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

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