menuhin (2008) competitions, Chen has dazzled audiences across the world with his virtuosity and charismatic musicianship. He performs Max Bruch’s sumptuous Violin Concerto No. 1 on a program that will also feature Beethoven’s Overture to Egmont.

Krzysztof Urbanski Conducts PSO Credit: Fred Jonny
Urbanski and the Pittsburgh Symphony close the program with the politically charged Symphony No. 5 by Dmitri Shostakovich, a work that delicately and brilliantly balances authentic artistic expression and conformity to nationalistic propaganda. Shostakovich described the triumphant tone of the final movement “as if someone were beating you with a stick and saying, ‘Your business is rejoicing, your business is rejoicing,’ and you rise, shaky, and go marching off, muttering, ‘Our business is rejoicing, our business is rejoicing.’” Come hear Urbanski and the Pittsburgh Symphony illuminate the complexities of this masterpiece.

Soloist Ray Chen will be signing merchandise at intermission for both performances.

After both Friday and Sunday's concerts, The Clarion Quartet (a group from the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra) will be performing Weinberg's Aria and Capriccio. Group members include: Jennifer Orchard, violin; Marta Krechkovsky, violin; Tatjana Mead Chamis, viola; and Bronwyn Banerdt, cello. These performances, happening on stage immediately following the concert, are free and open to ticketholders.

Shostakovich Triumphant
featuring violinist Ray Chen
“To die for. He had the kind of liquid tone that carries with it
emotional depth of great intimacy” - The Huffington Post on Chen

Friday October, 13 | 8:00 p.m.
Sunday, October 15 | 2:30 p.m.
Tickets start at $20!

Phone 412-392-4900 or

Friday, October 6, 2017

Theater Alert! Don't Miss This Show!

Cast of East Texas Hot Links

I can't praise East Texas Hot Links enough. Now playing at the the Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre Company on Liberty Avenue in Downtown Pittsburgh through November 5, this production electrified me so much I left the theater emotionally charged and elated. Playwright Eugene Lee snuck into my consciousness for the first time and left an indelible mark. Such fine writing.

Director Montae Russell is a native of Pittsburgh (Homestead) and does an exceptional job getting his fine cast of 8 to give their all. Even my theater companion, who is seldom stirred by live drama, came away from the performance exalted and ecstatic.

Don't hesitate to reserve your tickets NOW because all the critics agree on the show's exemplary attributes.

Buy your tickets online, or save with a subscription! Tickets are $30 in advance, seniors (60+) and students $27.50, with no ticketing surcharges. Prices at the door are $5 higher than online prices. Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre is at  937 Liberty Ave, Downtown Pittsburgh

Kevin Brown
Sam Lothard
Cheryl El-Walker
Jonathan Berry
Monteze Freeland
Chuck Timbers
Les Howard
Taylor Moss
Stage Manager: Tashia Scott Terry

Individual tickets now available! at

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Cultural Trust Accepting Applicants for Three Rivers Arts Festival

Aerial View of Festival Credit: Courtesy Photo

The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust is officially accepting applications for participants in the 59th annual Dollar Bank Three Rivers Arts Festival, June 1–10, 2018. The nation’s premier free, community arts festival seeks a diverse group of visual and performing artists of all disciplines and career stages. The festival attracts half a million visitors annually to enjoy an extensive array of music, performance, visual arts, crafts/art-making activities and a renowned Artist Market.

This year’s call for visual and performing artists welcomes artists and performers who have never before participated in Dollar Bank Three Rivers Arts Festival, emphasizing brand new art and original work. Applications will be accepted from October 2, 2017, through January 16, 2018. Application status notifications will be sent to all applicants in late March of 2018.

Travel + Leisure named Pittsburgh one of the Best Places to Travel in 2016, stating “the Steel City is reforging itself into the Arts City.”Thrillist listed Dollar Bank Three Rivers Arts Festival in Every Outdoor Concert Worth Attending In Pittsburgh This Summer. The 10-day arts celebration in downtown Pittsburgh has grown to attract local, regional, national and international artist participation, showcasing a broad spectrum of works and talent. In 2018, artists will have the opportunity to explore the following opportunities:

Artist Market presented by Peoples
Featuring 350+ independent artists selling handmade work in an open-air setting, the Artist Market is attended by hundreds of thousands of visitors. The show is ranked among the nation’s best by Sunshine Artist Magazine, offers $10,000 in cash awards, and features a new selection jury in a wide variety of media.

Juried Visual Art Exhibition
Showcasing exceptional new art by regional artists (150-mile radius) in various stages of their careers, and in a variety of media, the JVAE delivers high-quality visual arts to Festival fans in an indoor gallery setting. The jury process is "blind" and cash awards go to the best in show and jurors' top picks.

Emerging Artist Scholarship Program
Established in 2002, the Emerging Artist Scholarship Program of the Dollar Bank Three Rivers Arts Festival provides individuals the opportunity to take an important first step towards a future in fine art and craft shows. The program supports the growth and longevity of fine arts and fine crafts in the Pittsburgh region with a special devotion to introducing new art forms to the Festival and new audiences to emerging artists.

Music & Performing Arts
Musicians, dancers, actors, literary, and performance artists from around the region and globe present original work on stages and in spaces throughout the Festival, including Point State Park, Gateway Center, and the Cultural District.

Special Project / Collaboration
Creative original concepts, multidisciplinary work, and multi-artist collaborations leave lasting impressions with visitors each year. The Festival’s geographic footprint and artists’ imaginations are the only bounds for proposals.

On Wednesday, November 1 from 5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m., the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust in collaboration with the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council will host an Artist Information Session and Mixer where potential exhibitors will have the opportunity to gain insider knowledge on the application process, past artist submission success, and curatorial selection process. Presentations will be made by Sarah Aziz - Director of Dollar Bank Three Rivers Arts Festival, Jennifer Owen - Principal & Director of Production, Melissa Franko - Special Projects Manager, and Ivette Spradlin - Juried Visual Arts Exhibition Coordinator. Early registration for this event is encouraged, as space is limited. Interested applicants can register for the Info Session and Mixer here.

Applications will be accepted from October 2, 2017, through January 16, 2018. To learn more about the submission categories and to apply, visit or call (412) 456-6666.

Cheyenne Jackson Coming to the Cabaret at Theater Square

Monday, October 16
Cabaret at Theater Square
• 7:00 p.m. (SOLD OUT)
• 9:30 p.m. Great seats still available!

Cheyenne Jackson is a Grammy-nominated actor, singer, and songwriter who can most recently be seen in FX’s American Horror Story. He finished a critically acclaimed run of The Most Happy Fella in New York City in 2014.

In the fall of 2012, he starred on Broadway opposite Henry Winkler, Ari Graynor, and Alicia Silverstone in David West Read’s play The Performers. On and off Broadway, Jackson has starred in 8, Finian’s Rainbow (Drama Desk nomination), Damn Yankees, Xanadu (Drama League and Drama Desk nominations), The Agony & the Agony, All Shook Up (Theater World Award, Drama League, Outer Critics Circle nominations), the premiere cast of Altar Boyz, Aida, Thoroughly Modern Millie, On the 20th Century, and The 24 Hour Plays.

To Purchase Tickets:
Online at
Box Office at Theater Square
 Call 412-456-6666
Groups 10+ or call 412-471-6930