OnStage

2014AlarumLogoHoward Barker's "Slowly" makes its Pittsburgh debut courtesy of Alarum Theatre, which sets up shop on Schenley Park's Flagstaff Hill (Schenley Drive and W. Circuit Road) at 7 p.m. tonight, plus next Thursday and Friday and 6 p.m. Saturday (April 24-26). The 45-minute play, about four women waiting in their besieged city for the arrival of conquering forces, is directed by Jordan Matthew Walsh and stars Jenny Malarkey, Amanda Montoya, Cynthia Sulemana and Lauryn Thomas. Chairs are provided; tickets are $15 ($10 for students) at www.brownpapertickets.com/event/627190. Rain dates will be announced if necessary. For further information, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

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AWCompWinners2014

Check out some of the Pittsburgh ties in this press release about the judges for the sixth annual August Wilson Monologue Competition on Monday, May 5, at Broadway's August Wilson Theatre, home of the "Jersey Boys." Representing Pittsburgh after winning the local contest will be ShaQjuan Tyler, Lawrence White and Shawndasia Collins (above, image by Emmai Alaquiva):

 

Jujamcyn Theatersand True Colors Theatre Company have announced the judges for the event -- which is free and open to the public -- and features high school students from Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, Pittsburgh and Seattle performing monologues by the late, legendary American playwright.

Judges for the 2014 August Wilson Monologue Competition will include Narda E. Alcorn (stage manager), David Cromer (director/actor), Stephen McKinley Henderson (actor), Pauletta Washington (actress and wife of Denzel), and James A. Williams (actor).

The evening will also include performances by well-known Wilsonian veterans and special musical guests. The complete list of performers will be announced shortly.

Founded in 2007, the annual August Wilson Monologue Competition aims to expose a new generation of creative minds to the life's work and artistic legacy of this seminal American playwright. Program participants in cities across the country encounter Wilson's ten-play cycle and receive coaching from teaching artists as they prepare their monologues for local, city-wide and national competitions.

This year's competition will afford students from these cities around the country the opportunity to attend Broadway's "After Midnight," work closely with two of Wilson's closest collaborators: director Kenny Leon and Pittsburgh dramaturg and playwright Todd Kreidler, and explore popular Manhattan attractions before making their Broadway stage debuts. The two finalists from each regional city will compete, and the top contestants will be chosen to perform on the August Wilson Stage on May 5.

The top three contestants from the national competition receive monetary awards. The first place winner will receive a $1,000 cash prize, the runner-up a $500 cash prize and the honorable mention a $250 cash prize. Each of the winners will also become eligible for college scholarship opportunities and all finalists receive the gift of TCG's Century Cycle collection.

The Monologue Competition is also featured in "The Start of Dreams," a documentary directed by The Horne Brothers. Featuring A-list actors like Denzel Washington, Samuel L. Jackson and Phylicia Rashad, "The Start of Dreams" is packed with Hollywood's elite weighing in on this important art form and what it means to the United States. 

 

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Attilio "Buck" Favorini, the founding chair of the Department of Theatre Arts at the University of Pittsburgh, will be inducted into the College of Fellows of the American Theatre this weekend at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. The award "honors distinguished achievers ... of recognized national stature in professional and educational theatre." This year's other honorees are Frank Galiano, Alan MacVey, Kathryn D. Robinson, Robert Schenkkan, Thomas C. Schumacher, Roberta Uno and Jim Volz.

 

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Also freshly arrived via email, the 2014 fellowship recipients of the Drama League's Directors Project, which include Carnegie Mellon graduate Lavina Jadwani. She receives a four-month residency at Shakespeare & Company in Lenox, Mass., assisting on mainstage productions and directing in the company's extensive Shakespeare education program.

Here's what the release had to say about the honoree in the classical directing program: Lavina Jadhwani was named Time Out Chicago's "Best Next Generation Stage Director." Her work has been seen at Silk Road Rising (Artistic Associate), Rasaka Theatre Company (Artistic Director, 2007-2013), Apple Tree, Bailiwick, Chicago Dramatists, Oak Park Festival Theatre, Raven Theatre, Remy Bumppo, the side project, Stage Left, Victory Gardens, and others. She received an SDCF Observership, an Illinois Board of Higher Education Fellowship, and three LMDA awards. Proud graduate of Carnegie Mellon; currently pursuing an MFA in Directing at The Theatre School at DePaul University.

 

 

 

 

 

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Giles

Martin Giles, a stalwart of Pittsburgh stages as an actor, director and writer, is about to take it on the chin from his friends -- and like it. Bricolage Theater will present "The Roast of Martin Giles: A Cut Throat Affair!" at 7 p.m. Monday, April 14. 

Giles is in remission after battling throat cancer, and the roast is a benefit to help keep his recovery in full swing.

"Marty has given so much to our theater community,"  Bricolage producing artistic director Tami Dixon said of Giles, a Post-Gazette Performer of the Year. "He's been a staple on every stage in town for the last 30 years. As an actor he's giving us award-winning performances, as a playwright he's written beautiful scripts and as a director he's staged moving and memorable plays. We just know our community will come to his aid, and what better way than a roast!"

Featured roasters include stage veterans Tony Bingham, Jarrod DiGiorgi, Patrick Jordan, Jason McCune, Sheila McKenna, Joe Schulz, Gayle Pazerski Stephenson and the Post-Gazette's senior theater critic, Chris Rawson. 

A donation will get you in the door, plus food and drink. Proceeds go directly to the roastee. Doors open at 6:30 p.m.; for reservations RSVP to Tami Dixon at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

 

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Some news and notes from the Pittsburgh theater scene:

Pittsburgh Irish and Classical Theatre will present "UnCommon Pleas: An Evening of Legal Theatrical Entertainment," in which the killer Macbeths (played by attorney Dennis Ukovic and Pittsburgh High Tech Council president Audrey Russo) "appeal their murder convictions in front of six noteworthy judges." The event, co-sponsored by the Arts and Law Committee of the Allegheny County Bar Association, is at the Duquesne Club March 27 and features cocktails and hors d'oeuvres, a three-course meal to go along with the case if Shakespearan proportions.

The first-time PICT UnCommon Pleas event was created to help the theater company fulfill a commitment to make classic theater in general and Shakespeare in particular accessible to all.

The event is co-chaired by PICT Theatre's board president Charles H. Moellenberg Jr. (Jones Day) and his wife Karen Moellenberg, also an attorney, and Thomas G. Donahue (Dinsmore & Shohl LLP). The six judges who will deliberate are the Honorable Maurice B. Cohill Jr., Judge Nora Barry Fischer, Court of Common Pleas president Judge Jeffrey Manning, Superior Court Judge Judith Olson, Common Pleas Complex Case Judge Christine Ward and Common Pleas Judge and former Pittsburgh Steeler Dwayne Woodruff.

Tickets are $250 per person or $200 for members of the Arts & the Law Committee, Homer S. Brown Division, and Young Lawyers Division of the ACBA; 412-561-6000 or http://picttheatre.org/plays-events/pict-uncommon-pleas/. 

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Pittsburgh CLO has announced the cast for CLO Cabaret's Johnny Cash "Ring of Fire" (May 22-Aug. 17) at the Cabaret at Theater Square. This is not a Johnny Cash bioplay, by the way, but drawn from almost 40 songs. The musical conceived by William Meade and created and directed by Richard Maltby Jr. when it debuted in 2006 is about three American couples and as they progress through life, Maltby told Playbill.com. Songs include "Country Boy," "A Thing Called Love," "Five Feet High and Rising," "Daddy Sang Bass," "I Walk the Line," "I've Been Everywhere," "The Man in Black" and Cash's final hit, "Hurt."

The cast includes  singer/songwriter and accomplished guitarist Jay Hitt, who last appeared at the CLO Cabaret in "Always ... Patsy Cline" and New York stage veteran Nicole Stefonek. Making their CLO Cabaret debuts are Point Park grads Paul Koudouris and Jon Rohlf; CMU grads Mitch Marois and Erika Strasburg; and Santino Tomasetti, a graduate of the American Musical and Dramatic Academy. Guy Stroman directs, with Chris "Red" Blisset as musical director.

Tickets for the CLO Cabaret show are available at CLOCabaret.com or 412-456-6666.

 

 

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Here's a first look at the cover from BroadwayWorld.com that Pittsburgh Billy shared on Facebook:

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