Winter Preview 2017

5A letter from the Editor:

Our dearest readers,

Winter is only 24 days away and we’re already dashing through Christmas decorations and Cyber Monday sales as 2108 creeps up on us. 2017 has gone fast and we at Pittsburgh in the Round are picking up speed too! So far this year alone we’ve reviewed 151 plays and written 84 feature articles, blowing last year’s statistics out of the water! Even though some of our long-time writers have moved on to greener pastures, our team has ballooned up to 17 regular contributors bringing you the most consistent coverage that we can. We even have our first high school intern!

Beyond this preview, we’ll be bringing you some insights on Ted Pappas’s final shows at the Pittsburgh Public, the Pittsburgh Opera’s World Premiere Ashes and Snow, and a few tips on theatre etiquette from some of the pros. We will also continue to introduce you to the people that make up Pittsburgh’s vibrant theater community through our Artist Spotlight series.

2017 has been a very big year for us and 2018 will be even bigger as Pittsburgh’s theatre community continues to grow with us. We want to thank those of you that have and continue to support us through your engagement with us and simply being readers. Most importantly, we want to thank you for supporting local theaters and companies and helping the arts grow and thrive in Pittsburgh. Remember, if you would like to sponsor us or purchase advertisements on the site, contact info@pghintheround.com.

We would love to hear from our readers and follow along with your theater adventures so keep in touch with us on our FacebookTwitter, or Instagram using the hashtag #WinterwithPITR. To stay up to date on everything we’re getting into, click here to join our email list! Weekly updates straight to your inbox every Thursday.

Happy holidays from all of us here at Pittsburgh in the Round, now get out there and enjoy some theater!

Mara E. Nadolski


Let’s start off with the Top 5 shows we’re looking forward to this winter:

KINETIC-LOVE-LARGE-SQUARE-1#5 – Love, Love, Love by Kinetic Theatre:  Produced in association with Cockroach Theatre in Las Vegas, we follow a London couple from the summer of love in 1967 through the peaks and inevitable downfall of their relationship through present day. Playwright, and Olivier Award winner Mike Bartlett forces us to think about the baby boomer generation and its effect on our current state of life. Love, Love, Love starts previews November 30 and runs through December 17. For tickets and more information, click here

CT1712_AbsoluteBrightness_573x437 (1)#4 – The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey by City Theatre: Known for their commitment to producing new plays, City Theatre stays true to their mission with The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey. In this one-man show by Academy Award winner James Lecesne, a teenaged Leonard Pelkey goes missing and it’s up to one detective and a team of the town’s citizens to find out what happened to him. Inspired by Leonard’s absence, the locals start to question everything about their lives and realize that it’s okay to be different. Catch this heartwarming comedy at City Theatre starting January 20 through February 18. For tickets and more information, click here.

heat-of-the-night-IMG_7327-300x216 (1)#3 – In the Heat of the Night by Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre Company: From a book to a movie to a TV series in the 60’s, In the Heat of the Night finally makes its way to the stage at Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre. First produced in 2010, the story follows that of the original novel and subsequent adaptations. Virgil Tibbs, a detective from California, is arrested and wrongly accused of a murder of a white man in 1962 Alabama but slowly becomes the town’s only hope of solving such a brutal homicide. In the Heat of the Night runs at Pittsburgh Playwrights’ downtown space from February 2 through March 11. For tickets and more information, click here.

Screenshot (22)#2 – Inside Passage by Quantum Theatre: Gab Cody has been a staple in the Pittsburgh playwrighting community for years. After producing her play Fat Beckett with Quantum during their 2011-2012 season she’s back with a more personal story. Cody was born in Juneau, Alaska. When she was five her parents divorced causing her to move back to the east coast with her mother, leaving behind three siblings and two Tlinget Indian foster siblings. In this mash up of documentary film, music, and performance, Cody goes on an adventure to reconnect with her long-lost foster siblings. Inside Passage opens at a yet to be determined location March 2. For tickets and more information, click here

2017Mast-EvilDead#1 – Evil Dead the Musical by Pittsburgh Musical Theater: First in their new “After Hours” series, Pittsburgh Musical Theater heads to the West End for their Pro Series in the Gargaro Theater. Based on the 1980’s movie franchise of the same name, five college students, led by our hero Ash Williams, head to a cabin in the woods for Spring Break. After some light basement exploration, they find the Book of the Dead and accidentally unleash a spirit that slowly turns them all into demons! Running in repertory with PMT’s We Will Rock You, Evil Dead runs weekends starting February 2. The show starts at 10:30pm so make sure you find a babysitter because this production is definitely not recommended for children. For tickets and more information click here.

For more on the musicals coming up this season, check out George’s list of the 5 Musicals You Don’t Want to Miss This Winter!

Christmas is coming soon and you know what that means? Christmas shows! Read up on this season’s offerings in Brian’s article here. 

Pittsburgh’s theatre community is constantly growing and morphing. A few new theaters have popped up recently and we got some insider info for you! Check out Eva’s talks with the Glitterbox in North Oakland and Meredith’s interview with Aftershock Theatre in Lawrenceville.

We broke some pretty big records this Fall! In case you missed out on any of our adventures, here are some highlights from the last three months:

Six a Breast: The Absurd Life of Women by Corningworks

Henry V by Pittsburgh Shakespeare in the Parks

Boeing, Boeing at the Apple Hill Playhouse

Some Assembly Required by Attack Theatre

Angelmakers: Songs for Female Serial Killers by Real/Time Interventions

Belfast Girls by the Ghostlight Theatre Troupe

Romeo and Juliet by PICT Classic Theatre

Unhinged  by Cup-A-Jo Productions

HMS Pinafore by the Pittsburgh Savoyards

Equus at the Pittsburgh Public Theater

I Won’t Be in on Monday by off the WALL Productions

The Impresaria and Djamileh by Undercroft Opera

Arsenic and Old Lace at the McKeesport Little Theater

The Busy Body  by the Duquesne Red Masquers

All Quiet on the Western Front by Prime Stage

The Marriage of Figaro at the Pittsburgh Opera

Fall Preview 2017

Fall Logo

A Letter from the Editor,

Our dear readers, we’ve made it through another summer season! After 40 reviews and 14 features this summer, we’re ready to dig out our sweaters, put on the kettle and continue to keep you up to date with everything local theater. We’ve got some pretty big things coming up for us in the next three months and we can’t wait to share it with you! In addition to everything in this Preview, we’ll also be giving you the scoop on Bricolage Production Company’s latest Immersive Encounter Dodo , The Pittsburgh Playwrights upcoming season, checking in with off the WALL, and  giving you Part 3 of our coverage of the Pittsburgh New Works Festival.

There is plenty to keep us busy this fall and we don’t want you to miss a thing! We would love to hear from our readers and follow along with your autumn theater adventures so keep in touch with us on our FacebookTwitter, Instagram, or Email List and by using the hashtag #FallwithPITR.

If your theater or business would like to feature any advertising on the website for any of the upcoming content this busy season, don’t forget to reserve your spot well in advance! Please don’t hesitate to contact us at about rates and packages at info@pghintheround.com.

Here’s to looking forward to another busy Fall season,

Mara E. Nadolski
Editor in Chief, Pittsburgh in the Round


 

Let’s start off with our Top 5 productions we’re looking forward to this Fall!

quiet#5: All Quiet on the Western Front – Prime Stage: Prime Stage Theatre is known for their productions of shows adapted from literature and this season opener holds true to their nature. Prime Stage honors veterans and those serving our country by partnering with Soldiers and Sailors Hall for this US premiere of the classic World War I novel by Erich Maria Remarque. All Quiet on the Western Front opens at the New Hazlett Theatre November 4.

Tickets and more information can be found here. 

rj-431x500#4: Romeo and Juliet – PICT Classic Theatre: After bringing us productions of Macbeth and The Merchant of Venice in previous seasons, PICT is taking on one of Shakespeare’s best-known tragedies this season with their 100th show! The classic tale of two star-crossed lovers and their clashing families comes to life in a new location at the famous Fred Rogers Studio at WQED in Oakland. PICT has chosen the 1930’s in New York’s Little Italy as the setting for this rendition of Romeo and Juliet which officially opens Saturday, October 21st. For tickets and more information click here. 

Attack Theatre's presentation of "Assemble This" at the August Wilson Center in Pittsburgh. © Martha Rial 2/17/2010

#3: Some Assembly Required – Attack Theatre: In their 23rd season opener, Attack Theatre will be performing another round of original performances in their second production of Some Assembly Required. In this unique series, dancers tow the line between dancing, visual art, music, and even a bit of improv. This show requires input from the audience as to where the performance will go next, thus creating unique  performances with each show. Some Assembly Required opens at Contemporary Craft in the Strip District September 21. Tickets and more information can be found here.

DODO-1-880x420#2: Dodo – Bricolage Production Company: Bricolage’s latest immersive theatre adventure partners with the Carnegie Nexus initiative to bring us a sensory-based experience that brings together art and science while exploring public spaces. Held in the Carnegie Museums of Art and Natural History in Oakland, adventurers will embark on an experience that navigates through behind-the-scenes areas normally off limits to traditional museum visitors! Adventures being October 13 – find more information here. 

21055136_10155550641940797_7827704986490740316_o#1: Unhinged – Cup-a-Jo Productions: On the heels of their production of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf inside an actual home, Fringe Festival veterans Cup-a-Jo brings us a new undertaking with Unhinged. Part haunted house, part immersive experience, the highly experimental project promises to have something for everyone. Unhinged starts performances October 13 in an empty bowling alley in Etna. Cup-a-Jo advises we keep a close eye on their Facebook page for ticket links and performance updates.

Next stop on your Fall Preview tour is 5 Musicals You Don’t Want to Miss This Fall, click here to learn more!

Mark Clayton Southers brings a little history into the mix with his one-act play The Homestead Strike of 1892 in commemoration of the 125th anniversary of the clash between steelworkers and mill owners, opening September 15. Find out more in Yvonne’s article here. 

The New Hazlett Theatre will be starting up their 4th Community Supported Art Performance Series on October 26! See what they’re up to this season here. 

The Pittsburgh Public Theater’s Artistic Director Ted Pappas will be starting his final season there this year. Yvonne sat down with him to get the scoop on what he’s envisioning this season! Click here to read more!

Pittsburgh Shakespeare in the Parks is at it again this year with Henry V, find out more about their 13th season here. 

Quantum Theatre may be in the middle of their run of Red Hills but how much do you know about Rachel Stevens, the director of their next production The Hard Problem? Check out our latest installment of our Artist Spotlight series here. 

See what else the Steel City has to offer this year with a few season previews of City Theatre from Brian, the Pittsburgh Opera from George, and the Lincoln Park Performing Arts Center from our High School Correspondent Emily!

The Pittsburgh New Works Festival is already in full swing, check out Part 1 and Part 2 of this year’s preview with Part 3 coming soon!

In case you missed it, check out our 2017 Collegiate Preview too!

We were pretty busy this summer, you might have missed a show or two. Don’t worry, here are some highlights from Summer 2017:

Annie at the Paliside Playhouse

Big Fish by Front Porch Theatricals

Cloud 9  by Throughline Theatre Company

Little Shop of Horrors at Comtra Theatre

Mr. Burns by 12 Peers Theater

Spamalot at Stage  62

Avenue Q by the Alumni Theatre Company

The Liar  by Kinetic Theatre

Seussical the Musical at the Apple Hill Playhouse

Pippin at The Theatre Factory

One Man, Two Guvnors at Little Lake Theatre

Sweeney Todd by the Pittsburgh Festival Opera

Collegiate Preview 2017

Collegiate LogoIt’s THAT time of year again ladies and gentleman! Time to settle back into your daily routine of books and classes for some of you, which means, rehearsals are starting soon! If you’ve been with us for a while, you’ll remember our first annual Collegiate Preview from 2016 but if you’re just joining us, welcome to the second annual Collegiate Preview 2017! We’ve got the inside scoop on our old friends at Pittsburgh’s four major universities, plus a check-in with our new friends at Carlow University!

Duquesne University’s student-run Red Masquer’s open their 105th season with Orphie and the Book of Heroes, followed by The Busy Body and some One Acts for Charity this fall, then starting the Spring semester with Macbeth and Equus just to finish it off with a weekend of new plays with Premieres XLI! Find out more in George’s article here. 

The 2017-2018 Subscription series at Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Drama includes The Matchmaker,  Love’s Labor’s Won, The Drowsy Chaperone, and A Bright Room Called Day. Don’t forget to check out their Director’s and New Works series throughout the school year. For more information on what CMU Drama will be bringing to the table, check out Robyne’s article here. 

We’ve got 8 shows for you from the Pittsburgh Playhouse, home to Point Park University’s Conservatory Theatre Company and their professional company The REP. Season offerings include The Scottsboro Boys, Kiss Me, Kate, Uncle Vanya, 42nd Street, You On the Moors Now,  The House of Bernarda Alba,  Gift of the Maji, and A Devil InsideClick here for Brian’s article about their upcoming season.

The University of Pittsburgh Stages brings us a clever mixture of musicals and straight plays in their 2017-2018 season. With classics like Little Shop of Horrors and Parade, to Our Town and Marie Antoinette hitting the stage this year, you’ll be sure to see the season closer Recoil, an original play written and directed by Cynthia Croot. Don’t forget to come back for their Student Lab shows too! Check out Mark’s article here for more details on what Pitt Stages has for us.

Last, but certainly not least, our new friends at Carlow University are presenting Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead this October. Be sure to check out Carlow alum Ringa’s piece about their theatre department here. 

Follow along with our Collegiate adventures on our Facebook, Twitterand Instagram with the hashtag #PITRUniversity! Sign up for our email list while you’re at it!

Summer Preview 2017

Summer Logo

A Letter from the Editor,

I would like to wish a happy unofficial start of summer to our marvelous readers! Because of you, we made it through another year here at Pittsburgh in the Round! As a special treat, we’ve put together one of our best season previews yet, including updates from old friends like MTAP and the Pittsburgh CLO, new friends like Split Stage Productions, and not one, but two Artist Spotlights!

Summertime is one of the busiest times of year for the Pittsburgh theater community, making it one of the busiest seasons for us here at Pittsburgh in the Round. There will be no shortage of reviews and articles and you may even see a few PITR exclusives!

With the release of this Summer Preview 2017, we’d also like to announce our latest Site Sponsor, the newly renamed Pittsburgh Festival Opera (formerly the Opera Theater of Pittsburgh). To find out more about their upcoming season, keep scrolling! If you or your theater or business would like to be featured in any of our advertising spots, please don’t hesitate to contact us at info@pghintheround.com!

Our team here keeps on growing so we’ll have plenty of content to keep you busy this summer. We would love to take this opportunity to thank all of you who continue to read the content we work so hard to bring you, engage with us on social media, and support all of these local theaters and companies that help the arts grow and thrive in Pittsburgh.

Here’s to another great summer,

Mara E. Nadolski
Editor in Chief, Pittsburgh in the Round


Let’s dive right into our Top 5 shows we’re looking forward to this summer!

Marcus Stevens (2)#5 – An Act of God – Pittsburgh Public Theater: A relatively new play, premiering on Broadway in 2015, An Act of God is a one-act comedy that originally started out as a series of tweets that evolved into the book of which the play was adapted from. Point Park University graduate Marcus Stevens plays God, joined by his sidekicks: angels Gabriel and Michael (John Shepard and Tim McGeever), in this comedy opening at the Pittsburgh Public June 9. For tickets and more information click here. 

#4 – Mr. Burns, a Post-Electric Play – 12 Peers Theater: Once you catch 12 Peer’s current production of Thom Pain: Based on Mr. Burns ImageNothing starring Pittsburgh’s own Matt Henderson, we’re sure you’ll be itching to see what else they have to offer. Opening August 3, Mr. Burns shoots us some years into the future after the apocalypse where we meet a handful of survivors trying to recreate a particular episode of “The Simpsons”. Fast forwarding into the future for Act 2, and even further for Act 3,  these reenactments become main forms of entertainment and eventually myths decades later. For tickets and more information, click here. 

#3 – Hot Metal Musicals – Musical Theatre Artists of Pittsburgh (MTAP): Since Email-Blast-Image-c.PG-Web1-copyits creation, MTAP has set out to help create and promote new musicals and the artists creating them in Pittsburgh. The incubator was established in 2011 by Erik Schark and is now currently led by executive director Stephanie Riso, managing director Jeanne Drennan, and advisor Steve Cuden. The first Hot Metal Musicals showcase in 2015 was one of our first major events of that year, and after seeing the talents Pittsburgh had to offer then, we’re sure this year’s showcase on July 17 will knock our socks off. For tickets and more information click here. 

#2 – Momentum Festival – City Theatre Company: City Theatre, known as yt17-momentum-featurePittsburgh’s home for new plays, delivers on their promise to keep things fresh and new again this year by finishing out their season with their annual page-to-stage festival: Momentum. Featuring 5 different staged readings, this year’s lineup will include not one, but two shows in progress that will be fully produced in their 2017-2018 season. Hop in for a meet and greet and a staged reading this weekend starting June 1! For more information, click here!

18556456_10155486793559873_589745343035013449_o#1 – WordPlay – Bricolage Production Company: Sure, for the second year in a row, we’ve named Bricolage’s storytelling show WordPlay the #1 show we’re looking forward to this summer. But this time, WordPlay is no ordinary WordPlay. This time, Bricolage as team up with PERSAD CENTER, the nation’s second oldest licensed mental health counseling center specifically created to serve the LGBTQ community. Featuring tunes by Tracksploitation and stories by Nyri Bakkalian, Brian Broome, Cindy Howes, kelly e. parker and Ciora Thomas. And, as usual, hosted by Creator and Co-Producer Alan Olifson. Don’t miss out on this special edition WordPlay this weekend, starting June 2. Tickets and more information can be found here

If musicals are more your style, don’t worry, George has our 5 Musicals You Don’t Want to Miss this Summer here. 

Learn a little more about the people you’ve been hearing about for all these years in our Artist Spotlight series. This time around we’ve got two for you! Get the scoop on costume designer Tony Sirk and musical theater actor Quinn Patrick Shannon. 

Our opera expert George is always a regular at the Pittsburgh Festival Opera’s summer shows so he’s got the inside scoop on their upcoming season hereThey’ve even commissioned a new opera they’ll be debuting this year, Nicole went a step further and got us some more information on the new show A Gathering of Sons. 

Throughline Theatre Company has a new home and a new season to tell us about! Ringa even got a sneak peak on their 3rd show, check it out here

If our Top 5 Musicals article wasn’t enough to meet your musical needs, George caught up with Split Stage Productions and the Pittsburgh CLO!

Kinetic Theatre Company has some fun planned for us this summer and fall, check out Stephen’s preview here. 

In preparation of MTAP’s upcoming Hot Metal Musicals this July, reacquaint yourself with the Musical Theatre Artists of Pittsburgh here. 

And last, but not least, a group of young Pittsburgh artists have come together to produce a cabaret night to showcase female talent in the industry to support Planned Parenthood, find out more here. 


 

Missing something? Here are some review highlights from the last few months!

Watch: A Haunting by Real/Time Interventions

The Philadelphia Story at Little Lake Theatre

La Rondine by Undercroft Opera

Anything Goes at McKeesport Little Theater

Falstaff by Resonance Works

The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Prime Stage

Hercules Didn’t Wade in the Water at Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre

Sive at PICT Classic Theatre

Tarzan by Pittsburgh Musical Theatre

Wife U at Carnegie Mellon Universtiy

The Summer King at the Pittsburgh Opera

What’s Missing?  by Corningworks

4.48 Psychosis at off the WALL

Collaborators by Quantum Theatre

Baltimore at the University of Pittsburgh

Sweet Charity at the Pittsburgh Playhouse

Bloody, Bloody Andrew Jackson by the Duquesne Red Masquers

Who’s Afraid of iVirginia Woolf? by Cup-A-Jo Productions

Spring Preview 2017

Spring 4A letter from the Editor,

According to Punxsutawney Phil, Spring is still another two weeks away, yet we couldn’t help but look ahead to the next three months and we are excited! Spring is a time for musicals, season finales and pulling out your light jacket in exchange for your winter coat.

Our writing team is continuing to grow and flourish so stay tuned for even more coverage of Pittsburgh’s theater scene coming up. We’ll be diving head first into the Fourth Annual Pittsburgh Fringe Festival at the end of March, finding out why Peter and the Starcatcher is such a popular show, not just in Pittsburgh but the rest of the country, and check in with some old friends like Little Lake Theater and the Musical Theatre Artists of Pittsburgh (MTAP).

We would love to hear from our readers and follow along with your theater adventures so keep in touch with us on our FacebookTwitter, or Instagram using the hashtag #SpringwithPITR.

Happy Spring!

Mara E. Nadolski


 

Let’s start off with the Top 5 shows we’re looking forward to this Spring!

scaled_256 (1)#5 – 4.48 Psychosis – off the WALL Productions: While maintaining their commitment to supporting the underrepresented female artist comes off the WALL Productions’ season finale: 4.48 Psychosis, author Sarah Kane’s final work before her untimely suicide. With a script that reads more like a poem, off the WALL will give us a peek inside Kane’s particular case of clinical depression. We’ll have a lot to think about in this Pittsburgh Premiere opening at Carnegie Stage April 21st.

For tickets and more information, click here. 

#4 – Oedipus Rex – PICT Classic Theatre: PICT oedipus-cutbounces into 2017 swinging with the Sophocles classic Oedipus Rex. A royal murder, a few prophecies, and a little incest are all one needs to realize you just can’t escape fate. Opening their third show at their new home in the Union Project, PICT promises many favorite Pittsburgh actors in this new take on a play that is well over two thousand years old starting March 23rd.

For tickets and more information, click here. 

15042008_908457625955605_6895723887467380350_o#3 – Patience – Pittsburgh Savoyards: Last seen from the Savoyards in 2009, Patience was one of Gilbert and Sullivan’s longest running shows when it opened in 1881. The story of a milkmaid stuck in an unwanted love triangle stars some Pittsburgh Savoyards’ favorites, like Mia Bonnewell and Board President Michael Greenstein. This classic satire opens March 3rd at the Andrew Carnegie Free Library and Music Hall.

For tickets and more information click here. 

Katrina-14512-492-300x200#2 – Hercules Didn’t Wade in the Water – Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre Company: Rounding out their 2017 season of world premieres, Pittsburgh Playwrights presents us with a drama, with comedy, set amongst the wreckage of one of the worst disasters in modern America: Hurricane Katrina. Playwrights’ regular Wali Jamal slides into the director’s role to guide us through the story of two sets of people just trying to survive. Hercules Didn’t Wade in the Water opens at Pittsburgh Playwrights May 6th.

For tickets and more information, click here. 

plaid-1#1 – Forever Plaid – The Lamp Theatre Players: After many ups and downs
getting here, The Lamp Theatre in Irwin, PA finally held its grand opening a little over six months ago. Since then they’ve held many events, from Split Stage Productions’ performances to classic rock cover bands. Now the Lamp has its own performing company, The Lamp Theatre Players, set to produce their inaugural show, Forever Plaid. The 1989 musical revue will open March 3rd, 80 years after the Lamp Theatre first opened its doors.

For tickets and more information, click here.

While we’ve got you, check out our Top 5 Musicals you don’t want to miss here!

Stage 62 is starting up their 55th season this year and we’ve got the inside scoop here.

Check out what 12 Peers Theater has up their sleeve this year in Mark’s preview here. 

There has been a lot of buzz surrounding the Pittsburgh Festival Opera lately, (formerly known as the Opera Theater of Pittsburgh’s SummerFest). We have an inside look at next installment of their Music That Matters A Gathering of Sons here. 

Get the scoop on all the hot parties and fundraisers with our roundup of Pittsburgh’s gala season. Check it out here. 

And once again, our busiest weekend of the year is rapidly approaching: the Pittsburgh Fringe Festival. Here are some highlights of what to expect this year.

Steel City Shakespeare will be announcing their 2017 season any minute now, brush up on your SCSC knowledge with our Jeffrey Chips Artist Spotlight. 

Winter got to be a busy season, here’s some of what we covered in the last few months:

Rust by the Duquesne Red Masquers

As One at the Pittsburgh Opera

The Complete History of America (abridged) at the Theatre Factory

The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee by the University of Pitt Stages

The Royale at City Theatre

Woody’s Order! at the Pittsburgh Playhouse

Twelfth Night at the Pittsburgh Public Theater

The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity by barebones productions

Cabaret by Split Stage Productions

Into the Woods at Comtra

Midnight Radio Holiday Spectacular at Bricolage

Mr. Marmalade at CMU

The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat by Quantum Theatre

Unbolted by Attack Theatre

 

 

 

Winter Preview 2016

Snowflake 6
A letter from the Editor

To our beloved readers,

The countdown has begun; there are just 21 days left until the first day of Winter and we have put together a preview sure to prepare you for a holiday season of new and exciting theater experiences. Even though things start to slow down in the winter, there are plenty of things to keep you entertained during the cold, dark evenings as Pittsburgh’s warm theater community invites you to step in from out of the cold and catch a show. There is plenty of holiday themed fun and even a few new plays to choose from this Winter season!

Beyond this preview, stay tuned for continuous coverage of Pittsburgh theater. We will be checking in with local companies, some new to the scene and some seasoned veterans. We will also continue to introduce you to the people that make up Pittsburgh’s vibrant theater community through our artists spotlight series.

On a business related note, we are officially a legal entity (LLC) recognized by the government (AKA the IRS, OMG!). Remember, if you would like to sponsor the site or purchase advertisements on the site, contact info@pghintheround.com.

Again, we want to thank those of you that have and continue to support us through your donations to our previous fundraising campaign, your engagement with us, and simply being readers. Most importantly, we want to thank you for supporting local theaters and companies and helping the arts grow and thrive in Pittsburgh.

We would love to hear from our readers and follow along with your theater adventures so keep in touch with us on our FacebookTwitter, or Instagram using the hashtag #WinterwithPITR.

Happy holidays from all of us here at Pittsburgh in the Round, now get out there and enjoy some theater!

Mara E. Nadolski

 


Let’s start off with the Top 5 shows we’re looking forward to this winter!

#5 – Eugene Onegin by Undercroft Opera: Usually sung in French, 10 year oldOneginPoster Undercroft Opera will be presenting this Tchaikovsky masterpiece in Russian as a concert. Originally premiering in Moscow in 1879, this story of unrequited love and regrets was last produced in Pittsburgh by the Pittsburgh Opera in 2009. Undercroft, a company known for giving performers “opera-tunities”, brings many opera veterans to the stage in this one night only event. Last seen in the Pittsburgh Savoyards’ production of Gianni Schicchi,  Eugene Onegin will bring Ian Greenlaw and Katie Manukyan together on the stage once again. For tickets and more information, check out Undercroft’s website here. 

#4 – Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf by Cup-a-Jo Productions: On the heels of their innovative 404501_10150601331240797_648691161_nproduction of Titus AndronicusCup-a-Jo brings us another twist on an old classic. A not-so-fun night of drinks with new colleagues turns dark and disastrous in the late Edward Albee’s absurdist drama. Starring company founder Joanna Lowe and Brett Sullivan Santry, Cup-a-Jo will drag us into an immersive universe complete with signature live music and of course, cocktails. Literally set within a living room, this production will give audiences “ultimate uncomfortable voyeuristic experience” says Lowe. Dates and more details to come, but for more information about Cup-a-Jo, click here.

#3 – The Lion in Winter by PICT Classic Theatre: The classic Christmas tale of King Lion-Final-WebHenry II and his dysfunctional family weaves through politics, conspiracies, and ruthlessness. The cast includes Pittsburgh favorites like Karen Baum and Tony Bingham, even PICT’s Artistic Director Alan Standford graces the stage as Henry himself in the company’s third production in their new space at the Union Project in Highland Park. As always, PICT is “committed to the creation of high-quality, professional thought-provoking theatre of substance” and we’re confident this production will be no different. The Lion in Winter begins previews Thursday December 1, for tickets and more information click here. 

#2 – Lungs by off the WALL: In the second production of their Mainstage scaled_256series, off the WALL brings us more of the quick-witted dramas the company is known for with Duncan MacMillan’s Lungs. On a mostly bare set, no costume changes, and little accoutrements, Sarah Silk and Alec Silberblatt will force audiences to focus on the important themes of the text, rather than superfluous theatrics in this production. This two person drama takes us on a ride over the course of a relationship as they battle with questions about their families, their aspirations and each other. Opening December 2 at Carnegie Stage. For tickets and more information, click here. 

#1 – The Royale by City Theatre: City Theatre continues to uphold its mission YT17-Feature-The-Royaleto be Pittsburgh’s home for new plays with their January premiere of The Royale. Known for writing and producing television shows like Sons of Anarchy and Orange is the New Black, Marco Ramirez’s Broadway debut play The Royale is inspired by the true story of turn of the century boxer Jack Johnson. DeSean Terry plays Jay “The Sport”Jackson in this drama about fighting more than just the other person in the ring. Jackson has eyes on the heavyweight championship but with the racial tension of 1905 that might be easier said than done. The Royale runs on City Theatre’s Mainstage January 21 – February 12. For tickets and more information, click here.

While we’ve got you, check out our Top 5 Musicals you don’t want to miss here!

In the mood for something a little more festive? Claire rounded up the Top 5 Holiday shows for you here.

Throughline Theatre Company has gotten a new Artistic Director! Meet Sean Sears here.

Speaking of new things, check out one of Pittsburgh’s newest theater companies, Jumping Jack Theater.

Curious about something a little more than theater? Check out Jason’s articles featuring slowdanger and The Space Upstairs.

Even Attack Theatre is loosening some screws in their upcoming show Unbolted.

We’ve been pretty busy this fall too! In case you missed anything, here are some highlights of the last three months:

Between Riverside and Crazy at the Pittsburgh Public Theater

Three Days in the Country by Kinetic Theatre

The Music Man by Stage 62

12 Angry Men by the McKeesport Little Theater

How I Learned to Drive by the Duquense Red Masquers

Salome by the Pittsburgh Opera

To Kill a Mockingbird by Prime Stage Theatre

Giselle by the Pittsburgh Ballet

Barefoot in the Park by The Theatre Factory

Prometheus Bound: A Puppet Tragedy at the Irman Freeman Center for Imagination

Pride and Prejudice by Steel City Shakespeare

Trial by Jury & Gianni Schicchi by the Pittsburgh Savoyards

The River by Quantum Theatre

The Toxic Avenger at the Pittsburgh CLO Cabaret

 

Fall Preview 2016

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A letter from the Editor,

To our fantastic readers,

We’ve done it; we made it through another Pittsburgh summer. Summer 2016 was a very big season for us. Not only did we review 34 shows and publish 15 features this summer, but we also successfully launched a fundraising campaign in June. Although we did not make our target goal, we did raise enough funds to continue moving forward and growing as an organization. We could not have done that without you: our loyal supporters. So thank you to our readers, from the bottom of my heart. If you missed out on our indiegogo and would still like the chance to make a donation, click here and you’ll be directed to our fiscal sponsor, New Sun Rising’s donation page.

With the release of this Fall Preview, we’d also like to announce the addition of advertising space on the site. If you or your theater or business would like to be featured in any of our advertising spots, please don’t hesitate to contact us at info@pghintheround.com!

There is plenty to keep us busy this fall and we don’t want you to miss a thing! We would love to hear from our readers and follow along with your autumn theater adventures so keep in touch with us on our Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram using the hashtag #FallwithPITR.

Here’s to Fall,

Mara E. Nadolski
Editor in Chief, Pittsburgh in the Round


Fall brings a lot of fun for us. The next few months are jam packed with plenty of new plays, old classics, and more than enough musicals. If you’re having trouble keeping up with all the theater happening in the ‘Burgh, never fear! We’ll keep you in the loop with our first annual Fall Preview 2016! Let’s start off with the Top 5 shows we’re looking forward to most this fall.

TheRiver-Webheader1#5 – The River at Quantum Theatre On the heels of a successful run of an adaptation of Lopa de Vega’s Peribañez, location based Quantum Theatre brings us another Jez Butterworth original: The River. In a very fitting location in Aspinwall along the Allegheny River, The River skillfully examines the nature of love, memories, and passions between a Man, a Woman and the Other Woman without spoon feeding its audience. Starring Pittsburgh favorites Siovhan Christiensen and Daina Michelle Griffith, and CMU Assistant Acting Professor, Andrew William Smith, The River runs October 7 through the 20th. For tickets and more information, click here.

#4 – Three Days in the Country by Kinetic Theatre Company – Kinetic bbvbnchTheatre makes it into our top 5 again this fall with Three Days in the Country: an adaptation by Patrick Marber of Ivan Turgenev’s 1854 play A Month in the Country. The romantic comedy has been inspiration for many other plays, an opera, a ballet, and even some works of Anton Chekhov. Filled with love triangles and misunderstandings, Three Days in the Country will open its U.S Premiere at the New Hazlett Theater November 18th and run through December 4. For tickets and more information, click here.

13934802_10154353582585797_7018449335951891274_n#3 – Titus Andronicus by Cup-A-Jo Productions – Pittsburgh in the Round has become very familiar with the work of Cup-A-Jo Productions over the years, from the Fringe Festival and the Pittsburgh New Works Festival to their solo works like The Sisters. Always pushing boundaries with new takes on classics, and almost always utilizing live music, Cup-A-Jo Productions’ upcoming show Titus Andronicus promises to be no different. Though Artistic Director Joanna Lowe says if you’re looking for some classic Shakespeare, you’re out of luck. This stripped down version of one of the most violent Shakespeare plays opens at Kim Barry’s outdoor Studio Sixthreefour September 30th. For tickets and more information, click here.

#2 – Enter the Imaginarium by Bricolage Production Company – Bricolage always has something new and interesting up their sleeves, and this project 13323354_1636677919918965_4701929111369954486_ois no different. Enter the Imaginarium is part immersive adventure, part escape room, all imagination. Bring a group of friends along to help you explore other worlds and solve puzzles or risk getting stuck forever! Partnered with Pittsburgh Halloween staple ScareHouse, Enter the Imaginarium is set to be open indefinitely in Harmar Township. Tickets are on sale now and previews start Friday September 9th. For tickets and more information, click here.

Poster-FINAL-web522#1 – An Accident by off the WALL ProductionsKnown for their mission to shed light on gender equality in the arts, off the WALL Productions at Carnegie Stage brings us a captivating drama by Lydia Stryk. Loosely based on the recovery process the playwright herself went through years ago, critics have called it a “visceral and emotional story about recovery…and even the discovery of self.” Though the play is a fictionalization of the life events of the playwright, many of the show’s themes reign true. An Accident runs at Carnegie Stage starting Friday October 14th. For tickets and more information, click here.

Check out the Top 5 Musicals You Don’t Want to Miss this Fall here.

There are so many companies starting their 2016-2017 seasons this fall and here are the highlights:

  • City Theatre Company is bringing a diverse selection of productions to the stage from playwrights of all backgrounds this season. Learn about the lineup here.
  • McKeesport Little Theater is a very self-aware theatre. They’ll be bringing us some classics while taking a risk or two this season. Find out more here.
  • PICT Classic Theatre has a new home for the new season! Get all the information you need about the space and the upcoming season, plus our interview with Artistic Director Alan Stanford. All right here!
  • Pittsburgh Opera starts up their 78th season this October with La Traviata. Find out more about their favorites filled season here.
  • Prime Stage is celebrating 20 years of theater! This year’s lineup includes two classic novels and another exclusive premiere of a more contemporary novel based right here in Pittsburgh! Get the Full scoop on Prime Stages’s 20th Anniversary season here.

The Pittsburgh Savoyards, one of Pittsburgh’s oldest companies, opens their 79th season in October. Yvonne got to chat with some of the current members about their future, check it out here.

Maybe dance is more your speed. Chloe got to chat with Attack Theatre and CORNINGWORKS about their upcoming shows. See what you should expect here.

Pittsburgh Shakespeare in the Parks is at it again, this time with The Comedy of Errors. See what they’re up to here.

The Pittsburgh New Works Festival begun their 26th season last month. Various new productions are being staged every weekend in September, find out what which shows you want to see here.

A few weeks ago we posted our first annual Collegiate Preview, now’s your chance to check it out in case you missed it!

And finally, one of the best known theatre spaces in town, The New Hazlett Theater, turns 10 on September 16th! With this comes their 3rd CSA season; lots of fun coming up this fall, check it out here.

We were pretty busy this summer, you might have missed a show or two. Don’t worry, here are some highlights from Summer 2016:

Floyd Collins by Front Porch Theatricals

A History of the American Film by The Summer Company

Loot by Little Lake Theatre

Driftless by Hatch Arts Collective

The Birds by 12 Peers Theater

Seven Guitars by Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre Company

American Idiot by Alumni Theater Company

Julius Caesar by Throughline Theatre Company

SummerFest 2016 at the Opera Theater of Pittsburgh

Damn Yankees by the Pittsburgh CLO

Krapp’s Last Tape/Not, I by Tact Theater

Church Basement Ladies by South Park Theatre

Bloody Hell by the Rage of the Stage Players

The Theater Festival in Black and White at Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre

Another big thank you goes out to our readers and supporters. Without you this wouldn’t be possible! Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram! Keep track of all the fun using the hashtag #FallwithPITR

Fun with Shakespeare in the Parks!

poster-CoE-web-1024This Saturday marks the beginning of the 12th annual Pittsburgh Shakespeare in the Parks show; this year, they’ll be presenting one of Shakespeare’s earliest comedies, The Comedy of Errors. PSIP’s history includes the more well-known Shakespeare works like Macbeth and A Midsummer Night’s Dream and some  his lesser known works, such as The Merry Wives of Windsor or Love’s Labor’s Lost.  Pittsburgh Shakespeare in the Parks was created by Artistic Director Jennifer Tober in 2005 with their inaugural production of As You Like It. The company has continued to perform and expand its audience for over 10 years.

The Comedy of Errors is the story of two sets of long lost twins with the same names who happen to unknowingly find themselves in the same place at the same time. Hijinks and hilarity ensue, the siblings are all reunited, and they all live happily ever after! No witches or kings but *spoiler alert* no one dies! PSIP’s Artistic Director Jennifer Tober says that after working with COE’s director Chuck Beikert on UnSeam’d Shakespeare Co.’s show Out of This Furnace last year that the two started talking about doing Comedy of Errors, “Last year we did King Lear, and I think we were all ready for a comedy!COE is Shakespeare’s shortest play, and most likely his first,” said Tober. “It’s a really fun and accessible piece, with a ton of funny jokes and physical gags that the cast — a bunch of hams, really — is having a blast playing.”

Director Chuck Beikert is a PSIP veteran, Comedy of Errors marking his fourth production with the company, this being his first production he’s directed for PSIP. Though Beirkert has never directed COE until now, he has been a longtime fan of the play, “I first encountered it in 1987 when PBS aired a production featuring the juggling troupe The Flying Karamazov Brothers,” said Beirkert. “I have never forgotten watching that afternoon in my grandparents’ kitchen on a 13” Black and White television.”

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L-R Kneeling: Derrick Shane, Andrew William Miller, L-R Mid: Jessica Schiermeister, Tonya Lynn, Nick Benninger, L-R Back: Elizabeth Farina, Marc Espstein, Jennifer Tober, Jim Walker

This production will be plenty of fun with Beikert stating his comedic influences as The Three Stooges, Lucille Ball, Charlie Chaplin and many other classic slapstick acts. Performing with only nine actors can be challenging but it allows for aptly punctuated scenes and room for shenanigans! “This play is really a series of gags based on the premise of mistaken identity, and begs to be played at a frenetic pace,” says Beikert.  “These lines the characters speak are great and the story is neatly crafted…the key to that language is the action – a series of gags tied together by the text.”

PSIP is known for their physical storytelling and emphasis on the text and this year will prove to continue that legacy. The Opera Theater of Pittsburgh has been kind enough to donate their rehearsal space for the duration of Comedy of Errors’ rehearsal process so they’ve been able to avoid the stress of this August rain, “I think it allowed us to craft some complex comedy bits without the distractions we normally face outdoors.  We’ve taken it to the parks on weekends though and gotten some grass under our feet so I think everyone is ready to embrace the great outdoors” said Beikert.

Though they’ve been rehearsing inside, PSIP is free and accessible to the public in Pittsburgh’s many parks including Frick Park in Squirrel Hill and Arsnel Park in Lawrenceville.

PSIP’s Comedy of Errors promises big laughs in beautiful locations by Pittsburgh’s Shakespeare veterans. For more information about Pittsburgh Shakespeare in the Parks and their show locations, head to their website here.

And as they say, “Bring a blanket, a loved one, and a thermos” and enjoy some Shakespeare.

Collegiate Preview 2016

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College campuses throughout the city are springing back to life with students moving into their dorms, buying books and preparing for another semester of learning. With schools gearing up for fall term we want to make sure our readers are in the know when it comes to Pittsburgh’s collegiate  stage productions. Our first ever Collegiate Preview covers the four major universities and what they have to offer audiences the 2016-2017 season.

Point Park’s upcoming Conservatory season includes The Who’s Tommy, The Sea, The Best Christmas Pageant Ever: The Musical, Big Love, Sweet Charity, and Uncle Tom’s Cabin or the Most Popular American Play You’ve Never Seen. Plus some some surprises from the REP and the Conservatory Dance Company. Read more about what the Pittsburgh Playhouse’s 2016-2017 season has for us here.

The University of Pittsburgh Stages’ 2016-2017 season brings us a nice mix of classic musicals and modern plays. Pitt’s upcoming season includes Intimate Apparel, Hair, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Baltimore, and Peter and the Starcatcher. Click here to see what we’re in for this school year!

Carnegie Mellon University’s subscription series includes The Playboy of the Western WorldThe RoverRagtime, and The Three Musketeers.  Plus bonus Director Series and New Work Series! Check out what CMU will be bringing us here.

Duquense Univeristy’s Red Masquers has big plans this season starting with Avenue Q, How I Learned to Drive, Rust, Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, Proof, and True West. Finishing off the school year with a weekend of One Acts for Charity. Click here to find out more!

Follow along with our Collegiate adventures on our Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram with the hashtag #PITRUniversity!

Summer Preview 2016

Summer LogoA Letter from the Editor

To our beloved readers,

As most of you know, Pittsburgh in the Round has been working over two years to bring you the most comprehensive coverage of the local theater community. In that time, we have operated solely on a volunteer basis to bring you coverage of the theater scene we are so passionate about. In an attempt to create a more sustainable entity that can provide more for our readers and the theater community as well as keep up with its fast growth, we have become an official fiscally sponsored project of New Sun Rising! Among the many doors this opens, we may now accept tax deductible donations that will help us grow and better serve our community. If you or your organization are interested in donating to our cause, check out our donation page here.

With this announcement, we decided to launch our first annual Summer Preview which should keep you entertained until the leaves start to turn. There is a lot happening this summer and we don’t want you to miss a thing! We would love to hear from our readers and follow along with your Summer theater adventures so keep in touch with us on our Facebook, Twitter, and now Instagram using the hashtag #SummerwithPITR.

 

Happy Summer,

Mara E. Nadolski
Editor in Chief, Pittsburgh in the Round


Looking for some quality entertainment this summer beyond frequenting your neighborhood swimming pool? Luckily this season is full of opportunities to catch some local theater and we have put this guide together to make sure you don’t miss a thing! Every year, Pittsburgh’s theatre community gets bigger and bigger, with companies pushing the limits from ASD friendly performances to classic story adaptations. And this year is no different. If you’re curious about what this summer has to offer, then we’ve got you covered! Let’s start off with the Top 5 shows we’re looking forward to most this summer.

#5 -Venus in venusFur at the Pittsburgh Public Theater. Producing Artistic Director Ted Pappas says “New plays with exciting actors and edgy themes are a big part of what we love to produce at The Public. Venus in Fur is one of the best.” A play within a play adaptation of the 1870 novel Venus in Furs, David Ives introduces us to director/writer Thomas in the throes of attempting to find an actress to play Wanda von Dunayev in his play of the same name. Eventually an actress named Vanda shows up to audition in her best dominatrix get-up and “the erotic seduction of power takes center stage and the rules of domination are forever reversed.” according to PPT’s website. Just make sure you’ve got a babysitter for the night; you aren’t going to want your kids to see this! Venus in Fur plays at the Pittsburgh Public Theater with previews starting June 2nd.

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Andreas O’Rourke as Dracula bound in chains. Photo by Joseph Stammerjohn and Eyes to the Sky Films.

#4 – Rage of the Stage Players’ latest adaptation, Bloody Hell A play inspired by characters in Bram Stoker’s “Dracula”. Adapted by artistic director James Michael Shoberg. Rage of the Stage is known for their dark reimaginations of classic stories and Bloody Hell makes no exceptions. Shoberg says “Bloody Hell is the final installment of my “Old London Series” of plays based on Victorian novels set in a dystopian future (following Hooked and Oliver Twisted). Though it was inspired by characters from  “Dracula,” the story has many surprises and twists and turns which will make it an entirely new experience for our audiences. Bloody Hell features a large cast of some of Pittsburgh’s most talented character actors, and they couldn’t be more excited to originate such unique roles in this world premiere play. It’s also been my great pleasure to direct this gifted and enthusiastic ensemble. They certainly do my writing justice. I definitely believe this dark, edgy Rage of the Stage Players’ production is a live summer event that’s not to be missed!”  Bloody Hell plays at the McKeesport Little Theater starting June 24th.

#3 – The Hound of Baskervilles from Kinetic Theatre thobBased on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s 1902 novel of the same name, we follow the infamous Sherlock Holmes as he solves a mystery with murder, a family curse, and a dog! “The script for the show is by the British comedy troupe Peepolykus (people like us, get it?). Fans of John Cleese, Michael Palin, and Monty Python’s Flying Circus will recognize the mad, deadly serious, and uniquely British hilarity that ensues when three fearless actors re-tell a favorite story: improvising props, costumes, and scenery and playing all the roles themselves. Our stellar cast consists of local favorite David Whalen as Holmes, reigning Post-Gazette Performer of the Year James FitzGerald as Watson, and Connor McCanlus as the Baskervilles. This will be a real summertime romp – fun for the whole family!” says Artistic Director Andrew Paul. The Hound of Baskervilles plays at Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre starting July 21st.

#2 – The Birds at 12 Peers An adaptation of the 1963 classic Alfred HitchcocThe Birds Text-1k movie of the same name, based on the Daphne du Maurier’s short story, The Birds by Conor McPherson is a story of survival, paranoia, and well, birds. Directed by artistic director Vince Ventura, he’s “proud to present the Pittsburgh premiere of this tense, disturbing, thriller.  With an amazing technical team, and a new location for 12 Peers Theater, in the Studio Theatre at the Cathedral of Learning,” Ventura promises not to disappoint, “Conor McPherson is one of our generation’s best playwright, and most of his major works have been loved by audiences in Pittsburgh.” The Birds plays at the Studio Theatre in the basement of the Cathedral of Learning starting August 4th.

#1 – WordPlay at Bricolage2016-WordPlay web copy Storytelling is one of the oldest, simplest forms of theater, so why wouldn’t WordPlay be the thing we’re looking forward to most this summer? Hosted by Alan Olifson, whom you might also know for hosting Pittsburgh’s Moth StorySLAM. “The August WordPlay comes at an exciting time for the show as we start exploring new creative partnerships with some of the best writing and musical fixtures in the city. So our eleventh(!) show promises to be one of our best.” says Alan. Bricolage is still accepting story submissions for their August show and their November show! And anyone can submit a story, you don’t even have to be an actor! Even our writer Isaac has told a story for WordPlay! WordPlay goes down August 26th and 27th at Bricolage!

If musicals are your cup of tea, check out Drake’s special on the musicals he’s most excited about here.

Would you rather see a variety of plays all at once? Then you might want to see what’s in store for the upcoming Theater Festival in Black and White at Pittsburgh Playwrights or the next 10 Minute Play Festival at City of Asylum.

Need more insight on what else is in store for us this summer? How about some season previews?

Or maybe an Artist Spotlight of City Theatre’s artistic director Tracy Brigden is more your speed. She’s finishing her 15th season with City!

We also checked in with Little Lake Theatre to see what they’re up to since their major administrative changes!

Did you miss Mother Lode back in January at off the WALL? Well, you’re in luck. They’re doing another round from June 2nd to June 4th and here’s Megan’s review from the previous production!

Did you miss out on any of our reviews in May? You’re in luck, here’s a list of what we published in the Merry Month of May.

How about our coverage of the Fringe Festival? And don’t forget about the group of locals taking Dani Girl to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival!

Another big thank you goes out to our readers and supporters. Without you this wouldn’t be possible! Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and now Instagram! Keep track of all the fun using the hashtag #SummerwithPITR