Friday, March 4, 2011

New Classics presents Hangin' Up My Heart

Media Contacts:

Melissa Hill Grande – 412.561.6000 x203 or

Josh Storey – 412.624.0933 or



New Classics presents Hangin’ Up My Heart in March

Michael Schwartz play explores the healing powers of love

Pittsburgh, PA -- March 1, 2011. The New Classics Series returns on Sunday, March 27th at 7:00 p.m. with Michael Schwartz’ play Hangin’ Up My Heart, directed by Michael Fuller and performed in the Henry Heymann Theatre at the Stephen Foster Memorial in Oakland. 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 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 director Michael Fuller and David Peterson, a graduate student in the Ph.D. program of the Department of Theatre Arts.

The reading will showcase the talent of actors from the University of Pittsburgh Department of Theatre Arts, including Kevin Christian, Amanda Leslie, Dylan Meyers, Fred Pelzer, Maria Polombo, and Andrew Sours. PICT alum Ben Blazer, a University of Pittsburgh graduate who holds an MFA in acting from the University of South Carolina, will also be featured.

Hangin' Up My Heart tells two (maybe three) love stories over the course of a rainy Memorial Day weekend at a public swimming pool in a small town in Tennessee. The lifeguards, and a couple of visitors, try to run away, settle down, start over, or just plain get started over plenty of beers and plenty of country music on the town's only radio station. By the end of the weekend, the characters might discover the healing power of love.

Author Michael Schwartz is an instructor, director, performer, playwright and dramaturg in the Philadelphia area. Other plays include Istanbul (Not Constantinople) and Say Hi to Rose Rabbit for Me, as well as a number of one-acts and 10-minute plays. Mike received his Ph.D. from the University of Pittsburgh in Theatre Arts in December 2007. His book, “Broadway and Corporate Capitalism: The Rise of the Professional Managerial Class 1900-1920” was published by Palgrave Macmillan in July 2009, and was nominated for the Bernard Hewitt for Outstanding Research in Theatre History.

Director Michael Fuller works as a professional actor, teacher/director, and filmmaker in the Pittsburgh area. Some of his favorite performances include: Happy in Death of a Salesman at Point Park’s Repertory company, and Moss in Glengarry Glen Ross with barebones productions. His PICT credits include Pride and Prejudice and Beautiful Dreamers, and he will return to PICT this summer in Alan Ayckbourn’s House and Garden. Fuller teaches in the theatre departments at Point Park University and Pittsburgh’s CAPA 6-12, where he has directed a number of projects, including: A Midsummer Night’s Dream, You Can’t Take It With You, and most recently, Richard Wilbur’s translation of Moliere’s The Learned Ladies. He particularly enjoys directing original pieces of theatre that he creates with his students at CAPA, combining both live performance and filmed elements.

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,

No reservations are required, and the reading is free of charge. For more information about “New Classics,” contact Melissa Grande at, 412.561.6000 x203, or Josh Storey at, 412.624.0933.

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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.

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