Thursday, December 30, 2010

Nicoletta Giacchino to Perform at First Night Pittsburgh


Media Contacts:

The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust
Lauren Bracey
(412) 471-3591

Equitable Gas
Scott Waitlevertch
(412) 395-2314



Nicoletta Giacchino to perform at First Night Pittsburgh

As part of its staunch commitment to opening opportunities for young people in its service territory, Equitable Gas Company initiated a sing-off competition for musically talented students in the region. Created in conjunction with the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, the Equitable Gas Sing-Off is an exciting new component of the upcoming 2010 First Night Pittsburgh activities.

Similar to a number of talent shows currently popular on television, students from grades six through 12 affiliated with a middle or high school in Southwestern Pennsylvania were invited to submit an audition performance. Entries conveying the spirit of the New Year, celebration, resolution or hope on video were submitted via YouTube and were then open to online voting.

The voting was very competitive, with a near tie among the three finalist entries. Amidst this tough competition, Equitable Gas proudly announces Nicoletta Giacchino, a 17-year-old senior from Franklin Regional High School, is the winner of the 2010 Equitable Gas Sing-Off competition.

Says Ms. Giacchino, “I am very honored to be the Equitable Gas Sing-Off winner. I would like to thank Equitable Gas and The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust for providing such a wonderful opportunity and for keeping the arts alive in Pittsburgh.”

Ms. Giacchino has been working toward a professional music career all of her life. She made her first singing recordings at the age of 10 and has taken steps since then to become a first-rate well rounded performer. She also developed her stage presence by studying ballet, tap, jazz, theater, and gymnastics. Now, with help of mentor Walt Maddox, (Christina Aguilera’s mentor), Ms. Giacchino is developing her own style and finding her professional voice.

“Equitable Gas is pleased to once again sponsor First Night® Pittsburgh and support The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust in its annual presentation of this premier holiday event,” said Bill Lucas, Executive Vice President of Equitable Gas. “We congratulate Nicoletta Giacchino, winner of the Equitable Gas Sing-Off, and all of the talented young people who participated in this new community initiative.”

Ms. Giacchino will perform live as the opening act for the 6:30 p.m. Equitable Gas Marquee Performance of Squonk Opera at the Byham Theater during First Night. A First Night® button and a free seating voucher are required to attend the performance.

First Night® buttons ($8 advance/$10 at the door) are available at the Box Office at Theater Square (655 Penn Avenue), online at, by phone by calling 412-456-6666, and at participating Giant Eagle locations. Free seating vouchers are available at the Box Office at Theater Square or by calling 412-456-6666.

About First Night® Pittsburgh

First Night® is the largest one-day outreach event of The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust. Founded in 1984, The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust has led the way for the creation and ongoing development of Pittsburgh’s award-winning Cultural District. Utilizing the arts as a means for transforming a formerly blighted downtown, the Cultural Trust today welcomes over a million visitors annually to thousands of performances, gallery exhibitions and community events.

About Equitable Gas Company

Equitable Gas Company is a provider of safe and dependable natural gas service to approximately 275,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers located mainly in the city of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County. Its customer base also includes more than 200 municipalities in nine other counties in western Pennsylvania, 12 counties in central and northern West Virginia, and nine counties in eastern Kentucky. Additional information about Equitable Gas can be obtained through its Web site at

First Night Road Closures Announced

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 29, 2010

Media Contact::
Lauren Bracey
(412) 471-3519



Friday, December 31, 2010

PITTSBURGH, PA: To have a safe and enjoyable environment for First Night® Pittsburgh 2011, the following road closures will take place at 10 am on Friday, December 31, 2010, unless otherwise noted:

Penn Avenue from Stanwix Street up until, but not including, Tenth Street.

Stanwix Street from Liberty Avenue to Penn Avenue (parking garage is still accessible from Ft Duquesne Blvd.).

Sixth Street will remain OPEN with the exception from 8:00pm-8:45pm for the First Night Parade. EQT parking garage and 6th/Penn Parking garage MUST be entered and exited via 6th Street ONLY. Garages not accessible from 4pm-1am.

Fifth Avenue Extension from Fifth Avenue Place to Fort Duquesne Boulevard for parking garage access only.

Seventh Street from Liberty Avenue to the entrance of Theatre Square Parking Garage for parking garage access only.

Eighth Street from Liberty Avenue (Tito Way) to the entrance to the 8th and Penn parking lots for parking lot access only.

Ninth Street from Liberty Avenue to the Ninth and Penn Garage for parking garage access only.

All alleys leading into the footprint from Penn Avenue, Liberty Avenue, 6-10th Streets.

Seventh Street Bridge (will be closed from 10am until 10pm).

The streets will re-open at 1am unless otherwise noted.

Please note the following:

Access to all Pittsburgh Parking Authority Garages and all parking garages noted above will be open and will not be impeded by the road closures, with exception of the 6th and Penn Parking Garage which will be closed after 3:00pm for the safety of all First Night and Cultural District patrons.

For information on Port Authority bus stops that may be affected by the road closures, please call the Port Authority Customer Service center at 412-442-2000 or the TTY number 412-231-7007, for the speech and hearing impaired, or visit

Visit for more information and a schedule of event or call 412-456-6666.

Angelina Ballerina the Musical Premieres in Pittsburgh


Media Contact:

Diana Roth
(412) 471-8717

Electronic images are available upon request.

Pittsburgh International Children's Theater


Vital Theatre Company

in the Pittsburgh premiere of

Angelina Ballerina the Musical

January 23-30, 2011,

Six performance locations throughout Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh, PA: Pittsburgh International Children's Theater, a division of The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, presents award-winning Vital Theatre Company in the Pittsburgh premiere of Angelina Ballerina the Musical from January 23-30, 2011 at six performance locations throughout the area. Performance location include: City: Byham Theater, January 23 at 2:00 p.m & Student Matinee: January 24 at 10:15 a.m.; East: Gateway High School, January 26 at 7:00 p.m.; North: Pine-Richland High School, January 27 at 5:30 & 7:30 p.m.; West: Sewickley Academy, January 28 at 7:00 p.m.; South: Upper St. Clair High School, January 29 at 11:00 a.m. & 2:00 p.m.; and Butler: Seneca Valley Senior High School, January 30 at 2:00 p.m. Citizens Bank is the season sponsor of Pittsburgh International Children's Theater.

Vital Theatre Company's live stage production, Angelina Ballerina the Musical, was created by Susan DiLallo (book and lyrics) and music by Ben Morss; and is based on the critically acclaimed story books created by Katharine Holabird and Helen Craig and the PBS Kids' television animated series Angelina Ballerina, The Next Steps. This family friendly live stage show will appeal to children ages 3-10. The stage musical tells the story of Angelina and her friends, Alice, Gracie, AZ, Viki, and their teacher Ms. Mimi who are all aflutter because a special guest is coming to visit Camembert Academy! Angelina and her friends will perform all types of dance, including hip-hop, modern dance, the Irish jig and of course, ballet, and they are excited to show off their skills to their famous visitor. Angelina is the most excited of all, but will she get the starring moment she hopes for? Through Angelina's adventures, children may share in her experiences and be inspired to set goals and reach for their dreams.

Vital Theatre Company is based in New York City and was founded in 1999 by Stephen Sunderlin (current Artistic Director), Michael Schloegl, Scott C. Embler, and Laura M. Stevens, with the goal of creating a safe home to nurture emerging theatre artists. The company's mission states, "If one adult is inspired, if one child's imagination is awakened, if one student is empowered, our theatre is important and vital." Creating original stage productions since it was founded, Vital Theatre Company is the recipient of two American Theatre Wing Awards for Continued Commitment to Excellence in Theatre, six-time winner: Off-Off Broadway Review's Award for Excellence, and New York Theatre Experience award: Theatre Company of the Year (2002). Vital teaching artists are involved in the Brooklyn community through the integration of theatre arts into the high school humanities curriculum in an effort to jumpstart academic progress. Vital was commissioned by The Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation to create and produce America is my home: The Immigrant Journey to America that was presented on Ellis Island for seven months.

In addition to her work with Vital Theatre Company, Susan DiLallo, (book and lyrics-Angelina Ballerina the Musical) is the recipient of the Kleban Award, Jonathan Larson Award, Richard Rodgers Award, winner of the Global Search for New Musical Competition, Outer Critics Circle nominee and winner KIDDstuff New Play competition.

Ben Morss (music, Angelina Ballerina the Musical; music and lyrics-Cinderella�s Mice), has written music for various stage presentations, as well as musical arrangements for solo piano and bands: Cake and Wheatus. Ben has performed around the world with his band Chariots of Tuna and leads a nine-piece band called The Infinite Orchestra. Ben received a doctorate in music from the University of California-Davis.

Katharine Holebird, author of the original book series, Angelina Ballerina, with illustrations by Helen Craig, has been capturing the hearts of children for over 25 years. Her award-winning series helps children explore important issues such as friendship, rivalry, loyalty and dedication. Katharine is the recipient of the Kentucky Bluegrass Award (1985) for her first book, Angelina Ballerina, British Book Design and Production Award (1990) for Angelina's Birthday, and Child Study Association's Children's Book of the Year (1990) for Angelina's Christmas. Holebird's Angelina book series has also been honored with several Platinum Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Awards for Rose Fairy Princess in 2002, and Friends Forever and The Magic Of Dance in 2004. Holabird was honored in 2006 with an invitation to Queen Elizabeth's eightieth birthday party at Buckingham Palace. That same year, the entire series of Angelina books was reissued by Grosset and Dunlop in the United States. Also in 2006, The Angelina Ballerina Dance Academy debuted with special Angelina ballet classes across England. Angelina's Star Performance, an original ballet based on Angelina at the Palace, debuted in 2007 in London with the English National Ballet. Holabird has also written two theatrical pop-up books (2008, 2010). The Angelina books have been translated into more than twenty languages.

Individual tickets ($11 at the door; $9.50 in advance) can be ordered online at, by calling (412) 456-6666, or in person at the Box Office at Theater Square, 655 Penn Avenue. Group tickets can be ordered by calling (412) 471-6930.

Pittsburgh International Children's Theater, a division of The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, opens the door for children to experience professional performing arts programming for children which inspires, challenges, educates, and stimulates respect for and an understanding of all cultures in an entertaining and enlightening way. Each year Pittsburgh International Children's Theater presents a Family Series and the Pittsburgh International Children's Festival, which is one of only four international children's theater festivals in the nation.

The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust is a non-profit organization whose mission is the cultural and economic development of Pittsburgh's 14-block Cultural District through public and private support. The Trust presents and encourages diverse performing and visual arts programs within the District, and is an impetus for additional development in downtown Pittsburgh. In addition to the Pittsburgh International Children's Theater and Children's Festival, The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust presents the PNC Broadway Across America-Pittsburgh series Pittsburgh Dance Council, Trust Presents, CD Live, JazzLive, First Night Pittsburgh, Gallery Crawl, and Three Rivers Arts Festival, among other Cultural District and arts events. The Trust owns Theater Square and the Cabaret at Theater Square; James E. Rohr Building & Arts Education Center; the Benedum Center for the Performing Arts; Byham, O'Reilly, and Harris Theaters; visual arts galleries: Wood Street Galleries; SPACE, at 812 Liberty Avenue and 937 Liberty, a multipurpose performance and exhibit space, among other downtown arts facilities.

TechPOWR and EWC cohost Networking and TechTalk Event


December 15, 2010

For More Information Contact:

Theresa Kaufman

AT: 412-207-0760


TechPOWR for Pittsburgh Women & The Executive Women’s Council


TRANSFORM YOUR BUSINESS: Leverage the Power of Mobile Technology

On Tuesday, January 11th TechPOWR and EWC will co-host, a networking event and tech-talk at Bistro To Go, 415 East Ohio Street, North Side from 5:30 to 7:30. Featured speaker is Preeti Gupte, Vice President of Business Development for Extentia.

Ms. Gupte will share how companies worldwide are now leveraging the power of mobile technology to craft new and innovative business solutions. Attendees will learn how mobile-based applications and services have helped transform business. If you ever wondered about mobile technology and applying them to your business, this is the meeting for you.

Register for this event by emailing, Registration fees: TechPOWR / EWC Member: $20, Nonmembers: $30.

This meeting marks the first collaboration of TechPOWR and EWC; TechPOWR will become part of the EWC in 2011, enabling EWC to develop an additional focus on technology innovations in the workplace.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Salsa Fridays Celebrates 100th Night of Salsa


Contact: Veronica Corpuz, 412-471-6082

The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust's

Popular Salsa Fridays

Celebrates Milestone with 100 Nights of Salsa

PITTSBURGH: On Friday, January 7, 2011 at 10 P.M., The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust marks its 100th Salsa Fridays with a big 70s theme bash. Established in 2008, Salsa Fridays is the Cultural District's sizzling dance party held every Friday night at the Trust's intimate Cabaret at Theater Square.

Attendees are encouraged to don nostalgic tie-die, flared jeans, peace symbols and sandals for a lively 70s dance party with a Latino flavor. Guest Deejay Marc Brewer from Detroit and Pittsburgh's leading ambassador of Salsa, Jeff Shirey, will fill the Cabaret at Theater Square with spicy Salsa rhythms to fill the dance floor.

Admission for Salsa Fridays is only $5 at the door. Admission is free (space permitting), for attendees with a ticket stub from an earlier Friday night show in the Cultural District. Salsa Fridays is a 21+ event.

The Cabaret at Theater Square is located at 655 Penn Avenue in the heart of the Downtown Pittsburgh Cultural District. For more information on the Cabaret at Theater Square's late night, weekend entertainment, visit or call 412-456-6666.

Maceo Parker, Legendary Saxman at The Byham


Media Contact:

Veronica Corpuz
(412) 471-6082

Diana Roth

Electronic artwork is available upon request.

The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust


legendary R&B saxman


Sunday, January 16, 2011, at 7:00 p.m.

Byham Theater, 101 Sixth Street

PITTSBURGH, PA  The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust presents R&B funk legend Maceo Parker and his band on Sunday, January 16, 2011, 7:00 p.m., at the Byham Theater. This performance is part of the 2010-2011 Cohen & Grigsby Trust Presents series. Tickets ($20.75, $32.75, $37.75) may be purchased in-person at the Box Office at Theater Square, 655 Penn Avenue, online at, or by calling (412) 456-6666. To purchase 10 or more group tickets, call (412) 471-6930.

Revered for his impeccable pedigree and leading the world's tightest funk orchestra, the saxophone titan has played with Funk legends James Brown, George Clinton and Bootsy Collins, among others. Collaborations with Ray Charles, Ani Difranco, James Taylor, De La Soul, Dave Matthews and Red Hot Chili Peppers have introduced him to an exuberant, younger fan base.

"Everything's coming up Maceo," concluded DownBeat Magazine in a 1991 article at the beginning of Maceo Parker's solo career. At the time Maceo was a remembered by aficionados of funk music as sideman; appreciated mainly by those in the know. For the past two decades, Maceo has been building a new funk empire, fresh and stylistically diverse, navigating deftly between James Brown's 1960's soul and George Clinton's 1970's freaky funk while exploring mellower jazz and the grooves of hip-hop.

His solo career recording highlights include 10 weeks at the top of Billboard's Jazz Charts for his recording Roots Revisited (1990) and "funk fan favorite" Live on Planet Groove, recorded live in 1992. Parker's recordings Funk Overload, Dial M-A-C-E-O and Made by Maceo all reached the top 40 charts in Europe. "Maceo Parker is a funk titan. " "Parker must be regarded as simply one of the all-time great saxophonists. He stretched the boundaries of music, fashioned a new style of playing and, most importantly, made some truly great music" (Mercury San Francisco).

Mr. Parker is the recipient of the Pioneer Award from the Rhythm and Blues Foundation for his leadership contributions to the genre of rhythm and blues. "Quite simply, there is no better showman than Maceo Parker. Catching one of the alto sax maestro's marathon three-hour shows is a truly transcendental experience for any fan of funk, jazz, hip-hop, R&B and soul: His performances are "a funky, funky good time (Westworld)."

Artist website:

Friday, December 17, 2010

ParkPGH Innovative Parking Solution for Cultural District

FOR RELEASE: December 15, 2010

Media Contact:
Veronica Corpuz

The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust unveils city’s first mobile “smart” parking solution for Cultural District garages

Pittsburgh, PA: This morning The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust launched the pilot program ParkPGH [Park P-G-H], the city’s first comprehensive “smart” parking solution that delivers real-time information about parking availability in all Cultural District garages. This technology-based program, funded by The Benter Foundation, delivers space availability by way of an iPhone application, a traditional website, a mobile website, text messaging, and through a call-in telephone service.

“One of the perceived barriers to the Cultural District has traditionally been access to parking,” said J. Kevin McMahon, President and CEO of The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust. “Our goal in launching ParkPGH is to reduce stress for arts patrons, increase more impromptu visits to the District, decrease the number of latecomers to performances, and further improve the overall visitor experience of enjoying Downtown retail and entertainment.”

“The Benter Foundation is pleased to support development of these smart technologies to make parking easier in the Cultural District,” said Bill Benter, President of The Benter Foundation. “These applications will guide visitors to open spaces right when they’re needed, easing traffic congestion, reducing energy and making the Cultural District an even more inviting destination. This pilot should help to enhance the vitality of Pittsburgh.”

In the pilot phase, eight parking lots are currently transmitting real-time information: five Alco Parking-managed garages (Theater Square, 6th and Penn Avenue, Convention Center, Three PNC Plaza, Town Place) and four Pittsburgh Parking Authority Garages (Grant Street Transportation Center, Ft. Duquesne and 6th Street, Smithfield & Liberty). The Pittsburgh Parking Authority garage located at 9th and Penn Avenue will be added in January 2011, totaling more than 5300 spaces monitored by the ParkPGH system and representing 25% of garage parking in Downtown Pittsburgh. The program serves two million visitors to the Cultural District annually and approximately 149,700 daily commuters.

Once the initial phase is assessed, enhancements and plans for ParkPGH will extend to other areas for citywide use of the technologies. “ParkPGH is a great opportunity to highlight how Pittsburgh is deploying technology to advance intelligent transportation solutions. This pilot program is one aspect of a multidisciplinary approach that will help brand the region as a learning lab for smart transportation,” said Rick Stafford, director of Traffic21, a research initiative of Carnegie Mellon University.

“ParkPGH is an exciting initiative that figures into the city’s long-term transportation plan of MovePGH. The program helps to raise the national profile of Pittsburgh as a ‘smart transportation’ city that successfully showcases the collaboration among our cultural and educational institutions,” noted The Hon. Luke Ravenstahl, Mayor of the City of Pittsburgh.

In addition to The Benter Foundation and Traffic21, The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust’s ParkPGH program is made possible through and its partners: Pittsburgh Parking Authority, Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership, Hillman Foundation, Numeritics, and Alco Parking. ParkPGH was built by Deeplocal.


ParkPGH operates on a system that calculates the number of parking spaces available in Cultural District garages every 30 seconds. Patrons who use the system will know the capacity of each garage through a Green/Yellow/Red grade and a numerical update for the number of spaces available.


A free iPhone app is available at the iPhone App Store. The app features a scrollable view, listing each available parking lot and its parking space availability along with Cultural District destinations. The information can be manually refreshed by the end-user. Clicking on the parking lot will reveal more information, such as address, map and pricing. Patrons can view a map with each parking space and availability as well as the user’s current location (if GPS is enabled). This will help visitors to pick the closest parking lot to their location.

The website,, offers a web page with a list of parking lots and their parking space availabilities. Clicking on a lot will provide the user with an address, map, and options to get directions to the parking lot. Pricing information will also be displayed.

In addition to parking garage information, popular destinations will also be displayed so that visitors can locate their targeted destination and find the closest available parking.

Mobile Website

A mobile version of the website,, provides the same information as the traditional website but will be optimized for all mobile devices, including Blackberries and Andriod Phones.


Visitors can text PARKING to 412-423-8980 to obtain a list of downtown parking lots.


Similar to the SMS offering, visitors may call 412-423-8980 to receive a list of parking lots with available space. A text-to-speech system will announce the parking lot names and the available spaces for each lot.


The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust is a non-profit organization whose mission is the cultural and economic development of Pittsburgh’s 14-block Cultural District through public and private support. The Trust presents and encourages diverse performing and visual arts programs within the District, and is an impetus for additional development in downtown Pittsburgh.

The Complete World of Sports (Abridged) at O'Reilly

Pictured (l to r) Reed Martin, Austin Tichenor and Matt Rippy in The Complete World of Sports (abridged).

Contact Margie Romero, Communications Manager at Pittsburgh Public Theater

412.316.8200 ext. 707 or

Pittsburgh Public Theater Presents

Reduced Shakespeare Company


The Complete World of Sports (abridged)

The Bad Boys of Abridgement are back with a brand-new hilarious workout.

PITTSBURGH (December 14, 2010) Pittsburgh Public Theater is thrilled to welcome back Reduced Shakespeare Company with their brand-new show, The Complete World of Sports (abridged). Starring Reed Martin, Matt Rippy and Austin Tichenor, The Complete World of Sports (abridged) runs for eight performances only, January 4 – 9 at the O’Reilly Theater, Pittsburgh Public Theater’s home in the heart of Downtown’s Cultural District. For tickets call 412.316.1600 or visit

Pittsburgh Public Theater Producing Artistic Director Ted Pappas describes Reduced Shakespeare Company as “a potent combination of verbal dexterity and physical comedy.” In their new show the guys are broadcasters for the Reduced Shakespeare Company Sports Network (RSCSN), who report from around the world about sporting events throughout history. Alternating between anchor man, reporter and players, their subjects include baseball, cricket, golf, fight songs, coaches, female athletes, bullfighting, and even curling. The audience will be called upon to help create the sport of the future and four audience members will join the guys onstage for the Olympic parade of nations. With big laughs and plenty of audience interaction, this brand-new show sprints through the world of sports in record-breaking speed. For more info visit Reduced

Reduced Shakespeare Company first appeared at Pittsburgh Public Theater in 1995. Since then all six of their world-renowned shows have been performed here: The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged), The Complete History of America (abridged), The Bible: The Complete Word of God (abridged), Completely Hollywood (abridged), All the Great Books (abridged), and The Millennium Musical.

Pittsburgh Public Theater Presents

What: The Complete World of Sports (abridged)

When: January 4 - 9, 2011

Performance Schedule

Tues., Jan. 4 through Fri., Jan. 7 at 8 pm

Sat., Jan. 8 at 2 and 8 pm

Sun., Jan. 9 at 2 and 7 pm

Ticket Prices: $40.75 to $60.75. $15.75 for students and age 26 and younger.

For tickets call 412.316.1600 or visit

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Artistic Director Andrew Paul Remains with PICT

Media Contact:

David Kremen

PICT Board Secretary


Andrew Paul to Remain with PICT

PICT Board of Directors Clarifies Position Regarding Artistic Director

Pittsburgh, PA – December 13, 2010. The Pittsburgh Irish & Classical Theatre Board of Directors is pleased to announce that Producing Artistic Director Andrew S. Paul will continue in his position with the company.

Paul is moving his family to Las Vegas, Nevada, but will continue to lead the company as its chief executive through at least the 2012 season. He will be in Pittsburgh during the production season, and will be fully available to the PICT board, staff, patrons, and funders throughout the year.

Board secretary David Kremen explained that during the off-season, Paul will be working full-time from his home in Las Vegas, communicating by email and telephone, and will make trips to Pittsburgh as necessary. Kremen also expressed that, “His presence in Nevada will give him increased access to artists, theater productions and contacts on the West Coast, which he will be able to use for the benefit of PICT.”

Paul founded the organization with current Operations Director Stephanie Riso in 1996. Under his leadership, PICT has produced nearly 60 mainstage productions during fourteen seasons and completed two successful international tours; his production of Faith Healer played thirteen venues in Ireland and Northern Ireland in 2002, and Major Barbara played fourteen sold-out performances at the 2003 Galway Arts Festival. In 2008, Paul also directed and collaborated with playwright David Hare on the non-English language premiere of Stuff Happens at the Slaski Teatr in Katowice, Poland. PICT is the professional theatre in residence at the University of Pittsburgh.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Pittsburgh CLO Triple Espresso Thru January 9


Aja Jones
412-281-3973 ext. 224

Triple Espresso tickets on sale NOW!

Pittsburgh Premiere of this highly caffeinated comedy opens September 9

Pittsburgh, July 27, 2010 – Be one of the first to see the Pittsburgh Premiere of Triple Espresso, the irresistible comedy that’s taken the world by storm for the past 14 years - logging over 10,000 performances and bringing laughs to over 1.7 million people in six countries! Tickets are on sale now at, by calling 412-456-6666 or visiting the Box Office at Theater Square.

About the Show:

September 9, 2010 – January 9, 2011 Written by Bill Arnold, Michael Pearce Donley and Bob Stromberg Triple Espresso tells the irresistible story of a comedy trio going for their big break, only to have their hopes dashed over and over on the rocks of one magnificently funny failure after another. Hugh, Buzz and Bobby reunite for a hilarious evening of music, magic and mega-laughs in this audience favorite that appeals to everyone from age 6 to 106. The Los Angeles Times calls Triple Espresso “A triple shot of inspired craziness…infectious fun!”


Tickets for Triple Espresso start at $34.75 and are available online at, by calling 412-456-6666 or at the Box Office at Theater Square. Groups of 10 or more can call the Group Sales Hotline at 412-325-1582 to learn more about special discounts and priority seating.

# # #

Since 1946, the Pittsburgh CLO has been the driving force behind live musical theater in Pittsburgh and the entire Southwestern Pennsylvania region. Under the direction of Van Kaplan, since 1997, this not-for-profit arts organization appreciates the support of nearly 200,000 patrons each year and produces a subscription series, educational programs, national tours and develops and invests in new works, including 11 Broadway shows (12 Tony® Awards) and currently Come Fly Away and The Addams Family. Its dedication to the musical theater art form extends to include such programs as the CLO Academy, the CLO Mini Stars, the Gene Kelly Awards, the Richard Rodgers Award, the National High School Musical Theater Awards, the Construction Center for the Arts and the CLO Cabaret.

Media members may access photos and other show materials by visiting the Press Room at When prompted, simply enter “pressroom” as the username and “pittstadium” as the password.

Pittsburgh CLO Presents A Musical Christmas Carol

For Immediate Release Contact:

Aja Jones 412-281-3973

Cast Announced for Pittsburgh CLO’s A Musical Christmas Carol

One of Pittsburgh’s Greatest Holiday Traditions Returns!

Pittsburgh, November 15, 2010 – The talented cast includes exciting new faces and a host of returning favorites, led by Pittsburgh’s own Tom Atkins as Ebenezer Scrooge. A Musical Christmas Carol – celebrating 19 years as a true Pittsburgh holiday tradition, December 9-23. Tickets are now available by calling 412-456-6666, online at or at the Theater Square Box Office

About the Cast

(Listed in alphabetical order) Tom Atkins (Ebenezer Scrooge) returns for a third consecutive appearance in A Musical Christmas Carol. Mr. Atkins is perhaps best known for his numerous film and television credits, including “Escape from New York,” “The Fog,” “Creepshow,” “Lethal Weapon,” “Bob Roberts,” “Striking Distance” and “My Bloody Valentine 3D,” as well as “M*A*S*H,” “The Rockford Files,” “Homicide” and “Law & Order: Criminal Intent.” A Pittsburgh native, he has performed in numerous Pittsburgh Public Theater productions, most notably starring as Art Rooney Sr. in The Chief. He recently reprised his role in the film version of The Chief. On Broadway, he appeared in The Changing Room and The Front Page.

Paul Domencic (Young Scrooge/Ghost of Christmas Future) returns to A Musical Christmas Carol. A graduate of The Carnegie Mellon School of Drama, he has appeared regionally with Colonial Theatre, St. Michael's Playhouse, The Depot Theatre, St. Vincent Summer Theatre and most recently as Duke Orsino in Twelfth Night at Mountain Playhouse. He has also appeared on several daytime soaps.

Wesley Edwards (Wilkins/Watkins) returns to the Byham after making his Pittsburgh CLO debut in 2009 in A Musical Christmas Carol. Originally from Louisville, Kentucky, Mr. Edwards is a graduate of Point Park University, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in musical theater. He has performed at The Mountain Playhouse and the Pittsburgh Opera.

Tim Hartman (Mr. Fezziwig/Ghost of Christmas Present) returns to A Musical Christmas Carol for the 12th time. Broadway credits include A Tale of Two Cities and Finian’s Rainbow. Pittsburgh roles include Don Quixote in The Man of La Mancha, Daddy Warbucks in Annie, El Gallo in The Fantastiks, and Captain Von Trapp in The Sound of Music. Other theater credits include Miles Gloriosus in …Forum, Lumiere in Beauty and the Beast, Falstaff in Henry IV, C.S. Lewis in Shadowlands and The Big Bang at the CLO Cabaret. Tim has also appeared as Merlin in Camelot, Ziegfeld in Funny Girl with Anna Gasteyer, FDR in Annie and 24 characters in the one man show The Cotton Patch Gospel. Film credits include “Silence of the Lambs,” “The Piano Lesson,” “The Mothman Prophecies” and “The Mysteries of Pittsburgh.”

Jeff Howell (Bob Cratchit) is a veteran of numerous productions of A Musical Christmas Carol. He was most recently seen as Mr. Brownlow in Pittsburgh CLO’s 2010 production of Oliver! His other Pittsburgh CLO credits include Beauty and the Beast, Bells Are Ringing, Chess, Singing In the Rain and The Most Happy Fella. Local credits include Candide for Quantum Theatre and Show Boat with Marvin Hamlisch and the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.

Joe Jackson (Topper) returns to Pittsburgh CLO after his debut this past Summer Season in Oliver!, The Producers, Hairspray and The Student Prince. Regional credits in include several roles for Walnut Street Theatre and Arena Stage.

Allison Scarlet Jaye (Mrs. Cratchit) makes her Pittsburgh CLO debut. A University of Pittsburgh alum, Allison has been in productions coast to coast. Pittsburgh credits include leading roles in Lion In The Streets, Proof, Fairest and festivals of new plays and musicals.

Rebecca Knowles (Fan/Alice) is also making her Pittsburgh CLO debut. She currently attends Point Park University. Theater credits include Mary Turner (Of Thee I Sing) with Boston’s Lyric First Stage Company and Minnie Fay (Hello, Dolly).

Daniel Krell (Marley) returns to A Musical Christmas Carol for the ninth time. He is a veteran of over 20 Pittsburgh CLO productions, including Curtains, Oliver!, Les Misérables, The Full Monty, 1776, Jekyll & Hyde, Guys and Dolls, South Pacific and Anything Goes. Mr. Krell starred in Quantum Theatre’s production of When the Rain Stops Falling this year and has also appeared in productions for City Theatre and Pittsburgh Public Theater, among others.

Caitlin Elizabeth Reilly (Miss Watkins/Martha Cratchit) returns to Pittsburgh CLO after six previous appearances in A Musical Christmas Carol and as the understudy CLO Cabaret’s productions of I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change and My Way. Her previous regional credits include Oklahoma!, Picnic, Grease!, The House of Yes, High School Musical and Annie Get Your Gun.

Connor Russell (Peter Cratchit) is making his Pittsburgh CLO debut. His credits include: 42nd Street, The Who’s Tommy, Bye Bye Birdie (Village Theatre), Disney’s High School Musical (Seattle Children’s Theatre), Zanna Don’t! (Contemporary Classics), Thoroughly Modern Millie and Carousel (Pittsburgh Playhouse Conservatory). Mr. Russell is currently a junior musical theatre major, dance minor, at Point Park University.

Peter Matthew Smith (Fred) returns to Pittsburgh CLO after appearances in The Student Prince and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. His Broadway credits include RENT, Mamma Mia, Hairspray, Fiddler on the Roof (Motel) and Cry Baby.

Amanda Serra (Ghost of Christmas Past) returns to the cast of A Musical Christmas Carol for a 10th time. Her other Pittsburgh CLO credits include The Music Man, Hello, Dolly!, Me and My Girl and The Sound of Music. In New York, she has appeared in Disembodied Heads, Dialing For Donna, Amahl and the Night Visitors and Ripper – the Musical.

Amanda Slaughter (Bess/Belle) is also returning to the cast of A Musical Christmas Carol. She is a graduate of Point Park University with a degree in musical theater. Ms. Slaughter has performed in CLO’s Gallery of Heroes productions of First Lady and Pioneers of Flight. Her other credits include the National Tour of Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Brigadoon, Into the Woods, Quilters and Oklahoma!

Eli Tokash (Tiny Tim) returns for his second season as Tiny Tim. He is a 7 year old, second grade student at St. Joseph the Worker School in Weirton, WV. He attends the Pittsburgh CLO Academy and last performed for Pittsburgh CLO in Oliver! this past summer. Other credits include the short film "Anywhere But Here" which premiered at the Three Rivers Film Festival and the upcoming feature film "Super 8," directed by JJ Abrams. Eli can also be seen as a face/voice for the American Diabetes Association in their public service announcements.

Terry Wickline (Mrs. Dilber/Mrs. Fezziwig) returns to A Musical Christmas Carol for the 11th year. Her Pittsburgh CLO credits include The Music Man, Hello, Dolly!, Me and My Girl, My Fair Lady, Funny Girl, Crazy For You and Bye Bye Birdie, as well as Always...Patsy Cline and Nunsense at Pittsburgh CLO Cabaret. She has also appeared in Pittsburgh Public Theater’s The Importance of Being Earnest, Man of La Mancha and Much Ado About Nothing.

The cast is rounded out by a host of carolers and party guests.

Greggory Brandt is a veteran of several productions of A Musical Christmas Carol. He most recently performed in the 2009 Pittsburgh CLO productions of Les Misérables and Into the Woods. Prior to that, Mr. Brandt appeared on Broadway in A Tale of Two Cities and in both the Broadway and National Tours of Les Misérables.

Jodi Gage returns to A Musical Christmas Carol for her third year. Her other credits include Orpheus and the Underworld (Diana) at Oberlin Conservatory; Working (Housewife) in Hamilton, Scotland; Lion in Winter (Alice) at Hamilton Civic Theater. Ms. Gage is a graduate of the Oberlin Conservatory.

Christina McCann returns to A Musical Christmas Carol for a fifth time. Previously, she toured for Pittsburgh CLO in numerous productions of its Gallery of Heroes program. She has also performed in the Pittsburgh Opera productions of The Marriage of Figaro, Eugene Onegin and La Boheme. Her other credits include: Gypsy (Louise), Chicago (Velma) and Brigadoon (Fiona) and will next appear in Camelot for Pittsburgh Public Theater.

Scott P. Sambuco is a Pittsburgh CLO veteran making his 11th appearance in A Musical Christmas Carol. He has appeared in Pittsburgh CLO productions of The Pirates of Penzance, Annie, My Fair Lady, Funny Girl, She Loves Me, Guys and Dolls, Crazy For You, Grand Hotel and Bye, Bye, Birdie.

Several Pittsburgh CLO Academy students will also take part in the holiday production. Kylie Byers (Belinda) join the cast of A Musical Christmas Carol for the first time. She is a seventh grader at Shaler Area Middle School, a fourth year CLO Academy student, and a Pittsburgh CLO Mini Star. Her most recent appearance was in Pittsburgh CLO's Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and her school’s production of Willy Wonka.

William Davis (Cratchit Child) performed in last year’s Avonworth High School musical Mame as Patrick; a role for which he won a Gene Kelly Award. He is currently performing with the Pittsburgh CLO Mini Stars.

Allison Joyce (Cratchit Child) is a fourth grader from the Avonworth School District who loves to sing, dance and act. She was a member of the Children's Choir in Pittsburgh CLO’s Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.

Trent Soyster (Turkey Boy) comes from the North Allegheny School District to make his Pittsburgh CLO debut. He is a first year student at the Pittsburgh CLO Academy and a seventh year student at Act One Theater School.

About the Creative Team Tim Gregory (Director) is back for a third year directing A Musical Christmas Carol. He is the Founding Artistic Director of Provision Theater Company in Chicago, where some of his directing credits include Provision Theater’s Jefferson Award–Nominated productions of A Christmas Carol, The Hiding Place and the critically-acclaimed production CS Lewis On Stage.

Bruce Barnes (Musical Director) returns for a fourth season as musical director for A Musical Christmas Carol. His National Tour credits include Happy Days, Kiss Me, Kate, Cats, Jesus Christ Superstar, Cabaret, Camelot and Peter Pan. He made his Broadway debut conducting Peter Pan, starring Cathy Rigby, and regularly substituted as associate conductor of the Sam Mendes production of Cabaret at Studio 54. As a pianist, Mr. Barnes has accompanied a range of artists, including Patti LuPone, Penny Fuller, Ruthie Henshall, Beverly Sills, Billy Porter and Eartha Kitt.

The stage manager for this production will be Fredric H. Orner. This production features original scenery by D Martyn Bookwalter and lighting by Andrew David Ostrowski.

More Merry Musical Information

In what has become A Musical Christmas Carol tradition, local choirs will perform prior to each performance. Musical groups from all over the Tri-state area have the opportunity to perform on the Byham Theater stage and take part in this special holiday celebration. The list to date includes:

McKeesport High School Thursday, December 9, 7:00 pm

Harrison Middle School Friday, December 10, 7:00 pm

Howe and Hoover Thursday, December 16, 7:00 pm

Karns City Choir Friday, December 17, 7:00 pm

The Coraleers -Tri County Institute Saturday, December 18, 11:30 am

Whitehall Elementry School Saturday, December 18, 3:30 pm

West Allegheny High School Choir Saturday, December 18, 7:30 pm

Pittsburgh CLO Mini Stars & CLO Academy Students Sunday, December 19, 1:30 pm

A Musical Christmas Carol will be presented at the Byham Theater (6th & Fort Duquesne Boulevard) December 9-23. Tickets range from $26.75 - $46.75 with half-price tickets for children 3-14 and are now available by calling 412-456-6666, online at or at the Theater Square Box Office.

Special events available for groups include School Matinees Dec. 8-10, 16-17 and 21-23, Girls’ Night Out on Dec. 9 with Lidia’s Italy and Holidays with Habitat on Dec. 22. You can also pair a meal at your favorite restaurant with a performance of A Musical Christmas Carol. Let our holiday party planners do the work for you. For more information on these and other group events and discounts, please call Group Sales at 412- 325-1582.

Pittsburgh CLO gratefully acknowledges the support of our production sponsor First Niagara and Macy’s for sponsoring Half-priced Tickets for Kids.

A Musical Christmas Carol Public Performance Schedule

Media members may access photos and other show materials by visiting the Press Room at When prompted, simply enter “pressroom” as the username and “pittstadium” as the password.

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Since 1946, the Pittsburgh CLO has been the driving force behind live musical theater in Pittsburgh and the entire Southwestern Pennsylvania region. Pittsburgh CLO is a not-for-profit arts organization that appreciates the support of nearly 200,000 patrons each year. Its dedication to the musical theater art form extends beyond the summer season with such programs as the CLO Academy, the CLO Mini Stars, the Gene Kelly Awards, the National High School Musical Theater Awards, the Construction Center for the Arts and the CLO Cabaret.

First Night® Features Events, Tower of Power


Veronica Corpuz

Lauren Bracey

Electronic art is available for download at


is entertainment hub during historic weekend

First Night® features more than 100 events including headliner Tower of Power

Friday, December 31, 2010, 6 pm – Midnight

In the heart of the Cultural District

Celebrate New Year’s Eve in the heart of Downtown Pittsburgh’s Cultural District with The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust’s First Night® Pittsburgh 2011. This family-friendly community event is presented by The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, with generous support from lead sponsor Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield. During this momentous weekend of entertainment, the city will revel in a joyous celebration of the arts: dance, music, theater, comedy, magic, visual art and film, plus hands-on activities for children and adults.

“During this exciting weekend for Pittsburgh, First Night will serve as a gateway of fun and entertainment offering an incredibly diverse selection of programming on New Year’s Eve,” said David O’Brien, Executive Vice President, Government Services and External Affairs for Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield. “First Night presents a creative, affordable, and healthy New Year’s Eve celebration that makes the most of our city’s wealth of artistic talent. Highmark is proud to mark its fifth year as the lead sponsor of First Night.”

Adds Kathryn Heidemann, Director of First Night Pittsburgh: “We’re thrilled to welcome tens of thousands of First Night visitors, including the many Winter Classic patrons, to the heart of the Cultural District. The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust is proud to host this community event and to introduce Pittsburgh to premiere artists such as the Neo-Futurists, a Chicago-based theater company, and acclaimed saxophonist Tia Fuller, among many others.”

First Night® Pittsburgh begins at 6 pm with the Dollar Bank Children’s Fireworks Display and performances by One World Tribe on the Dollar Bank Stage, followed by the First Niagara First Night® Parade at 8 pm. This year’s parade will have a “Winter Wonderland” theme with penguin puppets and Iceburgh as a programming thread to the Winter Classic. The evening concludes with a performance by Tower of Power and the First Night® tradition, The Countdown to Midnight and Future of Pittsburgh Grand Finale atop Penn Avenue Place. The Highmark Stage, where all the First Night® revelry concludes, is located on Penn Avenue next to Fifth Avenue Place. The newest venue is the former Bally’s Building, which will have half a dozen workshops and activities.

Among the 125 events and activities held in 50 venues throughout the Cultural District, other special First Night® Pittsburgh attractions include the First National Bank Family Tent; Equitable Gas marquee performances featuring Squonk Opera at the Byham Theater and the Neo-Futurists at the O’Reilly Theater; Tia Fuller (who has performed with Beyoncé) at the Trust Arts Education Center; First Night Around the World international performances at the August Wilson Center for African American Culture and other venues. For a complete listing of events, visit or call 412-456-6666.


To join the celebration, simply purchase an all-access First Night® Pittsburgh 2011 Button. A First Night® button costs only $8 in advance, $10 at the door; children age 5 and under are admitted for free. First Night® buttons are available at participating Giant Eagle stores, at The Box Office at Theater Square, online at, and by calling 412-456-6666.

Due to their overwhelming popularity and limited seating in Cultural District theaters, a free General Admission Seating Voucher is necessary to see the performances of Squonk Opera, the Neo-Futurists, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, Attack Theatre, Dan Kamin, Pittsburgh Gospel All City Choir and Jason Hudy’s Magic Show. Vouchers are available at The Box Office at Theater Square beginning Wednesday, December 7, 2010. Simply show a First Night® button to obtain one seating voucher per production. The Box Office at Theater Square is located at 655 Penn Avenue between the O’Reilly Theater and Katz Plaza.

There will be general admission waiting lines for performances at all “vouchered” venues. Patrons will be seated on a space-available and first-come, first-served basis once voucher holders have been accommodated. Box Office hours are Monday-Saturday, 9 am to 9 pm and Sunday, noon to 6 pm.


First Night needs volunteers for numerous jobs–from button checkers to activity helpers to parade assistants. Families, co-workers, school groups and individuals of all ages are needed to help us ring in 2011 in a fun, alcohol-free, family-friendly way. To volunteer with First Night, sign up at


First Night® Pittsburgh 2011 Sponsors as of release date include: Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield as the lead sponsor, Dollar Bank, Equitable Gas, First National Bank, First Niagara Bank, Giant Eagle, and PNC.

First Night® Pittsburgh 2011 Community Supporters include County of Allegheny, The Buhl Foundation, The Grable Foundation, and Richard King Mellon Foundation.

First Night® Pittsburgh 2011 Media Partners include Trib Total Media, KDKA TV, BOB 96.9 FM, Q 92.9 FM, Radio Disney, STAR 100.7, WDUQ 90.5 FM, 91.3fm WYEP and Y108.


First Night® is the largest one-day outreach event of The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust. Founded in 1984, The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust has led the way for the creation and ongoing development of Pittsburgh’s award-winning Cultural District. Utilizing the arts as a means for transforming a formerly blighted downtown, the Cultural Trust today welcomes over a million visitors annually to thousands of performances, gallery exhibitions and community events.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Jason Hall's The Tulip Brothers Reading Announced

Media Contacts:

Melissa Hill Grande – 412.561.6000 x203 or



New Classics announces new date for first reading

The Tulip Brothers by Jason Hall on Sunday, December 12th

Pittsburgh, PA -- November 22, 2010. The New Classics series begins its second season on Sunday, December 12th at 7:30 p.m. with Jason Hall’s play The Tulip Brothers, directed by Melissa Hill Grande. New Classics is a cooperative program presented by the University of Pittsburgh’s Department of Theatre Arts and Pittsburgh Irish & Classical Theatre. The series is intended to highlight new works and showcase up-and-coming early-career playwrights.

The reading is free and open to the public, and will be followed by a talk-back with the cast and audience. The moderators will be series coordinators Grande and David Peterson, a graduate student in the Ph.D. program of the Department of Theatre Arts.  Please note that the New Classics reading of "The Tulip Brothers" will be in the Henry Heymann Theatre, located in the Stephen Foster Memorial in Oakland.

The reading will feature actors from the University of Pittsburgh Department of Theatre Arts, including Aric Hudson, Brendan Schatzki, Andrew Sours, Joanna Getting, Erin Collopy and John Michnya.

The Tulip Brothers is about a family in conflict in 17th century Holland. The tulip bulb market is on the rise, and Nils DeGroot believes this is his opportunity to make his fortune and gain independence from the stench of the bleaching mill. He needs help, but brother Pieter knows that life offers up no assurances beyond the sin of mankind. With one brother betting on the future and another cynical of the past, Nils wagers more than he can afford while Pieter must pay a price he did not expect.

Jason Hall is a third-year M.F.A. student in Ohio University's playwriting program and the recipient of the 2010 Scott McPherson Playwriting Award. He has recently received the Anthony Trisolini Fellowship to write a play about active mountain-top removal coal mining occurring near a West Virginia elementary school. A Student Enhancement Award (SEA) will fund a second public reading of The Tulip Brothers at Chicago's Tony Award-winning Victory Gardens Theater this spring. Jason's short plays have been performed at the Minnesota Fringe Festival, Chicago's n.u.f.a.n Ensemble, and presented at the Mid-America Theater Conference. In 2009 a feature film Jason wrote and directed, The Ballad of Faith Divine, won the Best Feature award at Ohio's Colony Film Festival. He is preparing Kate and Comet, a darkly comic play about women fighting to hold their own in the workplace of 1950s live television, for production in this spring's Seabury Quinn, Jr., Playwrights Festival.

Melissa Hill Grande is the associate artistic director and director of marketing for Pittsburgh Irish & Classical Theatre. A three-time graduate of Ohio University, she holds a BFA in Production Design and Technology with an emphasis on Costume Design, an MA in Theater History and Criticism, and an MFA in Directing. Local directing credits include productions for PICT, Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre Company, Phase 3 Productions, Pittsburgh Shakespeare in the Parks, No Name Players’ SWAN Day, and Pittsburgh Pride Theatre Festival.

Persons who are unable to attend the reading in person will be able to view it online via LIPLO™ (Live and in Person, Live and Online), a new internet technology pioneered by PICT Operations Director Stephanie Riso and Alex Geis. Geis of 21 Productions and videographer Randy Griffith of RLG Creations will live-broadcast the readings, and viewers will be able to respond via live chat as they watch the performances on the LIPLO™ website,

For more information about “New Classics,” contact Melissa Grande at 412.561.6000 x203 or
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The University of Pittsburgh’s Department of Theatre Arts (founded in 1982) offers the BA, MA, MFA and PhD degrees in Theatre Arts. All faculty members are active in both teaching and artistic / research activities. The department shares a philosophy of theatre education, the chief feature of which is the firm conviction that theory and practice, academic and creative work, and educational and professional theatre must be integrated for a successful program of theatre education. The University of Pittsburgh Repertory Theatre is the department’s flagship theatre company with performance spaces in the landmark Stephen Foster Memorial and the Cathedral of Learning.

Pittsburgh Irish and Classical Theatre was founded in 1996 to diversify the region’s theatrical offerings by providing Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania audiences with high-quality, text-driven, affordable productions of classical theatre and the works of classical and contemporary Irish playwrights and to significantly improve employment opportunities for local talent in all facets of theatrical presentation and production. PICT is a Small Professional Theatre (SPT) affiliated with Actors’ Equity Association, and a constituent member of Theatre Communications Group (TCG) and the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council. PICT is the Professional Theatre in Residence at the University of Pittsburgh and PICT productions at the Charity Randall and Henry Heymann Theatres are presented in cooperation with the University of Pittsburgh – Department of Theatre Arts.

Power of 32 Celebrates Community Conversations


CONTACT: Melissa Marullo


Power of 32 Concludes Its First Public Phase

More than 3,000 Residents Attended a Community Conversation

PITTSBURGH, PA (December 1, 2010) Power of 32—the regional visioning initiative for 32 counties in the Maryland panhandle, eastern Ohio, southwestern Pennsylvania, and West Virginia’s mid-central and panhandle—completed its Listening Phase with more than 150 public input sessions since June 2010, including Conversations in Downtown Pittsburgh, Homestead, Carnegie, Monroeville, Mt. Lebanon, Penn Hills, Wilkinsburg, McKeesport, South Park, Franklin Park, Allison Park, Dormont, Squirrel Hill, Natrona Heights, and Sharpsburg.

Community Conversations were the first of three public phases of Power of 32 and represent more than 7,000 hours of deliberative democracy. The number of events, as well as the number of participants, exceeded the initiative’s goal by more than 50%. Originally scheduled to conclude at the end of September, Community Conversations continued through mid-November to assure voices representing all of region’s demographic groups were included.

“Power of 32 is creating an ambitious agenda for our region’s future built on the ideas and concerns of the thousands of people who attended Community Conversations and actively participated in the process,” reports Selena Schmidt, Power of 32 executive director. “Church members, church groups, Rotarians, young professionals, students, teachers, CEOs, seniors, and teens made sure their input is a part of what we work on as a region for the next 15 years.”

More than 120 trained volunteer facilitators led the discussion at the Community Conversation events. Participants, working in groups, considered four discussion questions:

· What does a thriving region look like?

· What key challenges must be addressed for our region to thrive, and what key strengths can we build on?

· What one or two possibilities must be pursued to ensure the region thrives? Why?

· It is 2025. What makes us most proud of our region, and what was key to getting us here?

Thousands of sticky notes captured the responses of each Community Conversation participant. The first step in the second public phase—Framing Solutions—will be to analyze those comments to determine common themes. The common themes, which will be announced in early 2011, will be the focus of facilitated Stakeholder Summits during the first quarter of 2011. By May 2011, Theme Teams composed of topic authorities will develop policy and program options to address the challenges and opportunities of their assigned theme. These options will be prepared for presentation to regional residents for prioritization during the third public phase of Power of 32—Create Regional Agenda—by June 2011.

“Power of 32 is the largest regional visioning initiative of its kind and is supported by 50 sponsors and a Steering Committee of 70 members representing public, private, and nonprofit sectors from across the region,” explains Michael Bernarding, chair of the Power of 32 Steering Committee. “Power of 32 is not just about the power of 32 counties. It’s about the power of 4.2 million people. We’re very pleased with the public response during Community Conversations and expect to engage thousands more people in the process of creating a regional agenda.”

Public officials will play an important role in the implementation of the regional agenda resulting from the Power of 32 regional visioning initiative. As of mid-November, more than 50 elected officials, including Allegheny County Councilman Rich Fitzgerald, signed a pledge “to support the public conversations initiated by the Power of 32 regional visioning project, and to be part of developing a Regional Agenda that results from the process.”

To see a full list of Community Conversations, visit
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Melissa Marullo
Project Assistant
Judith Kelly + Associates, LLC
Investment Building
239 Fourth Avenue - Suite 1811
Pittsburgh, PA 15222-1716
412.281.0995 - phone
412.281.0996 - fax

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Lewis & Clark Heritage Trail Discussion December 6th

Lewis and Clark National Heritage Trail Extension East of the Mississippi

Meeting with the National Park Service

Special Resources Study Team

Monday, December 6, 2010, 5:00-7:00 PM

Elizabeth Senior Citizen’s Center

206 3rd St. (Corner of 3rd and Plum St.)

Elizabeth, PA 15037

Elizabeth is easily reached by PA Route 51.

Please visit for a list of all the National Park Service Public Meetings and a newsletter regarding the Eastern Legacy Special Resource Study. Please visit to answer these questions online.

The National Park Service Special Resources Study Team conducting the Lewis and Clark Heritage Trail (LCNHT) Eastern Legacy Study has selected the LCHNT Monongahela River Chapter over larger demographics to hold an investigational meeting, on December 6, 2010, to gathering public opinion.

It is extremely important that each member of the Lewis & Clark Trail Heritage Foundation and our friends provide comments concerning this great opportunity. This is your time to make your feelings known, through a report to be sent to Congress. The Extension East will be beneficial to the entire Nation as well as a particular boon to our region.

A great Nation deserves great trails. Please consider these benefits relative to the completion of  the LCNHT. A completed sea-to-sea trail will tell the full story, including the pre-exploration phase of planning, provisioning and staffing for the expedition. The post exploration phase will explain discoveries made during the epoch journey as they were reported to President Thomas Jefferson and the Nation. Other historical events in our Nation’s history are interpreted through the cause-event effect on our history and the same should be done with the Lewis & Clark story.

The educational benefits, especially east of the Mississippi River, will be greatly improved in classroom or out-of-doors settings. There is nothing like the NPS-LCNHT “Two Captains Pointing the Way” Signs to attract the attention of children and adults. This is another resource for teachers in the east, just as it has been in the west for many years. All tools should be made available to enlighten and motivate students of all ages about their history and legacy. Scholars during the last 20 years have found new primary source documents and collections that shed new light on the full story of the Lewis & Clark expedition. It is now time to complete the LCNHT so that everyone can learn the lessons of perseverance, determination, shared responsibility, and respect for their fellowman of all cultures as experienced during the expedition.

Tourism will be enhanced because of those same “Two Captains” signs through increased communications, publications, and opportunities for volunteers of all ages. A completed trail will be a truly continental trail that leads easterners to see the beautiful western country and western citizens will be enticed to travel east to see original historic building like Monticello, Charlottesville, VA and Historic Locust Grove, Louisville, KY or the White House at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington DC. These are homes visited by Meriwether Lewis, William Clark and other members of the expedition including York and the Tribal delegations that visited Thomas Jefferson as diplomats from their respective Nations. All of these homes are connected by beautiful vistas along rivers and highways.  While traveling the trail in the east, everyone should take advantage of the opportunity to see original documents or material collected during the exploration of the west, including the original hand written Journals of the Lewis & Clark Expedition housed in the American Philosophical Society in Philadelphia, PA.

The health benefits of a trail experience are entwined in points 2 and 3 but have a major impact on all of us. Hiking, canoeing, geocaching or any kinds of out-of-doors experience is beneficial to a healthy life style. A good brisk 30-minute walk or even better, a ½ day hike/bike along a segment of the trail, in the city or countryside, is good for the mind and body. At this time when our country is struggling with health issues of great magnitude, the trails, especially the LCNHT, need to be available to the entire population of our Nation from coast to coast.

The Lewis & Clark Trail Heritage Foundation sees this as not an effort to start a new trail but to complete the trail advanced since 1969, pre-dating the Congressional designated Lewis & Clark National Historic Trail by nearly 10 years, as an outgrowth of the Lewis & Clark Commission (1965). The Foundation has been involved in trail improvements and education from day one, and advances NPS efforts.

A great Nation deserves great trails.

Please join in providing comments relative to completion of the LCNHT.







DECEMBER 21-26, 2010


CIRQUE DREAMS HOLIDAZE is an original musical extravaganza of ornaments that come to life when costumed characters perform astonishing feats that celebrate the holiday season with spectacle, imagination and whimsical dreams. An international cast of 30 artists transform into gingerbread men flipping mid air, toy soldiers marching on thin wires, snowmen daringly balancing, icemen powerfully sculpting, penguins spinning, puppets caroling and reindeer soaring high above a landscape of holiday wonderment. Some holiday favorites accompany an original musical score with hundreds of spectacular costumes adorning a magical tree of dreams in a setting of gigantic gifts, colossal candy canes and 30-foot tall towering toy soldiers.

Says Creator/Director Goldberg, “Cirque Dreams Holidaze follows in the spirit of the Cirque Dreams entertainment brand first established in 1993…to produce high quality, affordable family entertainment that blends multiple performance genres and Broadway theatrics with international talent, European and American circus artistry and limitless imagination.”

More than 50 million fans worldwide have attended a Cirque Dreams show in the past decade. Critics and audiences alike have praised Cirque Dreams shows as “the grandest circus spectacle east of Vegas” (New York Magazine); “a whiz-bang family friendly spectacle” (Los Angeles Times); and "brilliantly conceived entertainment for multiple generations" (Chicago Tribune). In 2009, Cirque Productions premiered the first touring season of CIRQUE DREAMS HOLIDAZE, grossing more than 10 million dollars in ticket sales, breaking box office records and entertaining more than 200,000 spectators. In 2008, Cirque Dreams made Broadway history by presenting Goldberg’s CIRQUE DREAMS JUNGLE FANTASY at the Broadway Theatre, the first and only show of its kind to ever perform on Broadway. The production recently remounted for a limited 2010 summer engagement at the MGM Grand/Foxwoods featuring the original pop princess Debbie Gibson, in the singing role of Mother Nature. A new year-round version of the show will open December 1, 2010 at Busch Gardens Tampa. Currently, CIRQUE DREAMS ILLUMINATION, Goldberg’s new show of street-smart stunts turned acrobatic stage spectacle is touring the U.S. A first-ever CIRQUE DREAMS & DINNER theatrical dining extravaganza on board the new Norwegian EPIC cruise line has been declared "a groundbreaking spectacle among the best, if not the best we have seen at sea" (USA Today). Between now and the end of 2010, Cirque Dreams brand shows will perform in more than 35 cities across the nation.

For more information, visit:

Become a Facebook Fan:

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View our videos on YouTube:

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ADDITIONAL PRESS INFORMATION & HI RES PHOTOS AVAILABLE AT:, PA: CIRQUE DREAMS HOLIDAZE lights up the 2010 holiday season when it transforms the Heinz Hall stage into a wonderland of fantasy and disbelief, Tuesday, December 21, through Sunday, December 26, 2010. Cirque Dreams, an American theatrical production company, brings its critically acclaimed entertainment brand to Pittsburgh for 8 glorious holiday performances. CIRQUE DREAMS HOLIDAZE is a special production of PNC Broadway Across America – Pittsburgh, presented by The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, Pittsburgh Symphony and Broadway Across America.

Created and directed by Neil Goldberg, creator of the groundbreaking Broadway hit CIRQUE DREAMS JUNGLE FANTASY, CIRQUE DREAMS HOLIDAZE is "so full of energy it could end our dependence on oil" according to the New York Daily News and "a delicious confection of charm, sparkle and talent by the sleigh load." The Rochester Democrat and Chronicle raves, "even the Grinch would be impressed with this Christmas wonderland." "Stuffed with so much holiday cheer and audacious acts, Scrooge would exit with a big ol' smile on his face," hails the Erie Times News about this "Broadway-worthy spectacle." "The perfect way to come in from the cold, forget the holiday stresses and find the magic of the season" proclaims The Oakland Press.

Tickets ($22-$64) are available by calling (412)392-4900, visiting the Box Office at Theater Square (655 Penn Avenue) or online at For more information about the PNC Broadway Across America-Pittsburgh 2010-2011 subscription series, please call (412) 456-1390. Groups of 10 or more may call (412) 392-4819. Performances of CIRQUE DREAMS HOLIDAZE at Heinz Hall will be held Tuesday, December 21, through Sunday, December 26, 2010: Tuesday at 7:30 p.m.; Wednesday and Thursday at 1 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.; Friday at 1 p.m.; and Sunday at 1 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.