Best of Culture: June

Our arts editors have assembled a list of the finest summertime plays, lectures, dance performances and exhibits.




All Aboard!

June 23
In the history of motorized parts, no sight has been more beautiful than a vintage car. Top off the Pennsylvania Trolley Museum’s 50th Anniversary Weekend celebration with a drive down memory lane at the Classic Car Show. You’ll find antique vehicles that ran on both road and rail, back when mass and private transit shared the byways. While you’re there, check out the colossal Trolley Display Building.

(One Museum Road, Washington; 724/228-9256, pa-trolley.org) - Robert Isenberg; photo by David H. Hamley on June 23, 1963



By Robert Isenberg

Pittsburgh Irish & Classical Theatre
May 30-June 22

The Kreutzer Sonata is based on what might be Leo Tolstoy’s darkest story: A man marries a woman, but their love sours; she takes refuge in her love of music (and the arms of another musician), sending him into an unbridled rage. The story’s shocking finale cuts the reader like a knife. Irish playwright Nancy Harris adapted this furious story for the stage, making it the perfect material for PICT. Kreutzer was quite a coup in the late-19th century: Not only was the story banned in Russia, but Tolstoy considered the novella an argument for sexual abstinence.

(Henry Heymann Theatre, Stephen Foster Memorial, Oakland; 412/561-6000, picttheatre.org)

Pittsburgh CLO
June 21-30

Christine Daae is a simple girl in Paris who wants to become an opera singer. Erik, a mysterious stranger, agrees to train her voice, but Christine is never allowed to see his face. Little does Christine know that Erik “haunts” the local opera house, and he is falling in love with her. The story may sound familiar, but don’t confuse Kopit and Yeston’s Phantom for the operetta by Andrew Lloyd Webber. Phantom may also be a musical, but Maury Yeston and Arthur Kopit put their own twist on Gaston Leroux’s gothic novel The Phantom of the Opera. The CLO presents this alternate show, an acclaimed musical that has wowed audiences across the country but never appeared on Broadway.

(Benedum Center, Seventh Street and Penn Avenue, downtown; 412/456-6666, pittsburghclo.org)

Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre Co.
June 1-29

A desperate run for mayor. An explosive scandal. A showdown between a successful businessman and a civic hero. August Wilson’s Radio Golf is so believable that you might mistake its plot for this year’s political race. The final episode of the 10-play Pittsburgh Cycle, Radio Golf centers on Harmond Wilkes, a real-estate mogul from the Hill District. Wilkes hopes to become the first African-American mayor of Pittsburgh. The only thing that stands in his way is a crumbling house on Wylie Avenue. Will ghosts from the past destroy Wilkes’ ambitions? Or will they save his soul? Pittsburgh Playwrights presents the final masterpiece by August Wilson, the Steel City’s most beloved dramatist.

(937 Liberty Ave., downtown; 412/377-7803, pghplaywrights.com)

Pittsburgh Public Theater
May 30-June 30

Think of someone close to you — a friend, a lover, a sibling. This person announces, out of nowhere, that she is publishing a memoir about your most horrifying shared experience. To make matters worse, this person flaunts the exact opposite politics of yours. How would you respond? Other Desert Cities (by Jon Robin Baitz) imagines this scenario, and the power of his play made it a finalist for the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. The Public completes its highly political “Made in America” season with this intimate showdown between liberals and conservatives, proving once again that the personal is political.

(621 Penn Ave., downtown; 412/316-1600, ppt.org)


By Mike May

Dollar Bank Three Rivers Arts Festival
June 7-16

This year’s Three Rivers Arts Festival is set to make a splash in more ways than one. After a four-year dry spell, the fountain at Point State Park is set to return, with its 150-foot-high plume of water firing on opening day. Look for other special highlights that evening, including a waterscape of lights on the three rivers, as water enthusiasts are encouraged to decorate their crafts. During its more than 50 years in existence, the annual arts fest, which has become a multimedia event, still retains at its core a celebration of the visual arts.

Among special features for this year’s event are public-art installations, including “Drift,” a collaborative — and moveable — project by Carnegie Mellon University School of Fine Art graduates, which makes use of the riverfront for its exhibition space and palette. Hugh Hayden merges African-American identity and classic Americana in “American Hero No. 4,” and Vanessa German offers an interactive experience for festival patrons in the Creativity Zone.

Other highlights include a Flight School Visual Art Exhibition and a sculpture created by the Society of Sculptors. Look for more visual-arts stimulation with other special exhibits and happenings at Cultural District galleries. Last but not least, longtime festival traditions are back, including the Juried Visual Art Exhibition and the Artists Market.

(Point State Park, Gateway Center and Cultural District, downtown; 412/456-6666, 3riversartsfest.org)


“The Patron Saint of White Guys That Went Tribal and Other Works”
June 15-Sept. 15

The Andy Warhol Museum presents Pittsburgh artist and tattooist Nick Bubash in his first solo museum exhibition: a recreation of Bubash’s studio and a collection of found-object sculptures revealing “a playful approach to the artist’s practices and sardonic sense of humor.”

(117 Sandusky St., North Shore, 412/237-8300, warhol.org)

“Marshes, Mountains, and Fields: Small Landscapes, Big Views”
Through June 22

See interpretations of nature by landscape painter Crista Pisano.

(BoxHeart Expressions, 4523 Liberty Ave., Bloomfield; 412/687-8858, boxheartgallery.com)

SOLO Exhibits
Through June 29

Three artists — Leslie Ansley, Jo-Anne Bates and Tina Brewer — exhibit their work in a trio of shows featuring paper, fiber art and paint.

(August Wilson Center for African American Culture, 980 Liberty Ave., downtown; 412/258-2700, augustwilsoncenter.org)

“Caldwell Linker: All Through the Night” & “Genesis Breyer P-Orridge: S/HE IS HER/E”
June 15-Sept. 15

“All Through the Night” comprises images documenting the LGBT community by photographer Caldwell Linker, who moved to Pittsburgh in 2007. “S/HE IS HER/E” is the first solo museum exhibition, with more than 100 works, for British performance artist, musician and essayist Genesis Breyer P-Orridge.

(The Andy Warhol Museum, 117 Sandusky St., North Shore; 412/237-8300, warhol.org)


By Karen Dacko

Work It Out
June 5-9

Choreographer Beth Corning goes solo this year for Pittsburgh’s fourth annual installment of The Glue Factory Project, an initiative that addresses universal human issues. Remains, a multidisciplinary dance-theater work developed in collaboration with and directed by Tony Award-winning director Dominque Serrand, unfolds as a series of vignettes covering youth, loss, mortality and end-of-life concerns.

(Corningworks at the New Hazlett Theater, 6 Allegheny Square East, North Side; 412/320-4610, corningworks.org)

Pittsburgh Youth Ballet Co. & School
May 31-June 1

When downtown subway construction transformed Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre soloist Jean Gedeon’s commute into an obstacle course, the South Hills resident established Pittsburgh Youth Ballet Co. Now celebrating its 30th anniversary, the troupe presents George Balanchine’s Tchaikovsky-driven Serenade, influenced by Commedia dell‘arte (a type of theater that originated in Italy), and composer Riccardo Drigo’s Harlequinade, a section performed by 32 children.

(Byham Theater, 101 Sixth St., downtown, 412/969-6000; pybco.org)

The Pillow Project
June 8

Musical guest Phat Man Dee, a local chanteuse known for an eclectic repertoire and original compositions, takes center stage for an evening of dance improvisation, collaboration and multimedia experimentation that includes live video projections, a chalk art installation and spontaneous Freejazz, a dance style combining physicality with jazz musicality. 

(The Space Upstairs, 214 N. Lexington St., Point Breeze; pillowproject.org)


By Kristofer Collins

Bloomsday
June 16

Stately plump Buck Mulligan swaps the Liffey for the Allegheny as Pittsburgh celebrates Bloomsday, an annual worldwide event that started in 1954 in Ireland to memorialize James Joyce’s great modernist masterpiece Ulysses.

Organized locally by Dublin native Anne Burnham, this series of readings from the novel moves around the city to sites that stand in for book settings.

The novel’s hero, Leopold Bloom (from whom the event gets its name), is a peripatetic sort. So Bloomsday, now in its 25th year, moves from neighborhood to neighborhood, stopping at bars, cemeteries and bookstores along the way for readings from Ulysses. Note: Participants are encouraged to bring the book with them.

(bloomsdaypittsburgh.org)

 

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Hot Reads

Chuck Noll: A Man for All Seasons

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The 412

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In its 225th year, the reference book on weather suggests we tune up our snow-removal equipment.
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The Ross native finished third on NBC's “The Voice” in December of 2014.
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Zoom in on the places that make our region so fascinating and diverse.
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Hot Reads

Chuck Noll: A Man for All Seasons

Chuck Noll: A Man for All Seasons

Two years after Chuck Noll’s death, University of Pittsburgh Press prepares to publish the first definitive biography of the legendary Pittsburgh Steelers coach. Pittsburgh Magazine is proud to share an interview with author Michael MacCambridge and an exclusive excerpt of “Chuck Noll: His Life’s Work,” scheduled for release in October.
The Changing Face of Campus in Pittsburgh

The Changing Face of Campus in Pittsburgh

Renovation is under way at nearly all of our area colleges and universities. For students heading back to school this fall — and their parents — we offer this crash course on the highlights of these projects and their projected benefits.
Fall Fashion: In the Black

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The little black dress, and shirt, and pants, never go out of style. Add mystery to your wardrobe with these easy-to-accent autumn staples.
Apteka: A Taste of Home

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Talk of The Tahn: City of Beer

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There are plans afoot for a international museum of beer to be built and staffed right here in Pittsburgh.
Pitt vs Penn State: Resumption of Hostilities

Pitt vs Penn State: Resumption of Hostilities

After an extended hiatus, the storied rivalry between the Pitt Panthers and Penn State Nittany Lions returns in September to Heinz Field.
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On the Blogs


Old Farmer’s Almanac: Winter in Pittsburgh Will Be Warmer, But…

Old Farmer’s Almanac: Winter in Pittsburgh Will Be Warmer, But…

In its 225th year, the reference book on weather suggests we tune up our snow-removal equipment.

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Pittsburgh, only cooler
PittGirl: How You Should Grade A Squishy Tongue

PittGirl: How You Should Grade A Squishy Tongue

Kennywood Park opens soon and new this season is the return of the famed whale at the entrance of Noah’s Ark. In the name of science, PittGirl paid an early visit to test the squishiness quotient of the whale's all-important tongue.

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All the foodie news that's fit to blog
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Some of the city's top chefs and bartenders are organizing events to raise awareness about food waste and hate crimes in our community.

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Not just good stuff. Great stuff.
The 5 Best Comic Shops in Pittsburgh

The 5 Best Comic Shops in Pittsburgh

These comic book shops offer more than just your casual Batman or Spider-Man choices.

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New Industry Public House Location Up to Par

New Industry Public House Location Up to Par

If you’re in need of a dining option that’s not a national chain while visiting the Robinson area, this is one to keep in mind.

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Mike Prisuta's Sports Section

A weekly look at the games people are playing and the people who are playing them.
Le'Veon Bell Talks The Talk But Can’t Walk The Walk

Le'Veon Bell Talks The Talk But Can’t Walk The Walk

The Steelers running back emphasized his latest suspension resulted from missed random drug tests, and not a relapse into the marijuana-induced haze that got him jammed up last season. But if you lack the maturity to grasp the consequences of your actions (or, in this case, inactions), does it really matter?

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Style. Design. Goods. Hide your credit card.
Custom Made: The Surmesur Suit

Custom Made: The Surmesur Suit

Straight out of Canada, the custom menswear store opens its first U.S. location in Pittsburgh.

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Sean Collier's Popcorn for Dinner

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Hipsters in Iraq, Cops and Robbers in the Old West

Hipsters in Iraq, Cops and Robbers in the Old West

Reviews of "War Dogs" and "Hell or High Water," plus local movie news and notes.

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Everything you need to know about getting married in Pittsburgh today.
The Lucky Ones: Katie Doré and John Potter

The Lucky Ones: Katie Doré and John Potter

Want even more Real Pittsburgh Weddings? We'll be bringing them to you throughout the fall, beginning with this lovely and lucky couple.

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The latest tips and trends to refresh your home.
Put a Lid On It! The Container Store Coming to Pittsburgh

Put a Lid On It! The Container Store Coming to Pittsburgh

The store famous for carrying storage and organizational products is set to open at the revamped Block Northway in Ross Township.

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The hottest topics in higher education
Two Events Planned for Prospective Waynesburg Students

Two Events Planned for Prospective Waynesburg Students

A fall visitation day and a Saturday information session aim to allow interested students a look into life at the university.

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