Things To Do This Weekend in Pittsburgh

Top Picks: Broadway returns to ... Heinz Field? Plus a visit from one of Cleveland's finest comics and Open Streets.

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Despite a clue in the name, even Pittsburghers with long memories forget that the bygone Civic Arena was built for the Civic Light Opera — the organization frequently referred to by its initials, CLO.

The region’s musical-theater specialists were the primary tenants when the pre-Igloo Civic Arena opened in 1961, and the famous retractable roof was put in place to allow for open-air performances. Six decades later — and in observation of the organization’s 75th anniversary — the CLO has returned not just to the open air, but to a prominent sporting ground.

The “Summer Under the Stars” series, the CLO’s first in-person events since early 2020, kicked off earlier this month with selections from “The Wizard of Oz” performed at Heinz Field. The second half of the event, “Pittsburgh CLO’s 75th Anniversary: A Broadway Musical Celebration,” opens tonight and continues through Friday evening. Expect selections from megahits such as “Chicago” and “A Chorus Line,” a nod to the CLO’s globetrotting production of “An American in Paris” and even a bit of current favorite “In the Heights.”

I wouldn’t bet on hearing a stirring rendition of Styx’s “Renegade” as a nod to the venue, but I suppose anything is possible.

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Comedian Mary Santora has established herself as one of Cleveland’s finest — but she’s conquered plenty of stages in Pittsburgh in the process. Santora appeared multiple times at Arcade Comedy Theater and the Burning Bridges Comedy Festival before being named the “Top Undiscovered Comic in Ohio” by Thrillist and joining the popular Cleveland radio show hosted by former 105.9 The X host Alan Cox. She’ll headline a show at the Thunderbird Cafe on Thursday night, along with Steve Hofstetter of the budding Steel City Arts Foundation.

Speaking of comedians, Bo Burnham’s genre-shattering comedy special “Inside” emerged as a late-pandemic sensation, providing an early skewering of our COVID-era mindset but also a poignant acknowledgment of the ongoing feelings and trauma caused by a year of change and isolation. (If you haven’t seen it, don’t worry — I promise it’s entertaining and not just an emotional earthquake.) The Netflix hit is getting a very brief theatrical run; it’ll play at the Manor Theater in Squirrel Hill at 9:30 p.m. Thursday-Sunday only.

The next edition of OpenStreetsPGH takes over a bit of Hazelwood (both the neighborhood and the still-growing Hazelwood Green development) this Sunday. You’ll get a chance to burn some calories and then get ’em back to great music — the theme for this installment is “Bikes, BBQ & Beer.”

A sure sign that things are getting back to normal: Hitmakers of yesteryear are playing their hits at Jergel’s Rhythm Grille. This Sunday night, catch hair-metal heroes Warrant celebrating the 30th anniversary of their smash “Cherry Pie.”

Watch Sean Collier talk about this weekend’s picks on KDKA’s “Pittsburgh Today Live” here:

Looking for more ideas? Check out our full events calendar here.

Categories: Things To Do