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Daddy Long Legs is Delightfully Charismatic.

Daddy Long Legs, a relatively new production based on the Jean Webster novel penned in 1912, made its way to the stage of Pittsburgh Public Theater for their most recent production. The Public doesn’t play too much in the waters of musical theater, peppering shows like My Fair Lady into the more classical theatrics the audience become accustomed to. Before I sat down for the first act, I heard a fair amount of people talking about the fact that…

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Josh Mitchel’s Dual Gallery Opening Is Phenomenally Emotive

There are shows that display nice art, and then there are shows that make art, art. Josh Mitchel’s dual exhibit “Hidden In Plain Sight // A Collision of the Second Self” completely envelops what art is meant to do, create a narrative through imagery, and command self-reflection. Mitchel, one of the area’s most talented artists, cemented his relevancy with the show, which encompassed 707 and 709 gallery. Mitchel’s detail and poignancy is riveting, screaming to be dissected. Stripping ourselves…

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CLO’s Pump Boys and Dinettes is Kitchy Fun

Pump Boys and Dinettes, a musical comedy written by Jim Wann and Mark Hardwick in the late 70’s, opened at the CLO, bringing a light-hearted repertoire of melodies to a mixed bag of theater and non-theater folk. The wide-spanning show follows slack-jawed gas station attendants (Pump Boys) and spit-fire waitresses (Dinettes) through a back and forth war of songs and dances, all the while exploring the mysteries of catfish (Actual catfish, not MTV catfish), dating, the mystique of Dolly…

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New Exhibit Gives Bird’s Eye View Into Hit Film, “Fences”

Paramount Pictures and Denzel Washington in collaboration with The August Wilson Center, recently opened Fences Up Close: A Pittsburgh Story, an exhibit featuring original props, video interviews, photos, and a custom-built setting from the film. Fences is one of 2017’s most prolific Pittsburgh-centric movies. Filmed in The Hill District, the adaptation from playwright, August Wilson, follows the path of Troy Maxson, an ex-con and talented baseball player who eventually found himself in waste management. Now struggling to make ends…

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Celebrating MLK, Words, and Activism at “Poetry Unplugged”

  There is little doubt that Martin Luther King was one of the greatest orators of his or any generation. As we celebrate his legacy this January, it was fitting that the power of words were on display at the August Wilson Center this past Friday for their Poetry Unplugged event. The atmosphere was club-like: DJs, dim lights, and drinks all contributed to an upbeat mood; however, the reality of what was being celebrated was never in the background….

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#LOCALartIS: Darshell. Hepner. Giaramita.

Kierra Darshell: Female Impersonator. Diva. More Diva. Kierra Darshell took the reigns as a female impersonator for the Pittsburgh area some 20 years ago. And since then, Darshell has redefined the art of drag with a record-setting 24-year run presenting the Miss Tri-State pageant, an event which celebrates drag queens from around the area. Darshell also graced the stage as the opening act for Patti Labelle at the 2011 Pittsburgh Pride Fest, appeared in “Cats” at The Lambada Ball,…

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Hannah Altman’s Luminous/Weightless Opening

Photographer Hannah Altman recently opened her solo show, Luminous/Weightless at The Lantern in Downtown Pittsburgh. The exhibit highlighted Altman’s intimate and provocative work of the female form, showing the power of femininity while embracing a moody undertone. Altman’s exhibit is displayed under dim lighting, as each one of her photographs is illuminated through a light-box frame with perforations in each image shining through specific aspects of the subject matter. The placement of each hole creates an eccentric point of…

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Double Threat: Second Cast of Jekyll and Hyde Delights, Inspires.

Twenty-Five years ago, Pittsburgh Musical Theater (PMT) opened its doors to a city that was still cultivating its arts scene. Now, the second largest arts community in the nation, only second to New York, Pittsburgh offers a diverse palette of theater, visual arts, dance, and other mediums. Also within those 25 years, PMT has become a juggernaut in the independent theater scene. Their philosophies are to cultivate and encourage talent to reach for the stars, but to also put…

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PMT’s Jekyll and Hyde is a Dark Labyrinth of Fantastic

Pittsburgh Musical Theater kicked off their 25th anniversary season with a conservatory-lead production of the famed horror drama musical, Jekyll and Hyde. The story follows Dr. Henry Jekyll as he fights public approval to create a formula to separate evil tendencies from the human personality. While his intentions were noble, the execution of the plan goes awry and leads to an untimely series of catastrophic events. As with any-student run production, one would expect some holes in the armor,…

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Yinz Musicals. An interview with Steve Cuden

Steve Cuden, a native Pittsburgher, has worked in Hollywood as an animation writer for two decades, penning episodes for popular series like X-Men, Batman, and Iron Man . He has directed, produced, and recently started teaching screenwriting at Point Park University. Cuden recently visited PMT to meet with the students at the Richard E. Ruah Conservatory, who are putting on Jekyll and Hyde, a musical in which he gained critical acclaim as a writer. He also took a few…

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